No sound devices installed on Windows 11: how to fix

Can’t find any compatible audio output on Windows 11? Let’s find out together how to restore audio devices on the PC

On some PCs with Windows 11, especially after an update of the system or of the drivers on the computer, it is possible to run into the volume icon crossed out by an X, on which the writing appears “No audio devices installed”.

This error clearly shows that the operating system does not have any audio devices for the reproduction of sounds, although everything was working perfectly until yesterday or a few hours before.

In the guide below we will show you how to fix the error “No audio devices installed” on Windows 11, so that the sounds emitted by programs or Internet streaming sites can resume playing correctly.

READ ALSO -> How to switch audio output on windows

1) Enable the primary audio device

The first method that we can use to solve the problem of the missing sound card is to enable the card from the Windows settings; normally the main board is always active, but some update or some program could have played a bad joke on us by deactivating it.

To proceed, right click on the Start menu, press on Settingslet’s go to the menu Systemclick on Audio and finally we press on Other sound settings.

In the new window that will open open the tab Reproductionright click in the empty space, enable the item Show disabled devicespress the right mouse button on the name of the integrated sound card (or on the name of the speakers integrated into the PC) and press on Ability.

Then press the audio device again with the right mouse button and make sure that the items are ticked Set as default device And Set as default communication device.

2) Disconnect and reconnect the audio cables

The problem with audio devices could be caused by a problem with the audio cable, particularly if we use HDMI cable or DisplayPort cable to transport the sound to a fixed PC monitor (equipped with integrated speakers).

To try to solve it, we suggest you turn off the PC, disconnect the audio cable or HDMI cable, wait a few minutes, reconnect the cable and try restarting the computer. If possible we carry out this test with a new AUX audio cablea new HDMI cable or a new DisplayPort cableto rule out hardware damage.

3) Run the audio troubleshooter

Another effective method to solve the problem of no audio devices installed in Windows 11 is to use the troubleshooter built into the operating systemwhich can fix most driver, service, and bad configuration issues.

To activate it, go to the path Settings -> System -> Troubleshootwe press on Other troubleshooting tools and finally press the button Run present next to the item Sound playback.

A scan of the audio devices will start: at the end the problem will be shown and, if it can be solved directly by the tool, the indication will be shown Resolved alongside the problems encountered.

4) Enable the Windows Audio service

Among the numerous services present on the PC we also find Windows sound, which takes care of managing audio playback from any device on the computer; if for any reason this service is disabled or not set to automatic start, the system will not be able to use the installed audio devices.

To check the operation of this service we open the Start menu, type Serviceswe open the item of the same name, right click on the item Windows soundwe press on the item Property and make sure the voice is set Automatic in the drop-down menu Startup type and press on Start (if available).

If the key Start it is not selectable or an error message appears after pressing it we leave the automatic start of the service and try to restart the PC to verify the correct functioning of the service and the associated audio peripherals.

5) Update or reinstall the audio driver

If none of the tricks seen so far has worked we can restore access to the PC’s playback devices updating or reinstalling the audio driver associated with the primary playback device.

To proceed, right-click on the Start menu, press on the item Device managementlet’s expand the menu Sound, video and game controllersright-click on the peripheral to be re-enabled (called in most cases Realtek or High Definition Audio), click on the menu Propertywe select the tab Drivers and press on Update Driver -> Search for drivers automatically; if no driver is identified, we can try pressing Search for updated drivers in Windows Update, so as to force the search for new drivers.

To uninstall and reinstall the driver, repeat all the steps described above up to the tab Drivers but this time we press on the voice Uninstall devicetaking care to also check the item Attempting to remove the device driver.

At the end of the uninstallation we restart the PC; at the next start we start Windows Update to download the new audio driver or we force the search for new drivers as seen in our guide how to find the right drivers in case of an unknown device.

Driver for audio on HDMI or DisplayPort cables

If we use HDMI or DisplayPort cable to bring audio the monitor’s built-in speakers may be a good idea to troubleshoot audio problems downloading updated video drivers; it might seem strange but the audio controller drivers (integrated on the video card) are “managed” by the video drivers, which must therefore be updated in case of problems related to the audio that “passes” from the video card to the monitor.

To correctly update the video drivers we advise you to read our guides on how Download and install updated NVIDIA and AMD video card drivers and about how Download updated Intel HD Graphics Video Card Drivers.

If we have problems with the audio generated by the video card we can also read our article at solutions to video driver errors in windows.


With these valid tricks we will make the message “No audio devices installed” on Windows 11 disappear once and for all, so as to resume audio playback from the PC speakers or from the speakers integrated into the monitor.

If none of the previous tricks worked we can still restore the sound using system restore, as seen in the guide on how to use system restore in windows 10 and 11.

Always on the subject of updated audio drivers we can read our guides on how to update or install Realtek Audio drivers and about how download updated drivers to install safely.


Professional writer with a passion for technology and all things related to personal computing. With years of experience in the field, William has honed his craft as an expert in writing about how to use PCs, laptops, mobile devices, and staying up-to-date with technological updates.

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