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Microsoft KB Archive/165622

From BetaArchive Wiki

Article ID: 165622

Article Last Modified on 1/19/2007



APPLIES TO

  • Microsoft NetMeeting 2.11
  • Microsoft NetMeeting 2.1 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft NetMeeting 3.01 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft NetMeeting 2.11
  • Microsoft NetMeeting 2.1 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft NetMeeting 2.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft NetMeeting 3.01 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 98 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition
  • Microsoft NetMeeting 3.01 Standard Edition



This article was previously published under Q165622

SYMPTOMS

When you are using Microsoft NetMeeting and you are participating in an audio conference, you may experience various audio problems, including poor audio quality, voice distortion, echoing, or sound loss.

CAUSE

Audio quality can be influenced by any of the following conditions:

  • Sound card quality or malfunctioning card
  • Microphone quality or malfunctioning microphone
  • Microphone sensitivity (usually set by the Audio Tuning Wizard)
  • Network connection speed (usually set by the Audio Tuning Wizard)
  • Audio compression method
  • Central processing unit (CPU) speed or power
  • Other programs running in memory
  • Full-duplex versus half-duplex audio conference
  • Video conference (NetMeeting 2.0 only)
  • Limited bandwidth from your Internet service provider (ISP)
  • The conference was not established using Dial-Up Networking and Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)
  • One of the meeting participants may have the microphone positioned too close to the speakers
  • The computer has more than one audio device
  • Computer hardware
  • Moving a shared program window while you are talking to a NetMeeting participant.
  • The Network Bandwidth is set too high


RESOLUTION

To resolve this problem, use the following troubleshooting techniques. After troubleshooting each area, check to see if the problem is solved.

Check for Other NetMeeting Processes

Other processes involved in NetMeeting can impact audio quality and general performance. Sharing several programs while simultaneously running Whiteboard and Chat and performing a large file transfer will affect available bandwidth for audio and will also consume memory.

To test for this, you should:

  • Close unnecessary programs that are running.
  • Reduce the number of shared programs.
  • Close unnecessary windows, including Chat or Whiteboard.
  • Postpone large file transfers.

Try Running the Audio Tuning Wizard Again

The Audio Tuning Wizard determines whether full-duplex audio is available, specifies the recording and playback devices, and lets you specify the network connection speed and set the microphone sensitivity.

Note that you cannot use the Audio Tuning Wizard during a conference. You must leave the conference first, run the Audio Tuning Wizard, and then call the other conference participants back.

To run the Audio Tuning Wizard, follow these steps:

  1. In NetMeeting, click Audio Tuning Wizard on the Tools menu.
  2. Follow the instructions on the screen.

If the Audio Tuning Wizard indicates that your sound card is not supported, you may be able to use the audio features of NetMeeting, but you may experience poor audio quality.

If your computer has more than one audio device, make sure that the audio devices selected in the Audio Tuning Wizard match the selections in the Multimedia tool in Control Panel. (To access Control Panel, Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.)

Can the Sound Card Simultaneously Send and Receive Audio Signals?

Choppy full-duplex sound may indicate that the sound card cannot simultaneously send and receive audio signals. Try switching NetMeeting to half-duplex sound quality.

To switch to half-duplex audio, follow these steps:

  1. In NetMeeting, click Options on the Tools menu.
  2. Click the Audio tab, and then click the Enable Full Duplex Audio check box to clear it.

If the sound continues to worsen, run the Audio Tuning Wizard again to reset your audio values. For more information about full-duplex sound, see the "More Information" section of this article.

Is the Microphone Positioned and Set Up Correctly?

Voice distortion may be caused by talking too close to the microphone, or the sensitivity of the microphone may be too high. To test for this, try speaking a little further from the microphone. Wait for feedback from a conference participant.

If this does not help, you might need to adjust the microphone sensitivity. To do this, use one of the following methods:

  • Run the Audio Tuning Wizard again.
  • Manually adjust the microphone sensitivity.

To manually adjust microphone sensitivity, follow these steps:

  1. In NetMeeting, click Options on the Tools menu.
  2. Click the Audio tab, and then in the Microphone Sensitivity area, click Adjust Sensitivity Automatically. If this option is already selected, click Let Me Adjust Sensitivity Myself.
  3. Adjust the Sensitivity slider.

If you move the slider to the right, your voice will be transmitted earlier and will be less likely to cut out, but it might also transmit sound when you are silent. After you adjust the setting, speak a few sentences, and wait for feedback from a conference participant before changing the setting again.

In addition, you should have the other participant move the microphone away from the speakers. Also, try decreasing the volume of the speakers.

Has the Background Noise Level Changed?

You should be sure to run NetMeeting in a quiet environment.

If there has been a change in background noise levels since the Audio Tuning Wizard was last run, run the Audio Tuning Wizard again.

Are You Running Audio and Video Simultaneously?

Running audio and video simultaneously on a computer with a slower processor may also impact audio quality. Try turning off video (NetMeeting 2.0 only).

Is there a Problem with Your Internet Service Provider (ISP)?

Your ISP may have limited bandwidth or may be using a proxy server of some kind or may have periods of peak usage.

Are You Using the Correct Internet Protocols (IPs)?

Audio is supported only over TCP/IP and can be used between no more than two people at a time.

When you use NetMeeting with Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP), you need to make sure that TCP/IP is installed and configured correctly. You must use a local area network (LAN) with TCP/IP, or you must establish the conference with Dial-Up Networking, using TCP/IP, and then start NetMeeting.

You can install TCP/IP using the Network tool in Control Panel. (To start Control Panel, click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.)

Note that TCP/IP is not installed by default on a Windows 95-only LAN. When you install TCP/IP, you must manually configure IP addresses, LMHOSTS files for name resolution, and HOSTS files for domain name resolution.

For more information about installing a network protocol, see the following resources.

Windows 95 Help:

Click Start, and then click Help. Click the Index tab, and then type TCP/IP. Click the Installing topic, and then click Display.

The Windows 95 Resource Kit:

See the Configuring TCP/IP Settings Manually topic in the Windows 95 Resource Kit or Windows 95 Resource Kit Help file (Win95rk.hlp). The Win95rk.hlp file is located in the Admin\Reskit\ Helpfile folder on the Windows 95 CD-ROM.

Is Other Hardware Generating Audio Interference?

Audio interference may be generated by other hardware in your computer. Try moving your sound card to a slot away from video cards or fans; they may cause playback problems with sound codecs (compression technology).

For information about your hardware devices, refer to your computer's documentation, or consult your hardware manufacturer.

Are You Moving a Shared Program Window While Speaking?

When you move a shared program window while you are talking to a NetMeeting participant, the available band width is decreased. Avoid speaking while you are moving a shared program window.

Is the Network Bandwidth Set Too High?

To determine if the Network Bandwidth is set too high, follow these steps:

  1. Start NetMeeting, and then click Options on the Tools menu.
  2. Under Network Bandwidth, click a slower bandwidth than the currently selected choice, click OK, and then restart NetMeeting.

Incorrect Audio Mixer Settings

Make sure that your microphone is set up in the mixer to not play back locally and to be the only device being recorded. You should not hear yourself speak through your speakers. The mixer settings can be opened by clicking Multimedia in Control Panel, and then clicking the Speaker and Microphone icons on the Audio tab. Make sure you go to the Advanced Options of the mixer and select to view all. Set the mixer so that the microphone is "muted" on playback and "selected" on record. For good measure it might be sensible to use only the "Wave" device on playback and only the "Microphone" on record. Others can be added back as you need them and determine that they don't cause problems in the m x.

MORE INFORMATION

What Is Full-Duplex Audio?

Full-duplex sound cards allow simultaneous processing of sound recording and playback. If you are using a full-duplex sound card, you can talk into a microphone and simultaneously listen to another NetMeeting participant with your speakers or headphones. When you are using a half-duplex sound card, you must wait for the meeting participant to finish speaking before you can speak into the microphone.

With full-duplex Audio, when you speak into the microphone, your voice is heard through the speakers or headphones of the other NetMeeting participants. If one of the NetMeeting participants is using speakers and a full-duplex sound card, your voice may be transmitted from his or her speakers to his or her microphone and back to your speakers or headphones.

For additional information about this issue, please see the following article(s) in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

166038 Audio May Echo with Microsoft NetMeeting


Why Can Using Full-Duplex Audio Result in Poor Sound Quality?

Full-duplex audio can require both more bandwidth (a faster connection) and more processing power (a faster computer) than half-duplex audio. Therefore, Sound cards that support full-duplex audio may require additional resources.

Enabling full-duplex audio in NetMeeting 2.0 or another program may prevent the sound card from functioning properly if there is a resource conflict.

For information about your hardware devices, refer to your computer's documentation, or consult your hardware manufacturer.

How Can I Set Up a Full-Duplex Sound Card?

The sound card drivers included with Windows 95 do not support full-duplex audio. If your sound card supports full-duplex audio, you must obtain full-duplex drivers from the manufacturer of the sound card to use full-duplex audio in Windows 95.

For additional information about Dial-Up Networking, please see the following article(s) in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

139710 How to Enable Dial-Up Networking Server Capabilities


For additional information about using TCP/IP with Dial-Up Networking, please see the following article(s) in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

165611 Audio or Video Unavailable in NetMeeting Conference



Additional query words: nmfaq 1.00

Keywords: kbenv kbprb kbsound kbfaq KB165622