James Helferty wrote in to say that he was having a problem with garbled sounds:
"I'm using a SB128 (ensoniq 1370) and a MVP3-based motherboard...
Quickly, the problem I was experiencing was an audio... rotation of the audio buffer, as part of the audio is played, and then replaced in mid-play, which causes the audio to sound all distorted and messed. The problem gets worse as you continue playing a long file.
Why this happens is a simple matter of bad BIOS design; the BIOSes on these boards, by default, give the CPU a higher priority on the ??memory?? bus, which means that the other devices (ie; PCI devices) are essentially starved of their share of time. Normally this isn't a problem with other PCI cards, but whenever you're using a sound card, it's really obvious. The reason the BIOSes were designed this way was because it gave a 0.04% speed increase in an obscure benchmark under Windows...
(Btw, I should point out that this non-technical explanation is actually third-hand information; I heard it from someone who replied to a post on Slashdot, who says he read it from a mailing list for the kernel. So I can't guarantee that it's an accurate explanation. :)
Anyways, the solution is actually quite simple; just go into your BIOS and disable something called "PCI Delay Transaction." Everything's fixed, problem goes away, everyone's happy. I still have a little static, but I can live with it..."
-- James Helferty
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