Steam voice chat issues when RAM usage high

Discussion in 'Troubleshooting Help' started by damo2002, Mar 9, 2019.

  1. damo2002

    damo2002 Member

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    Title basically explains it!

    If I'm having a steam voice chat with friends and load up a game (not all, but most), the sound turns bad - distortion, slurring, dropping whole sections of audio. This seems to only happen when RAM intensive games are opened. When I open old games this doesn't seem to occur.

    Having Chrome open (with the many, many tabs I usually have..) seems to exacerbate the issue. If I close it, it seems to take longer to happen - but it still does, eventually.

    I ran a CPU stress test, and the issue did not manifest. But as soon as I started a RAM stress test, the exact same symptoms occured.

    My PC is relatively new, however it did work fine for a few months before this started happening, and no bios settings were changed between then and the occurrence of this issue.

    Specs: MSI z390m motherboard 9600k CPU Gskill 16gb 3200mhz ram

    CPU had a stable overclock to 4.7ghz, RAM running at rated specs via XMP profile. All of which was OK up until now.

    I have updated my BIOS in case this would help, but no dice.

    Also opened all necessary steam voice ports (just in case, y'know). Used my phone as a hotspot to bypass all router/modem settings and no improvement.

    Reinstalled Steam, no change. Also removed Kaspersky, no help.

    Voice communication via Facebook & Skype didn't seem to succumb to these issues, so it does seem specific, but I am concerned that maybe it's manifesting in other ways on my system.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. CAPT-Irrelevant

    CAPT-Irrelevant Member

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    When you have high RAM intensive things open, and your voice chat issues kick in, how much RAM is being utilised by the entire system for the entire time?
    When did the issue first start? Did you have any system updates before and after?
    We need data, not just descriptions of symptoms :)
     
  3. OP
    OP
    damo2002

    damo2002 Member

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    Fair call!
    I haven't tested too many games, but with Grim Dawn running it seems to sit around 8GB usage (including Chrome, etc). Quake Champions is another game that causes it, that seems to sit around 10-11GB.
    I believe the issue started 2-3 weeks ago. Can't narrow it down, because I shrugged it off initially thinking it was a temporary problem with the connection or something. There have been 2 or 3 Windows updates in that time, but none of them have descriptions that would indicate they'd cause the issue - no guarantee, of course.
    Steam also updates itself regularly, so can't really comment on that.

    I forgot to mention that I did run 4 passes of memtest, and no errors were found from it.

    My microphone input & sound output devices are separate from each other too, so they shouldn't be the cause either.
     
  4. CAPT-Irrelevant

    CAPT-Irrelevant Member

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    Windows updates won't necessarily indicate that they will cause issues, but if you can identify the KB numbers of the updates installed around that time, you can google around for common reports.

    Try other voice chat services to assess their QoS and memory use.

    Maybe try a clean reinstall of the Steam client.
     

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