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Audio playback issues distortion, crackles & noise.

Discussion in 'Technical Issues (Archive)' started by Morten Eriksen, Aug 1, 2016.

  1. Morten Eriksen

    Morten Eriksen New Member

    Hi all

    My S4 is having major issues with distortion, crackles & noise. The issue started at my last job. It is quickly solved by restarting the controller and the sound is perfectly back after 2-3 seconds. The issue started after 2 hours of playback, and then it came back repeatedly after 30-45 min. The problem appears in both jack output and headphones.

    I'm using the newest version of TRAKTOR PRO 2 and El Capitan(vanilla installation and no other applications installed on the Mac). I'm having the same issue with Windows 10

    Any ideas?

    BTW: everything else if working perfect.

    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016
  2. ezc

    ezc New Member

    • Dislike Dislike x 1
  3. goku21

    goku21 Forum Member

    hey on windows you can try to install the freeware vb-cable .. it fixed similar issues i had with my audio8dj
  4. Krystle B

    Krystle B New Member

    Having same issue with el capitan...getting reallllllllly tired of waiting for a good update to come out. Just installed Traktor 2.10.3 in hopes it will fix audio issues/distorting/crackling/speeding up...eventually losing audio and then crashing. nothing is working i'm moving to cdjs and USB.

    really wish there was a fix that would work. been using traktor for 4 years now and I've NEVER had this many problems before. *disappointed*
  5. Karlos Santos

    Karlos Santos Rocket Man Moderator

    Welcome To The Forum.

    Please be advised that this is *not* an issue that NI can fix nor is it fixed in the latest version of Traktor.
    This completely an issue with El Capitan and CoreAudio caused by Apple.
    The good news is that testing on macOS Sierra is hopefully showing that Apple have fixed this.

  6. stevenmalysse

    stevenmalysse New Member

    Hi, I have exactly the same. My set up is: Traktor S4 MK2, Traktor 2.10.3, El Capitan on my Mac.

    For me it starts the first time around 4 hours of playback. Then I need to restart the controller, so 2 seconds later it's fixed. But then it returns after two hours, one hour and so on ...
    First it starts to crackle a bit (which I hear through the headphones as my jack outputs), but after one or 2 minutes the crackling is really messing up everything so I need to restart my controller then which is of course stupid during a set.
    I've had it already many times during a set (private parties).
    I updated Traktor a couple of times and also the latest drivers ...

    One strange thing was that my sound was completely crackling when I was watching a youtube movie (the sound was coming through my speakers via my S4MK2, but without traktor on).

    So this would indeed confirm the issue is at El Capitan side...

    So what you suggest is to upgrade to OS Sierra ...
    I have a party in 3 weeks, so I'm still doubting ...

    I was/am even considering changing to Rekordbox or Serato and ditching my S4 MK2 :) as I thought it was due to my controller ...

    In any case, it is frustrating ...
  7. Morten Eriksen

    Morten Eriksen New Member

    I downgraded to Yosemite, and it is now running smooth again. The support from Native has been very weak. They simply doesn't understand the consequence of bad software.

    Anyway, I will stay on Yosemite until I'm forced to upgrade. I might change to another setup as well. Time will tell:)


  8. frankle

    frankle NI Product Owner

    As Karlos mentioned, this is an Apple issue and one that NI support can not solve as its to do with Apples changes to Core Audio within Mavericks, Yosemite and El Capitan. Sierra solves these issues. If you'd like to read through the thread in my signature you'll see that I was having issues as well and rolling back to 10.8.5 and 2.6.8 gave me over a year of trouble free gigs.

    I have installed Sierra onto a fresh SSD in my MacBook Air (I've kept my 10.8.5 SSD in a static proof bag just in case mind you), and have not had any issues in the last 4 weeks using it live with Traktor 2.10.3, and now the 2.11.0 betas. There are still a few issues with this configuration (scrolling isn't smooth), but on the whole it is a stable configuration.

    Trust me as one of the most vocal forum members regarding these issues, Apple are not going to update Mavericks, Yosemite and El Capitan so the best advise is to move to Sierra if you want to use any version of Traktor after 2.6.8, or if your Mac can't be rolled back to Mountain Lion (10.8.5), or like me you want to use some of the newer NI hardware like S8, S5 or D2's.
  9. Morten Eriksen

    Morten Eriksen New Member

    Sounds good if it will work on Sierra, but I will stay on Yosemite and current version of Traktor for now...

    I simply can't see how the audio issue can be an Apple problem. Native released an El Capitan supported version of Traktor, and it doesn't work. How can that be an Apple issue? Remember, that I'm an end user, and not a technical guy :) . I know that Apple changed the sound driver in El Capitan, but Native should still test the software to a level there it can be trusted.

    I would love to move to Sierra for many reasons, but stability is key for me. To me beta versions and bad software is for home use ;)

    Thx for your reply,
  10. frankle

    frankle NI Product Owner

    It was actually a change in Core Audio that Apple made going from Mountain Lion to Mavericks that's caused all of the issues. It was still present in Yosemite, and again in El Capitan. The main problem is that it doesn't happen to everyone, and therefor you get some people that have no issues and others that keep getting them.

    Within my testing I've had the issues with a MacBook with USB2, changed to a USB3 MacBook clean install and they were still there. It happened to both of these MacBooks on DJM-850, DJM-900NXS, Xone DB2, TA6 and TA10mk2 soundcards, the only one I used that didn't have the issue was the RME FireFace 802. Didn't matter what controllers I used as well, it happened with X1mk2's, F1's, CDJ-2000's, CDJ-2000NXS and D2's. The common that whole time was Mavericks as the OS.

    As much as I wanted to use my flash new D2's, there were reports of the same issues in Yosemite and later El Capitan, so I decided in June last year to roll my MacBook back to Mountain Lion (it just made it, mid 2013), and install the ever trusty Traktor 2.6.8, and move back to my pair of X1mk2 controllers, and I used that faultlessly for 2 gigs a week of 4 to 6 hours each up until Sierra was officially released a few weeks ago. 100 plus gigs, over 400 hours of playing live at paid gigs with no issues, with exactly the same MacBook and all of the above soundcards and controllers (except the D2's) without issues.

    Yes, this was an issue that Apple caused by changes to Core Audio, you'll never get them to admit it though. If you want me to find exactly what it was its somewhere in the many threads that I posted in ...

    Anyhow, Serato users were also having the same issues, so we weren't alone here. NI were able to replicate the issues and have obviously worked with Apple (Serato probably did the same) to make sure that Sierra didn't have the same problems, and right now unless you have any other software that isn't Sierra ready, there is no reason to stay on Mavericks, Yosemite or El Capitan.
  11. frankle

    frankle NI Product Owner

    Just wondering, what MacBook are you using? Year and model?

    Regarding stability, yes it's the key for me too, hence why I stayed with the best known working configuration for 15 months and didn't have any issues. I also carry with me an exact copy of my Mountain Lion installation on an external bootable Thunderbolt SSD, and have a USB stick sitting in the club's CDJ's ready to go should anything happen. In the last few weeks at my smaller gigs I had no issues with Sierra and the 2.11.0 beta and so I was quite confident going into last nights gig that I'd be fine, and playing to around 1500 people obviously I can't have audio glitching or stopping!
  12. Morten Eriksen

    Morten Eriksen New Member

    I'm using a Macbook pro 13 inch from Dec 2015, 8gb with a S4 MK2. Pain installation without any other software. Great idea with the Thunderbolt SSD, I will get that right away. Do you have access to a list with known models/configurations causing the issues?
  13. frankle

    frankle NI Product Owner

    There is not a list of affected models, it is completely random as I've said, I've had it happen to my 2011 MacBook Air 13" (USB2) and 2013 MacBook Air 11" (USB3). I've had it happen to a 2013 MacBook Pro 13" that was at work, and then I had a faultless install on my MacMini 2012 with El Capitan while testing 2.10.3.

    All that has been proven is that if you're on Mavericks, Yosemite or El Capitan then you are absolutely at risk. If you have a Late 2013 anything Mac (since the release of Mavericks) you should update to Sierra. If you have a Mid 2013 anything Mac (last model with Mountain Lion) then you have the choice of Sierra if you want to use the latest version of Traktor, or stick with Mountain Lion 10.8.5 and Traktor 2.6.8 if you're on older hardware.
  14. iamluvinlife

    iamluvinlife New Member

    Yea well this sucks. 5 hours into a set on Sierra I got sudden terrible distortion. Thought my speakers were blown. Guests at the party were like WTF? Had to stop set and restart traktor software. Horribly embarrassing.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2016