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Help with Vista Home Premium & Headset Issues Re: Second Life & Youtube, Etc.

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Topic Includes:


Cyber Acoustics USB Headset

Headset Microphone & Speakers, Voice, Audio, Recording

Laptops, PC Laptops


Re: Second Life, Linden Labs, Youtube, Skype & Other Websites & Communication Software

Note – the model number for the headset I have is not stamped on the actual headset itself.  If that info was anywhere in the instructions it’s all long gone. But hopefully this page will serve as helpful general assistance for any same or similar issues re: headsets used with Vista and/or other operating systems on PC Laptops and other PC computers.


The issue was:

USB headset would not work or would start and then stop working randomly whenever I used the Voice features in Second Life (both the Standard SL viewer and Emerald Viewer). When the headsets did function – after I logged out of Second Life – they would not work for other websites such as Youtube, etc.

All updates for all software and computers were current.

This is the non-tech expert solution I came up with after other ideas found online did not seem to work.
If anyone has a more efficient way to handle this issue please feel free to post it here below. Thanks!


More info below – but if you were first wondering what I and others are up to in the Metaverse here is some of what’s  happening:

I’m Mostly Using Second Life To Help  Design My Dreams

So Far I’m Also Doing Some Of The Following Things:

Creating 3-D Works of Art

Getting A University Degree

Visiting NASA

Learning New Languages

Meeting New Friends & Old Friends From All Over The World

Learning GCI Skills

Listening To Great Music Both DJ’d & Live



Playing Great Music!

Reading Poetry

Starting A Fun Online Business and/or Giving The Brick & Mortar One A Presence in the Metaverse, Too

Participating in Discussions

There Really Is Something For Everyone, Free Activities, Events & Items Abound!



To use your USB headset in Second Life:

1) First make sure your computer has all updates current, including the USB headset device drivers.

2) Plug your USB heasdet into the computer.

3) Then go to the Control Panel, find the Device Manager, then the Sound/Video/Game Controller tab.

4) Next, click the ‘+’ sign on the Sound/Video/Game Controller tab and find your USB device under that same tab.

5) After making sure you are connected to the internet and that your USB headset device is plugged in

6) Double click on your USB device under the ‘+’ sign on the Sound/Video/Game Controller tab, go to the Driver tab and click on Update Driver.

The computer will do an auto search from there to check for and/or update to the most current driver for your headset.

Optionally you can also do a Google search for information on the driver you may need.

7) Restart your computer

Note: the first time I did an automatic search for updated drivers the download was for the Logitech brand – even though mine are from Cyber Acoustic. Although I could not find that driver via Uninstall Programs or in any other  searched so far

On the try right after that one the USB PnP Sound Device driver/update was the one installed. After restarting the laptop(s) I was again able to use the headsets.

@@@@ PART A:

1) (optional) For a clean beginning: Restart your computer

2) Plug your USB headset device to the computer

3) Go to Control Panel

4) Go to Manage Audio Devices

5) Go to Playback (audio/headset speakers) tab (right click and choose to show all disabled and disconnected devices)

6) Disable all Speakers that are not already disabled

7) Then chooose the USB Speakers device icon

7a) Then actually click again on the same on the same USB Speakers device icon

7b) Click on Properties

7c) Click on Levels and make sure the volume is not at zero and make sure the mute button is not activated. The main Microphone button will likely be turned off and/or muted since you are set to use your USB microphone instead.

8) Choose Apply and/or OK

(Note: If you have an headset that is not wireless you can also try enabling both the default and the USB speakers.  This, if you are ever listening more than speaking and you want to be able to walk around freely. But this may not always work. It also may cause unpleasant background noise effects for those listening on the other end).

9) Go to Recording (microphone/speaking) tab (right click and choose to show all disabled and disconnected devices)

10) Disable all microphones that are not already disabled

11) Then choose your USB Recording (microphone/speaking) device icon

11a) Then actually click again on the same on the same USB microphone icon

11b) Click on Properties

11c) Click on Levels and make sure the volume for the main/regular Microphone is set at zero since you are set to use your USB microphone instead. it dies not have to be muted and so that is one less thing to have to remember to undo later

12) Choose apply and/or OK

@@@@ PART B:

1) Log into Second Life.


To use the Voice features you must be in a Voice active/permission sim area. See the Note under #9 below for how to know when a sim area is Voice enabled

2) If you cannot use the Voice features with your headset (speaking or listening) in a Voice enabled sim area  go to the next step  below (#3):

3) Go to the Edit menu at the top right of your Second Life Viewer and click on it

4) Go to Preferences

5) Go to Voice Chat

6) Make sure Enable Voice Chat is checked

7) Choose where you want to hear voice chat from

8) Choose Push To Talk In Toggle Mode if you want to choose when voice/sound will be heard from your end during a conversation

You will click on the Talk button at the bottom right of your screen to engage the Talk feature and again every time you want to disengage the Talk feature while you are in a conversation.This is helpful if you want to minimize background noise from your side whenever you are not speaking.

9) Choose Reset Voice.

10) Go to Device Settings and click on it. Test out  the headset microphone by speaking into it and adjusting the slider. You may want to start  with a a level of 2 to 3 green squares. If the squares turn to red lower the number of them via the slider. You can always ask others for help in order to know if the mic settings sound okay when others are listening to you.

11) Click Apply and the click OK

12) Try out Voice in a voice active sim area.

If something here does not help  fix things you can change the order of steps 9 and 10, play around with it, see what else might work.


It may take a minute to hear Voice Chat sounds from others in areas in Second Life where Voice is allowed. You can check your Local Chat history via the Local Chat button icon at the bottom left of your screen. If you do not see it click on the bubble chat icon button there and it should appear. Click on the Local Chat button and find the time you arrived at the sim area. It will say at that time stamp either: Connecting to Voice Chat or Voice Chat Not Available.

You can also check the top middle of the Second Life screen frame to see if the Voice icon is active (available) or inactive (unavailable).

When you are voice active  you will see a white dot above your head.  Then when you are speaking or background noise is transmitting from your end you will see green waves emitting from the dot. If the waves are red make adjustments.


1) Move the mic further away from your mouth

2) Adjust sound via the Device Settings again. Lower the number of green squares lighting up via the Device Settings slider when testing the mic.

3) Ask for help from someone Inworld.


9a) Make sure that the volume is turned up on every relevant piece of software and hardware: including your computer, your headset if it has volume control. Also make sure the mute button is not turned on if your headset has its own mute or sound on/off control (may be on the headset itself or on its electric cord).

9b) Make sure the relevant volume and mute controls for the Second Life software are properly set:

9c) At the bottom of the screen – between the Local Chat bar (click on the bubble chat icon, bottom left screen, if you do not see it) and the Talk button at the bottom right of the screen – is the Volume Control. Make sure it is turned up.

You can also fine tune it via the small icon to the  right of the music, media and volume icons. Click on this icon to the right of these others and a Master Volume Menu will pop up. Make sure there are no mute buttons activated (they are usually highlighted in red when on – turn them off if needed).

9d) You can close the Master Volume Controls the same way you opened them. You can also find a Master Volume Menu under the Preferences tab referred to above in PART B #3.

If you need more assistance than is here on this page you can go to:

In Second Life:

Search >> Places (sometimes Search >> All can work, too, if needed):

Type in any of these locations which you can teleport to for help (click or double click the teleport button icon):

A) —  Search >> Any Category and then type in any of these (one at a time per search):

Help Island

NCI (any of the locations)

Help People! Island

The Shelter (if you would like to meet other kind and friendly others. Many of whom can likely point you in the direction of other helpful locales for new Second Life residents)

Remember: after typing in your search words initiate your inquiry by clicking on the colored Search button.

B) — Search >> Linden Location and then type in any of these (one at a time per search):

Welcome Area (any under this category)

Info Hub (any under this category)

Note: there are lots of other ‘unoffical’ Welcome Areas & Info Hubs that you may find under sub categories other than Linden Labs.  Many of a PG or Mature nature & also some of an Adult nature. Read descriptions when they are available. Also ask around Inworld and you can learn which ones are  most beneficial for what you are wanting to know.

C) — You can also go to Search >> Events >> Education and look for classes for new members of Second Life. There are several offered each week where lots of help for new residents can be found.

Tons of Freebies are available in the Second Life world: Clothes, Free Money Trees for Linden Dollar$, Skins and body Shapes to help your avatar have one favorite or many different looks:

You can start with these:

Search >> Any Category:

Noob Island

Freebies Beach MetaRL

The Gnubie Store

The Free Dove

**** If you are age verified and/or have payment information on record with Linden Labs (as in a bank card registered for purchases or a Premium account):

In the Search interface, if you unckeck the parameters for “Adult” and do have “PG” and “Mature” checked your searching will go alot faster for basic new residents assistance.

@@@@ PART C:

If after logging off from Second Life:

If you find you are not able to use the headset on other websites (for listening or speaking using the microphone):

1) Start or restart your browser. If that does not help go to step #2.

2) Restart Your computer.  If the settings were not saved try the same steps again found above in PART A # 1 thru 12 for your website of choice.

If that does not work you will have to dig deeper online for a solution or hire expert assistance.  But if you only want to listen to audio on a website without a headset:

2) Make sure you have Unplugged your USB headset device from the computer

3) Go to Control Panel

4) Go to Manage Audio Devices

5) Go to Playback (audio/headset speakers) tab. Right click and choose to show all disabled and disconnected devices

6) Disable all speakers that are not already disabled

7) Then choose the default speaker icon

8) Choose apply and/or OK

9) Go to Recording (microphone/speaking) tab. Right click and choose to show all disabled and disconnected devices

10) Disable all microphones that are not already disabled

[Note: You may also have one called ‘stereo mixer.’  It’s not needed for these basic purposes. But if you want to know what it is used for you can visit Torley Linden’s blog for a tutorial: ]

11) Then enable whichever microphone you think you will be using next

12) Choose apply and/or OK.

Close all unneeded windows and enjoy the audio on your website(s) of choice (Restart your browser or computer again if needed).


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