Crackeling/popping noises when listening to music, tried everything without success.

axels01

Estimable
Jun 21, 2015
12
0
4,560
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The issue is pretty basic to understand, I'm hearing crackeling/popping noises when listening to music, watching movies, playing games etc.
What I've tried:
I've tried with my HD600 SE215 and RHA earbuds, all of which have been plugged directly into my PCs 3.5mm, both front and back and my iFi Nano iDSD, every single solution still ends up with popping noises.
The second thing I thought of was maybe it was Realtek drivers even though it really wouldn't make any difference, no luck there.
The third thing I thought it might have been was windows "enhancing" the muisc (lol) so I went and disabled EVERYTHING, bass boost and everything with no luck. Now I'm sitting here, tried everything still hearing popping noises when listening to literally anything.

The noises does get more intense if there is a lot of bass in what ever I listen to, I think thought I'm not 100% sure about that fact.
I'm currently using a Asus Z170-A motherboard, windows 10 OS and as mentioned a iFi Nano iDSD DAC/AMP.

I would appreciate any kind of help! Thanks a lot!
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
how about in safe mode? are there still issues?

i'm not saying that the problem isnt some odd windows error or the like, just what my first thoughts were. the issue is certainly strange and might take time to nail down given how it doesnt appear to have the normal obvious problems.

also, i cant guarantee that the issue is one of the things i've said, just that these can be factors of popping or other odd noises.

voltage can be checked if you have a multimeter. you can check usb port output, psu output to see if its stable. voltage spikes cause popping in speakers. its possible fluctuations in the power for the pc might affect both input power of the amp and work its way through the onboard amp as well though certainly odd. do you have a quality psu installed? do check voltages if only as a check.

grounding is a bit harder. trying a powered usb hub (with wall plug) might fix this if you have one laying around. normally ground issues are ground loops with constant buzzing or other sounds though.

emi could be caused by things inside the case or things on your desk like phones, routers, etc. normally only a problem with unshielded wires. its hard to nail down emi easily so really only experimenting or eliminating other options work here.
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
you are positive your ifi is a dac/amp model correct? i'm not saying you are wrong but there are many models so i want to make sure. if it was only the amp model it would be just as susceptible to audio quality issues from onboard. if its the dac version then it would bypass your onboard.

does the ifi have crackling problems on other devices? specifically other computers.
does the usb port you use matter? does using a powered usb port help?
are you using the best possible music file you can that you have verified sounds fine on other devices?
have you tried on a fresh os install without any onboard (motherboard) sound drivers? optional, but curious on this fact.
 

axels01

Estimable
Jun 21, 2015
12
0
4,560
0
Yes I'm 100% sure it's an amp/dac, it takes USB in, so it must be taking digital in. I have used the same iFi nano idsd on my dads laptop, no crackeling there.

 

axels01

Estimable
Jun 21, 2015
12
0
4,560
0



Well, the fact that the crackeling is still there if I use analog out from my mobo rules out the dac/amp even being a part of the issue.

 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
true though my reason for asking is that a dac bypasses the onboard. because you get the same issue with and without it forces the question as to what external factor would affect both.

what are my thoughts as to its cause?

could be a grounding problem.
could be voltage spikes
could be emi
 

axels01

Estimable
Jun 21, 2015
12
0
4,560
0


Could be, but how would I check for that? Right now I'm thinking about doing a reinstall of windows, not installing drivers (besides the ones I need) and go from there.

Also, the noises are not constant, they can go several a second to once every two seconds, restarting the pc can sometimes get rid of them. Thing is, unless I have some program such as Spotify playing there are NO noises. They're only there when some program, doesn't depend on which, lossless, mp4, flw, mp3, youtube, spotify, netflix, games, doesn't matter.
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
how about in safe mode? are there still issues?

i'm not saying that the problem isnt some odd windows error or the like, just what my first thoughts were. the issue is certainly strange and might take time to nail down given how it doesnt appear to have the normal obvious problems.

also, i cant guarantee that the issue is one of the things i've said, just that these can be factors of popping or other odd noises.

voltage can be checked if you have a multimeter. you can check usb port output, psu output to see if its stable. voltage spikes cause popping in speakers. its possible fluctuations in the power for the pc might affect both input power of the amp and work its way through the onboard amp as well though certainly odd. do you have a quality psu installed? do check voltages if only as a check.

grounding is a bit harder. trying a powered usb hub (with wall plug) might fix this if you have one laying around. normally ground issues are ground loops with constant buzzing or other sounds though.

emi could be caused by things inside the case or things on your desk like phones, routers, etc. normally only a problem with unshielded wires. its hard to nail down emi easily so really only experimenting or eliminating other options work here.
 
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