HP (Pavilion) Riptide-Chameleon Drivers
a.k.a. Rockwell Riptide Audio & Conexant Modem

    A summary of what I learned about the drivers for both versions of this card, after a client first obtained a used HP Pavilion 8650C computer (with no recovery CDs or manuals), then a replacement hard drive with an OEM Window 98SE package— from two separate sources. Leaving me to discover the driver update provided by the HP Website is just that— a program that updates the already installed driver, which HP provides only on the product recovery CDs.

    Thankfully, those original drivers were uploaded to DriverGuide.com. So below are the driver files and documents I located for Windows XP, 2000, 95/98/98SE and Me, then Linux— with brief note about the use or usefulness of each.


DISCLAIMER: I am not affiliated with the manufacture of these modem/audio cards, so the below information represents only my own understanding— which has not been verified with HP.

[WWW Link]ModemSite.com: HP Riptide Information
http://www.modemsite.com/56k/hcfhp.asp    [New Window]
Riptide HCF modem, then Chameleon/Riptide "Soft56" HSF Modem.
[WWW Link]vee90.net: Conexant modem chipsets
http://www.vee90.net/chipsets_cnx_rok1.html    [New Window]
ACF, HCF & HSF chipsets— including RipTide & Chameleon versions.

   It appears that there are two versions of the HP Audio/Modem card. I expect that the Pavilion models with the original— not Chameleon— audio/modem card are the ones listed in the HP Riptide Audio/Modem Update document. (Scroll down that page a bit.)

[WWW Link]Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 315342
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=315342    [New Window]
The Modem Does Not Work After Upgrade a Pavilion to Windows XP.

   Apparently Windows XP already knows about this card. So that version of Windows will install appropriate drivers, without needing any additional driver files. However, when some systems are upgraded to XP, the modem portion of the card might not work correctly using the drivers that XP installed. This problem can be avoided by uninstalling the modem (within Windows) just before upgrading the Pavilion computer to Windows XP.

[WWW Link]HP.com: Win2K HP Riptide Modem Driver  448KB

   The Riptide— not Chameleon— version of the Windows 2000 driver file. "na" in the file name stands for North America; while the European version has "ww" in the file name (ripwww2k.exe); and the Asian Pacific version has "ap" in the file name (ripapw2k.exe).

[WWW Link]HP.com: Win2K Chameleon Modem Driver  1.31MB

   This file was located via the driver downloads & updates search for "Pavilion 8650C". This contains the drivers that Windows 2000 needs to install both the modem and the soundcard.


"Use the following steps to install the [above] driver:
1. Download and open the file.
2. Unzip to the default directory.
3. Remove all unknown audio and PCI devices from device manager.
4. Scan for new hardware. When Windows is unable to find the drivers, browse to the new folder (Chameleon_HSF_Win2000). Use Rip2tide.inf for the audio device and use NT52013 for the PCI simple communications controller."

 HP Pavilion Desktop PCs - Modem Drivers  
 (before that Webpage was "updated")  
[WWW Link]HP.com: Win2K Audio Modem Combo Driver  1.28MB

   The Windows 2000 Chameleon sound/modem drivers that HP provides for those who wish to upgrade a Pavilion pre-loaded with Windows Me.

[WWW Link]DriverGuide.com: riptide-chameleon-w982k.exe  23MB
http://members.driverguide.com/driver/detail.php?driverid=62976    [New Window]
A free registration may be required to make full use of the above site.

   Windows 98 and Windows 2000 drivers for the Smart Modular Technologies Riptide Chameleon combo sound/modem card with Rockwell chipset. This file is almost 23MB, and contains the complete driver set for this combo card. Taken from the HP restore disk. Card P/N: 90079-2. (Note: See below about cham508.exe updating the Windows 9x drivers.)


Hint: The Windows 98 drivers from the above file are extracted to a folder called (something like) Win9x. The "9x" part of the folder name would indicate one set of drivers for Windows 95/98/98SE. So on a Windows 98 system, if a driver complains it cannot find the Windows 95 files, instead locate and use the Windows 98 install files. (Those could be on the Windows CD, in C:\Windows\Options\CABS\ , etc..)

[WWW Link]HP.com: Chameleon Audio/Modem Update  3.60MB
[WWW Link]HP.com: HP Riptide Audio/Modem Update  3.07MB

   The (top) Chameleon file was located via the driver downloads & updates search for "Pavilion 8650C". While the second file seems to be the Riptide version of the same drivers. This update improves how the modem works, and fixes some soundcard compatibility issues. For the Chameleon version, the above driver from DriverGuide.com needed to be installed first, as the cham508.exe file only updates the already installed Windows 95/98/98SE drivers. The rip417na.exe driver file also supports Windows Me, and "na" in the file name stands for North America.

[WWW Link]HP.com: Bass/Treble Controls & Memory Errors  352KB

   An update, for the below rippc99na.exe driver, to fix Out Of Memory error messages and Bass/Treble controls not working. (Does this provide the same end result as installing the rip417na.exe driver?)

[WWW Link]HP.com: Win9x HP Riptide Modem Driver  2.52MB

   The previous version of the Riptide— not Chameleon— drivers for Windows 9x. This is slightly older than rip417na.exe. "na" in the file name stands for North America; while the European version has "ww" in the file name (rippc99ww.exe); and the Asian Pacific version has "ap" in the file name (rippc99ap.exe).


"For those of you who need Win98 drivers for the old Riptide card (Not the Riptide Chameleon) as found for example in my HP Pavilion 8520, you need one of the three [above] files."

"The files are only updates, but they seem to have almost everything you need to install. The only file which I couldn't find was some midi one (can't remember the exact name sorry). All other files should be in the extracted directories, and it should allow windows to install both the sound and modem."

 Vee90.Net - HP 8655c audio/modem driver!?!?!?  
[WWW Link]DriverGuide.com: Genmidi.zip (missing Riptide file)  8MB
http://members.driverguide.com/driver/detail.php?driverid=24196    [New Window]
A free registration may be required to make full use of the above site.

   Contains the Windows 98 genmidi.wsl file for the Riptide— not Chameleon— Modem/Audio combo-card, copied out of the Windows\System folder from a freshly restored HP Pavilion 6470z. (The missing midi file in the above message.)

[WWW Link]HP.com: WinMe Rockwell Sound/Modem Update  1.86MB

   The file to update the already installed Chameleon sound/modem drivers on HP Pavilion's which come pre-loaded with Windows Me.

[WWW Link]LINUXANT: 3rd party Linux drivers for Conexant chipsets
http://www.linuxant.com/drivers/    [New Window]

   A third party driver development firm, which provides the Linux drivers for the Riptide (HCF based) and Riptide-Chameleon (HSF/Soft56 based) Modem/Audio cards. See these notes on the Conexant Linux drivers for which driver(s) the specific modem types require.


Bookmark & Share this page

E-mail the Webmaster
Page Content Updated: 02 February 2009

The virtual "Tip Jar"

If this document provided the needed assistance, then a small donation— to help support the operation of this Website— would be appreciated. (A couple of dollars is the suggested donation amount.)

  << Visa MC AmEx Discover
Canadian Dollars   US Dollars
Make a donation via PayPal
Note: until you Login, PayPal might show a "default" US Dollar checkout.