How to Install a Sound Card

Level of difficulty: Easy

A sound card is a computer component that processes all audio files or requirements of a computer. Sound cards can deal with various audio files like .mp3 or .wav. A sound card has interface that accommodates various types of audio plugs or jacks. Benefit from a good sound card and enjoy great sound quality from music files and games. Replacing and installing a new sound card can be relatively easy as long as the sound card will not require changes in jumpers or IRQs. If this is the case, consult a computer professional.

Materials Needed:
- Screwdriver
- Microsoft Windows XP Operating System (OS)
Step 1
Familiarize yourself with the new sound card to be attached by reading its accompanying documentation or instructions.
Step 2
Prepare the screwdriver and sound card and clear the intended work area.
Step 3
Shut down the computer and unplug the power cord. Also, remove any wires or jacks (like speaker wires and keyboard jack) attached to the computer.
Step 4
Carefully position the computer on its side (if computer casing is a tower type).
Step 5
Wear an anti-static wrist band or rub hands on a metal part of the casing to remove static electricity.
Step 6
Remove screws and case cover and carefully set in an undisturbed area.
Step 7
Locate the sound card to be replaced. A computer can have either an internal sound card or 'on board card' which is attached to the motherboard and cannot be removed. If the sound card is attached to the motherboard, continue to Step 9.
Step 8
Remove the old sound card by removing any screws (one may be screwed onto the board or computer casing) and by carefully unplugging any wires like the CD-ROM connector. Gently rock the sound card from left to right to loosen it. Slowly pull the sound card with a direct upward force.
Step 9
Insert the new sound card on the same slot or locate another motherboard slot, remove the slot protector, and insert the new sound card. Plug the CD-Rom connector to the sound card.
Step 10
Make sure that the sound card is fit snugly and place screws to hold the sound card into place.
Step 11
Replace the casing cover and connect all computer wires and plugs.
Step 12
Turn on the computer to test the new sound card. Installation of the new sound card device may be required. Follow installation directions.
Step 13
Test music files and game sounds. Insert an audio or music CD into the drive and test again.
Step 14
If satisfied with sound card performance, power down the computer and replace computer cover or screws.