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MacBook Pro 2011 Distorting Audio Playback

1817 Views 12 Replies Latest reply: Mar 4, 2014 4:11 PM by Heads Talking RSS
chriswrightaudio Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Aug 6, 2013 4:45 AM

I have a late 2011 MacBook Pro 13" running OS X 10.7.5 which distorts all audio playback. This problem has always been present, however it has become worse in the last few weeks.


I've tried the following methods of audio playback - internal speakers, headphones and external speakers via headphone jack, and even audio over WiFi using Airplay/Airfoil - all of which have exhibited the same distorted audio.


It seems particularly important to note that Airplay was still affected, as I originally assumed the problem was either the physical headphone output or the internal sound card, both of which Airplay should bypass, right?


I tried resetting the NVRAM which didn't change anything.


Has anyone got any other ideas?

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.7.5)
  • Carolyn Samit Level 10 Level 10 (84,160 points)

    Since Airfoil is not an Apple product, try uninstalling AirFoil to see if that makes a difference.


    Try their support link for uninstall instructions >  Rogue Amoeba | Support

  • Carolyn Samit Level 10 Level 10 (84,160 points)

    Try a Safe Mode boot ...



    Startup your Mac in Safe Mode


    A Safe Mode boot takes a longer than a normal boot so be patient.


    Once you are in Safe Mode, click Restart from your Apple () menu.


    That deletes some system caches that may help.



    Mac OS X: Starting up in Safe Mode



    If Safe Mode does not help, it may be corrupted audio preferences ...


    Open the Finder. From the Finder menu bar click Go > Go to Folder


    Type or copy paste the following;




    Click Go then move the following .plist files from the Audio folder to the Trash.





    Restart your Mac. See if that made a difference ...




    message edited by:  cs

  • Jeremy Photographer Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)



    same issue here - very odd. Sound distorted badly when using airplay, headphones and built in speakers... I tried airplay with my wives computer and then mine and the difference was massive. 


    I've reset PRAM, run hardware diagnostic and tried Safe mode restart - nothing helping. Is there a "sound card" that could be broken ?

  • musicbud Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 12, 2013 6:46 PM (in response to chriswrightaudio)



    We (my music teaching colleagues and I) are having the same issue with our new 2013 13" MacBook Pro systems.  When we connect the computers to our classroom sound systems through the headphone jack we get a horrendous hiss-hum-buzz coming through the speakers.  The sound technician has been in countless times, and today he used his PC to connect to the sound systems.  Guess what?  No horrendous sound issues. 


    This also has occurred with my personal 2011 MacBook Pro and our previous 2008 15" MacBook Pros.


    What is up with the MacBook Pro sound cards?  Has anybody taken their system to the Geniuses at the Apple Store? 



  • Andrewhubbard Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 1, 2014 12:43 AM (in response to chriswrightaudio)

    happy new year! My New Year's Eve gig with my MacBook Pro playing some backing tracks, made me realise the iPhone or iPod is much better plug n play devise. Shame on you designers. I will put my laptop through my rme fireface and Adam a8x monitors and find the cause :)

  • Andrewhubbard Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 1, 2014 12:50 AM (in response to chriswrightaudio)

    Also all this metal macbook pro, Mac Pro mouse, the newer mackie universal control, is doing my hands in and being a musician I need them for my job. I will either completely jel up the whole macbook pro with keyboard cover, body and track cove(which is sprayed with nickel)  or get a refund. Leave the metal at the scrap yard don't make people who work with computers touch metal all day ;) 

  • ianeparker Calculating status...
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    Jan 30, 2014 7:22 AM (in response to chriswrightaudio)

    Hi Chris

    I suddenly got this distortion problem on my Pro laptop, it turned out I'd switched the equaliser on and as soon as I switched it off the problem was gone.

  • Heads Talking Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 4, 2014 4:11 PM (in response to ianeparker)

    You are the man! Thanks buddy. Solved my issue too.


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