2018 MacBook Air - speakers/headphones intermittently disappearing


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 6, 2020

I seem to be having some strange sound issues with my MacBook Air 2018 8GB/256GB silver - it is around 10 months old running macOS Catalina 10.15.2, and I have had the keyboard replaced by Apple at an Apple Store under warranty due to the butterfly keyboard having issues, if this affects anything.

Recently, I have been having some sound issues with my Air, mainly with the headphones and speakers - AirPlay and Bluetooth headphones (AirPods Pro) work fine. It seems like macOS is having trouble detecting headphones and speakers - for example, as I am writing this post (with headphones disconnected), the volume controls on the keyboard do not work and the MacBook Air Speakers do not show in the sound dropdown menu (the Living Room devices are AirPlay devices on our network):
Screenshot 2020-01-06 at 11.14.44.png

When headphones are connected, they will work for a second (you can hear the 'popping' like they were being connected, but will then disconnect - this happens almost continuously when they are connected.

I have already reset the SMC and PRAM without success, as well as restarting CoreAudio through the terminal - I want to know what else I can try without booking a Genius Bar appointment/going through AppleCare.

Thanks for your help in advance,