Macbook power adapter noise

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by fr0, Jun 28, 2006.

  1. fr0 macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    #1
    I just got a new 13" Macbook 5 days ago (tasty I might add), and yesterday I finally got around to calibrating the battery. This uncovered a nasty little problem with the magsafe. When the machine is off/asleep it charges up like it should, but as soon as it is on the power brick starts making all sorts of crackling/buzzing noises that seem to parallel the CPU. Its as if the power brick is amplifying the CPU whine. The noise seems to get much better once the battery is charged. I should also mention that it gets nearly as hot as the CPU as well. I called Apple and they immediately agreed to send me a new one overnight, no questions asked. The apple discussion boards have many threads about this issue, but one question seems to remain: Does the problem really stem from the power supply, is it the macbook that is causing the problem, or some combination of both? I ask because I can still return it, but I would rather not since I have already donated my old 15" Albook to my brother and I've finally finished getting the Macbook setup to my liking.

    Has anyone else had and fixed this problem, and if so was it as simple as a new power adapter?

    Update: I actually got my new one, and while there is still a slight buzz it is significantly better. I compared mine to a friend's setup (he also has a 13" MacBook) and they are comparable in noise emissions. As far as the heat goes it is unquestionably better. I think these machines just draw a lot of power when they are charging and running. Anyone else having visions of the old Pismo chargers? :)
     
  2. pinetec macrumors member

    pinetec

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2006
    Location:
    Red Sox Nation
    #2
    I just noticed the same thing with my MacBook this morning. My battery was down to about 10% so I plugged the magsafe in and I started hearing a buzzing sound. I picked up the powerbrick and it was buzzing and quite warm.

    This is actually my second magsafe. I lost/forgot my first one in the Atlanta Airport and ordered this one on-line.

    I guess this is considered a defect and I should call Apple Care to get a new one.
     
  3. chrispl macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    #3
    good luck getting an exchange! apple is either very helpful and will give you a new one immediately, or they will just say that its within spec. i called applecare twice, and both reps told me to go into a store to see a genius. i went to 3 stores and saw 3 geniuses. one told me "the hissing sounds like 'weezzzzpzzzst' right? yep thats within spec." another one said "the power adapters are supposed to make noises." and one didnt hear much but still offered to waive the restocking fee since i was within the 14 day return period.

    good luck!
    chris
     
  4. donaldGuy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    #5
    mine was fine for about 2 weeks.. it started buzzing today ;_;

    I'm really concerned and I'm gonna try to get a replacment
     
  5. it5five macrumors 65816

    it5five

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    New York
    #6
    I just got my replacement today, as my old one was making the same buzzing noise and had heat problems. My new one (which I got right away with no questions pretty much) has the same problem. I wonder if it is a problem with the adapter or the MacBook battery itself?
     
  6. potarou macrumors newbie

    potarou

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    #7
    I've been working with applecare on this same issue, so here's where I'm at with the power supply noise.

    Apple has sent me two power supplies, both of those and my original exhibit the same noise as other people describe.

    I went to the Apple store today to do some testing. After taking my macbook and power supply into the back and swapping them around with another power supply and macbook they said the power supplies all sound the same so it must be normal. I didn't argue with them but I had them update my case.

    So I called applecare back and we're going to send in my macbook for repair. The product specialist did say that noise isn't acceptable.

    My hunch is since the power supply mimics the same noise coming from the macbook (only much louder) that we've got an issue with the logic board. Hopefully the testing/repair will produce some results.
     
  7. it5five macrumors 65816

    it5five

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    New York
    #8
    Well, please let us know what happens with that. My replacement is also making the same noise.

    What's weird though, is when I got the replacement one on Monday, I looked at the back of that peel off label, and it said this:

    "Problem Description: 697 - Won't Run Off AC Power"

    Even though the lady taking the call was aware it ran off of AC power, and even though I made it clear I was concerned about the noise/heat. Should I call Apple about this and make sure they know what the real problem with my orginal power supply is?

    Also, I made a recording of the sound mine is making. It really doesn't sound safe at all.

    http://www.yousendit.com/transfer.php?action=download&ufid=DFF4DC543D55B5C5
     
  8. TheMuffinMan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    #9
    I turned my macbook on this morning to hear the very noise that has been described and recorded. After a quick google search, I found this thread. It seems this is not an uncommon problem, although it doesn't seem to be all that annoying to me. My mp3 player (archos jukebox ftw) makes the same noise, but it started when it was years old, not weeks. It sounds like the generic old ac-dc inverter noise, but the inverter is only weeks old. It would make sense that it would only be loud when the coumputer is being used and charging, because it would only be loud when undeer the highest load possible.

    Not being near an apple store, I am in a tough spot. I have to decide if this is annoying enough to live without my macbook for a while to wait for it to be replaced. If they will replace it, which is, as some have pointed out, hit or miss.
     
  9. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #10
    My MacBook's Power Supply also whines. :( I find it very weird though that the noise is directly related to the computer itself. For example, if I am scrolling in Safari, the noise isn't as loud, but as soon as I stop it get louder.

    I guess I will call for a new one.
     
  10. giantquiet macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2006
    #11
    Had this same problem with my first MacBook (on #2 now)--screeching power supply and rather hot adapter to the touch. AppleStore just exchanged it--however, exchanged the whole MacBook at the same time for another defect issue. So I am not sure wherein the issue was. Regardless, now mine is silent and I am relieved. The thing was a banshee at times!

    I guess this is to say, it doesn't have to be that way and if Apple's "spec" and your personal sanity are at odds, I would encourage badgering them until sanity wins out. It's stupid that they would think a clear defect that drives a customer nuts is somehow good business practice. Though sadly they may be moving in this direction lately for who knows what reason.
     
  11. Josias macrumors 68000

    Josias

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    #12
    My powersupply is completely silent at all times.
     
  12. ashley macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2006
    #13
    Mine buzzes too - it's going in to have the outside casing replaced, should I just ask them to replace the powercord as well?
     
  13. example42 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    #14
    I have the exact same problem. After reading this thread, I called Applecare and after a bit of pleading they agreed to ship me a new power supply. I received the new one but it exhibits the same problem. I don't know whether to try again or give up, turn up the volume on my music, and hope my office doesn't burn down. :(
     
  14. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #15
    Don't give up that easily.

    Call 'em back and tell them you are experiencing the same problem.
     
  15. potarou macrumors newbie

    potarou

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    #16
    Power Supply Update

    So after three power supplies didn't help applecare took my Macbook in for repair. Got it back yesterday. They replaced the logic board then discovered there was still a problem during the final testing (I had also noted in my case the macbook runs too hot). They then ordered a heatsink, installed that and shipped it back to me.

    It was a long wait but it's all fixed now. No power supply noise, the PS is much much cooler while charging too. And best of all the Macbook is running 20 degress celsius cooler now and there's no noise from its CPU either.

    Needless to say I'm very happy!
     
  16. Star Destroyer macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2006
    #17
    its funny how when you read these threads, you dont notice that your macbook is having a problem until you hear of it.. Soo yes i now notice a noisey charger...

    If i were to call applecare, and tell them, would they they send me a new brick and have me ship back the old one? or would they just let me have both?
     
  17. potarou macrumors newbie

    potarou

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    #18
    You can keep both, but they will charge you for the new one. It's free if you exchange yours. But as me and others have found out, it's not a problem with the PS it's with the logic board or other componets.
     
  18. andrewface macrumors regular

    andrewface

    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    #19
    yes ihave also noticed this!
    it is damn annoying
    i called app care and got a replacement and this one continues to do the same thing...im ognna call again before the 3 month apple care warranty is up
     
  19. FleurDuMal macrumors 68000

    FleurDuMal

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    London Town
    #20
    I think I'm having the same problem, though I thought it was the hard drive making the hissing/whining/droning sound :confused: . Infact, I've just made a thread about it somewhere.

    Does anyone elses noise stop briefly when they access their hard drive?! Or is that just mine?
     
  20. Star Destroyer macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2006
    #21
    yeah i think i might have a different noise then some of you guys.. Mine is right at the computer where the magsae connects... Is that normal? its like i can actually hear the power being absorbed into my Macbook!

    The actual brick is silent, the connection hisses...kinda.. it, well, sounds like its working hahaha

    Thats what i am experiancing, and that noise does pause when i access my finder..
     
  21. ashley macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2006
    #22
    any updates? i'm on my second power cord and it still buzzes.

    had the logic board replaced (different problem) and it's still happening.

    anyone else?
     
  22. breakfastcrew macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2006
    #23
    wait my brick buzzes too but I am too lazy to take it to the store. If I call apple care and tell them about it they will just send me a new one and a box for me to return the old one? No shipping charge?
     
  23. Kitrik macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #24
    Mine started buzzing yesterday as well... It's rather irritating and I play music just to cover up the noise. It's livable - but if it's fixable, I would definitely do it!
     
  24. ryman150 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    #25
    I bought a MacBook in August. The first day I got it, the power supply had a weird issue. It would blink on and off - charging the computer for about a second, then off, then on. I swapped out the power supply. It fixed things. I had some other issues, so I am on my second MacBook. I noticed last week that the power supply was humming and getting really hot. I took it into the Apple Store. The guy swapped out the power supply with no questions asked. Today I notcied that it is doing the same exact thing. When plugged into the wall, but NOT into the computer, it does not hum. When connected to the computer, it hums. This agrees with the idea that it is computer related and now power supply related. I'm debating on dealing with taking it in to the store and having them fix or replace the computer. If it's not harming anything and if it's in momst computers, I can live with it. I just don't want to have it around if it's going to be a problem...
     

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