Thief Gold: How to Fix EAX/Surround Sound Issue (Anything Using EAX 1-4)

A Universal EAX 1-4 and surround sound fix for many games.



Windows Support for EAX has been gone for years now and most modern games have moved to OPENAL. Unfortunately what this means for a whole generation of older games, is that if you want to go back and play a classic; you’ll have to deal with downgraded audio because modern systems do not offer support for EAX 1-5.

For a long time there was really no solution outside of installing Creative Alchemy, unfortunately this only works with Creative based soundcards, so if you’re Realtek or anything else you’re out of luck.

Fortunately there is a fix!

This New Vegas plugin will essentially emulate EAX 1-4 support with help from an unobtrusive .DLL wrapper and .ini file, the beauty of this little plugin is it works with pretty much everything i’ve tested that uses EAX 1-4.

(It not only restores EAX, but often restores surround sound support for many games as well!)


  • Download DSOAL and make a backup, keep in mind you can use this same plugin to restore EAX to just about anything so keep a copy on your desktop!
  • Drag and drop the contents to your main Thief directory. (FOR ANY GAME ALWAYS INSTALL TO THE DIRECTORY WITH THE MAIN .EXE FILE)
  • You can drag and drop everything if you like, but the only 3 files you need primarily are dsound.dll, dsoal-aldrv.dll and alsoft.ini.
  • Right click on alsoft.ini once it’s in your primary directory and click edit.

  • (Once you’re done editing alsoft.ini to your liking, SAVE the .ini file and launch Thief.)
  • Go to Thief’s Audio settings, after editing alsoft.ini as seen above.

You should now see EAX that was previously greyed out is now lit up.

  • Audio Channels: 48
  • Hardware Acceleration: On (We are now emulating DirectSound, that’s why we are now able to set this ON and active EAX at the same time.)
  • EAX: ON
  • These 3 settings allow for you to bring back Surround Sound audio and EAX to Thief.
    (And many other games!)

By Thumper

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Post Author: Robins Chew

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