Fixed Windows 7 Sound (Popping, Cracking & Skipping)

Nov 25

Fixed Windows 7 Sound (Popping, Cracking & Skipping)

I’ve had some strange issues with my PC since building it… It’s had an odd sound problem in which the longer the PC is powered on, the worse it seems to get. It would crack, and pop, and even skip and cut out for a brief moment. It made consuming any form of digital media unbearable unless I were to reboot the PC beforehand.

Now some initial thoughts might be that my PC is garbage, but it’s running an Intel Core i7 920 processor on an EVGA x58 SLI3 motherboard with 6GB of G.Skill PC3 10666 triple channel RAM. Now my next thought was that my speakers had issues, but I debunked this by plugging in headphones and it was still an issue, also a close personal friend of mine who has a very similar build was experiencing issues as well.

I’ve quite literally been looking for a solution to my problem for MONTHS, and even formatted my HDD and reinstalled Windows 7, to no avail.

I was determined to fix this problem, and almost purchased a new sound card, until I learned from a friend that it wasn’t going to help, as he already purchased one and still experienced the same issues.

I started doing some extensive research on the subject and heard, quite literally, every excuse in the books on this one. I had somebody say that it was uTorrent and all of it’s connections to my computer causing the sound to have bad latency.

I had gotten alot of recommendations on the subject, but had trouble testing them all, since the PC had to be powered on for a few days before the issues started occurring again… so during my waiting time I did more research before seeing a small message board post about audiodg.exe causing sound to drop out.

After hitting many dead ends, I decided to check into what exactly audiodg.exe is responsible for… and it seems like it’s Windows 7’s new sound engine, but also processes and is responsible for controlling DSP enhancements and effects.

This was my big breakthrough.

I started looking for ways to disable or reduce audiodg.exe’s responsibility since I had seen some users reporting that the sound skipping and popping was only during times when audiodg.exe was taking excessive CPU usage (it shouldn’t ever take more than 0, to maybe 1 percent).

Searching through the audio device manager in Windows 7, I found a quite curious section labeled enhancements, and I instantly made the connection to DSP enhancements and thus audiodg.exe.

My solution in the end wound up to be quite simple, but it just took alot of research to get there, and I’m hoping to spare others that research, so just follow the steps below, and you shouldn’t have these issues anymore.

Step 1 - Right click the speaker icon in the system tray and choose Playback devices from the context menu.

Step 2 - Hilight your default audio device (green check) and choose Properties.

Step 3 - Choose the Enhancements tab and make sure EVRYTHING on this page is unchecked, and then CHECK the option to disable all effects.

After all those, just reboot for good measure, and you should be well on your way to a more enjoyable audio experience.

For curious users, please use a DPC latency checker to see if your hardware has issues with live audio and video. This was a valuable utility for me to monitor my progress during my experiments.

I used Thesycon’s DPC Latency Checker, as it’s a freeware utility and displays a nice graph over time of your latency.


228 comments

  1. ohhh duuuude!!!! You freaking saved my life!!! I had this sound issue for a while, and I’m a producer… so I was f*cked!

    The only difference is (and maybe this will also help other people who have a similar setup), is that I have an external sound interface, which doesn’t support the damn DSP.

    My on-board Realtek piece of c*ap does, though. So, since I don’t use my Realtek because I have my external audio interface, what I did was disable the Realtek devices altogether. All of them, both for playback and recording.

    VOILA! my audio is now flawless again!

    Thanks so much, man. Seriously, I was pulling my hair out.

    Props to you!

    • Yeah it was driving me NUTS for the longest time. I couldn’t play video games, listen to music, or really do anything that involved audio because it bothered me so much…

      Glad you found the post and this helped!

      • Nice! Fixed! I didn’t have problems until recently. I found this article (instead of reloading sound drivers) and it worked like a charm!

      • Bryce Kelly /

        Dude, I fucking love you. Thank you so much.

      • OMGoooodness, been looking around for a while, your a legend Corey! Thanks for your find!

      • Dilly /

        I just had this cracking sound come up on my laptop, but i couldnโ€™t use this since i have windows 8 hp envy and there is no enhancement tab. please help, any thing i can do to stop the noise. thank you

      • Partypooper /

        I’ve never experienced speaker issues from using these enhancements, but people I talk to on skype keep complaining that my microphone is popping and crackling and suddenly switching off for a while. Do you think these settings affect the input aswell?

      • Andrew Scott /

        It doesn’t have enhancements on my computer.

        • Andrew Scott /

          Never mind. It was located somewhere else for me. Thanks for this article.

          • CHarlie /

            I do not have that option anywhere?????
            But mt garbled audio crashes my editing software constantly

    • Ooooh, dude you've saved me and my family's life /

      Gaaahhh. Had this issue for a year and was on the verge of killimg myself and everyone around me UNTIL I found this recommendation and tested it.

      Thank you sooo much Marcos!!
      Thank you NOOOT Microsoft!!

    • Brandon /

      Saved my life man I really appreciate it!

    • Hey man i produce music too! ๐Ÿ™‚

      I was facing this problem for quite a while. I installed an audigy sound blaster as a replacment while on board sound card was failing completely. Eventually it started working again but sometimes There would be a crackle / static noise and the audio would fade out. It comes back later. Sometimes unplugging the jack or moving it around helps. Thats when i just plug my speakers to the audigy card when my main card failes. Reason is because the an board is higher quality. my audigy card is kinda old. Now im panicking because the audigy card randomly failed too. it always worked. Im thinking its just my motherboard being retarted sometimes. im thinking what the sound quality would be like from a usb card.

    • omg you’re a heaven sent ๐Ÿ˜‰
      thank you so much for saving my ears & live lol
      you dunno how happy i am ๐Ÿ˜€
      again thank you ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Cleanbiker /

      Fixed it for me too!! (Windows Vista) What’s amazing to me is that Apple introduces these problems with their “updates” and then never seems to fix them with future updates. Arg!! How many thousands of people this must have affected, amazingly both on Windows AND XOS machine! Not exactly an “enhancement” now is it??!!!

    • Hi GUYS!

      amazing this worked very well for me.

      But i still had a problem with the 8 speakers ( Popping, Cracking)

      Maybe this could work for more of you, my big old YAMAHA AMP. has 4 Input’s: TApe Turner Phono Aux phono was dead and therefore the sound was very crapy

    • Nick /

      If anyone Is using a Reaktek Chip set and wan’ts everything such as equlizer and bassmanagement ECT on you don’t have to disable them all I found that Disabling (Loudness Equalization) was the Culprit on the list. This is most likley due to it having to Correct the volume all the time Shutting this off should fix the Issue Hope i helped

    • grlonfire80 /

      Thank you! I read other posts online and was worried because they all seemed to have tried everything. I just want to also point out that the restart was absolutely necessary for me and my computer probably needed it for a while! Thanks again!

  2. absolutely! I hope you don’t mind, but I translated your bit and adapted what I did, in Spanish, for people who don’t read English. I gave you full credit, of course, with link and all, on my own blog. let me know if you want the link!

  3. Hey i tried and i’m still having the issue… can you please help?

    • Sorry, this is what worked for me (short of buying a dedicated sound card.)

      I’m really not sure what else to try.

  4. all you changed was those settings?

    • Yeah that’s about it, I tried a bunch of stuff before to no effect but I had reverted all those settings. You’ll always want to make sure you have the latest audio drivers from your motherboard vendors website.

  5. SuperGuest /

    I had the same problem with my brand new Toshiba L755 laptop running on W7. The very first time out of the box, I booted it up and played a song, it skipped. Pandora, YouTube, Win Media Player, downloaded movies, any media would stutter and skip every 15 seconds or so. Very annoying, especially after spending $500 to buy it.

    I checked for updated drivers, turned off the sound card enhancements, checked the bios, and nothing worked. Then I found out that if both the ethernet port and wireless were active at the same time, I would get multiple svchost.exe spikes and the system would skip. I use wireless at my house so I disabled the ethernet port, since then no problems.

    Hope this helps for anyone else searching for this same problem.

    • ะขัˆััƒ /

      Thank you so much! THIS WAS THE ONLY THING THAT DID IT. I already had all Enhancements turned off and still had issues w/audio.

      Disabling everything in Network Connections except for the Wi-fi adapter stopped the cracking right off.

      • Anarkan /

        Thank you very much Twcy, you sure a legend this random skipping or cracking noise annoyance was driving me insane on a brand new machine I was ready to kick it in.
        Here is what I have :
        Asus rampage extreme V that comes with Broadcom wifi and Intel NIC which had both enabled by default using
        OS windows 8.1 Pro 64bit. I am using a soundblaster zx
        tried everything from turning all the windows and sound blaster enhancements off to fully uninstall and reinstall the drivers … non worked until I turned off my on board wifi in my asus board and only use the Intel NIC similar in a way to what you described in and the noise is completely gone. Thank you again

      • hi
        can you tell me steps to get to netw connections on windows 7 cause i’m haveing same problem;
        i see network connections in control panel;
        i’m in netw and internet and see my wireless network connection noted as “disabled”;

  6. j come /

    didnt work man… plz can someone help….

    • Donovan /

      This reply is probably years too late, but my fix to this problem was slightly different and hopefully it helps others. What solved my problem was a change of a setting in Realtek HD Audio Manager. When you open the Realtek sound manager, go to [Device advanced settings] and change the Recording device settings from [Tie up same type of input jacks as an input device] to [Seperate all input jacks as independent input devices]. In fact, better yet, disable the Realtek startup processes (audio manager and background processes) altogether.

  7. Richard /

    Wow, I can’t tell you how long this has been bothering me. I’ve been looking for solutions for this on and off for quite some time now. Really appreciate you sharing this thanks.

  8. Wow thank-you sooooooo much!!!!!!! I was so worried about this annoying cracking skipping sound and you fixed. I’m very grateful.

  9. For those that have crackling sound after upgradeing to Win7, if you have Realtek drivers, I suggest downloading this older driver:
    http://www.mediafire.com/?kib0upou786751a

    Uninstall the driver you have now, install this one, and restart your PC. I hope it will work, as it worked for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Tried the above and several other fixes but uninstalling the more up to date driver and reverting to the vista one above was the only thing that worked

    • Edonito /

      Thanx Boan,

    • Shahab /

      DUDE!
      I think this may fixed the problem, I have to wait and see. But until then, I may forget about this blog, so I wanted to thank you now.
      Don’t know how the F*** did you know this.

  10. Antoeknee58 /

    Much obliged for all your hard work. Your simple solution worked for me. I’d just finished loading my entire cd collection into iTunes only to be chagrined by the crackling and popping noises. My iPhone and iPad lack the memory so I am using my wife’s notebook with 100 gigs of free space for my music. Phew! Saved by Corey. The family is grateful.

    • Antoeknee58 /

      Footnote: I celebrated a little too soon. There were two issues here. Implementing your solution worked at first but the next day some popping and cracklling sounds returned. Based on when they eventually started up again I guessed it may be a overheating issue. Letting the notebook cool down allowed for several hours of clear sound until the annoying sounds returned.
      I glued bigger rubber pads (feet) allowing for more air circulation under the notebook and the noises have not returned for a couple of days. Still waiting for them. I think this combination solved my issues. Overheating is not an issue with an iPad, iPhone or iPoad or similiar device.

      I hope this helps others avoid the more drastic suggestions out there online.

  11. Shamar G. /

    Thanks much! I’m an aspiring producer and this problem started happening randomly about 15 mins ago after I had the laptop for about a month! This totally worked! Thanks greatly!

  12. Gerad W. /

    Thank you so much. Just upgraded to windows 8 from XP and the popping and cracking started. It was really apparent using Spotify through my Audiofile headphones and desktop headphone amp/DAC combo. This fix worked for me!

  13. Kameron M /

    One other thing that helped,
    On the “advanced” tab of the properties menu,
    Make sure your quality is not set too high.
    Lowering from 24 bit to 16 bit caused the stuttering to stop

    • Bill /

      This one did the trick for me. stopped the popping I was getting every 5 seconds.

  14. So I tried this and it made my sound issues 10x worse. The worst part is, when I unchecked the box, my sound did not return to its original popping state, and is now worse all the time. I can’t even bear to watch a video any more. Strangely it only affects videos…

  15. Thank you for this!
    The first method didn’t work for me but I used the “Thesyconโ€™s DPC Latency Checker” and followed the directions on that baby.
    It worked!
    Trough that I figured out it was actually the drivers for my dvd drive.
    Thanks a ton for the info, that skipping audio was driving me crazy. I’m still a little crazy but at least I’m not pissed off ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Thank you! This worked great and I’m so happy you took the time to post about this.

  17. it seems that it worked for u, but for more serious problems rathjer than surfing the net for answer do try http://remotetechhelp.us/ComputerTroubleshooter.html
    for help.

  18. Thank you so much. This have been bothering me for the last 6 months and driving me crazy when trying to game and skype with other people. Now it works like a charm!

  19. Nice find! Thanks.

  20. check out conflicting anti virus programs. I had Avast and Malwarebytes and I removed Malwarebytes and problem solved

    • Thank you so much – not only to the author of this post, but also to Paul. This problem was driving me NUTS! I listen to music all day long as I am a graphic designer and this issue was really, really distracting and annoying. Anyway, I tried the suggestion above and I thought it has worked, but then the cracking and popping returned. I used the DPC Latency Checker and tried removing devices, no luck. My system would be completely Idle and then it would have these sudden spikes – I was so annoyed. No matter what devices I removed, still the same issue.

      I looked at Pauls comment here and thought – I have that installed. So, I disabled the ‘Enable malicious website blocking’ on Malware Bytes and low and behold – the red disappeared! It was this causing the issue. The only trouble is now I need a similar tool that will block malicious websites – but one that doesn’t interfere with audio. Any suggestions?

    • Yes! This worked for me, too. Thanks a lot, Paul.
      I tried the solution that Corey suggested to no avail. Then, I scrolled down the comments and did the same thing that Matt did. Voila!
      I also tested it by playing a YouTube song while toggling the โ€˜Enable malicious website blockingโ€™ button on and off a few times. Sure enough, when I have it checked on, I get the crackling sound. When I check it off, the crackling goes away.

      • Thanks for this post, I’d been getting an irritating ‘tock’ sound in completely random intervals while playing games or watching netflix. It was driving me crazy as i would always focus on it. Getting rid of MWB resolved the issue.

    • See Boan’s post above related to uninstalling the latest realtek drivers and reverting to a vista driver. I can run MWB no prob and can set the quality to 24 bit instead of 16. You’d think Microsoft or realtek would have figured this stuff out

  21. And thanks by the way Corey. The term DPC helped me to find it.

  22. Thank you thank you thank you thank you! I was pulling my hair out trying to figure out how to fix this problem.

  23. I tried this but I still have the problem. I get the crackle sound when I load a page with a lot of pictures. I’m using Windows 7 and also have an i7, cpu usage is 20% and memory usage is about the same.

  24. I turned EIST, C1, C3, C6 off in the Bios (ASUS Advanced CPU)
    My DPC latency went from 1200+ to 5.
    When I do something like clicking it goes to 1000.
    But it longer stays at 1000+.
    With the DPC Latency Enhancer it stays at around 500 stable. It nearly goes up or down.

    Good luck!

  25. Johan /

    Worked awesome. Thanks alot dude.

  26. richy /

    Too sad I am still having this problem in Vista.
    Even for Windows system sounds, when nothing else is open.

  27. So glad I found your article Corey! This problem has been causing me a headache for yonks. Your remedy certainly works for my pc.
    Thanks for publishing it!

  28. OMG! Thank you soooo much! My speakers started to pop every time I ran utorrent, but this has now gotten rid of the horrid problem. Thank you!

  29. Renee /

    Wow! Looks like your time and efforts in your research really paid off and helped a lot of people. I just researched this problem and your blog came up. It was driving me nuts and your solution fixed it! I did have to restart my computer in order for it to work, but it sure did the trick. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

  30. Decline /

    My new build was starting to irk me with a similar problem. Thanks, this fix worked. So glad too.

  31. Tribun /

    Thanks. Now i dont have to reinstal win ๐Ÿ˜€

  32. Cyndi Maria /

    I love you!! I tried your solution but my heart sank when it did not work… I decided to keep reading down the comments and w00t… there it was!!! I had just bought the Malwarebyte Anti-Malware PRO a couple months back after an attack… well, I opened the program and under the ‘Protection’ Tab, I UNchecked the ‘Enable’ Button for the Malicious Website Blocking… WOWWIE!!! It worked…. back to smoooooth and delicious tunes once again! So grateful for you sweet dude and everyone else here who had continued commenting for the solution!! Peace, Love and Blessings to allโ™ฅ

  33. Jon O'Connor /

    I recently upgraded my Asus laptop from Win-XP to Win-7 and I noticed the cracking and popping in the audio while listening to music from any source, such as MP3s or Youtube. The computer has a Realtek audio system. I tried removing the Win-7 HD audio driver and installing the recommended Realtek driver for Win-7 but that didn’t fix the problem. I read that the solution was to use the Realtek R2.22 driver. This was the last version made for Vista before Win-7 came out. I removed the Win-7 driver and installed the Realtek R2.22 and the noises are gone. It’s worth trying this if you are hearing these cracking and popping sounds with a Realtek audio system and Win-7. You can download the Realtek R2.22 driver from many sources. Just do a search for it.

  34. thanq rey…….

  35. Thank you so much for this, was driving me around the bend!

  36. Van Grube /

    Left a thank you comment previously. Had “popping, drop-out ” problem periodically with Vista too. Also had Realtek HD drivers.
    Did want to mention that if anyone mentions a 60Hz (about) sounding BUZZ along with the above mentioned I had that too. The culprit? Malwarebytes (trial ed.). I noticed when trying to download an update for VLC player got a big buzz sound so started eliminating programs that made contact with the internet on their own (Avast virus, IDM, etc.). Soon as malwarebytes was removed…silent bliss!! Weird ..you bet. But no more so than the other problem you spent a great deal of time fixing!!! Thanks again for that!
    vg

  37. Jim /

    You Sir, are a freaking genius. this was driving me insane and I couldn’t figure out what was causing it. The second I hit apply with the disable all effects the popping stopped.

  38. Dino Heeeeeeeelp me plz /

    Hi guys i have exactly this problem but i use an audio interface called quad capture by roland. Ive tried everything but cant get it to work.

    when i read this i thought “finally im saved!!!”

    but then i saw that when i go to menu shown there was no such thing as an “enhancements” tab.

    FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU computer !!!!!!!!!

    I never had this problem before. Ive even reinstalled windows and ALL drivers twice and still cant find a solution to this problem. If anybody knows how to fix this please help me. peace !

  39. Mirage /

    Wow. I believe a 2 year old article just saved me. I’ve been changing Adobe Flash versions, aimlessly updating my sound drivers, fiddling with several settings, and it was a bloody enhancement that must have got auto-set on an Adobe Flash update for some non-sensible reason. So… Thank you for ending my never ending headache from those accursed “pops”.

    Here’s hoping it stays fixed.

    • Haha, glad to see it was of help to some more people still. ๐Ÿ™‚ It hasn’t failed me yet, still running without issues!

      • Mirage /

        Sadly it started up again, I’ve narrowed it down to probably be something with my connection though so it’s likely temporary though so whatever.

  40. ruuh /

    uuhhhuu … nice … thanks so much
    didnt reboot yet but it does seem to be working better

  41. Nick /

    I don’t have the Enhancements tab. Any ideas? I have a HP Pavilion M6 with the Beats Audio if that has anything to do with it.

  42. Gianmarco /

    You my friend….
    well lets just say in case of a nuclear zombie war.. i would save you and protect you forever.

  43. Dan19872013 /

    I KNOW HOW TO FIX THIS ANNOYING PROBLEM…. ITS THE STUPID IAANT MON.EXE RAID MONITOR its taking a huge spike in performance every 30 second and causes audio and video glitchs. I have been working on this issue for like 6 months and finally got it. If you go to task manager and go to performane under CPU you can end the task in there and try your video if it works then do this to solve it right click on my computer click manager go to services and applications you should see something like intel matrix raid event monitor, right click that and then click disable, This will not hurt your computer this stupid optiion is for people that have RAID systems set up which a majoirty of us done so its usesless and super annoying!!! I hope this helps!!!!!

    • Jeff /

      Right on the money! I have a Dell 1545 and this seems to be the problem for my windows 10.

  44. cjrh /

    I have a Dell Latitude E6420. It was necessary to both update the Intel RAID drivers (using the new “Intel Rapid Storage” driver suite) as well as disabling the “O2Micro Integrated MMC/SD controller” driver. I had been struggling with crackling music for over a year, now DPC latency checker registers all green, with an average of about 200 us.

  45. Meharie /

    Yo, Just want to say thank you!

  46. LoganNZL /

    This post helped me “I had the same problem with my brand new Toshiba L755 laptop running on W7. The very first time out of the box, I booted it up and played a song, it skipped. Pandora, YouTube, Win Media Player, downloaded movies, any media would stutter and skip every 15 seconds or so. Very annoying, especially after spending $500 to buy it.
    I checked for updated drivers, turned off the sound card enhancements, checked the bios, and nothing worked. Then I found out that if both the ethernet port and wireless were active at the same time, I would get multiple svchost.exe spikes and the system would skip. I use wireless at my house so I disabled the ethernet port, since then no problems.
    Hope this helps for anyone else searching for this same problem.”

    Thanks a lot Superguest!

    • Anonymous /

      You are so correct. Disabling the Ethernet made the spikes disappear. I haven’t tested the Audio yet. I think it’s much better. Just one thing – Was your Ethernet port indicators light up even when the cable wasn’t plugged in? Because mine used to light up.
      Thanks for Sharing.

  47. Henry /

    Thanx so much.your post helped me.i was about uninstalling my sound driver.You too much bro.

  48. Shawn /

    Thanks so much for this! Finally my computer is a joy to use again ๐Ÿ™‚

  49. Carina /

    In win 7 Ultimate When HDD is full is starting making a repeater noises, that’s when is time to move files to an external drive. I figure it out in a hard way. ๐Ÿ™‚

  50. I am praying this works for me! I own an internet radio station and it’s the WORST to have bad sound when we are broadcasting LIVE shows!!! All you get is crackling and popping as if the mics are distorted! This sounds like it will fix our problem. We have Windows 8, so I have to play around with that. I am not a big fan of Windows 8. Thanks a lot!!

  51. yoeri /

    Holy Effing Sh*t, I have had this problem for literally 2 years.
    I tried every thing in my knowledge and power, looked in every corner of the internet and I couldn’t fix it… (Mind you, I’m quite talented with computers)

    And now (thanks to you) I find out that it was only a small option, made by windows itself, that caused this terrible sound crackling…

    Well, thanks a huge bunch for this information.

  52. You are MY HEROOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  53. Your a genius ๐Ÿ™‚ thanks mate

  54. I have had this exact same problem for several years – except that I use Windows Vista, not 7. I’m in the process of searching for solutions, one of which is upgrading to a better operating system. I’m also looking into purchasing a better sound card, defragmenting my hard drive, and even reinstalling my audio drivers. I doubt any of these solutions will work, and this recommendation is only for Windows 7; I doubt it will be applicable to Vista.

    Or will it?

  55. Robert /

    Another one who has found this page a couple of years after it was posted. The tip here didn’t fix my issue but it gave me enough information that a couple more days of googling eventually found a fix for my system. In my case it was CorsairLink (control software for a water cooling system) that was causing issues with the usb drivers.

    So thanks for setting me on the right path to a solution.

    • Robert /

      I knew I forgot something… it’s 2AM, please forgive the doublepost. I figured I should post a link to another useful program I found to help track down the issue. This is the one that led me to the USB drivers which then led me to x, which led me to y, which after several more hours of googling led me to the CorsairLink issue.

      The program I used is “LatencyMon” towards the end of this page:
      http://www.resplendence.com/downloads

  56. Zoran /

    excellent article! Thank you very much!

  57. pirate /

    one additional cause for this may be if you’re an nvidia geforce card user.

    the newer models use technology called powermizer, which throttles your gpu’s speed according to what’s going on.

    3d/hardware accelerated programs will make it go all out, 2d/software ones will go minimum and such. anytime such throttle happens, the dpc latency spikes appear, causing the popping.

    it can happen a lot, since all modern browsers use hardware acceleration these days to render the increasingly unoptimized, flash-ridden web 2.0 pages at acceptable speeds.

    disabling it will remove all throttling and your gpu will always run at maximum settings, so if you plan doing that, better be prepared for additional power use and extra heat. there may be third party programs that can do it better than nvidia.

  58. THANK YOU!!

  59. Thank you very much man, you saved my life!

  60. n2468txd /

    Thanks so much! Simple but efficient. Maybe save power as well as no effects? Anyways thanks much.

  61. Paw Magno /

    I LOVE YOU WITH ALL MY HEART DUDE! YOU SAVED my fuckin’ life! hahahah!

  62. Rich Murray /

    Thank you kindly for sharing your knowledge. This had been driving me nuts for months. VLC audio would break up but not SMPlayer. Turning off enhancements did the trick (who the heck turned them on???). Now VLC sounds as good as Realtek can do.

    Happy New Year!

  63. Ognjen /

    Thank you, no noise anymore for now!

  64. Frankie /

    Thanx for pointing me in the right direction, your solution didn’t work but the latency checker that you linked helped helped me to figure out that my lan driver was the problem.

    I just uninstalled my audio and LAN drivers and downloaded the latest ones from the ASUS website and now all the bars are green.

  65. Vilius /

    +1

  66. Thanks so much!

  67. Kasper /

    Thx you saved my day (:

  68. Steve Hefter /

    THANK YOU! This had me literally pulling out hair! And as always, such an easy fix! Thanks again. Steve.

  69. Thanks, after a month of messing around with different settings your solution seems like it worked!

  70. Bengt /

    Thank you so much. You’ve heard many thanks, but you are amazing.

  71. JimmyDee /

    AWESOME! Thanks.

    I am also a video editor who uses studio monitors and monitor headphones, and I can’t listen to anything with all that crackling. It was galling. It’s HORRIBLE. I was actually doing more work on my laptop because my office PC was driving me CRAZY.

    This fixed the problem! Yay!

  72. Kim Bickedike /

    Thanks. I had just installed new ATI 6530 video card with ATI Catalyst software that also installs updated Realtek drivers. This changed the existing settings and completely messed up a professional sound studio DAW functionality. SKIPPING like crazy!!!
    Disabling all the enhancements and other checkmarks cleared the issue. Thanks again!!!

  73. daniel /

    not a fix for me-win7,realtek,chrome,youtube and html5!Still win 7 i had xp and no problems ocurred!

  74. Thanks!
    This really helped me get such a frustrating problem fixed!

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  76. Archie /

    Thanks mate. Didn’t solve all the problems, but the sound is definitely much better. Shall try out the rest of the recommendations here.

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    Thank you!

  82. Dilly /

    I just had this cracking sound come up on my laptop, but i couldn’t use this since i have windows 8 hp envy and there is no enhancement tab. please help, any thing i can do to stop the noise. thank you

    • Hi and thank you all for these very usefull tips. Like Dilly, I don’t have this damn tab, but the cracks are still after spending almost 2 days trying every solution presented in this thread. Feel chained & desperite ๐Ÿ™‚ If someone has fixed it without having this enhancement tab, please let us know. I suspect one of the USB ports, but it’s only an intuition.
      Cheers.

  83. Rachel /

    You’re a lifesaver. The popping audio was driving me nuts! Glad I found this!

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  89. thepogoassassin /

    boom! perfect fix, even still!

    for me it was just disabling the effects.

  90. Natalie /

    thank you! So glad I found this as watching downloads was becoming unbearable!!

  91. pradeep /

    Bro how should I thank you!!!!!..
    you saved a lot of time and now I can hear all those good songs again after a week gap..

  92. George M /

    Thank you very very much! This problem was troubling me for months!

  93. Steve /

    Thank You!!!! I thought it was hardware related. I checked cable connections, move speakers around etc. Works great now. Thanks again.

  94. Almost upgraded all the way to an 8core then read your solution… Saving the money… I thought there wasn’t a solution so I replaced everything.. thank you worked perfectly

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    This ddid not work for me on my laptop, but the latency checker pointed me in the right direrction, it was my gfx drivers that made the popping, after i uninstalled and used the win7 drivers, all is good.

    thanks

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  102. siobhan /

    after months of searching for a solution it turned out to be so simple!! sound as a pound

  103. I have an Asus P8Z68-V motherboard with build in Realtek HD audio. This simple fix also worked for me. I would get speaker crackle after a day of pc running. A reboot would fix it for a while but it would misbehave consistently. Thank you for the fix instructions.

  104. Geraldine Odonkor /

    Have tried that solution over and over again but it’s not working, the poping and breaking will only stop for a while and after I restart my computer it will start disturbing.

  105. Geraldine Odonkor /

    Have tried that solution over and over again but it’s not working, the poping and breaking will only stop for a while and after I restart my computer it will start disturbing. Please help me if there is another solution.

  106. Sammie /

    I tried this solution and it didn’t work so I simply went back to the “speaker properties”clicked on the advanced tab and towards the bottom of that window is a “Restore defaults” button. I clicked on it and then clicked on OK. Then reopened the speaker properties and tested the sound now the clicking is gone.

  107. Just made this to say thanks /

    Hoolllllly shit maeng thanks so much just saved me some mulla. Been spending the last three days trouble shooting my speakers. I tried both my desktop speakers and my surround sound system on my computer both causing the crackling. Tried to rewire each and got some new aux plugs. nothing fixed it until i tried this. funny thing when i went to change it i knew immediately it would fix it cause all the options kept checking and un-checking themselves.

  108. Thank you!

    Seems to be working for me as well as for other people. Latency checker shows few yellow lines but on regular basis there is now no red lines (high latency).

    PS! Who still wants to see/hear some latency the open link below and choose quality 2160p (4K) ๐Ÿ˜€

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  109. you, sir… are a God.

  110. Rahul Kumar /

    Thanks man, your effort is respectable. I was thinking to take my laptop for repair, in case there was some hardware issue. You have saved money and time.

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  113. johnsmith /

    cheers mate worked a treat , thats been buggin me for too long .

  114. haha it worked. i had this problem for over a year.

  115. Lamborghini /

    You are a genus bro, it really worked for me.

  116. Lamborghini /

    You are a genius bro, it really worked for me.

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  118. for the ones who’s using external audio device like Steinberg Ci1, Ci2, M Audio, Focusrite.. etc
    MAKE SURE TO GO ON PROPRIETIES – AISO – CHANGE THE BUFFER SIZE TO LOWER NUMBER, so the input latency + output latency will be faster! no crackling or popping sounds

  119. OMG! Thank you sooooooo much!!!

  120. in some cases the powersaving mode of the mainboard makes the sound anoying as well.
    i had to disable the usb powersaving as well.
    but if your onboard soundcard is connected to pci express you need to disable pci express powersaving to get a better result. You need to read the Mainboard Specifications to get the exact informations.
    i’m using a realtek alc889 @ my gigabyte GA990FXA-UD3 Revision 1.1.
    good luck!
    fine

  121. Eduardo /

    OMG! Thank you! Seriously , I was going crazy because of that.

  122. Ming Chien /

    I have been fighting with this for the longest time as well. Until I realized that the problem is really CHROME Browser. So, now I just use other browser, such as IE to listen to Pandora–problem solved.

  123. Thank you! Thank you! Thank yoooooou!!!!!! ๐Ÿ˜€

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  126. WOW man, i’ve tried everything and your solution fixed it. THANKS!!

  127. I don’t know why I didn’t look this up sooner. But, I didn’t. Now I have, and now maybe I’ll remember what it’s like to listen to music. Thank you. I owe you a beer and/or soda or possible a juice, whatever floats your boat.

  128. THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!! Had similar problems and yes, I’m now all fixed now too! Thank you so very much for publishing this info! ๐Ÿ™‚

  129. Filip /

    This fixed everything. I was so sure that my computer was headed for decontamination after all the crap I’ve out it through.

    Thanks!

  130. Thanks a bunch! This was exactly what we needed!

  131. Corey thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! I’ve been trying to figure this problem out for a while, been doing research and so glad I finally came across this post! Worked like a charm. Thank you again for taking the time to share your findings/solution.

  132. Christina Fagerberg /

    Your solution did not work for me, but I solved it through going to the Volume control options (right clicking on the speaker icon)and reduced the level for the Internet explorer loudspeaker (for some reasons there were two columns for IE, but only one had a volume level). Setting it close to zero solved the issue (and sound is still audible at a good level)

  133. Robert /

    Yes went from XP to Windows 7 and the cracking and popping started. I solved it, for me anyways and I didn’t do anything with drivers, or updates. I downloaded the free “K-Lite Mega Audio Codec Pack” from filehippo .com, installed it , restarted and my sound is perfect, and I record 24 tracks in my apartment for songs and it was important to me to get this solved, and that’s what did it.

    Bobbo

  134. Robert /

    I do believe it is a communication problem for Windows 7 and audio, and the right codecs completely fixed it. So its NOT a hardware problem.

  135. Robert /

    Sorry I screwed up. Went to play my Flightsim, and allthe popping returned. It IS in my opinion a Windows 7 problem, because I never experienced this in XP……sorry guys……

  136. Thank you ๐Ÿ™‚ I had the same problem after I did a factory reset on my laptop. I also had issues with the sound crackling/popping and it didn’t matter whether I switched to headphones or speakers. The moment I implemented your fix everything went back to normal. Perfect sound.

  137. Bert /

    I just can’t thank you enough.

  138. Ric /

    I had the same problem. Sound stuttered when browsing on Chrome and ads pop-up. After trying many solutions, it turned out I installed wrong sound card driver.

  139. Lawrence /

    Life saver!!!!! Thank you very, very much man. Back to work!

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  142. Advanced system care and some other antiviruses cause audio issues so test before you buy full one. ALSO TRY USEING A LOWER RATE OTHER THAN STUDIO BIT RATE IT WILL CLEAR THE CRACKLEING.

  143. SO RELIEVED I found your site- I have been putting up with this problem for 6 months- now finally I can listen to my audio without cringing
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  145. Mike M /

    WOW!! Ok, listen up here. This is strange, and not sure why, but I had a DIFFERENT solution. Yes, I am on a PC, Win 7

    Do the Right-click, Playback Devices, choose your default Playback Device (green check,) Properties; just like Corey said.

    However, However, there is no “Enhancement” tab. There are 4 tabs:

    General, Tone, Custom, Levels, Advanced.

    Choose the “Custom” tab, and the only thing on that screen is:

    Digital Output Only. Check that box if it is unchecked. INSTANTLY cut off the crackling/popping. When I uncheck it, it’s back.

    I did that completely and totally by accident. But if I had not run across this blog, I would never have gotten far enough to figure that out.

    And, damn man. The number of props you got for this solution…..awesome work! And five years later as well.

  146. Nethermore /

    Still have the problem >.<

  147. Joe Murtha /

    I’ve been trying to fix this off and on for months and finally an answer that works! Thanks so much. It’s amazing that 4-5 years later everyone is still encountering this same issue.

  148. You are brilliant upon brilliant. I was trying to problem solve due to a Windows 10 upgrade. I even tried going back to Windows 8 (bleh…) and nothing was working. Then I came upon your post and voila! Problem solved. Mucho gracias!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  149. Ronaldo /

    Yeah, worked like a charm, was getting the popping crackling using digital and analog to Creative card and both were coming back with the anomaly, so checked the latency checker and noticed the red bars so i did what you said and voila! but bear in mind that if you have a separated usb connection like many gaming headset do, you might wanna disable those too as they will show as a different component under the Playback tab . I also disabled onboard sound card and the GPU inboard graphics sound solution which is the case with AMD, not sure about NVIDIA. but thanks men it saved my ears and my early OCD like symptoms.

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  151. brenda /

    only movies not music, causes problems with sound. And its still having same problem after I tried this

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  153. Wow, It works ooo, thank God oooo

  154. wtf when i go into my audio device, im using a mic, there is no option for enhancments! its alwasy something

  155. Walldorf2000 /

    Great, this fixed my sound playback issue on my Windows 7 system. Thank you very much.

  156. Bluelady4848 /

    Thanks SOOO Much! I did exactly what you said, and so far,so good!

  157. HIMS-IQ /

    I have tried what you said bro but its not working,is there anything i can do about this problem?

  158. Um.. What if there’s no “Enhancements” tab? I only see 3 tabs here. These are: General, Levels and Advanced. What do I do?

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  161. If you have a Windows 7 machine with a Realtek sound chipset or drivers, then you may have run into a problem where you randomly hear crackling or popping or static while playing audio through your speakers or even headsets.

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  164. Abid /

    Thank you soooooo much!

    I did exactly as you wrote. And, the speakers now work like magic.

    No more crackling noise. ๐Ÿ™‚

  165. Yea, worked. I had to reboot after disabling the enhancements. So much better

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  167. Juca Brazil /

    Thanks, dude. I think everything is okay now.

  168. Luke Holley /

    Thanks so much, this was driving me crazy! I tried everything and nothing fixed it until this.

    • Luke Holley /

      This fixed for a moment, but then it came back after restart. Then read through even more of some of the other feedback and found my solution and had to go through the calibrated function for my outboard dac. Once it calibrated , no more popping.

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  172. thank you so much for this fix! it worked. i was wondering what was making my music sound like that. i thought for sure my laptop was crap and i had overloaded it with junk. i stopped listening to music on my laptop because of this problem. you’re the best

  173. Karateka95 /

    This solved the problem the first time round. But it’s come back, and I can’t figure out what’s wrong. When the work load is especially heavy (games such as Overwatch, Subnautica), there is a lot of crackling and audio distortion – slowing down and speeding up – even if the FPS is decent. Any ideas what’s going on?

  174. Great fixes are always the simplest – this fix is so easy and it immediately works. All I had was the equaliser enabled, de-selecting it stopped the popping / skipping although the treble is slightly high its much preferable to the alternative.
    Just a shame that the software is so poor!
    Happy Christmas!
    John

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  177. Gabriel /

    My computer played music for one week using an external amplifier, finally, it plays well when not plugged to any audio device. But plays very low when connected to an external amplifier. Please help solve the problem.

  178. Worked for me, I think. I’ve had this come back before. For DELL users, I had to do this via “Dell Audio” which was in the notification area of the task bar on Win7.

    Thanks so much for posting this answer, saved me a year in trouble shooting and my sanity.

  179. Ermawan Banyubiru /

    thanks bro.. u make my day <3

  180. Gustav /

    I fixed this by uninstalling the Nvidia HD audio software that came with the drivers for my Geforce GTX 1050ti
    Maybe it clashes with the normal audio drivers?
    And Utorrent makes this clashing worse for some reason… really odd side effect.

  181. BBButcher /

    I uninstalled Real Player on my windows 7 PC. Worked like a charm.

  182. OVID /

    Thank you!

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  2. Solved: Crackling and popping sound in Windows 8.1 | The Wanderer - […] worked for me? Eventually, I was inspired by this guy who disabled his audio enhancements. I instead went to…

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