14 Solutions to Fix ‘No Audio Output Device Is Installed’ Error in Windows

Are you having trouble with your audio on your Windows PC? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Many users encounter the frustrating ‘No Audio Output Device Is Installed’ error. This error can be caused by various factors, including physical connection issues, driver problems, interfering programs, and problematic Windows updates. But don’t fret! We’ve compiled a list of tried and tested solutions that can help you resolve this issue.

1. Check Physical Connections

Before diving into software fixes, it’s essential to inspect the physical connections of your audio device. Unplug and plug all the connecting cables, including the USB connection and audio port connections. Make sure to check the cables for any fraying or severe damage. If necessary, replace the cables. You can also try connecting the audio device to another spare system to check if the audio output works, ruling out any hardware issues.

2. Enable the Correct Audio Device

If you have selected the wrong audio device for playback, you need to switch to the correct audio device using the Sound settings. Here’s how:

  1. Press the Windows key, type ‘mmsys.cpl,’ and press Enter to open the Sound utility.
  2. Find the audio device in the list and check its status. If it is disabled, right-click on it and select the ‘Enable’ option.
  3. Click on the OK button.

3. Inspect Audio Services

Windows uses the Windows Audio and Windows Audio Endpoint Builder services to manage audio devices. If these services glitch, you may experience audio output issues. To fix this:

  1. Press the Windows key, type ‘services,’ and press Enter to open the Services app.
  2. Find the ‘Windows Audio’ service in the list, right-click on it, and select the ‘Restart’ option.
  3. Similarly, right-click on the ‘Windows Audio Endpoint Builder’ service and click on the ‘Restart’ option.
  4. Close the Services utility.

4. Remove Meddlesome Programs

Certain programs, such as the Avast Driver Program or other third-party driver update utilities, can interfere with your audio output. Try uninstalling these programs using the Settings app or Control Panel to restore normal audio functionality.

5. Use the Audio Troubleshooter

The Windows Audio Troubleshooter can help you identify and fix underlying issues with your audio devices. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Press the Windows key, type ‘troubleshoot,’ and press Enter.
  2. Click on the ‘Other troubleshooters’ option.
  3. Find the ‘Audio’ troubleshooter and click on the ‘Run’ button.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to apply the suggested fixes.

6. Update the Audio Driver Using Device Manager

Outdated audio drivers can cause audio issues. To update the audio drivers using the Device Manager:

  1. Press the Windows key, type ‘Device Manager,’ and press Enter.
  2. Right-click on the audio device and click on the ‘Update driver’ option.
  3. Click on the ‘Search automatically for drivers’ option and wait for the tool to find and install the latest available drivers.
  4. Close the Device Manager app.

7. Reinstall the Audio Driver

If updating the audio driver doesn’t fix the issue, you may need to reinstall the driver. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Device Manager.
  2. Right-click on the audio device and click on the ‘Uninstall device’ option.
  3. Click on the ‘Uninstall’ button.
  4. Close the Device Manager and restart your PC. Windows will automatically find and install the available audio drivers.

8. Tweak System Registry

A faulty Windows monthly patch can cause the audio output error by misconfiguring the ‘ConsoleSecurity’ value in the ‘WinStations’ registry key. To fix this:

  1. Press the Windows key, type ‘Notepad,’ and press Enter.
  2. Paste the provided code in the Notepad window.
  3. Press Ctrl + Shift + S to save the file as ‘key.reg.’
  4. Navigate to the location where you saved the registry file and double-click on it.
  5. Click Yes to confirm and apply the changes.
  6. Restart your PC to apply the changes.

9. Switch to Generic Audio Driver

If reinstalling the audio driver doesn’t work, you can switch to the generic audio driver in Windows. This can help when device-specific drivers stop working. Here’s how:

  1. Open Device Manager.
  2. Click on the PC name to select it.
  3. Click on the Action button in the top menu and then click on the ‘Add legacy hardware’ option.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to select and install the generic audio driver.
  5. Restart your PC.

10. Try OEM Specific Solutions

If you use a laptop or desktop from popular OEMs like Dell or HP, you can try using their driver download and update utilities. Download the correct driver management utility from the manufacturer’s website or download the updated drivers for your audio device compatible with your Windows version.

11. Roll Back Windows Update

If the audio issue occurs after installing a recent Windows update, you can roll back the update to restore audio functionality. Here’s how:

  1. Press the Windows key, type ‘uninstall updates,’ and press Enter.
  2. Find the update in the list and click on the ‘Uninstall’ button.
  3. Click ‘Uninstall’ again to remove the update.
  4. Restart your PC.

12. Run an SFC and DISM Scan

Running an SFC (System File Checker) scan and a DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management) scan can help fix problems with system files and the Windows component store. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Command Prompt with admin privileges.
  2. Execute the DISM scan command: DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth
  3. Run an SFC scan with the command: sfc /scannow
  4. Wait for the scans to complete and restart your PC.

13. Add Services to the Administrator Group

If the DISM and SFC scans don’t fix the issue, you can try adding the services to the administrator group using an elevated Terminal window. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Command Prompt with admin privileges.
  2. Execute the following commands one by one:
    • net localgroup Administrators /add networkservice
    • net localgroup Administrators /add localservice
  3. Close the Command Prompt window.

14. Perform an In-place Upgrade

If all else fails, you can perform an In-place upgrade of Windows. This method reinstalls Windows without losing your files, apps, and settings. Here’s how:

  1. Download the Windows ISO file.
  2. Double-click on the ISO file to mount it and run the ‘setup.exe’ file.
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions, selecting the ‘Keep personal files and apps’ option.
  4. Complete the In-place upgrade process, which may take some time.
  5. Restart your PC.

By following these solutions, you should be able to resolve the ‘No Audio Output Device Is Installed’ error on your Windows PC. Start with the physical connection check, restart audio services, and update drivers. If necessary, tweak the system registry, run SFC and DISM scans, and perform an In-place upgrade as a last resort. Good luck!

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