RAM is an essential component of your computer system as it allows your computer to store data and information for quick retrieval. RAM also helps your computer to process data faster. If you are a power user, you may need to upgrade your RAM to keep up with your demanding usage.
Many users who upgrade their RAM suddenly can’t listen to audio anymore. It can be a headache to solve, but there are a few potential reasons why this might happen. In this article, we’ll review some of the most common reasons why audio might not work after upgrading your RAM and how to fix the problem.
Why Does Audio Doesn’t Work After RAM Upgrade?
Upgraded RAM could cause no audio due to several reasons, including the RAM configuration, RAM frequency errors, and RAM bottleneck. There could be more possibilities like the sound card not working, the GPU not supporting the RAM, and other hardware issues.
RAM Channel Errors: RAM channels transfer data between the RAM and the CPU. Most computers use two channels, but some high-end computers use four channels. If you have two RAM sticks installed on your computer, they should be in the same channel. If they’re not, this could cause issues.
RAM Frequency Errors: RAM frequency is the hertz at which the RAM runs. Your CPU can only run at a certain frequency; if your RAM runs at a different frequency, it won’t support many functions.
RAM Bottleneck: All systems have limited RAM capacity. Exceeding your RAM beyond that capacity might cause the RAM bottleneck and affect other functions like audio and rendering.
Sound Card Errors: During RAM upgradation, we don’t care about other hardware and accidentally unplug the sound card. If you have a dedicated sound card, it must be properly plugged into the motherboard.
GPU Not Supporting RAM: We often forget that our graphics card also uses RAM. If you have installed new RAM and your graphics card is incompatible, this could be the reason for no audio.
Correct RAM channel Configurations
When buying a new RAM, you must consider the RAM timing, voltages, frequency, and channel configurations. RAM channels are the most important to consider as they are responsible for the data flow between CPU and RAM.
Dual Channel RAM
A dual-channel RAM uses two separate channels to send and receive data. This helps in quick data processing and can provide a significant performance boost. You can’t use dual-channel RAM in quad channels, but you can use dual-channel RAM in a single channel.
Most of the motherboards support this dual-channel RAM. These motherboards are used for general purposes like office use, and working as dual channels is enough for such tasks.
Quad Channel RAM
A quad-channel RAM uses four separate channels to send and receive data. It is the fastest type of RAM available and gives you the ultimate boost. You can make a quad-channel kit into a dual-channel by using just two RAMs from the kit.
You can identify how many channels there are on your motherboard, and then you can buy the RAMs according to these channels. Search on the user manual or manufacturer’s website if you can see the motherboard itself. You might have noticed that two colors are given to the RAM slots.
Each color represents one channel. You don’t always have to use both channels if you don’t have enough RAM kits. But to boost and get maximum performance, you must fill both channels.
The same color channels/slots must have RAMs from one single kit. This means these RAMs must have the same frequency, timing, and voltage. If you accidentally insert a RAM with a different frequency, it will disturb the RAM channel frequency, and you will face several issues like no audio and unavailable RAM.
Match RAM Frequency
RAM frequency is the hertz that your RAM is running. The CPU can only run at a certain frequency. You can consult your motherboard’s user manual or manufacturer’s website to know the exact frequency limits of your motherboard. RAM won’t work or create errors if you exceed that frequency limit.
You can check through the BIOS or use applications like CPU-Z to identify your running RAM frequencies. If you find any RAM with a different frequency, you need to change it immediately. This RAM stick is the one causing no audio issue in your system.
Avoid RAM Bottleneck
Too much RAM is also bad for your CPU and other components. All hardware has to use RAM to run but has different capacities. For example, your CPU might use up to 16 GB of RAM, while your graphics card can only use up to 4 GB. However, overloading is always a hurdle in overall performance.
Sometimes, your soundcard is not responding to the RAM due to an over-memory bottleneck. Your motherboard has a specific limit to handle the RAM. If it exceeds that limit, it surely causes hardware and audio issues.
Reset Your Sound Card
The best practice if you face no audio after a RAM upgrade is resetting your sound card. Sound Cards have certain options that can be accessed through BIOS. If you have accidentally changed any settings, this might be the reason for the no audio issue. You just need to go into your BIOS and reset the default settings.
You need to open your computer’s case to reset your Sound card. Once you see the card, unplug it from the slot, plug it in again, and ensure it is properly seated. Now, you can turn on your system to confirm whether the issue is resolved.
Restart Audio Drivers
Sometimes, a new hardware addition like the RAM leads to driver issues. These drivers are the ones that enable communication between your CPU and other hardware components. A new RAM can also cause driver issues, which might be the reason for no audio output.
- You should visit the manufacturer’s website for new sound cards or motherboard drivers.
- Download the exact drivers for your audio hardware.
- Now go to “Device Manager” and expand “Audio inputs and outputs.”
- Here right, right-click on your audio drivers and select uninstall. After uninstalling the drivers, close the Device Manager and install the previously downloaded drivers.
- You can also scan for new hardware to detect and install drivers automatically.
Note: You will need a fast, reliable internet connection for automatic driver updates.
Try Without a sound Card
Try this method if your upgraded RAM makes an error for your sound card. Turn off your computer and open its case. Unplug the sound card from the PCI slot carefully. Now turn on your computer and check if the audio starts working.
Suppose it does, then there might be an issue with the new RAM not being supported by the sound card. You must replace it or try to match the exact channel or frequency. Moreover, you can also consult the sound card manufacturer for compatibility issues.
Resolve GPU Errors
Upgrading your RAM causes many changes in other hardware like GPU and CPU. If you were using the GPU’s audio output, then it might be affected by your new RAM. If the latest RAM is incompatible with your GPU, you can face display and audio issues.
The best solution for that is to reinstall or update your GPU drivers. Visit the manufacturer’s website of our GPU and look for the updated drivers. Download and install them. Some graphic cards have managing tools like AMD has a Catalyst, and MSI has an MSI Gaming App. All such managers have update options.
Install New Windows
If you have tried all possible methods and still have no audio output from any hardware, the last thing is to install a new Windows into your computer system. It will also delete all your data, so you must have a backup. After installing Windows, install all the drivers individually, including the latest audio drivers.
Most of the time, new hardware causes several changes in the operating system’s settings. It leads to several file corruption, and ultimately, you cannot recover from the issue. Installing a new operating system is the best option in this case.
No audio issue after the RAM upgrade is a very common problem. But it has several solutions, as I have mentioned above. You must follow the methods one by one until your audio starts working. Audio not working is a very serious issue as you cannot work or enjoy any multimedia content. So, taking some preventive measures before upgrading your RAM is better.
Hey, I’m Hammad. I have been writing for several years now and have amassed a wealth of experience within my field. My focus is on technology and gaming, two areas that I am highly knowledgeable about. Also, I’m writer for iPhonEscape.com and CPUGPUnerds.com as well and where I have written over 350 articles.