I'm having issues with getting sound out of my studio monitors. Today I bought a new M-audio interface thinking it might have been the problem because I thought maybe my other interface was faulty, but tested today it with no luck.

I am not getting any sound through my speakers. I am using Mackie speakers, Ableton Live, a 6-month-old HP laptop 16 GB RAN, SSD, with Windows 10 (which I think may be the problem.)

I have searched many forums, watched many YouTube video's asked a lot of people who do music production themselves but keep coming up with the same solutions that do not work for me. I have tried with no avail setting default devices in playback devices, disabling devices, unchecking devices; I have also tried in device manager uninstalling Realtek. I have lost count how many times I have done this. I have updated drivers for numerous things. I have downloaded ASIO4ALL, stopped and restarted things in services, changed a few things on firewall & in task manager; I have even gone as far in the previous weeks as rebuilding the whole system to the original state but yet again nothing. I am basically all out of ideas and cannot find out why this is happening as it had worked fine with no problems for a good few months...

When I connect my interface to my laptop and speakers, the device shows up and I play the track. I get a signal in the playback devices but no sound on speakers, but would through headphone or computer speakers. Here is where it gets weird, when I turn my speaker off then back on, I get a brief 1 to 2 second of audio then it cuts back off.

Also, when I connect my headphones straight into the headphone jack at the front of the speaker, I get sound through my headphones, so the signal is going through the interface and reaching the speaker, but there are no problems with the speakers. I really do not know anything else I can try.

This is incredibly frustrating and I just want to get back to making some music, but instead am just finding myself stressed out and unsure if I will ever get this laptop back to doing what I want it to.

  • 3
    If the sound is coming into the speakers (as you mention that you can hear it with headphones at the speakers front-jack) and is not coming out of the actual speakers, the issue is probably in the speaker .... Can you add the exact speaker reference ?
    – audionuma
    Jun 4, 2017 at 11:35
  • Voting to close as the OP has not given enough information.
    – audionuma
    Jun 7, 2017 at 12:47
  • 1
    @audionuma - they provided information that clearly shows the problem is on the speaker end of the signal flow. A specific answer needs a bit more information about speaker model and will probably require some back and forth in comments to figure out the key pieces of information, but there's enough information here for a pretty strong general determination.
    – AJ Henderson
    Jun 8, 2017 at 13:53
  • Having exactly the same issue here. Turing off and on again gives me a second of sound then it dips to nothing. Was there any luck fixing it? I have noticed the powered speaker is quite warm. Over heating? Cheers!
    – sam
    Jun 7, 2023 at 15:49

1 Answer 1


The problem IS your speakers. 100% guaranteed. You are getting sound on the headphone jack on the speakers and get sound from the speakers when you first turn them on. That means the signal path to that point is good. There isn't bidirectional communication between the interface and the speakers, it is just an analog signal. The interface has no way to know if the speakers are on or not, so the only possible explanation is that something with the speakers is wrong since the only thing changing between it working and it not is the speakers. There is a small chance that something about the audio signal makes the speakers not like it, but that's relatively unlikely since it sounds right on your headphones (assuming it isn't way too quiet or way too loud especially).

It sounds likely that it is some kind of self-protection feature or a general misconfiguration of the amplifier given than both speakers are behaving the same way and they aren't blocking the headphone path which would be prior to amplification. If you include the exact model of speaker, we may be able to provide further insight, but the path is good up to the speakers. It may also be an issue with the power being provided to the speakers.

  • Do you think it could be that they are passive speakers (and he doesn't have a speaker amp)? The fact that he gets a second or two of sound makes me think not, but I don't know what would happen if you tried that. I assume just no sound at all..
    – user22688
    Oct 6, 2017 at 18:00
  • @Thomas - no, there would be no audio at all or only very, very quiet audio if you sent a line level signal to an unpowered speaker, as it would either not be able to move the cone at all or would only very slightly move it.
    – AJ Henderson
    Oct 6, 2017 at 18:48
  • Yeah, that definitely makes more sense. Thanks.
    – user22688
    Oct 6, 2017 at 19:05

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