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Thread: macbook pro - strange sound

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Default macbook pro - strange sound

    Whenever I use anything with sound, my mac starts giving strange noises (it doesn't make the noises when I use programmes or apps without sound) - I am thus assuming it is connected with my sound card...

    The noise is hard to describe but is kind of squeaky, distorted, high pitched sound coming from the speakers.

    Any ideas?... I am thinking of buying a new sound card but I thought it would be worth checking with you guys first...

    (It is aMacBook Pro, 17", bought in 2008 - it was brand new back then)

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Default Welcome to the Guru's forums

    I don't work much with the laptop ie. MacBook Pro so I'm not as familiar with it's workings as much.

    If it's a common problem I'll often see something about it. This sounds like a new one to me so before I start asking to much I'll let some others toss in their 2 cents worth. There are some great guys with good heads on the Guru's forums.

    So when this happens do you have anything else connected to your USB or FW ports. Like an external drive, USB Hub, any other peripherals that you use or are attached to it.

    Also has this been ongoing and getting worse or did it just start? Have you installed any recent or new applications or programs? updates?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Default hello & thank you

    thank you for getting back to me so quickly!

    to answer your questions:

    1. Do I have anything plugged in?
    Yes, I almost always have a usb cable for my iPhone/iPad plugged in. Also, an external drive LaCie (but this is through fw port).

    2. This problem has been an ongoing one (for quite a few months - soon would be coming to a year) and it used to be only sometimes... Now, it is constant and I no longer can listen to any music or anything sound connected as the irritating noises start... this is why I think it is a sound card - but not 100% sure... When it first started those few months ago, I took it to a couple computer shops to see what they thought - they had no idea what the problem was and suggested I just wait and see... well, I've waited and the problem has now got much much worse.

    I hope these answers help - but let me know if you need to know anything else.

    Thank you,
    Magda

  4. #4
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    Default

    Go to accounts and create a new user and see if the problem persists. If the new user doesn't have the issue then the problem is in your main user account (and therefore your user account software). If the problem is also in the new user then the problem is either in the OS itself or hardware

    This will at least point us in the direction of a fix
    Damien,

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Default different user

    Hi - I have created a new user and the problem is still there...

    so what do yo reckon? sound card?...

  6. #6
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    Default

    well you could boot from your OS DVD boot disk and if it's still there then it would definitely be hardware

    I don't think there is an independent sound card that can be replaced. But you can use USB digital sound out by using one of these.
    Damien,

  7. #7
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    on the landline, Mr. Smith
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    Default

    I second that. Need to confirm that it is (or is not) software. Besides booting to another OS like the installer disk that the machine came with, you might also try Safe Boot.

    Just restart your computer and hold down the shift key.

    See if the noises persist in Safe mode, and/or booted to a different OS. If they do, then yes, likely hardware. Unlikely, but make sure the audio out port is clean, with nothing in it (dust/debris) that might cause any feedback or shorting. Rare, but have seen it on a few iPhones with headphone jacks full of pocket lint.

    If it is hardware, there is likely no separate sound card; I would expect that all audio processing is done on the logic board. Logic board are very price to replace, so it would be good to see if you can find an acceptable work around as Damien suggested.

    Do the sounds stay come out through both the built in speakers and external speakers/headphones the same? Does the weird sound follow the volume changes you make (get louder with higher volume settings?)
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    Default

    Hi guys, been too busy for the last few weeks but as I have a different problem - in a new thread - I thought I'd pitch in on this one while I'm here.
    As it's a 2008 it must be pre-unibody so there is a separate soundcard with the MacBook Pro, it's attached to the DC in board - I had to replace a DC in a couple of weeks ago and it was a bit more expensive than expected because of that reason.
    So yes, you can replace it if need be - once you've established that it's not software and no other extraneous devices are causing a problem.
    And do you still get the same sounds through a headset? Not answered that one yet.
    The opposite of what you automatically assume to be the truth is the answer you're looking for!

  9. #9
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    on the landline, Mr. Smith
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    Default

    Ah, good point. Forgot about that on the older units....unibody on the brain.

    Nice catch.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
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    1

    Default Mac Pro - Wierd Sound only with speaker Mode and not with ear cords

    Hi,

    I have a weird sound from a Mac Prod starting yesterday afternoon.

    No additional installation or over use done as such. The sound is observed only in speaker mode, not when ear cords are plugged in or through ear cords.

    Please can anyone help on how to fix it?

  11. #11
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    Default

    Go to accounts and create a new user and see if the problem persists. If the new user doesn't have the issue then the problem is in your main user account (and therefore your user account software). If the problem is also in the new user then the problem is either in the OS itself or hardware. If it is in your user account just copy your stuff to the new user you just created. Delete the malfunctioning one. If the problem exists in the new account as well then boot from your OS install DVD. If the problem is gone when booted from the DVD then reinstall your OS. If the problem is present when booted from the DVD then you have a hardware issue you can then pay to have it fixed or buy a new one. A third option at this point would be to disable the speakers and use only external speakers or headphones
    Damien,

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    265

    Default

    Better to boot from another hard drive than the DVD if you can.
    The opposite of what you automatically assume to be the truth is the answer you're looking for!

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