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  • .mono.
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sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
So, I've been having this problem for quite some time (since ver. 1.1.11), and I haven't been able to figure out a way to fix it.  So, due to frustration, I've finally come for support.  During music playback (be it .mp3, .FLAC, or any other file type), I get occasional pop/glitch noises during the track (i've searched, and seen most people are having pops/clicks in between tracks), and sometimes the program will hang for a moment and I'll have no sound at all.  I've removed all third party components, done the 'reset page' thing, and updated drivers for all devices via Microsoft or the hardware manufacturer. I've tried to set the foobar2000 process to high priority (it wouldn't let me change it to real-time), and that had no effect.  Here are some specifications for my system, and foobar install:

Code: [Select]
 Computer:
     Computer Type                                    ACPI x64-based PC
     Operating System                                  Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate
     OS Service Pack                                  Service Pack 1
     Internet Explorer                                9.11.9600.17501
     DirectX                                          DirectX 10.1
     Computer Name                                    WINCTRL-5K9TOSA
     User Name                                        mono
     Logon Domain                                      WINCTRL-5K9TOSA
     Date / Time                                      2015-10-20 / 16:25

   Motherboard:
     CPU Type                                          QuadCore AMD Phenom X4 Black Edition 9950, 1300 MHz (6.5 x 200)
     Motherboard Name                                  Gigabyte GA-MA790X-UD4P rev. F6
     Motherboard Chipset                              AMD 790X, AMD K10
     System Memory                                    8192 MB  (DDR2-800 DDR2 SDRAM)
     DIMM1: OCZ OCZ2F8002G                            2 GB DDR2-800 DDR2 SDRAM  (6-6-6-18 @ 400 MHz)  (5-5-5-15 @ 333 MHz)  (4-4-4-12 @ 266 MHz)
     DIMM2: OCZ OCZ2F8002G                            2 GB DDR2-800 DDR2 SDRAM  (6-6-6-18 @ 400 MHz)  (5-5-5-15 @ 333 MHz)  (4-4-4-12 @ 266 MHz)
     DIMM3: OCZ OCZ2F8002G                            2 GB DDR2-800 DDR2 SDRAM  (6-6-6-18 @ 400 MHz)  (5-5-5-15 @ 333 MHz)  (4-4-4-12 @ 266 MHz)
     DIMM4: OCZ OCZ2F8002G                            2 GB DDR2-800 DDR2 SDRAM  (6-6-6-18 @ 400 MHz)  (5-5-5-15 @ 333 MHz)  (4-4-4-12 @ 266 MHz)
     BIOS Type                                        Award Modular (08/05/09)
     Communication Port                                Communications Port (COM1)

   Display:
     Video Adapter                                    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 295  (896 MB)
     Video Adapter                                    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 295  (896 MB)
     3D Accelerator                                    nVIDIA GeForce GTX 295
     Monitor                                          Acer H213H  [21.5" LCD]  (LF80D0028500)

   Multimedia:
     Audio Adapter                                    Realtek ALC889A @ ATI SB700 - High Definition Audio Controller

Code: [Select]
Core (2015-03-26 07:45:52 UTC)
   foobar2000 core 1.3.8
foo_albumlist.dll (2015-03-26 07:42:40 UTC)
   Album List 4.5
foo_cdda.dll (2015-03-26 07:42:18 UTC)
   CD Audio Decoder 3.0
foo_converter.dll (2015-03-26 07:42:24 UTC)
   Converter 1.5
foo_dsp_eq.dll (2015-03-07 10:19:44 UTC)
   Equalizer 1.0
foo_dsp_std.dll (2015-03-26 07:42:26 UTC)
   Standard DSP Array 1.3.1
foo_fileops.dll (2015-03-07 10:19:10 UTC)
   File Operations 2.2.1
foo_input_shorten.dll (2014-10-13 20:41:38 UTC)
   Shorten decoder 0.4.2.2
foo_input_std.dll (2015-03-26 07:45:52 UTC)
   Standard Input Array 1.0
foo_rgscan.dll (2015-03-26 07:43:12 UTC)
   ReplayGain Scanner 2.2.1
foo_ui_std.dll (2015-03-26 07:45:52 UTC)
   Default User Interface 0.9.5

While idling with foobar running, my cpu runs at about 14%.  RAM usage rarely tops 50%, no matter what is going on.  Now, I realize my computer is old, but it still scores a 5.8 in the Windows Experience index thingy, so there's no reason why foobar shouldn't be working properly.  Any suggestions would be appreciated!

  • Rollin
  • [*][*][*][*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #1
Did you try increase buffer length in File->Preferences->Playback->Output ?

  • .mono.
  • [*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #2
Did you try increase buffer length in File->Preferences->Playback->Output ?


Just set buffer length to 5000 ms.  For further reference, what would be a "recommended" length (if there is such a thing)?

*EDIT - Now it seems there's a gap in between tracks.  Did increasing the buffer length affect this?  I haven't heard any more pops, though.
  • Last Edit: 20 October, 2015, 11:04:11 PM by .mono.

  • Case
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
  • Developer (Donating)
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #3
The default 1000 ms is the official recommendation. It is enough to prevent glitching unless the machine is heavily stressed with other tasks. The reason for short buffer is moderate memory usage and relatively quick reaction to DSP setting changes. With some outputs even volume adjustments can be delayed by the buffer.
You can safely use longer buffer. And you should too if you get glitching.
This output buffer setting doesn't cause gaps between tracks. If the tracks shouldn't have gap check that you haven't enabled the full file buffering setting in advanced preferences. That setting isn't recommended for any normal use. It delays the next track start for the duration it takes to load the file into memory. That can easily cause gaps and it shouldn't be necessary. Source media only needs to be able to read a few hundred kilobytes per second to provide glitchless playback. That is a tiny fraction of the speed any hard drive is able to achieve.

  • .mono.
  • [*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #4
The default 1000 ms is the official recommendation. It is enough to prevent glitching unless the machine is heavily stressed with other tasks. The reason for short buffer is moderate memory usage and relatively quick reaction to DSP setting changes. With some outputs even volume adjustments can be delayed by the buffer.
You can safely use longer buffer. And you should too if you get glitching.
This output buffer setting doesn't cause gaps between tracks. If the tracks shouldn't have gap check that you haven't enabled the full file buffering setting in advanced preferences. That setting isn't recommended for any normal use. It delays the next track start for the duration it takes to load the file into memory. That can easily cause gaps and it shouldn't be necessary. Source media only needs to be able to read a few hundred kilobytes per second to provide glitchless playback. That is a tiny fraction of the speed any hard drive is able to achieve.


Oh nooooo, I don't mess with anything in advanced preferences without being explicitly instructed to do so.  I learned my lesson about twiddling with settings that you have no idea of how they work when I was 8 years old and toying with the computer's BIOS. 

  • .mono.
  • [*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #5
Well, my buffer is now set to 10000 ms, and I'm still getting glitching.  When CPU utilization goes over 15%, it seems to start having issues.  I've been watching Process Explorer while it's happening, and it seems that the 'System' process (which from my understanding, isn't really a process at all) is what has jumped to the top of the usage list when the glitching occurs.  System will be using anywhere from 5% to 15% of the CPU process for just a brief moment, glitching occurs, then it's back down at the bottom of the list.  (well, not the BOTTOM, per se, but off the list of active processes).  System does show up at the top of the list with a usage percentage of 3 or less, sometimes, and no problems occur then.  Only when the percentage is above 5% that the issues seem to happen.  Now, of course, there's no telling if that's truly the culprit or not, I just figure it's worth mentioning because the common denominator is, when I hear a glitch, System is at the top of the usage chart.

I even tried installing a proper sound card, thinking maybe my on-board sound processor might be screwy, but that didn't solve anything.

It's got me wondering: could my processor be messed up or on the decline or something?  or should I be thinking memory?  I have Aida64 Extreme; would running some benchmarks show me if I had a faulty piece of hardware here?
  • Last Edit: 05 December, 2015, 10:16:12 PM by .mono.

  • DustMagnet
  • [*][*][*][*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #6
Well, my buffer is now set to 10000 ms, and I'm still getting glitching.  When CPU utilization goes over 15%, it seems to start having issues.  I've been watching Process Explorer while it's happening, and it seems that the 'System' process (which from my understanding, isn't really a process at all) is what has jumped to the top of the usage list when the glitching occurs.  System will be using anywhere from 5% to 15% of the CPU process for just a brief moment, glitching occurs, then it's back down at the bottom of the list.  (well, not the BOTTOM, per se, but off the list of active processes).  System does show up at the top of the list with a usage percentage of 3 or less, sometimes, and no problems occur then.  Only when the percentage is above 5% that the issues seem to happen.  Now, of course, there's no telling if that's truly the culprit or not, I just figure it's worth mentioning because the common denominator is, when I hear a glitch, System is at the top of the usage chart.

I even tried installing a proper sound card, thinking maybe my on-board sound processor might be screwy, but that didn't solve anything.

It's got me wondering: could my processor be messed up or on the decline or something?  or should I be thinking memory?  I have Aida64 Extreme; would running some benchmarks show me if I had a faulty piece of hardware here?


A common cause of audio dropouts is a badly implemented device driver, especially network drivers. I had that very problem with the default drivers for my USB Wi-Fi stick. IIRC I found an update at the vendor's website, and that fixed the dropouts.

I diagnosed that issue with LatencyMon. You can easily search for it.

There's also DPC Latency Checker, but note that it doesn't work properly with Windows 8 or newer.
That's so plausible, I can't believe it.

  • .mono.
  • [*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #7
A common cause of audio dropouts is a badly implemented device driver, especially network drivers. I had that very problem with the default drivers for my USB Wi-Fi stick. IIRC I found an update at the vendor's website, and that fixed the dropouts.

I diagnosed that issue with LatencyMon. You can easily search for it.

There's also DPC Latency Checker, but note that it doesn't work properly with Windows 8 or newer.


Well, wouldn't you know it... I downloaded DPC latency checker, and it's not showing any latency problems.  I even started Foobar up and started playing some tracks, and opened up my web browser and mail client and went crazy trying to create a load on the PC, and of course, the playback isn't acting up AT ALL.  Why do I suddenly feel like I just took my car to the mechanic, and now it won't make that "strange noise" for him? <rolls eyes> I will keep this latency checker on my desktop, so when the sound inevitably starts acting poorly again, I'll take another look and report back.

smdh.  I mean, you'd think I'd be happy the problem seems to have gone away, but I don't like this situation one bit.

  • DustMagnet
  • [*][*][*][*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #8
Heh. That's happened to me.  Intermittent problems can be a real pain.
That's so plausible, I can't believe it.

  • .mono.
  • [*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #9
Heh. That's happened to me.  Intermittent problems can be a real pain.



Well, I'm making minor progress:  The glitching and/or latency issues only seem to be occurring after my computer has been running for quite some time.  I haven't been able to really pinpoint when exactly the problems start... it occurs after uptime of more than a few hours, but less than 24 hours.  In the coming days I should be able to whittle that time differential down some more, with luck.  But, as far as what I've found out now, are there any specifics that can be made out of this data?  The issue isn't strictly tied to cpu usage, utilization only seems to have an effect after the computer's been on for a while.  I just restarted 20 minutes ago, and I've put more than enough of a load on the pc while playing audio, and the latency is very low.  maximum has been 670 µs, whereas when the system is acting up, it's maxed at over 32000 µs .  I've updated most of my drivers, and those I haven't upgraded yet, I tried disabling with device manager, and the latency wasn't affected.  I even turned on ACHI for my hard drives.  Ran HijackThis to make sure there wasn't any creepy stuff going on in the background, and that came out fine as well.  Not sure where to turn next.  I mean, having to reset my computer periodically isn't that bad of a fix, more of a hassle than anything; I just don't understand why after years of flawless operation, things now seem to have changed.  I want to know why!!!!!


  • .mono.
  • [*]
sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #10
Heh. That's happened to me.  Intermittent problems can be a real pain.



Well, I'm making minor progress:  The glitching and/or latency issues only seem to be occurring after my computer has been running for quite some time.  I haven't been able to really pinpoint when exactly the problems start... it occurs after uptime of more than a few hours, but less than 24 hours.  In the coming days I should be able to whittle that time differential down some more, with luck.


It started up at 7h:50m of uptime.

  • carthur
  • [*]
Re: sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #11
Hi Guys, the reason for my late entry is that this thread is likely to be read quite a lot despite it not having been contributed to for 2 years, as one of many on the subject. Few people seem to have solved this problem so you can try this if you haven't already done so.

I too have had all these problems and tried everything and nothing worked. So finally I heard somewhere that updated drivers are not necessarily the best thing especially if they are by the hardware manufacturer because these can be buggy. So as a desperate last resort and with practically nothing else left to try I deleted my up to date specialist driver for a hardware USB interface therefore forcing windows to install the default generic MS Windows audio driver which I had on before altering it, to try to play high res files. All I can say is PROBLEM SORTED!!

  • EpicForever
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
Re: sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #12
Well, when do an archeology... For me such problems were cause by ITE's IDE RAID chipset on the motherboard, which was used for 2x DVR-RW PATA drives. Whenever I was opening tray, closing tray, getting access to DVD/CD contents - beginning of such operation caused a glitch in audio. There were 2 possible solutions:
- upgrade DVD to SATA ones
- change motherboard to have PATA integrated in main chipset, instead being 3rd party device on board.
Both are working well... After upgrading DVD to SATA it stopped on a daily basis. However my old PATA drive had better error correction when reading scratched Audio CDs in EAC so I still needed PATA to be working and not glitching audio when used, so I downgraded my AMD 9xx chipset on Asus Crosshair to AMD 7xx chipset on ASRock DE3US3. Now all works perfectly, when PATA/IDE is controlled directly via 790G chipset...

There are loads of reasons for such situation, most common today is some buggy USB device, especially network adapters (but also USB hubs, cheap wireless keyboards/kb+mouse combos, cheap/old USB cameras, etc.). Plus network adapters can cause problems even if they are PCI based - sometimes upgrade, sometimes downgrade of driver may be necessary. Especially in case of shared IRQ (see also below). Also - if sound card is not supported natively (like old SoundBlasters under Vista/7) then you need to fiddle with checking exact version of alternative drivers. For me not always the latest KX driver was the best, when I used SB080 and SB100 under Win 7. I got huge archive of various KX versions and even not always the same version was best after OS was reinstalled.
Dying HDDs can also hang system buses and cause glitches. Dying external USB HDD too (when connected of course). Cheap and slow USB flash drives also - you may not believe, but I remember exact Chipsbank based cheap flash that caused overall lagging in my system. By the way - flash has died unexpectedly. Data were saved on one laptop, flash was moved to other one to read data and... There was no response. Even no sound of device being connected to PC. Such flash memories also cause USB keyboards/ mouses to lag hardly, when connected to the same USB subsystem in PC. 
Unfortunately devices can interfere with each other in strange ways, so audio glitching sometimes depends on exact PC configuration - what hardware exactly sits inside (in general - what are vendors of particular devices), OR it can depend on which devices share IRQ. The later can be solved by switching PCI/PCI-E slot for certain device. When PCI sound card shared IRQ with PCI Ethernet card I also had problems (under good old XPSP2), but when I moved Ethernet adapter one slot down - everything started working correctly.
Even certain BIOS settings might cause problems on older machines... But we have 21st century now, so let's skip it.

So there is no simple way of determining why there are glitches in audio. Ultimately you can't even exclude that sound card (even integrated) is simply buggy and device needs to be exchanged (like whole motherboard in case on integrated Realtek...).

  • carthur
  • [*]
Re: sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #13
Yes, I agree there can be many causes such as what you mention. But people mentioning setup, buffers, power management etc etc didn't seem to hit the mark in many cases, usually there is more than enough spare capacity to run audio in Foobar. People need to understand that upgrades to the newest drivers are not necessarily the way to go as you say.. I ruled out hardware problems, external and onboard drives etc. so the software needed looking into. The trouble is you rarely make only one change at a time so that makes it more difficult to trace the cause of a particular problem.

Not a good advert for flash memory btw.
  • Last Edit: 01 December, 2017, 07:34:13 AM by carthur

  • Ryrynz
  • [*]
Re: sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #14
The default 1000 ms is the official recommendation. It is enough to prevent glitching unless the machine is heavily stressed with other tasks.

Updating the tags on currently playing sometimes causes the audio to stutter for me  I do have my files on a NAS so it could be just that it's too slow to react, but maybe this value should be set higher by default than 1000ms?

  • kode54
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
  • Administrator
Re: sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #15
You could try setting it to 2000ms or even as high as 5000ms, that may fix your issue. The problem is, when tagging files that are being played, it must stop playback, rewrite the file, reopen the file, then seek to the previous position. If your storage makes this too slow, it will cause a noticeable pause in the audio. Pre-buffering the file can make it worse over a network link, if you have full file buffering enabled.

  • Ryrynz
  • [*]
Re: sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #16
Well I have to set foobar to 12000ms just to update tags for a FLAC on my NAS to avoid it skipping back and forward. All I'm doing is adding a Lyrics field and pasting them in there, no probs on the SSD, seems a bit weird cos the NAS isn't exactly slow. Maybe updating things over a network location could be optimized.
  • Last Edit: 13 December, 2017, 01:09:26 AM by Ryrynz

  • kode54
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
  • Administrator
Re: sound glitches - foobar 1.3.8/win7 x64 ultimate
Reply #17
Yes, but if your files don't have sufficient padding to accomodate the lyrics, it's basically rewriting the entire file, since the tag is in the header, not the footer of the file. So it's reading the entire file and rewriting a temporary file, then replacing the original with the newly written file.