MSI Creator 17 A10SFS microphone is almost all just noise

Joined
May 25, 2021
Messages
8
I've tried a couple of searches in this forum . . . MSI Creator 17 A10SFS laptop. Online meetings worked well originally, but for quite some time participants on the other end report my mic is nothing but "noise". I'm looking for suggestions! I've disabled every option in Nahimic. Even in that program, clicking "Try It" just results in noise anyway. I'll next be disabling any portion of Nahimic from starting up - it's been continuously annoying how it automatically updates without warning anyway. I'll see if that helps. I did find the thread with details on how to really get rid of Nahimic. That is, unless Nahimic can resolve the problem instead.

The only practical way I have of quickly testing and trying things ATM is using Win10's Voice Recorder. Every recording sounds like full spectrum hissing noise from the right speaker, and my voice barely audible on the left (with volume up over 1/2 way - WAY louder than I would have it for anything else.)

Also in Creator Center, the only option pertaining to the mic - noise cancellation, seems to have no effect.

In Windows 10 Settings/Sound, "Test Microphone" constantly has the bar bouncing from about 5 to 20%, even if it's totally silent in the room. Of course, the system fans are running constantly. In Creator Center, changing "User Scenario" from Max Performance to Silent slows the fans from ~4,200 RPM to <~3,000 RPM, with no noticeable effect on the "Test Microphone" meter.
In Additional Device Properties, I've tried the Microphone Boost at max (+30db), and interestingly under the Advanced tab, with Signal Enhancements unchecked, the Windows Setting's "microphone test" reported a max level of 100% detected. Prior to unchecking Signal Enhancements, it was very low - ~12-15%, even speaking in a loud voice directly into the laptop.

This model has an Nvidia RTX 2070 Super with Max-Q. I could swear I once saw some microphone sound settings in the GeForce settings, but not today. It does have audio settings for output, Etc.
 
Joined
May 25, 2021
Messages
8
Bump. The problem continues. I've updated Nahimic 3 again, Realtek audio drivers, GeForce Experience and drivers. With so many programs that may affect the microphone (none have solved the issue).
Creator Center (noise cancellation).

Nahimic: I've not yet tried to disable it entirely (prevent any portion of Nahimic from starting) or uninstall it. I did find and save instructions for uninstalling it. Screenshots attached.

Windows microphone device settings (screenshot attached - there are two "microphones") - one is the actual one (Realtek), the other MSI Sound Tune is for plugged-in microphones?

I JUST found a new group of settings - in Control Panel/Sounds. Attached screenshot. Interesting! The Realtek microphone is the default microphone, however Microphone "MSI Sound Tune" is constantly bouncing indicated sound levels?! More experimentation is needed - sound near the laptop doesn't affect the bouncing level at all. I will be trying to disable the MSI Sound Tune "microphone", leaving the Realtek microphone enabled (and default). If no joy, I'll reverse to the MSI Sound Tune mic. enabled and default with Realtek disabled.

There's the Realtek Audio Console, which looks like it should be where the settings are made. When launched, it is MSI branded. I'm currently Audio Driver Version 6.0.9202.1, UI Version 1.27.253.0. Of course, I've tried all manner of settings, which had significant effects but never came close to resolving the problem. Screenshot attached for reference.

Nothing above hints as to why the microphone worked initially but starting having this problem months ago.
 

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Crazydonkey

Well-known member
SECOND LIEUTENANT
Joined
Jun 30, 2020
Messages
1,959
Please try to disconnect the network, and uninstall nahimic, and realtek driver.
After reboot the system, if the problem still remains, it should be related to hardware.
If not, get all the drivers back from MSI webiste.
 
Joined
May 25, 2021
Messages
8
Thanks Crazydonkey! I'll try your suggestions and post back my findings. I appreciate all help and insight! I do strongly suspect a software/driver issue; I think it's unlikely the microphone is having a H/W problem. I sure hope not!
 
Joined
May 25, 2021
Messages
8
I'm still pursuing this. I haven't had a convenient block of time when I don't need this system. In the meantime I've rounded up downloads of all the pieces it looks like. MSI took down the bookmarked page for this model (less than a year old?!). WTH?! Hitting their download site entering in this exact model gets me a "500" page. Argh. I found a similar model's downloads, and everything matches up with previous downloads. Also, MSI Sound Tune (and other MSI bundled apps/utils) are part of Creator Center. What a mess! There is no distinct download for MSI Sound Tune, the Realtek driver can be downloaded under "Microsoft Apps" in Creator Center, but also available in MSI's downloads as a distinct download. Fun! Same with Creator Center itself - MSI download and Microsoft Apps.

To add to my confusion, I have (installed as long as I can recall, and screenshots of updating on 2021-09-29, Realtek Audio Control from Microsoft Apps. Yet looking today, the only thing I DO
have installed is Realtek Audio Console. And when launched, is a very sparse MSI branded utility. That will be uninstalled...
And to add to the fun, MSI's Sound Tune seems great? 🤷‍♂️ And in Settings/Apps it's listed as installed (2021-09-09), version 2.0.1.7🤷‍♂️. Sound Tune is accessed in Creator Center, and has selections for ONLY Realtek Audio for speakers and microphone. It will be interesting if the Realtek drivers are uninstalled...

:unsure:

MSI's download pages in case it helps someone else:
Creator Center/Dragon Center: Yes, it's "sound tune" https://www.msi.com/Landing/msi_sound_tune
Nahimic 3 and Realtek driver (all downloads for Creator 17 A10SF-257 (Yes, it's "down-bios): https://us.msi.com/product/support_sku/72451#down-bios
In case you missed it, the above can be had via Microsoft Apps (in Creator Center). Sound Tune is in Creator Center's Live Update.
 
Joined
Nov 25, 2021
Messages
52
please perform an clean installation of creator center audio drivers and related apps.
1. audio drivers and apps
https://us.msi.com/faq/faq-3640
2. creator center clean installation guide
 
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