Speakers Crackling, Sizzling, and Popping: How to Fix Common MacBook Pro Speaker Woes

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Every day is a great time to listen to your favorite tunes and some truly sick beats on your MacBook Pro. Out of the blue, however, you may find that your trusty laptop sounds unwell. Songs and videos coming from various apps and browsers, for instance, might sound terrible.

Audio issues aren’t at all a rare occurrence for MacBook Pro users. Users online have documented their issues with the MacBook Pro speaker, where they encounter a sizzling noise, speakers crackling, or a popping sound straight from the machine.

Here’s a quick guide to navigate these strange sounds coming from the MacBook Pro speaker and recover the good listening experience you’ve had before.

Weird Noise on MacBook Pro: Troubleshooting the Problem

That weird noise on MacBook Pro can be caused by many different things, such as damaged or blown speakers, audio settings gone wrong, or a temporary issue that you can resolved when you reset the PRAM and SMC. After Apple released the MacBook Pro with a new feature known as Touch Bar back in 2017, forum users shortly came out to complain about a popping sound – their common denominator was owning the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, albeit bought at different times and with various manufacturing dates.

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It’s important to properly troubleshoot the sound problem to identify whether it’s caused by hardware or software, or if it’s merely a system update that can tackle the sizzling or popping sound. First, determine if it’s the speakers or the audio settings at fault. Plug in your headphones and start listening to anything with sound. If the sound comes across as clear on the headphones, then that means the problem is related to software. Blown speakers, for instance, may crackle at high volumes.

If your audio woes happen only while you play specific songs, videos, or other files, then it’s likely that the files are corrupted or suffer from low quality. If the problem persists, too, even if you listen from a CD or DVD and not directly from your hard drive, then you can proceed to troubleshoot the sound settings.

Before you try one of the fixes we provide below, make sure to always keep your MacBook Pro in tiptop shape by diagnosis your system regularly, cleaning out junk, and eliminating space hogs using a reliable Mac repair tool.

How to Solve Speakers Crackling and Other Audio Issues on MacBook Pro

Here are some methods you can try to solve the sound problem on your machine:

Checking Audio Preferences

Expect audio issues when the speakers on your laptop are set incorrectly in the preferences. Follow these steps:

  1. Unplug all external devices from the USB, FireWire, as well as 3.5 mm audio ports.
  2. Open System Preferences, and then click Sound > Output tab.
  3. Choose Internal Speakers as the default option. If there are no other options, choose Internal Speakers to ensure that the option is selected anyway.
  4. Slide the Balance slider left or right while audio is playing in order to test if just one speaker’s not working right. If the problem happens while the slider’s all the way in either direction, then it means one speaker is damaged and needs to be repaired.

Reset your PRAM and SMC

Reset your Parameter Random Access Memory (PRAM) and System Management Controllers (SMC), which you can do by booting your computer while you hold down the Command, Option, P, and R keys simultaneously until you hear two chimes. Here are specific steps:

  1. Shut down your laptop.
  2. Turn it on again using the power button. Immediately press and hold the Command + Option + P + R keys. Wait until you hear the startup chime twice.
  3. Reset the SMC by shutting down your laptop, making sure that the power cable remains plugged in.
  4. Simultaneously press and hold Shift + Control + Option on the left side and the power button for five seconds.
  5. Release the keys and turn off your computer.

Installing macOS Updates

Some Mac OS X users reported hearing their speakers crackling after the 10.4.10 update, even though their speakers weren’t at all broken. To address this, update your OS to its latest version in order to patch any audio issues. Your audio woes might not be the result of your last update, but getting the most recent update just might be key to solving them.

Final Notes

Audio hiccups on your MacBook Pro can be totally annoying, but can signal a more serious problem as well. Electronics that produce a sizzling sound when electrically connected, for one, should be a red flag. It’s important to unplug it if it persists, remove the battery, and contact Apple support for assistance.

Otherwise, if you’re able to troubleshoot the problem more clearly, then you can try one of the three solutions we provided above and see if it successfully fixes that weird noise on your MacBook Pro.

Do you have the same problem? Tell us about your experience in the comments!

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