Fix: Failed to play test tone Error on Windows 7,8,10 (2023)

Written By Steven Arends

Are you unable to hear anything from the speakers of your computer although your speakers are working?

Then you have come to the right place.

In this post, you’ll learn how to fix Failed to Play Test Tone easily in just a listed few Methods. So let’s get started.

Reason behind failed to play test tone Error

Conexant Audio, Sound Blaster, IDT, Realtek Audio failed to play test toneOutdated DriversAffects IDT or Realtek audio devices
USB audio failed to play test toneusing a USB sound card or USB headphoneSound issues with USB audio devices
AMD HDMI audio failed to play test tonegraphics card installing audio driversAffects audio drivers while using HDMI cable with an AMD graphics card
Dell, HP audio failed to play test toneMultiple issuesCan permanently disable Sound system
Laptop no sound, failed to play test toneProblem in internal sound systemAffects both desktop and laptop
Sound card failed to play test toneIn-built functioning issueCan affect any sound card both dedicated and in-built
Failed to play sound, sound disabledAudio driver problem, backdated driverSound becomes completely disabled

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​What is failed to play Test Tone Error?

The Failed to play test tone is an issue between any Windows Operating system and the sound device your computer is using.

Basically, it pops up with an error message in case you are unable to hear any sound but you try to see if your sound device is working or not.


It gets even worse when I say:

This issue is commonly seen by a lot of Windows users and affects many of Microsoft’s Windows OS versions of it.

It’s obvious that having no sound on your computer is something that you should never experience, as it is one of the crucial performance of a computer.

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How to Fix Failed to play Test Tone Error on Windows

Test-Tone issue is randomly seen among the users.

But, luckily you can fix this error simply.

The only thing you have to do is to focus on the step-by-step methods carefully.

Here are the steps to fix test tone error on Windows:

1. Restart Windows Audio from services window

This solution is the fastest one to do and also is the first possible solution.

However, there are a couple of users who reported that this solution is not permanent and this error shows again after some time.

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To restart windows audio, you have to follow these steps:

Open the Run window by pressing the Win key and R at the same time. In the Run dialog, type the command services.msc and press Enter. Scroll in the list until you find the Windows Audio service from the opened Service Window. Press the Restart button on the top toolbar to restart it. Close the Services window box and most probably you will have your sound back.

2. Install High Definition Audio driver

Sometimes, the audio device drivers are backdated or get corrupted.

In this case, install a High Definition Audio Device Driver that is fully working.

It might resolve your issue easily.

Open the Device Manager by searching it clicking the windows search button. Expand Sound, video, and game controllers and select Update Device Software from the Action tab by searching for your current audio driver. Click on Browse my computer for driver software from the two mentioned options. Select High Definition Audio driver and click next.  In case you get a User Account Control prompt, click yes. Wait for the installation wizard to finish. Reboot your device to see if it worked.

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NB: If the driver isn’t available on your computer, visit the manufacturer’s site to install the latest driver of your sound card.

3. Repair Ruptured Windows Files

It might also be possible that some important Windows files are corrupted on your device.

So, you have to check and repair the corrupted system files.

Follow the steps below to do so:

Open Run Dialog Box by pressing Win+R at the same time. In the run box, type cmd and click the OK button. Type sfc / scannow when the command prompt opens and press Enter. The process will be executed properly in a couple of minutes until 100% complete.

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ProTip: If you are Unable to hear anything on discord then check out our separate post on it.

4. Change Sample Rate

Users reported that changing sample rates can fix the test tone problem.

Follow the steps below to do so:

Right-click on the sound icon that you see on the bottom right corner of your screen and select Playback devices. In the “Playback devices” tab, head towards your sound card and check Properties. Click on the Advanced tab option. You will see that the sample rate is set to 16 bit, 44100 Hz by default. Change it to 16 bit, 48000 Hz. Click Apply to save changes.

NB: If the sample rate is not set to default, click on Restore Defaults to check if the test tone issue is solved or not.

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5. Disable Audio Enhancements

Audio enhancements can cause test tone issues and thus it should be disabled.

Select Playback devices by Right-clicking on the sound icon in the bottom right corner of the desktop. Select Speakers and click the Properties and enhancements tab. Disable all enhancements then click Apply button to save changes.

6. Add the Local Service in the Local Users and Groups

This solution might seem completely irrelevant but, it helped a great number of users to fix test tone issues.

Select Manage from the dropdown menu by Right-clicking This PC or My Computer. Double click Local Users and Groups from the System Tools section in the right, and select Groups under it. Select Add to group by Right-clicking Administrators in the list in the middle of the window. Click Add > Advanced >Find Now. Double click Local Service and you should see NT AuthorityLocal Service in the list click OK. Reboot your device to apply changes.

7. Delete KB974571 Update ( for Windows 7 only)

It was reported by a lot of Windows 7 users that the KB974571 update was the one that caused a test tone problem for them.

For this, you have to delete it.

Open Control Panel > Programs and Features and open it. Click on the View installed updates link on the top left side in the programs and features window. Find the KB974571 update and uninstall it. It will reboot your PC a couple of times so make sure to save your work progress.

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Final Thoughts

The test tone Error message is mysterious as this causes Audio device Errors while your hardware is perfectly fine.

The steps I provided will definitely fix this issue for sure.

My suggestion would be, to check your hardware first before performing any steps if you are unknown to this issue.

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