How To Fix Sound Problems with Chromecast
Google’s Chromecast is one of our favorite ways to watch movies, TV shows, and other content straight from your phone, tablet, or laptop. Instead of having to fuss around with a remote and an interface on your television, Chromecast allows you to beam content directly from your device through the web from nearly any Android (and some iOS) application, including Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, and Google Play Movies. Since everything you play is straight from your phone, you don’t have to worry about dealing with menu systems and other services that are difficult to navigate. And with the current generation Chromecast devices only costing $35, it’s one of the cheapest ways to get into streaming videos and music on your devices.
If you recently picked up a Chromecast but are having difficulties hearing any sort of sound from your television while watching or listening to your favorite shows and movies, it can be a frustrating experience. Sure, the Avengers are saving the world again on your television, but what’s the point if you can’t hear what’s going on. Don’t stress too much, though—fixing sound problems through your Chromecast isn’t as difficult as you might think it is. All we have to do is pinpoint the problem causing an error in sound playback, and we’ll be back to your movie night in no time.
Checking Your Television’s Settings
Let’s start with some basic sound solutions to kick things off. Technology can be buggy and imperfect, but some fundamental knowledge in troubleshooting can save the day.
Ensure the sound issue isn’t coming from your television by checking your volume level and testing a different device for sound output (such as a game console or a cable box). Also, make sure that you have enabled the speakers in your television, and you have set your audio output to ‘fixed’.
Most modern televisions have a built-in option to disable the television speakers in order to use a home theater or surround sound system. You can also try turning off and unplugging your television for a few minutes, as well as resetting its factory settings from the settings menu. Finally, if you’re using a stereo system to power the audio side of your home theater, ensure that your audio system isn’t malfunctioning.
Once you’ve checked your television, try switching your Chromecast to a different HDMI port.
There are a few points that you have to consider checking about your Chromecast:
- Make sure your Chromecast is plugged into a fully-functioning USB port, and is receiving enough power.
- Your Chromecast is powered by a microUSB cable, plugging it into the TV’s built-in USB port won’t make it work.
- The 4K-supported Chromecast Ultra, meanwhile, uses a dedicated AC adapter, which means you might want to try a different outlet in order for it to function properly.
Troubleshooting Your Chromecast
After you’ve made sure your device is being supplied with enough power to function properly, you can also try to restart your device to shake up any bugs that might be occurring. To do this, follow these steps:
- Open the Google Home app on your mobile device.
- Tap the Devices button at the top right corner of your screen. From here you will see the currently available Chromecast devices on your network.
- Select your device.
- Tap the three-dotted icon at the top right of your screen, then select Settings.
- Tap More to view additional settings.
- Tap Reboot.
These steps will reboot your Chromecast, and should fix any issues with both visuals and sounds. Alternatively, you can simply unplug the device from its power source, forcing a reset.
If sound is still an issue from your device, make sure that the volume on your phone is turned up for Chromecast. Though you can control the volume of your Chromecast streams with your standard volume control on your TV remote, you can also control the volume through your mobile device. Just make sure that you have some kind of content playing from your phone or tablet on your Chromecast, and use the volume rocker on your device to increase the volume as you normally would.
Alternatively, try to stop the stream from your mobile device and restart the stream. If the sound problem is spawning from the application, restarting the stream will force Chromecast to reload the URL from which it’s accessing the video or audio feed.
You can also try force closing the application on your device to see if the problem is coming from the app itself as opposed to the Chromecast device or the connection between the app and Chromecast. If you’re streaming from
Chrome on your Chromebook or other computer, you can use the built-in Chromecast extension to ensure audio is optimized for sound. Tap on the extension in Chrome, select your Chromecast device, and select “Cast this tab (optimize for audio).”
Finally, you may want to attempt to factory reset your device. The main method for resetting the device is through using the Google Home app, as we already discussed. To reset your device using the app on your phone, tap on the Device icon inside the app and select the Chromecast device in your app. After opening your device’s settings menu, click on the triple-dotted icon inside the settings to select the factory reset option. Google Home will prompt you to ensure that you want to reset your device. Once you confirm your selection, you’ll be able to completely reset your device with preferences to test the audio again.
If you’re still experiencing problems with your Chromecast after trying these solutions, and you’ve ensured it isn’t another piece of A/V equipment in your setup, the next-best step is to contact Google for a warranty replacement.
Fixing Chromecast Audio Devices
It is also best to mention some Chromecast Audio-specific tips for fixing your audio streams. The Chromecast Audio is less popular than its older, video-friendly brother, but it’s a no less interesting device. This can be great for those who have excellent sound systems and are looking for something that functions better than a Bluetooth device.
If in any case you are having any trouble with your Chromecast Audio device, here are some tips that might help.
First, we need to dive back into the settings menu of your device in Google Home. Open your Chromecast Audio settings as described in our previous section and find the Sounds section. Unlike a traditional Chromecast device, the Chromecast Audio provides you with a new, never-before-seen setting here: full dynamic range. If you’re unsure about whether or not you want to enable this setting, then you should leave it off. Full dynamic range is designed for premium audio hardware, like Hi-Fi audio systems and AV receivers. If you’re trying to pump sound through a $30 pair of computer speakers from Amazon, this setting can actually cause distortion and improper volume increases on your device. If you’re having difficulty listening to your music, ensure this setting is disabled.
If you’re still experiencing issues with sound on your Chromecast Audio, check that the 3.5mm cable used by the device is working properly. Unlike typical Chromecasts, the Chromecast Audio uses a modular, analog 3.5mm jack and cable that can be damaged. However, this is typically easy to replace. Ensure that the cable is pushed into both your receiver or speaker and the Chromecast Audio unit. It would also be best to try testing the unit with a different aux cable. If you can’t get any sound out of the device, you may need to consider replacing the unit, as the 3.5mm jack may be dead or damaged.
Like most technology, Google’s Chromecast has its issues, including occasional hiccups and glitches when streaming media. Typically, most of these issues can be fixed by simply turning your off and on, or by switching the USB port powering your Chromecast, but of course, these problems can often have all sorts of causes and fixes, so keep trying our solutions above until you’ve solved the problem. You can do a lot with your Chromecast once you get it working properly, so let us know which fixes worked for you in the comments below.