Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Phoebus World of Warcraft SPDIF problem

Level 8
Hi there

I seem to have found a bug with World of Warcraft and the SPDIF output on the Phoebus.
When I join a 5 man Cataclysm dungeon the sound coming from the SPDIF is crackling, sometimes so bad that all sound but the crakling disappears and it sounds like a mess. Other ingame events could be triggering this aswell, but I've discovered it happens every single time when I join a dungeon. If I use the analog headphone output on the soundcard there are no problems, but I can see on my external DAC that the samle rate input led is flickering and a crackling noise is sent to my desktop speakers when the headphone output is enabled in the control panel. When I leave a dungeon the noise may still be there, but it vanishes when I quit the game. It happens with both the 32 and 64bit executable.

I've tried to see if I could trigger this with other games, but without luck so far (Dirt 3, Assassin's Creed Revelations and Portal 2). Gx is disabled in the control panel and sample rate is set to 48Khz 24 bit. I've tested it with other settings aswell, but with the same result and no changes to the ingame sound settings made a difference either.

I've tested this with 2 external DAC's to rule out faulty equipment.

Audio Card Model Name XONAR Phoebus
Audio Card S/N N/A
Motherboard / System MSI Z68A-GD80(G3)
Motherboard BIOS version I.80
O.S. Information Win7 Home Premium x64 fresh install
VGA BIOS version
VGA Driver version 301.42 (Nvidia)
CPU overlocking (Yes/No) Yes
GPU overlocking (Yes/No) No
OS audio setting (Sample Rates) Sample Rate 48kHz, Speaker 2.0
Output Device Connected (Include brand/model name) SPDIF to Cambridge Audio DACmagic
Content Used (Game/Music/Movie) World of Warcraft Cataclysm
In-Game audio setting Hardware disabled, High quality, 64 audio channels
Reproducible scenario (Certain in-game chapter) Join a 5 man Cataclysm dungeon
Other Apps opened Steam

It seems like a driver bug to me. Any thoughts on this?

Level 8
I've investigated this further and I've now found out what settings that triggers this.

First I tried to uninstall the driver and use the Windows generic audio driver, I did a few dungeons and the issue wasn't there on the SPDIF. I then installed the driver from the website again and leaving settings on default, expecting to hear the crackle again. I did a few dungeons and still no crackle. Was this now solved after reinstalling the driver?

No it wasn't. It would seem that using any other spdif sample rate than 44.1Khz triggers this. 16 or 24bit doesn't matter. I tried setting the sample rate to 48Khz = crackle. I tried 96Khz = crackle. I then set it to 44.1Khz. Crackle disappears and it sounds clean.

Both my dacs support 96Khz 24bit input and I know for a fact it isn't my equipment causing this, because I never had an issue with my Xonar Essence STX on 96Khz and World of Warcraft.

I could trigger smalle crackles by flying around the Stormwind canals so I think it's a general sound issue within World of Warcraft.

I'll leave my spdif settings on 44.1Khz 24 bit for now.


I forgot to mention that I've tested with 2 different optical cables with same results.


I tried to uninstall the driver again and putting it on 96Khz with the generic windows driver and it also causes the crackles. A hardware fault only triggered by World of Warcraft and only on the spdif output? I'm trying to move the card to a new pci-e slot now.


it didn't help to move the card to another pci-e slot or changing the power cable. Even though there's crackle without the driver installed it feels like the driver makes it worse.

Level 7

today I connected my TEUFEL audio system to the Phoebus via SPDIF and had the same.
The trick seems to be leaving the setting to "Dolby Digital Live".
This way everything works for me (check inserted image)

I had some problems connecting the boxes because I did not find a way to test them one by one connecting the right cables to the right outlets but after try and error I managed this too.

Even with Digital Live on SPDIF I get the crackles. I only can use 44khz without crackles. Using Dolbi Digital Live makes the driver switch to 48khz.

Any further ideas?

Level 10
So your external dac is better then the pheobus right? I'm trying to figure out why you bought the sound card for if you are going to simply bypass all of its features. Only thing I can think of off hand its you changing the sample rates other then what is default. As you make the sound card/dac do double work, upsampling it to the new frequency, then having to down sample it back tot he headphones or speakers.

Other then that is waiting for the new mystery drivers that aren't coming out no time soon. Best bet would be to return the sound card and buy one that is supported for every os at this point and time. This sound card has entirely too many problems and 100% no support.

Official/Unofficial? Beta Tester For The Asus ROG Pheobus Xonar 2012 - 2013