Any hiss/static on the Macbook or Macbook Pro's audio output?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Wolfpup, Jul 31, 2007.

  1. Wolfpup macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    I think I've asked something like this before, and I'm sorry to ask again, but...

    Dell's laptops have horrible sound output. If you plug in a pair of headphones, you'll hear static and hissing on a lot of them. It's nasty. You can hear it start up any time it plays a sound.

    Apple's Powerbook sounded great. Nice, clean audio. So does the iPod.

    But I've heard that the Macbook and Macbook Pro have at least some hiss/static to their audio when listened to through a pair of headphones.

    I'd just like to hear from some owners to make sure :(

    The thing is, on the Dell there's a work around-a $67 Creative Labs X-Fi Express Card, but that's really a possibility on a Mac.

  2. yetieater macrumors regular

    May 6, 2007
    A number of users have been reporting hissing on their MacBook Pros. I have yet to get my hands on mine.

    There is another option for audio output on the Mac - pick up a Griffin FireWave and output full surround sound through the FireWire port.
  3. eXan macrumors 601


    Jan 10, 2005
    I dont have any static in my MacBook. Not sure about MBP, as I dont own one.
  4. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    No background hiss on your Macbook either?

    Hopefully that means it's just the Pro...kind of disconcerting they'd sell something like that. I hope people complain.

    That Firewave looks interesting, and would be about the same price as the X-Fi for a Dell. Probably a dumb question, but does it work with normal headphones and just automatically take over sound duties for your system when it's plugged in?

    EDIT: Looks like it doesn't directly support headphones, if I'm reading it right.

    But at least it sounds like the regular Macbook sounds okay. Boy I wish that had a GPU in it-even something low end like a Geforce 8400 would have been great (and support for 4GB!)
  5. vicious7 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 16, 2007
    Jacked into the net...
    When I use my cheapo earbuds on my MBP, I do get static. I now have a set of cheapo Logitech R-10 speakers which work great...absolutely no static. However, when I plug in my cheapo earbuds into the R-10's, I get static again.

  6. devin macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2007
    I'm a sound guy. A DJ mostly club and college radio. I was working with an old G4 iBook forever that eventually had it's second hard drive failure and finally went cold and couldn't handle live effects on my turntables anymore

    So I bought a new SR MBP in the beginning of July. I had read the hissing sound problems people have had on these forums, but if never been one for paranoia, so I just went for it.

    Since then I've done gigs, recorded mixes, etc. with all means of sound input/output. Firewire Sound Card, USB Sound Card, and the provided internal sound card with both my studio monitors and my headphones. Everything has worked out fine. My sound quality is as expected on both playback and recording.

  7. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    #7 does that mean it's random luck if you'll get hiss/static? Or maybe Apple actually fixed the static problem on "newer" Macbook Pros? Good luck getting Dell to even acknowledge their hissing/static-y systems :D
  8. devin macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2007
    well it's my opinion that most of the hissing/static problems people have been having are just that. problems. i wouldn't keep a machine that was giving me that kind of noise.

    also there was an audio update relatively recently that might have fixed some problems. (not sure, i myself have never had any).

  9. rijiMacDij macrumors regular

    All OK

    My new SR MBP sounded like a rattle snake until I installed the Software Updates and started using the full power adapter cable with the earth connection.

    With the abbreviated adapter it would hiss until you unplugged it then as soon as you plugged it back in it would start hissing again. I read in a forum that static electricity was the cause.

    It is fine these days, but awkward using the full cable, I may try to get a spare and shorten it. I am plugged onto an el-cheapo set of cans now, no hiss.

    Good luck.
  10. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    Yeah, that could be. I probably would have assumed that, except that I've heard multiple Dell laptops that are just designed that way, and since Apple's using similar hardware now...
  11. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    What do you mean by an abbreviated adapter? I thought it just came with one AC adapter, and that was the only one available?

    At home I'm actually not grounded-it's an older house. But at work, where I'd actually be using headphones I am grounded. (If the ac adapter even comes with 3 prongs).
  12. Loge macrumors 68030


    Jun 24, 2004
    No static or hissing with my MBP 17-in 2.33GHz (pre SR). I use headphones most of the time, so it would be something I'd notice. It sounds just the same as my old Powerbook.
  13. rijiMacDij macrumors regular

    I refer to the standard adapter with the little plug that attaches rigidly to the adapter body in contrast to the same adapter with the power plug attached to the body by a couple of metres of three core cable!

    Sorry if I confused ya!
  14. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    Sorry, I'm still confused! :confused: :eek:
  15. rijiMacDij macrumors regular

    Shute! Does that mean I'm still confusing?

    The power adapter here in the land of oz is the standard little square white plastic thing.

    It can be used with the wall plug bit attached directly to the adapter *or* it can be used with the (included) 2 metre extension cord.

    Here in Australia the 2 metre cord plugs into the wall with its 3 pin socket. The other way, with the direct to adapter plug, you have only 2 pins, no earth!:confused:

    Hope that's a little clearer than MUD!
  16. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    I think so. Sorry, I'm probably being dense :D

    I *think* in the United States it just comes with one connector...who knows, maybe the sound issues are being caused by what AC adapter is included with it!
  17. sealab2021 macrumors member

    Jul 15, 2007
    I believe thats a first generation mbp problem. Oh, mine was terrible. but my new SR MBP is awesome!!!
  18. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    I'd only heard about it on the new SR Macbook Pros, and not the Macbooks either, so I'm confused :D

    But you've got no background hiss, no static on your SR Macbook Pro through headphones? Good to hear!

    Sounds like it is just random chance, or maybe it was an actual flaw that Apple's corrected.
  19. Animalk macrumors 6502

    May 27, 2007
    Montreal Canada
    Mine is absolutely silent. Anything less would of earned a return and trade at the apple store. I had an agreement with the manager that i needed a completely crysal clear audio output and he said if there is anything wrong with the output bring it back right away and ill give you another one (with the purchase of applecare ofcourse).

    I have High end audio equipment hooked up to it and it is flawless.

    A side note: the Audio output of the MBP is flat and untampered with. The Macbook audio out has been adjusted and sounds like an Ipod on Rock EQ setting.
  20. Wolfpup thread starter macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    Thanks! Okay, it obviously sounds like it's just some bad units out there that hissed. That's great to know!

    It really seemed weird that Apple would allow a $2000 laptop to sound worse than a $150 iPod! (Though like I said, Dell does!)
  21. eXan macrumors 601


    Jan 10, 2005
    Hmm, I dont think you're right. I'm using external speakers with my MacBook and also AirTunes to listen to music and I never noticed a difference between ext. spkrs and my huge spkrs in the living room (not in quality of course, but flat vs rock)

    Is this true for all MacBook models?

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