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lelou
Bronze

Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

It's a new Dell and it has been making crackling sound since I got it.

I spent an hour on the phone with a technician who restored the laptop with Windows 8.1 to an earlier point in time and it stopped crackling for the rest of the day, but the next day, the noise was back.

The worst are "ding" sounds, they have more crackle than ding. Video playback is bad but at least we can understand what is said. Youtube is bad. mp3 audio is bad. Crackle is there with earphones too.

 

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13 Replies
Jim Coates
Diamond

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

It's a new Dell and it has been making crackling sound since I got it.

Hello. If it made the noise right out of the box you probably should have returned it as defective during the brief return period.
 

Does it make the noise only when running on battery power or also when plugged into house current?

Jim Coates -- 14 years on the Dell Laptop Audio boards -- since 2/6/04 

lelou
Bronze

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

It crackles all the time, battery or plugged in.  I had lots of documents to work on the first few weeks and I only noticed the crackling with windows "dong"  noises.

It stopped crackling for one evening after an hour with a technician who made me restore to a previous version of windows. The next day problem again.

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Jim Coates
Diamond

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

The problem with crackling noises is that the cause is hard to track down, but most often the cause is software and software is not covered by the warranty, so you end up "owning" the problem if you keep the laptop past the return period.

I suggest that you perform a system recovery. Doing that will return the laptop back to the exact state it was in when you took it out of the box.

If the crackling is there immediately after the recovery -- before you connect to the internet -- then you could try to make a case to tech support that the hardware is defective and try to get them to install a new motherboard.

If you perform the recovery and the crackling is gone immediately after the recovery, but the crackling does return later, then it is being triggered by a change to your system configuration. A lot of things change the configuration: Windows updates, viruses, software that you or a third party installs, etc. It can be tough to pin it down.

Jim Coates -- 14 years on the Dell Laptop Audio boards -- since 2/6/04 

lelou
Bronze

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

Thanks Jim, that's what I did with the technician on the phone and the problem was back the next morning. I have to prevent some things to auto-update, the difficult part is to know which ones.

The first that comes to mind is one audio driver that was from Nov 2014. How can I prevent it's update?

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Jim Coates
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RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

On my laptop I prevent automatic updates of drivers. Open Windows Update (type that into the Windows search box), then click on Change settings. In the dropdown menu select "check for updates but let me choose..." Then  Windows will notify you when updates are available for downloading. Always allow the ones labelled "important", which will be security patches and such, but be selective about the ones labelled "optional", which will be driver updates and things like that.

Jim Coates -- 14 years on the Dell Laptop Audio boards -- since 2/6/04 

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lelou
Bronze

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

I contacted Dell service and they recommended updating everything.  I was contacting them by email, so the steps were really slow and everyday they'd ask me to try something I had already tried. Suddenly, on Jan 21, everything worked. My joys didn't last long, it started crackling again on Jan 24, 3 days later!!! 

So today, Jan 26 I uninstalled all the windows updates that were installed on Jan 23, and the sound is OK again.

Is the culprit Windows or Dell ? Anyways, it feels really bad, I spent hours on this issue that makes this new Inspiron 11 tablet-laptop sound worse than a '90s laptop.

What poor quality!

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lelou
Bronze

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

By the way, the windows update packages I uninstalled were security patches marked "important"...

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jonestexas
Bronze

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

I just started having the "crackling" noise when playing a video and now even Windows sounds crackle. Is this a Windows update problem and if so which one? I like having Windows Update automatically update my drivers as the Dell drivers are so old. I fear it is the last Realtec update and am going to try to to rollback my driver. I hope this isn't a hardware failure. I am currently running a custom Dell diagnostic on the audio and it's taking forever.

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cfred
Copper

RE: Dell Inspiron 11 (3147, Mid 2014) makes crackling sound whenever sound is played

I think I have figured out this issue on my computer by sear luck! Click on the battery icon in the bottom right and then turn off Power Saver mode. That seems to have taken away the crackling noise. My guess is that Power Saver lowers the processing power so it's not enough to handle video properly. Regardless of what it is, it worked for me.