How to Fix the Can’t Play Audio Error 0xC00D36FA in Windows 11

Audio and video playback problems in Windows 11 can be disruptive, particularly when they lead to the 0xC00D36FA error. This guide delves into the common causes of this issue and provides step-by-step instructions to help you get back to a seamless media experience.

Before You Begin: Basic Checks

Let’s start with the basics before moving on to advanced solutions:

  • Physical Connections: Verify that your external audio devices are plugged in securely, powered on, and functioning correctly. Test by switching headphones or speakers if possible.
  • File Compatibility: Try to play other media files. If the error is confined to a single file, that file itself might be corrupt or incompatible.
  • Restart: Close and reopen your media player app. Alternatively, a full Windows restart often resolves temporary glitches.

Solution 1: Verify Device Isn’t Disabled

Sometimes, the most unexpected things can trip us up! Let’s ensure your audio device is enabled in Windows settings.

  1. Access Settings (press the Windows key + I).
  2. Navigate to System and then choose Sound.
  3. Locate the output device you intend to use (your speakers, headphones, etc.).
  4. If apps are not allowed to use the audio device (the button reads Don’t Allow), click the Allow button.

After making this change, try playing your media again. If problems persist, continue to the next troubleshooting step.

Allow audio device to fix audio error 0xc00d36fa

Solution 2: Troubleshoot Audio Error 0xC00D36FA

Windows offers a built-in troubleshooter designed to detect and resolve audio-related issues effectively. To run the Playing Audio troubleshooter, follow these steps:

  1. Access Settings (using the Windows key + I shortcut).
  2. Go to System and then Troubleshoot.
  3. Choose Other troubleshooters.
  4. Locate Playing Audio and click the Run button.
  5. Follow any on-screen prompts to finish the troubleshooting process.
Audio troubleshooter to fix audio error 0xc00d36fa

Solution 3: Update Your Audio Drivers

Outdated or corrupt audio drivers can cause playback problems and impact overall sound quality. Let’s update your drivers to potentially resolve audio issues and optimize your system’s performance.

  1. Right-click the Start button and select Device Manager.
  2. Expand the category Sound, video and game controllers.
  3. Right-click on your primary audio device and choose Update driver.
  4. Select Search automatically for drivers and follow the installation procedure.
Update audio driver to fix audio error 0xc00d36fa

Solution 4: Reinstall Audio Drivers

If updating your drivers hasn’t solved the issue, a complete reinstallation can provide a fresh start, potentially fixing deeper problems that an update might have missed.

  1. Repeat steps 1 and 2 from the previous method.
  2. Choose Uninstall device instead of updating.
  3. Restart your computer – Windows will try to reinstall the drivers automatically.

Solution 5: Disable Audio Enhancements

Software-based audio enhancements, while useful, can sometimes cause playback issues. To help pinpoint the cause of the error, let’s temporarily disable them.

  1. Right-click your taskbar’s speaker icon.
  2. Choose Sound Settings.
  3. Scroll down and click on More sound settings (within the Advanced section).
  4. Double-click on your default playback device.
  5. Within the Enhancements tab, check Disable all enhancements.
  6. Click Apply to save the changes.
More sound settings


Though seemingly complex, the 0xC00D36FA error in Windows 11 is often fixable. Should these methods not provide a solution, don’t lose hope! Seek further guidance on online forums or consult a Windows technician for additional support. If you have any suggestions or think I made a mistake in this article, please leave a comment below!

author avatar
Derick Payne
My name is Derick Payne. With a deep-seated passion for programming and an unwavering commitment to innovation, I've spent the past 23 years pushing the envelope of what's possible. As the founder of Rizonetech and Rizonesoft, I've had the unique opportunity to channel my love for technology into creating solutions that make a difference.

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