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Windows 7: No Audio on certain wma/mp3 files

23 Feb 2016   #1

Windows 10 64 bit
No Audio on certain wma/mp3 files


This is one of the weirdest problems I have ever seen and I am not sure what is going on. I am on a windows 7, 64 bit computer.

My problem is there is no audio output when player a few wma/mp3 files. The computer is putting out system audio, music from the web browser and even other wma files. When I play the files that are not putting out audio, the speaker is showing sound when I look at Sound>Playback devices. These files also work when I play them on another computer.

Does anyone have any idea what this could be or other things I can look at? I've tried converting them over to a different file type and changing their names. I'm lost on what to look at next.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Feb 2016   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

You say "a few files".


Do these few specific files have anything in common--such as file type, original source, recent renaming, etc?

When did these few files last play properly?

What playback device are you using?

Does this playback device have a mute control or a volume slider?

Do most of your files of the same exact file type play properly on this very same playback device as of right now?

You say "no audio output". Do you mean ONLY that you can't hear anything from them and that your software playback meters are jumping up and down for ALL files as they normally would?

If the files play properly on some other device, that would indicate a setting issue to me.

Give as many more HIGHLY specific details as possible.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2016   #3

Windows 10 64 bit

Thanks for the reply. All the files are WMA files. They originate from a hand recorder. We use them in my company to take recorded statements. My computer has usb speakers and they are the only playback device on the system. They do not have their own mute button or volume slider. There are several other WMA files recorded earlier in time, which play fine right now. There are three files which are not putting out sound, all uploaded at the same time. For the files that are not putting out audio, the meter for the output speaker is showing a signal and jumping up and down... there is not sound though. However, I can play something else at the same time and I can hear it coming through the speakers.

To troubleshoot, I've tried using VLC instead of Windows Media Player, but this has not made any difference. I've also tried moving the files to the computer that does work and converting them into MP3. Still has not solved the problem. The MP3's show the same behavior.

All this would point to the audio tracks themselves having an issue, but they play fine on another computer. All I can think of is that there is some sort of flag or mark that the computer has put on the audio file itself.... but I can't imagine why, or what it would be for.

I know this doesn't make sense, and I could be missing something, but I don't know what. Do you have any idea where I should look for more information?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

24 Feb 2016   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

It doesn't make sense to me either, but I've seen goofy behavior from audio files.

You say you converted them to mp3 to no avail.


I'm wondering if you could use a semi-sophisticated audio recorder/editor like Audacity to open the files up and look at the waveform for any peculiarities---perhaps one channel is empty and your playback device is trying to play the empty channel.

Something like that, grasping at straws here. A stereo/mono issue.

Audacity would allow you to combine channels to get a mono signal or to copy an apparently good channel to a new file.

It would also allow you to convert WMA to WAV via export. Maybe you can play WAV? If not, you could again convert that WAV to another file type--mp3 or whatever.

I'd at least want to look at the WMA waveforms in an editor to see if there are any anomalies.

Other than that, I don't think I can help further.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Mar 2016   #5

Windows 10 64 bit

Thanks for replying. That is a fantastic idea, but the client was able to use what we had and now does not have any issues. It was just a few files. I really appreciate the help, you guys are awesome.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 No Audio on certain wma/mp3 files

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