Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

The Virtual Audio Mixer discussions and support...
RobBoss
Posts: 71
Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2020 4:39 am

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby RobBoss » Sun May 03, 2020 6:07 pm

newbieTrying34 wrote:The mic activity is not just being picked up by Voicemeeter application, it is actually there and is picked up by anything that can listen to mic input be it Discord, OBS recording etc etc.
Aha :!:
Bingo.
Quod erat demonstrandum.

newbieTrying34 wrote:.... has nothing to do with mic... .

Well, my problem at the moment is that I am already on my way to the kitchen (I am the cook today!).
So, please stay tuned in two or three hours for a more detailed explanation!
Last edited by RobBoss on Mon May 04, 2020 2:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

RobBoss
Posts: 71
Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2020 4:39 am

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby RobBoss » Sun May 03, 2020 9:32 pm

It is not a problem caused by Voicemeeter (and its drivers).
An audio driver is not an (active!) subject of audio routing, it is a (passive!) object!
A driver has input pins and output pins.
These pins are actively connected or disconnected by a control application like Voicemeeter mixer or Realtek Audio Manager, a routing definition of Windows Sound system settings, etc. (that are all active subjects of audio routing).
The driver itself does not actively route anything by its own will (because it has no own will).
Routing happens (is controlled) inside Voicemeeter mixer application by connecting input and output pins.
But if Voicemeeter mixer application is closed and the problem still persists, then the root for the problem (unwanted audio routing and mixing) must be caused by another control application:
A Windows sound system setting and/or a control application of the headset.
It is possible that headsets and their drivers and control applications from different brands are based on identical software frameworks.
So, using different headsets from different brands cannot prove that the problem is not based on their control applications.

Next steps:

Deinstall Voicemeeter (including its drivers).

Install Virtual Audio Cable (aka VAC by Eugene Muzychenko) trial version.
https://vac.muzychenko.net/en/download.htm
Select VAC Virtual Audio Cable 1 as your default playback and recording system devices (replacing Voicemeeter VAIO devices).
Use for it the same Windows Sound system settings as for the VAIO drivers now (especially have an eye on the Listen to this device/ Playback through this device option!).

Then check the microphone again with Audacity (or whatever can listen to it).

newbieTrying34
Posts: 16
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:22 pm

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby newbieTrying34 » Wed May 06, 2020 3:05 pm

Kilrah wrote:Have you tried removing your Realtek drivers completely and letting Windows install its generic HD audio drivers instead? Those work great...

Windows 10 installed my Realtek drivers, if I uninstall them would Win 10 revert to it's default audio drivers? Wouldn't it just reinstall the Realtek drivers at some point again as it auto updates anyway?

newbieTrying34
Posts: 16
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:22 pm

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby newbieTrying34 » Wed May 06, 2020 3:24 pm

@RobBoss You made a lot of points so I will go over them 1 by 1.

It is not a problem caused by Voicemeeter (and its drivers).

What I meant to say was that if Voicemeeter is started and the issue created, then the issue can be seen in OBS/Discord/Audacity etc etc.

If Voicemeeter is shutdown/never started the issue disappears instantly and is no longer seen in OBS/Discord/Audacity etc etc.

I will move onto your last point:
Deinstall Voicemeeter (including its drivers).

Install Virtual Audio Cable (aka VAC by Eugene Muzychenko) trial version.
https://vac.muzychenko.net/en/download.htm
Select VAC Virtual Audio Cable 1 as your default playback and recording system devices (replacing Voicemeeter VAIO devices).
Use for it the same Windows Sound system settings as for the VAIO drivers now (especially have an eye on the Listen to this device/ Playback through this device option!).

Then check the microphone again with Audacity (or whatever can listen to it).


Already did this twice, problem disappears, virtual audio cable works 100% fine. The problem starts with Voicemeeter drivers.

Now for your middle points:
But if Voicemeeter mixer application is closed and the problem still persists, then the root for the problem (unwanted audio routing and mixing) must be caused by another control application:
A Windows sound system setting and/or a control application of the headset.

I already mentioned my headset has no drivers and I have already tried different headsets, the problem occurs when no headset/mic is connected as well. It is a Voicemeeter problem only.

That being said, I did wonder about your Windows routing point. So what I did was shutdown Voicemeeter and switch to VAIO/AUX VAIO/VAIO3 as output and voila! Without Voicemeeter running, Windows uses these input-output channels as if they were virtual cables (what the other virtual cable drivers do). So if I set the system to output to VAIO/AUX VAIO/VAIO3 (the actual Voicemeeter inputs), then the Voicemeeter drivers are treated as through put by Windows and all the output goes into the mic side of VAIO/AUX VAIO/VAIO3 (the actual Voicemeeter outputs). So both output and input channel on each of these VAIO/AUX VAIO/VAIO3 show audio in any application that can read them.

So first off:
1. Since I do not have a 2nd working PC right now, can you confirm whether this behavior is similar on your PC. I think it should be as this is how the drivers are designed to work by default.
2. Obviously if I ouput to VAIO/AUX VAIO/VAIO3 with Voicemeeter shutdown, I cannot hear any system audio since the speakers are not the output.
3. Which brings us to the cause of the problem. With VAIO/AUX VAIO/VAIO3 selected as output, Windows using the VAIOs as throughput and Voicemeeter audio engine started, Voicemeeter does not handle the routing properly on the mic input side (or rather Voicemeeter's output side, love their naming convention btw). Meaning it does not fix the through put that Windows causes.
4. With speakers selected as output, and Voicemeeter audio engine started, Voicemeeter handles the routing properly.
Last edited by newbieTrying34 on Fri May 08, 2020 5:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

xcasxcursex
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2020 12:04 am

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby xcasxcursex » Thu May 07, 2020 10:45 am

1) Could you be so kind as to take a screenshot of your VM settings - as in, not the mixer part (you put that in the very informative first post), but the settings you get when you click the "Menu" button and then click "System Settings / Options". Also, can you please get the virtual cable settings; click the start button And find VB Audio \ Voicemeeter \ Virtual IO Control Panel (and the other two)

2) There is a potentially misleading assumption that I notice you've made, which may lead you away from fixing this. You often say, "voicemeeter is routing the audio from the output to the microphone input". Perhaps it's not. Perhaps the driver is going haywire when VM opens the device for output, and the driver is feeding the audio back on itself... Or some other computer-gone-crazy kind of thing. There's definitely crazy routing going on, but it's not safe to assume it's voicemeeter doing it (Voicemeeter may be required to trigger it, I understand that, but that doesn't mean it's the one doing the crime just because the crime only happens when VM is in the room). I can't think of any way voicemeeter could do it. The screen shot mentioned above will help with this. Also, you might like to cause the glitch, then go ahead and hit ALL the mute buttons and see if the audio is still feeding through to the mic.

We can move forward from there. Good luck :)

Andres
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Joined: Fri May 01, 2020 7:25 pm

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby Andres » Fri May 08, 2020 3:28 am

newbieTrying34 wrote:1. Since I do not have a 2nd working PC right now, can you confirm whether this behavior is similar on your PC. I think it should be as this is how the drivers are designed to work by default.

You are right; It is by design. Just to clarify:
    When VoiceMeeter (the Audio Mixing Application) is not running, the Virtual Audio Device (VB-Audio VoiceMeeter VAIO) is put in Virtual Cable mode and therefore the audio flows from the playback device (VoiceMeeter Input or VoiceMeeter Aux Input) to the corresponding recording device (VoiceMeeter Output or VoiceMeeter Aux Output).
    When VoiceMeeter (the Audio Mixing Application) is running, the Virtual Audio Device (VB-Audio VoiceMeeter VAIO) is put in Virtual I/O mode and therefore the audio enters the Audio Mixing Application through Virtual Inputs and leaves it through virtual recording devices connected to busses B1 and B2 for example.
You can verify it by running Virtual IO Control Panel (included in the VB Audio Program folder). A sample here.

Unfortunately, Realtek Audio Console doesn´t allow me to configure two independent streams; one for the headphones (front panel jack - A2 output) and one for the speakers (rear panel jack - A1 output) so I can't try to reproduce your problem in my PC.

xcasxcursex
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2020 12:04 am

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby xcasxcursex » Fri May 08, 2020 5:01 am

Andres wrote:Unfortunately, Realtek Audio Console doesn´t allow me to configure two independent streams; one for the headphones (front panel jack - A2 output) and one for the speakers (rear panel jack - A1 output) so I can't try to reproduce your problem in my PC.


Mine does and I'm already using it and I don't have this issue. This is unique to OP I'm afraid.

newbieTrying34
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Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2020 12:22 pm

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby newbieTrying34 » Fri May 08, 2020 4:47 pm

Andres wrote:Unfortunately, Realtek Audio Console doesn´t allow me to configure two independent streams; one for the headphones (front panel jack - A2 output) and one for the speakers (rear panel jack - A1 output) so I can't try to reproduce your problem in my PC.

Go to Realtek Audio Control from Start Menu > Device Advanced Settings > Playback Device > "Make front and rear audio devices playback two different streams simultaneously".

That will separate your front and rear speakers. The issue exists for me irrespective of this setting though.

And thank you very much for clarifying that without Voicemeeter running the drivers function as virtual cables! :D

xcasxcursex wrote:1) Could you be so kind as to take a screenshot of your VM settings - as in, not the mixer part (you put that in the very informative first post), but the settings you get when you click the "Menu" button and then click "System Settings / Options". Also, can you please get the virtual cable settings; click the start button And find VB Audio \ Voicemeeter \ Virtual IO Control Panel (and the other two)

Here you go:
Voicemeeter Setings: https://i.imgur.com/q2kbHHA.png

No bug VAIO: https://i.imgur.com/2KnBbUC.png
No bug AUX VAIO: https://i.imgur.com/AjvKAhg.png
No bug VAIO3: https://i.imgur.com/359BPFE.png

Bugged VAIO: https://i.imgur.com/1xxSuQx.png
Bugged AUX VAIO: https://i.imgur.com/aEV7QJD.png
Bugged VAIO3: https://i.imgur.com/10PwW0n.png

Control Panel settings look the same to me.

xcasxcursex wrote:Also, you might like to cause the glitch, then go ahead and hit ALL the mute buttons and see if the audio is still feeding through to the mic.

You mean on the A1 output from Voicemeeter right? If that is the case, muting A1 no longer sends feedback to mic input, unmuting starts sending it again. Muting the VAIOs via the sound icon in task bar (or sound control panel) or muting the video player also no longer sends feedback, unmuting starts sending again.

xcasxcursex wrote:There is a potentially misleading assumption that I notice you've made, which may lead you away from fixing this. You often say, "voicemeeter is routing the audio from the output to the microphone input". Perhaps it's not

Could be some other issue but as Anders helped me confirm, without Voicemeeter running the inputs and outputs fallback to a throughput virtual cable mode (actually, looking through the files it seems Voicemeeter runs on three Virtual Cables).

So what is happening is that when I launch Voicemeeter with one of the VAIOs selected (as just about every user does anyway) instead of closing the recording side of the VAIOs (output from Voicemeeter) like it should, it keeps them open and working as a throughput to the input side. Further, the volume on this feedback audio is considerably less which means something somewhere is reducing the dB on it.

You can't record or listen to the throughput audio via VAIO input and outputs without Voicemeeter running to confirm if the volume at output side matches the input side so no way to tell if it's a Windows thing either.

That being said as Kilrah had suggested earlier:
Kilrah wrote:Have you tried removing your Realtek drivers completely and letting Windows install its generic HD audio drivers instead? Those work great...

I uninstalled Voicemeeter and my Realtek drivers and reverted to Windows HD audio. However, this immediately removed any of the audio shielding tech and now all audio goes to the mic with and without Voicemeeter. So that is pretty much a no go solution. I am back to using Realtek drivers.

xcasxcursex
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2020 12:04 am

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby xcasxcursex » Fri May 08, 2020 10:16 pm

newbieTrying34 wrote:Here you go:


Thanks. I'm trying to figure out what triggers all of this, more specifically. Like, why does VM opening the realtek device, cause it to send its own output to its own input, but opening that device with other apps, doesn't do that. So I'm trying to figure out whats different about how the device is opened.

So, one thing I noticed is that in windows settings, you have the realtek set to work at 192kHz, but in VM it's opening at 44k1. What happens if you try windows at 44k1, or voicemeeter at 192k? What happens if you disable exclusive access to the realtek device (forcing it to be opened as a shared device by VM, as other apps would, rather than exclusive, as VM normally does)?

To explain - these tests are not intended to fix the problem, nothing of what I'm saying at this point is, these are just tests to see what happens - what we are trying to do is find out what the problem is, so it can be fixed. The idea with checking these settings, is to figure out if having voicemeeter open the driver as the other applications do, will stop the device from glitching out.


newbieTrying34 wrote:You mean on the A1 output from Voicemeeter right?


I meant all of them but I think you've already confirmed my suspicions here.

newbieTrying34 wrote:muting A1 no longer sends feedback to mic input, unmuting starts sending it again. Muting the VAIOs via the sound icon in task bar (or sound control panel) or muting the video player also no longer sends feedback, unmuting starts sending again.


Right, so what you're seeing is that when you stop sending audio to the realtek output, it no longer appears at the input. To further explore this, what you need to do is mute the VAIO devices in voicemeeter (not in windows as you've already tested) and mute the mic input in voicemeeter. Now, no audio should be coming into VM (because VAIO and mic muted), and so none should be leaving it... but you'll still be able to see the mic input levels (greyed out) in voicemeeter's meters. Now, play an audio file from the VM 'tape deck and make sure it is sent to A1. It is now outputting to the realtek device and you should hear it play. Look at the meter for the mic. Is it still silent, or do you see the meters moving (but greyed out because muted)?

newbieTrying34 wrote:So what is happening is that when I launch Voicemeeter with one of the VAIOs selected (as just about every user does anyway) instead of closing the recording side of the VAIOs (output from Voicemeeter) like it should, it keeps them open and working as a throughput to the input side.


If that were the case, then it would happen regardless of the mute states in VM, it would just be constant.... (edit) Also, you can see that the audio feedback is coming from the realtek mic input, not the VAIO inputs..... No, what you're seeing is that the realtek output is being fed back to the realtek input, and not by voicemeeter. It's just that it starts doing it when voicemeeter is started.....except for....

newbieTrying34 wrote:reverted to Windows HD audio.... now all audio goes to the mic with and without Voicemeeter.


How? This is not normal behaviour and there's practically no chance this driver does this or it'd be all over the internet with everyone with a realtek card talking about how it doesn't work.

Rather than stop with this driver, you should continue with the problem there. Having made the problem worse, is NOT a bad thing. It's a GOOD thing. You're NOT trying to fix it yet! You're trying to BREAK it. Breaking it, helps you figure out exactly WHAT breaks it, and then, once you know what breaks it, you can try to fix that.


You mentioned some "audio shielding" what do you mean by that? I'm starting to wonder if there's another factor involved here which has not been considered yet.

smallfreak
Posts: 13
Joined: Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:44 pm

Re: Voicemeeter does not work well with Realtek card/drivers causing system audio feedback as mic input

Postby smallfreak » Fri May 08, 2020 10:36 pm

I've seen in your introduction video your driver selector lists the Realtek ASIO driver. It is a thorough recommendation to use an ASIO device for your A1 setting.

I had very good results usig the Realtek ASIO instead of any other driver technology. If you do not have an external audio interface (as I do), you should give this option a try. This should map all inputs the soundcard offers on the corresponding hardware-input channels.


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