Vista Audio: Set Bit Depth, Sample Rate, and Exclusive Mode

Posted June 23, 2006 by Hack_Vista in Microsoft Vista

Vista is much more high-end, audio-friendly than previous versions of Windows. As an electronic musician, I am very happy to see these changes. Audiophiles should be excited as well. Now, you can run your audio higher than CD-quality and give your audio programs higher priority automatically.


I have always felt that XP was lacking in regards to audio capabilities. Vista seems to have changed that. Here are two big improvements in Vista audio.

To change these properties, do the following:

1. Click the Start button.
2. Select Control Panel.
3. Select Classic View.
4. Double-click Audio Devices and Sound Themes.
5. Under the Audio Device tab, click your Audio (output) Playback Device.
6. Click the Properties button.
7. Click the Options tab, and you will see the following:

8. Here, you may change the Default Format to change the bit depth and sample rate.
9. Checking Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device will allow your audio programs to more efficiently and effectively control your audio hardware.
10. Checking Give exclusive mode applications priority will allow these controlling audio software programs to be giving more priority to ensure audio quality.
11. Click OK.

Please note: Although you may be allowed in Vista to do Steps 9 and 10, those selections may not stay checked. This is likely because your drivers do not yet support these exclusive modes.

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