I'm posting in the internal hardware forum because the exact source of the issue is unknown. If we come up with a different or more precise cause I would be happy to move the discussion to the appropriate forum.
The problem is a brief (but loud) sporadic stuttering or digitization noise (very similar to some elements of dubstep music actually). It sounds like a quarter-second of audio is paused and repeated at high speed and then it goes back to normal less than a second later. This happens with variable frequency; sometimes once every 30 seconds, sometimes as long as 45 minutes between occurences. The frequency seems at least partially dependent on the graphical output being used, but it's hard to tell for sure. The problem is quite immersion-breaking, and it extends to all programs and all uses of audio (local music via iTunes, streaming via any website, movies via optical drive, gaming with titles including Hearthstone, Witcher 3, Starcraft 2, and others). I suspect that the entire computer (not just the audio) may be pausing/stuttering along with it, because sound effects never get desynced with video; for example when people are talking in movies their lips never get out of sync with their voices, despite the audio pausing while it stutters.
This problem started about 3 weeks ago, and I had not made any hardware or software changes that I am aware of.
Possible solutions I have already tried, without effect:
- New GPU (same model as old one)
- New PSU (same model as old one)
- Disconnecting HDMI
- Running only 2 monitors
- Adjust NVIDIA settings for performance not quality
- Rolling back GPU drivers twice to different versions, then updating
- Moving TV antenna away from power cords
- Plugging into different section of power strip
- Use alternate audio jack
- Use alternate audio equipment (Stereo, wireless headphones, 2 brands of wired headphones)
- Turn microphone off and disconnect it to ensure no interference/feedback
- Disable unused audio driver for an old program (Screaming Bee)
- Attempt to update primary audio driver (it was up to date already, most recent version was 2012 RealTek)
- Software based RAM test (no errors)
- Software based burn-in test for CPU, GPU, SSD, HDD etc (no errors)
- New Power Strip
- Different Outlet
My machine is a Windows 7 HP Pavilion Elite HPE 480t with some hardware modifications:
Windows 7 64 bit
Samsung Evo 840 SSD (OS and some programs)
Seagate ST3000 (Storage)
9 GB RAM
Intel i7 930 CPU
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 TI, 3 monitors
LAN internet connection
Stock Pegatron Motherboard, exact model unknown
Corsair CX500 PSU
At this point the only things I can think of are some other driver causing a great deal of latency, or perhaps a motherboard hardware issue. I've been trying to solve this on my own for weeks, and am at my wit's end.
I would love to find a solution to this problem, any help is very much appreciated. Please let me know if I can provide any further details.