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Russell H.
Russell H., Long-time Computer Expert
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 11208
Experience:  Years ago & in 2 years recently, I helped with Mac OS [X] & MacBook & Air & BootCamp etc. problems.
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I went on a camping trip and suddenly my left speaker is

Customer Question

i went on a camping trip and suddenly my left speaker is doing these loud crackiling sounds but they dont change if I lower the colume
JA: How long has this been going on?
Customer: 3 days
JA: What troubleshooting have you tried?
Customer: option command R and P
JA: The Mac expert can solve this for you. Anything else you want him to know before I connect you two?
Customer: thats all
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Mac Technician about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mac
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did that
what now?
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

Hi, thank you for contacting My name is Russell. I will do my best to provide the right answer to your question.

I need to ask first of all, what Apple computer or other equipment you are asking about - a MacBook or Apple Air laptop, or an iPod, or an iPod dock, or... what, please?

There are, depending upon what equipment is having the problem in the left speaker or left channel, different things to try doing.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
MacBook Pro - nothing happens when I play with the volume
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

So it's the built-in speakers on the Mac Pro that have the problem? not external speakers?

Customer: replied 1 year ago. No, I'm not sure what it is, here is a video
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

Thanks for the video, I'll view it in a moment.

But is it clear, that your MacBook Pro has no external speakers, just the built-in ones that are part of the body of the laptop in question - right?

If it has external speakers hooked up to it, unplug them, try again, see if the crackling persists...

Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

That is a severe problem with your laptop's sound card, I think.

The crackling noise... is hard to figure out, but basically an electronics problem with the sound card almost indubitably.

It does no respond to being put on Mute, nor changes to Volume setting... so, it's a 'breakage' in the sound card. There's not much else to say to it. Except: how old is the MacBook in question, please?

(You can try a reinstall of the sound card drivers. That's advisable before deciding on repair or not, etc. But I somewhat doubt that will help.)

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
1) no there are no external speakers
2) if I put a song on, it can play and I can lower and increase or mute volume but the crackling sound doesn't get affected by that
3) my computer is about 3.5 years old
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

So what is the crackling caused by exactly? maybe it's voltage surges in the sound card (in which case volume controls wouldn't affect it.)

But I'm sorry to say, esp. if the sound appears even before the computer has fully started up and loaded the OS, it may be the sound card is defective.

But when *does* the crackling start, in the course of booting up? it might still be a corrupted driver for the sound, or the like.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Sorry, I was on an airplane back home and couldn't answer right away....The sound only starts up after OS has already loaded and the computer is fully on and I can see all the programs, desktop and APPs etc. about 5 seconds in it will then start with this cracklings sound.If I let it go to sleep mode it will continue but after a while stop. But then if I put my password ***** and start using it, it will start up again after about 5 seconds after everything loads up and i can see the desktop.
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

That sounds very like a corrupted driver (though it could, still, be the sound card hardware at fault.)

1: what model is the MacBook, please? so that I can identify the sound card driver.

2: what MAC OS X version is on it?