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Dell N5010 Audio (DPC Latency)


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Dell N5010 Audio (DPC Latency)

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I have a Dell N5010 (Windows 7 64-bit) that is suffering from seemingly random choppy and stuttering audio, which I am pretty sure is being caused by the DW1501 wireless card.

I have seen threads about this for other laptops, and tried all of the suggestions I have found, but the only thing that seems to resolve it is to disable wireless or stop the WLAN AutoConfig service. With the service stopped or wireless disabled, DPC latency checker stays green and shows a maximum of about 630 microseconds; with the service started and wireless enabled, it shows red and peaks at about 120,000 microseconds.

Things I have tried, but which made no difference:

  • Disabling Intel Speedstep in the BIOS.
  • The WLAN Optimiser application.
  • Disabling the A band. The option to do this is not present on the DW1501.
  • Changing the laptop power plan to High Performance.
  • Disabling Microsoft Security Essentials.
  • Disabling my firewall (PC Tools).
  • Installing all of the latest Dell drivers.
  • Running on the latest BIOS version.

The laptop is still under warranty, and I am considering trying to get the DW1501 swapped out for an Intel 6250 wireless card. Has anybody tried this, and if so, has it resolved the issue?

Thanks for your help.

All Replies
  • I have too Dell n5010, When Ableton live is working with Audio4DJ soundcard I have constant pikes......Please Help us Dell and friends! I'm in music production, and DPC latency pikes an errors are makin me nerves....I tried a hundreed things, disable, enable many things but nothing helps...please help!

  • Tochko,

    Although I am still getting DPC spikes, my audio is much better now.

    The only thing I did was completely uninstall Comodo Firewall and switch to the Windows one. I am not sure if this was the issue, but Windows 7 (64-bit) seems to have issues with third party firewalls (ZoneAlarm causes BSoDs on my laptop). Since then, the laptop was also noticeably quicker in logging in and connecting to my wireless network.

    Around about the same time, a load of Windows updates took place, so perhaps one of them fixed it.

    Of course, I'm just an average user and not into music production, so what I find acceptable may not be good enough for you.


  • I've tried almost anything but nothing helps...seems to me like new drivers are needed! Cmon dell

  • Yes, there do seem to be driver issues. It's a shame, because the laptop is otherwise fine.

    Can you still return the laptop? If sound quality were so important to me, I wouldn't have put up with the issue.

  • After unsleeped night I found out what was the problem.....the Intel Speedstep option in Bios....The temperature in my laptop was going high and the speedstep slowed the processor so it can not come to overheating of the system, so with Speedstep disabled my laptop was overheating when I did some tasks in my music production tool and it shutted dow by itself because of that, so I cleaned heatsink of laptop and after that, there were not  DPC's anymore when speedstep was turned on, and no overheating when it was disabled..... Now I'm gonna buy myself a beer for prize :D