Should I install VIA drivers when Realtek drivers are already installed and my motherboard supports both?

Yashraj T December 23, 2013
Pinterest Stumbleupon Whatsapp
Ads by Google

I have a Gigabyte G41M-Combo(rev. 1.3) motherboard. The Specifications tab in the website mentioned above shows that I have the following Audio specifications in this mobo:

VIA VT1708S codec————————MY SYSTEM DOESN’T RECOGNIZE IT ANYWHERE
High Definition Audio———————THIS MEANS REALTEK HD AUDIO
2/4/5.1-channel—————————–USUAL STUFF
Support for S/PDIF Out——————–USUAL STUFF
Support for CD In—————————USUAL STUFF

I already have a Realtek HD Audio Manager installed which shows my Audio codec as ALC888B/ALC887 and driver version as 5.10.0.6387. I know there is a new update release available but I do not plan on downloading it since my motherboard does not have support for it.

Now the problem here is that I do not have the VIA drivers/software installed and the sound is working just fine with the Realtek stuff. Should I download any drivers/software for the VIA VT1708S codec to take advantage of its advanced features available at http://www.via.com.tw/en/products/audio/codecs/vt1708s/ and enhance my sound? I do not want to mess it all up as I’ve done in the past (got a PS/2 mouse running on some stupid Alps driver which made its performance bad… works fine now) and hope that if I download the drivers mentioned at http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3505#dl there would be no driver conflicts and issues. I just want to take advantage of the extra features without killing my 7 year old PC. I used GIGABYTE’s download center at  and it doesn’t show that VIA codec or software or driver anywhere.

The software at GIGABYTE’s website lists it as:

Audio Version Size Date
VIA audio driver 10800a 81.55 MB 2012/10/25

If anybody here can help I would be glad. Sorry for posting a long question! :)

  1. Jan F
    December 23, 2013 at 11:47 am

    High Definition Audio is only a specification, it doesn't say anything about the chipset used on the board. One of it's purpose is to have standardized connectors e.g. for front panel audio.

    If your chipset is identified as a ALC887 I suspect you actually have revision 2.0 of this board which does indeed feature a Realtek audio chipset.
    http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=4213#sp

    Previous revisions 1.3 & 1.4 do sport the VIA chipset you have mentioned.

    If your audio working using the "wrong" driver I would suspect your system is actually using a generic driver supplied by Windows. As for the software on top if like the Audio Manager there is a chance it is working thanks to the standards and specifications mentioned in the beginning.

  2. Oron J
    December 23, 2013 at 11:43 am

    Simplest way to find out is to open the device manager and see if there are any drivers missing or not working properly (normally shown with an exclamation mark on a yellow background, possibly in the "other devices" branch). If there are, it's worth your while installing the drivers. Otherwise, don't bother.