Sound distortion at beginning of notifications when on dock

Hey all!
I have a 12th gen low end model Framework laptop and generally love it. However, ever since I got it, when I have it plugged into a USB-C dock, when a sound first plays it’s terribly distorted. This is on Windows 11 Pro, fully updated and using Framework’s drivers. It’s only the first few moments of the sound, then it sounds normal.

A blind friend of mine told me that it might be because the sound card is going into power saving mode as soon as sounds are done playing, which is a common problem for people who use screen readers. He suggested that I download a program that constantly plays a silent audio file on loop in the background. Lo and behold, this fixed the problem. However, a better and less janky fix would obviously be to be able to turn off the sound card power saving mode.

I see there is a thread about doing this in Linux, and for the headphone jack. However, I am on a Windows and and using a dock that plays through to HDMI audio. Is anybody else experiencing this? If so, did you figure out a way to turn off the power saving mode? I looked around but the option doesn’t appear to be available in device manager. Thanks for any help anyone can provide!

To follow up, I recorded an alert sound with my iPhone. Not the best recording but gets the message across.

Sound with distortion, without silent loop running in background: SndUp | Post info
Sound when silent loop program is running:

Thanks for any help anyone can suggest!

HDMI audio adds some complexity. It has to go though USB-C to the HDMI module then deal with all the technology that allows HDMI audio including bad cables (extremely common).

Can you confirm if the issue happens when plugged into the audio jack. This will help narrow your scope.