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Audio reduced to clicks - Need Advice!

909 Views 28 Replies Latest reply: Jan 25, 2013 12:56 PM by cheekypaul RSS
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octafish Level 1 Level 1 (25 points)
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Jan 6, 2013 1:10 PM

I've been trying to troubleshoot this problem for some time no on my Mac Pro. WIth just about any audio app - iTunes, Pandora, Ableton Live etc. after a certain amount of time, the audio starts to distort and ultimately gets reduced to a series of repeating clicks. I've switched up audio interfaces, switched up MIDI/USB cables. Tried plugging them into different ports, out of hubs and directly into my Mac. I thought it might be memory related, but it seems to happen when I have enough available memory as well. Happens in all audio apps. Any advice on how to troubleshoot?

Mac Pro Nehalem Octocore 2009, Mac OS X (10.6.6), 2x 2.26 Ghz, 12GB RAM
  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 17, 2013 12:34 AM (in response to octafish)

    does it happen with the audio interfaces (which ones??) only, or also with the headphone/audio out of the mac pro?

    are you sure the audio you are playing is good?

    do you hear clicks even when no 'music' is playing?

    how or when do they stop?

    can you record them in any software, say, ableton? or are they purely emanating from the speaker and not the file playback?

  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 17, 2013 6:50 AM (in response to octafish)

    sounds like you have audio drivers conflicting.

    when you say 'highest setting', what is it actually, when you get the crackles?

    i can see 48000 in your error. the audio you are listening to is very likely to be sent at 44100, the mac should resolve this but it may not be doing it right because of a conflict. it shouldn't be a problem, but sometimes these things happen.

     

    my m-audio firewire audio interface sometimes doesn't 'lock' and i get no sound, not locking may be giving you your clicks.

     

    open audio midi in the utilities. have a look at your interfaces' clock and format.

    make sure you are up to date and that your operating system is supported by the manufacturer of the interfaces you are using.

     

    screenshot 2013-01-17 at 14.40.59.jpg

     

    screenshot 2013-01-17 at 14.41.03.jpg

  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 17, 2013 7:43 AM (in response to octafish)

    they should be fine sat there.

    the problem is when they are called into action, that's if i'm on the right track. but it could be something else and i'm barking up the wrong tree.

     

    the best way to solve these types of issues is to go through it methodically.

     

    where do you hear the crackles, ie where do they sound from?

    where ever they are coming from, get some headphones , intercept the signal , and find out if you can still hear the crackle.

     

    ps. do you play dvd's in your mac pro?

  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 17, 2013 10:47 AM (in response to octafish)

    Ok.

    So, from where do you hear your audio?

  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 17, 2013 11:12 AM (in response to octafish)

    Can you unplug your (unknown brand model and connection method) audio interface and instead plug your speakers to come directly from the Mac Pro?

  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 19, 2013 12:51 AM (in response to cheekypaul)

    i'm not being facetious, i'm trying to ascertain where the problem originates.

    unplugging your interface and using the mac pro audio out and thus the apple core audio drivers, will help source the issue.

    either way, i hope you get to the bottom of it, sounds annoying...

  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 22, 2013 1:45 AM (in response to octafish)

    hi octafish

    you get the sound break up while audio interfaces are attached, so you cant rule them out as part of the problem.

    you've tried allsorts of cables and you still get the problem. using the mac without interfaces is the logical next step.

    let us know how you get on.

  • cheekypaul Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 22, 2013 10:51 AM (in response to octafish)

    great! that's something at least.

    it's very difficult resolve, it could be any number of things causing the problem. you just have to go through things one at a time.

    let us know what software you are using when it happens. is logic, quicktime, youtube. the moment you get the problem.

    i think it's something to do with the audio clock swapping from one state to another. like from 48k to 44k OR also quite likely, trying to run something without enough buffer.

    what kinds of audio software do you use?

    is this your gear? Mac Pro Nehalem Octocore 2009, Mac OS X (10.6.6), 2x 2.26 Ghz, 12GB RAM

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