electrical noise while scrolling?

pna

macrumors 6502
Original poster
May 27, 2005
318
0
Hi all,

I've got a 1.25 ghz aluminum powerbook that's still covered under applecare. It was recently serviced, and they replaced just about everything except for the casing and the cpu.

Now that it's back and working again, I notice that when I scroll down a page either using the trackpad or using a usb mouse and dragging the window scrollbar, I hear sort of a static-y sound coming out of the grills. Not super loud, but it's definitely there. It seems to get louder as I use the computer more. It's not the fan turning on (I know what that sounds like), it really sounds like a rough bit of static that you can control and modulate by scrolling.

The strange thing is that this sound only happens when I'm running on AC power. The second that I unplug it and run off the battery it stops and doesn't start again. I've tried cranking up the monitor brightness and putting it on 'better performance' when on the battery to mimic being plugged in, but it definitely seems like an electrical issue from the adapter.

Is this normal? Do you all notice this with your powerbooks, or have you ever been in a quiet enough room to be able to tell? It's bizarre. I can live with it, but am wondering if I'm doing some sort of electrical damage to the machine that I'm going to discover after the applecare has run out. On the other hand, it seems like one of those hard problems for them to be able to diagnose and fix if I were to have it sent in.

Any ideas or thought you can give would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
 

Applespider

macrumors G4
I get that occasionally with the same model but was assured by the Genius in the Apple Store that it wasn't a problem (then again, it was so loud in there, he couldn't hear it).

Occasionally my keyboard squeaks a little when I've been using it a lot and it's very warm - most bizarre...
 

Cuckoo

macrumors 6502
May 2, 2003
368
0
The Netherlands - Utrecht
Got a PB as well, a 1,25Ghz version. I've got that squeeking sounds when i've got VNC open. When i Stop that program, then the squeeking stops as well...

I didn't think too much of it....
 

Chaszmyr

macrumors 601
Aug 9, 2002
4,265
76
I get this problem on my new G5, but I didn't on my old G5. I don't know if it is a hardware defect, or if Tiger somehow causes it. Exposé also makes the noise sometimes.
 

ITASOR

macrumors 601
Mar 20, 2005
4,400
3
SpaceMagic said:
I get it too on my G5... not all the time, but if its a quiet house.. i can hear it through my speakers... who knows!
This is weird. I get this too. When I'm home alone working on the computer and I scroll down, somtimes I hear a faint hiss come out of my AP Speakers. When stopping scrolling, the noise stops as well. I thought it was just me. :confused:
 

pna

macrumors 6502
Original poster
May 27, 2005
318
0
Wow, strangely comforting to hear I'm not alone with this problem with the powerbooks. I take it that you've all noticed that you don't have a problem if you're not running on AC power as well?

Also, I've definitely had the static-y experience with the dual G5's that some of you are describing. At work there are a bunch of rev A dual G5's that are impossible to listen to headphones on. You can listen, but every time the hard drive seeks or you move a window, you get a really irritating bit of static in the headphones. Annoying if you have them turned down low, but really obnoxious if you have them even marginally turned up. You'd think that electrical shielding would have been something the apple engineers would really have focused on for an obvious culprit like that -- this has been a problem with onboard sound in motherboards for years.

Applespider, I totally empathize with your trying to get a Genius in the store to hear anything noisy and out of spec about a machine. My hard drive was whining like it was going to die, but, unsurprisingly, he couldn't hear it over the store noise. Took it into the 'quiet' back, and claimed not to have heard it there either. When it made it into the techs at the service center, though, they ended up replacing pretty much everything in the machine...
 

tek

macrumors regular
Aug 23, 2003
105
0
This happened to me on my 12" powerbook too... it went away by its self after about 7 or 8 months though.
 

cleanup

macrumors 68030
Jun 26, 2005
2,643
10
Toronto
It happens on my Dell Inspiron 8200 (which is sitting collecting dust, waiting to be sold to some sucker). The laptop (when all else was quiet) would emit a weird ringing noise and when you performed an action or scrolled, the ring would be interrupted and "flicker." No idea what causes it but it never caused any performance problems that I know of.
 

dsharits

macrumors 68000
Jun 19, 2004
1,639
0
Plant City, FL
I get this sound all the time with my iBook, whether it's plugged in or not. I've noticed that it's only audible when I'm using headphones, though.
 

FireArse

macrumors 6502a
Oct 29, 2004
891
101
Power G5 doing the same

I have this problem with my Rev. B 2GHz G5. I think it may have something to do with the Performance setting in the energy saver part in System Preferences.

I'm not sure if its related to the regular 'squeekes' or 'buzzes' other people have said - but I how knows eh?

FireArse
 

dsharits

macrumors 68000
Jun 19, 2004
1,639
0
Plant City, FL
FireArse said:
I have this problem with my Rev. B 2GHz G5. I think it may have something to do with the Performance setting in the energy saver part in System Preferences.

I'm not sure if its related to the regular 'squeekes' or 'buzzes' other people have said - but I how knows eh?

FireArse
Is the noise on yours constant, or is it just when you're scrolling? I get some of that noise from my G4, but I know it is from the energy saver, because I can hear it change when I turn it on and off in prefs. The noise i get from my iBook is only when I'm scrolling, as it is with most of the other comments in this thread.
 

therevolution

macrumors 6502
May 12, 2003
468
0
I get a constant hiss on my PowerBook 15" 1.67GHz and, in some instances, chirping sounds when typing. It only happens when processor performace is set to "Highest" in the Energy Saver prefs. Very odd and a bit annoying. I don't notice anything when scrolling, though.
 

Mac Kiwi

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2003
517
0
New Zealand
I get the same thing since installing Tiger{the chirping noise}.It happens the most noticably for me when painting or using lasoo tools in PS CS2,thats using a Wacom tablet as well.


I thought it must have been a Wacom driver issue.
 

mduser63

macrumors 68040
Nov 9, 2004
3,038
30
Salt Lake City, UT
This is a very common problem/issue, and there are many threads about it. The verdict seems to be that while sometimes annoying, it's entirely normal and is nothing at all to worry about. FWIW, both my Power Mac and 12" PB do this.
 

HiRez

macrumors 603
Jan 6, 2004
5,808
1,705
Western US
Same thing happens on my G5, and used to happen on my PowerBook 2300c. It's pretty common, and usually I can live with it, but can be very annoying when I notice it.
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,693
1
LaLaLand, CA
Happens on my home built PC as well. Everything has been upgraded in it many times, hardware and software, and I still get that noise when I scroll. Sometimes, I just turn the sound down. Hasn't happened on any of my Macs, but I don't have Tiger yet, so I don't know.
 

stevey500

macrumors 6502
Sep 8, 2004
395
2
Salt Lake City, Utah
I have heard it on every PC I have ever used... even with nice sound cards I still hear it, its an odd interference.. I haven't ever heard it from my powermac or my buddy's G3 powerbook... in my powermac, im using an M-Audio card though... but on my P4 2.8ghz PC I get it terrible while scrolling, or even sometimes just moving the curser and loud when dragging windows when I have the speakers turned up pretty loud, that tower has a Creative Live 5.1 card... I'm not sure what causes it...