If the music in your library skips or the audio breaks up when you play it in Windows Media Player, there might be a problem with the audio driver installed on your computer. Typically, this type of problem occurs only toward the end of songs (in the last 20 seconds or so).

In some cases, you can work around the problem by disabling optional speaker effects that are collectively known as enhancements. If disabling speaker effects solves the problem, this usually means that there is an underlying issue with your audio driver. If an updated driver is available, we recommend that you install it so that you can reenable speaker audio enhancements.

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To disable speaker audio enhancements

  1. Open Audio Devices and Sound Themes by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking Control Panel, clicking Hardware and Sound, and then clicking Sound.

  2. On the Playback tab, click Speakers, and then click Properties.

  3. Click the Enhancements tab, and then select the Disable all enhancements check box.

    If you don't see an Enhancements tab in the Speakers Properties dialog box, those features are not available for your speakers and this procedure is not applicable to your computer.

    If disabling audio enhancements solves the audio problem you're experiencing, this typically indicates that your audio driver needs to be updated. If disabling audio enhancements does not solve the problem, contact your computer manufacturer for further assistance.

To update your audio driver

If disabling audio enhancements solves the audio problem you're experiencing, this usually means that there is an underlying issue with your audio driver. Check to see if an updated driver is available for your computer. Here's how:

  1. Go to Windows Update and install any available audio driver updates.

    For information about using Windows Update, see Install Windows updates.

  2. If no updates are available or if installing the update doesn't solve your problem, go to your computer manufacturer's website and search for audio driver updates for your specific computer model (updates are usually available in the "Support" or "Software Downloads" section of the company's website).

    For example, if you have a recent Dell computer and you've been experiencing audio problems with Windows Vista, see the Dell Forums webpage for information about downloading the latest audio driver for certain Dell models.

  3. (Optional) After you've updated your audio driver, try enabling speaker audio enhancements again.

    To enable speaker enhancements, follow the instructions in the procedure "To disable speaker audio enhancements," but, in step 3, clear the Disable all enhancements check box instead of selecting it.