Fix: 5.1 Channel Surround Sound not Working in Windows 10

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
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If you like to enjoy in multimedia content then you probably have 5.1 surround speaker system. These speakers are perfect for all fans of multimedia and it’s a big problem when 5.1 channel sound isn’t working on Windows 10, so let’s see if we can fix this.

5.1 Channel Surround Sound Not Working in Windows 10

What to do if 5.1 Channel Surround Sound Isn’t Working in Windows 10

Users report that they can only get 2.1 audio, although 5.1 audio worked fine with previous versions of Windows. In addition, users are getting Failed to play test tone error when trying to test their audio device. So what can we do to fix this issue?

Solution 1 – Change the sound bit rate and frequency

This applies if you’re using Realtek Sound. To fix this, you need to open Realtek Sound manager and set the sound bitrate to 24bits and frequency to 96000Hz for 5.1 audio to work properly. If this option doesn’t work, you might want to try changing the bitrate and frequency until you find the one that works for your computer.

Solution 2 – Update your audio driver

If you’re using Realtek audio, you might want to download the latest drivers, or any version of drivers higher than Some users report that this was helpful to them. If you’re not using Realtek audio, it won’t hurt that you try updating your audio driver as well.

All your drivers need to be updated, but doing it manually is very annoying, so we recommend you to download this driver updater tool (100% safe and tested by us) to do it automatically.

We also have to mention that Microsoft is aware of this issue and it’s working hard to fix it, and according to Microsoft they already have a working solution available for their Insiders program. After the solution has been tested by Insiders and confirmed that it works it should be available for all users.

If none of these solutions were helpful to you, make sure that you keep your Windows 10 up to date and wait for the official solution from Microsoft.

Read Also: Fix: File Corrupted in Windows 10

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  • Quite stupid ADs.Smart people recommend to keep your drivers backed and NEVER to update drivers before you have a full system backup. Folks, those driver-update-makers want your money, that’s it.

      • Well, now, 5.1 works, but only if it is recorded as 5.1. otherwise it plays 2.0. There is no synthesized surround and MS doesn’t care whether you like it or not. Look for DL-6ch or DTS for full sound. If you’ve been fiddling with the settings to make 5.1 work you will probably have to return to defaults or do more fiddling, but it works.

        • Well that is true, I was more commenting on some games that offer 5.1 surround. But I did get it working on the DTS, until I updated to the recent creators update. Not sure why but that took it out on my system again. But at least this time I am sure it is a driver or firmware update. Thanks for the input!

  • I tried almost everything but nothing works, I have asus motherboard viahd integrated sound. Even I’ve bought external sound card but in that case test sound works but from application surround 5.1 doesn’t work, I also tried fill speaker option but not working

  • Doesn’t work at all. Win 8.1 and 7 both show 5.1 surround, but win 10 only shows 2.0 at most, and that’s over the same setup with a 5.1 system over optical. And powerdvd recognizes 5.1, and thus making the sound really bad since the sound then goes 5.1 leaving only the rear speakers on, and rest silent.

  • I got tired of waiting and I have Creative Sound, not RealTek….so I cheated and got a Creative Sound Blaster Omni 5.1 Surround external sound card. Took care of everything and and have more control over what sound I want. It actually is a vast improvement over everything i had previously.