Now with a second MacBook air 11" I am experiencing the same issue. Return the first display and on to the second display. Also now using a 11 vs the 13. Both are 2012. Sound is slowly distorting and finally ends up with no sound from display at all with both MacBook Air 2012.
11" MacBook Air (2012)
Model Name: MacBook Air
Model Identifier: MacBookAir5,1
Processor Name: Intel Core i7
Processor Speed: 2 GHz
Number of Processors: 1
Total Number of Cores: 2
L2 Cache (per Core): 256 KB
L3 Cache: 4 MB
Memory: 8 GB
Boot ROM Version: MBA51.00EF.B00
SMC Version (system): 2.4f14
Vendor Name: Apple, Inc.
Device Name: Thunderbolt Display
Vendor ID: 0x1
Device ID: 0x8002
Device Revision: 0x1
Route String: 1
Firmware Version: 22.2
Link Status: 2
Port Micro Firmware Version: 0.0.21
Cable Firmware Version: 0.1.18
Status: No devices connected
Link Status: 7
Port Micro Firmware Version: 0.0.21
Message was edited by: RiggerIII
IMO, not worth your time and hope in exchanging in the 2012 macbook air or the thunderbolt display.
I bought the macbook air 2012 and the thunderbolt display the same day.
exchanged just the thunderbolt display.
exchanged the macbook air 2012
went through two of each in 48 hours. static LIVES.
its clearly a software update that needs to happen.
someone needs to go to an apple store. grab a 2012 macbook air. plug it into a thunderbolt display. stream pandora (or whatever). Drink a cup of coffee for 20 minutes. guess what...
I'm wondering whether each time you got a new MacBook whether you ran the migration assistant to set it up?
I did, and perhaps there is something transferring between MacBooks that causes the issue. The idea of using pristine apple store technology is a good one.
Also if someone is brave enough, a clean format of a MBA would e a great test also.
I didn't to a transfer when I got my new MBA, started it from fresh - using the factory install - and still have the issue.
Note that I've tested with Maya44 (USB Audio) plugged into the Thunderbolt display and that seems to play fine, so it seems isolated to the USB audio within the thunderbolt display.
(Though that's a "pro" external sound card, so may not be using the same type of drivers?)
same issue here. I upgraded from 2011 MBA (which has never had the issue).
Within an hour of watching EyeTV on the 2012 MBA the Thunderbolt speakers are distorted.
Changing back to the internal/onboard speakers and then back to Thunderbolt display audio, temporarily fixes it.
I also called Apple Support who are wanting me to perform SMC reset and various other things, I hope to get some time later today to go through it with them on the phone.
Not at all keen to go through the exchange with new MBA (and/or TBolt Display) as I dont want to have to migrate all over again, wipe the SSD, travel back and forth to Apple Store. So if not solved within 14 day return period, guess I will go back to 2011 machine.
I've contacted AppleCare, they had me go to an Apple Store with my MBA to test issue on T-Bolt display onsite.
Haven't managed to reproduce the issue with my MBA plugged into Sydney's Apple Store T-Bolt display after 5mins and 2 HDD plugged at the back of it. The display had the exact same system info details than mine.
Have called AppleCare again, they escalated and forwarded the issue to engineering for further investigation.
I've pointed them to this thread for reference and am waiting for them to get back to me, will keep you posted.
I've now tried three 2012 MBAs (all identical configuration) and two thunderbolt displays and the crackle exists in all cases.
EDIT: note that when starting a new MBA-TDB combination for the first time it can take a long while for the issue to appear. My suspicion is that it'll not show up in-store.
On the plus side my replacement TBD has a vastly better display and - when not crackling - better audio. So assuming Apple fix the audio issues, that's a win.
Good and bad news. Heard back from the technician and he said Apple doesn't have a hardware fix for this particular issue yet. But they are investigating this problem and are likely to be releasing a software update.
This is just a personal experience, I don't represent Apple and please don't take this as an official response. This is just what I heard from the technician who has been talking with the Apple advisors.
Thank you. I notice that some people earlier seem to have attributed to being somehow USB related. Static happens with mmy MBA 2012 when plugged in to Thunderbolt display WITHOUT anything plugged in to a USB slot. I am trying to escalate this within Apple as high as possible. My advice to anyone is don't waste your time swapping Thunderbolt displays or MacBook Air computers. Best to spend time escalating this issue.