Have you ever found yourself running around to plug in your earphones to the laptop to attend the zoom meeting you’re already late to, only to find that there’s an audio issue that you can’t seem to fix? Now you look like a fish out of the water, yapping away without any audio to give it context while your coworkers watch. Talk about embarrassing. Sounds familiar? So, in this article, we will see how to resolve the error of Failed to Play Test Tone.

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With the pandemic ravaging the world and virtual meetings becoming the new normal, chances are we’ve all been in such embarrassing situations. 

There are so many times that plugging in your earphones doesn’t do the trick. You’re left confused and slightly irked. You then proceed to spend the next few minutes trying to figure out what’s wrong, only to end up abandoning it altogether. At this point, you’re not sure what went wrong, but you are left wondering if this is divine retribution, for you had laughed at that one coworker back in the day when they were facing technical issues. 

While it may be time to look back on some questionable things that you did that would fetch you retribution, solving the error Failed to Play Test Tone is more accessible than escaping discipline.

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Usually, this error occurs in 2 cases-

  • if the audio drivers in use are outdated 
  • if there is a hardware issue

Visit: Audio Drivers for Windows

failed to play test tone
Failed To Play Test Tone

Some other reasons include device compatibility issues or an issue with the audio settings of the laptop. 

A simple tip to avoid this from happening beforehand is to ensure that your audio drivers are updated regularly and remain up-to-date.

So now that you know why you think that, you’ll probably be able to solve this issue on your own. While you’re always welcome to try, given below are a few solutions to save you from wasting your time trying unless you’re a tech expert. In that case, good luck.

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Several issues may have caused the error Failed to Play Test Tone. So it’s only fair that there are various ways to tackle this problem. 

WAY 1-Use the Audio Troubleshooter:-

Start by running the audio troubleshooter on your device

  • To do this, type troubleshooter in the system search 
  • then select additional troubleshoot from the window and open it

On the opening, look for the play audio option

  • under additional troubleshooter find the play audio option 
  • Click on it and select run
  • follow any onscreen notifications that may come up 
  • try identifying the problem and fixing it using the troubleshooter

Solve issue using troubleshooter

  • once the issue is resolved, close the open windows 
  • reboot the pc so that the changes made come into effect

See Also: Windows 10 Won’t Boot Error | Best 4 Fixes

WAY 2- Change the default test tone settings:-

The computer often acts on its own and changes the settings to suit the device plugged into it. While this automatic process does make work more manageable at times, it also causes errors like these. 

The device changes the default tone based on the headphone or speakers that have been plugged into it.

Here’s a way to fix such an issue which will in turn fix Failed to Play Test Tone:-

  • Open system settings
  • Select system and sound
  • Could you open it?
failed to play test tone
Open the playback devices.
  • Find the option “DEVICE PROPERTIES” on the right side of the window
  • Select and open that option
  • Click on additional device properties and you’re on your way to fix Failed to Play Test Tone.
failed to play test tone
Go to the Properties
  • Select the option “ADVANCED” from the pop-up window
  • Now select the default format
  • Try changing and adjusting the bit and rate depth.
failed to play test tone
Try adjusting the rates
  • Perform the Hit and trial method till then, and we did not get the perfect setting.
  • Once found, select and set that setting
  • Now try testing tone again once adjusted

If you’ve been lucky by now, it must have solved your issue as you followed the above-stated two most common solutions to this error. However, if you’re amongst the unlucky ones who’re still stuck, do not fear. Here are two more slightly less common solutions to this error:-

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WAY 3- Disable sound enhancements of the device:-

Computers, many times in an attempt to ease our work and provide a better quality of sound, adjust the tone, so tweaking these settings might fix Failed to Play Test Tone.

  • Open sound properties
  • Click on sounds
  • Select the option “PLAYBACK” from the pop-up window
failed to play test tone
Go to playback devices
  • Select your device (i.e., the device plugged in, such as headphones or speakers) from the drop-down menu
  • Click on properties
failed to play test tone
Go to the properties
  • Find the option “SOUND ENHANCEMENTS.”
  • Click on that option. 
failed to play test tone
Disable enhancements
  • Click apply to get the settings to take effect
  • Click on ok
  • Now check to see if the test tone plays

WAY 4- Restarting the audio services of WINDOWS 10:-

Another way to fix Failed to Play Test Tone is to follow these steps

  • Open services manager
  • Find the options that say “WINDOWS AUDIO” and “WINDOWS AUDIO ENDPOINT BUILDER” in the window.
  • Double click on the options
  • Check that the status of the service is not set to “RUNNING.”
  • If it is not set to automatic, set it to “AUTOMATIC.”
  • If the status is already “RUNNING,” then shut it off using the “STOP” option. 
  • Would you please press on the restart button to get it running again
  • After making, the changes, click on “APPLY.”
  • Now click ok
failed to play test tone
Restarting audio services
  • Close the windows opened
  • Restart the system
  • Now check to see if there is any error or not.


I sincerely hope that one of these ways ended up working for you and fixed your issue – Failed to Play Test Tone. If not, I’d suggest referring to the official Microsoft website to get in contact with a Microsoft team tech expert. And until the issue remains there. I’ll tell you to hold off on the Zoom calls or Teams meetings lest you get embarrassed.

Visit: Microsoft Official

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About the Author: McKenzie Smith

Hello, I am McKenzie and I am totally obsessed with getting the best experience out of every device that I use. Hence, I started this blog to help others make the most of their devices and fix errors in a jiffy! :)

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