Why does Speaker popping noise when turned on?

Speakers are a necessity in everyone’s daily lives for many purposes. It could be entertainment, or for work reasons, we need a decent sound system to listen to. To have a fully immersive, enjoyable experience, you need your speakers to function perfectly with no distortions, irritating or popping noises, or similar issues.

I have had many speaker enthusiast friends who have faced problems related to popping noises on their speakers. It can be fixed in various ways. Now, let’s take a look at some of the reasons why popping noises happen and how to fix them, and the alternatives.

6 Reasons speakers popping noises appear when turned on

Why does Speaker popping noise when turned on

After you have noticed that the speakers are giving terrible popping noises, which are becoming worse the more you listen, you have to realize that it is necessary to identify why it is happening. It could come from various reasons.

To start off,  it could come from something as simple as putting external devices like a phone near your speaker without your realizing, or it could come from your software driver. It could even arise from the receiver.

The issues will probably be quickly or sometimes a bit technical, but there is nothing to worry about as I will discuss the potential reasons for speakers to pop.

1. External electrical devices

Sometimes, you will hear a long beep noise before starting music or playing a video. This beep noise can lead to distorting noises and a lot of pop. The main reason for this is that there are external electrical devices near the speakers that are interrupting the sound.

Audio signals are converted into mechanical sound audio waves in short electrical current energy signals. This frequency is distorted if there are external devices near the speakers. Then it will lead to popping noises.

2. Cable mismanagement

The most basic and easiest identifiable way to realize your popping sound is cable mismanagement or loose connections. Loose connections or bad cable management can give you an absolute nightmare of an experience.

You have to be careful if the RCA cables or the 3.5mm jack is dirty or loosely attached or not. Any form of slight disconnection or exposed plugs can lead to popping noises, humming, and crackling sounds. It is not your fault for cable mismanagement.

When you have bought and placed the speakers, you have put everything in accordance, but in time and moving of furniture and compartments, these cables get pulled and distorted. 

3. Issues from the receiver 

The receiver has a direct relationship with the speakers. Power is drawn through the speakers as well as all the necessary cables are connected through the receiver. The stereo receiver and cable mismanagement are interrelated as bad wiring won’t produce your desired sound.

Also, the receiver works around a specific set of settings to create fine-tuned music, but people have different music equalization preferences.

Those settings often times get malfunctioned, so you need to identify if the issues are coming from your receiver or not. 

4. Unrelated cables

Often, you’ll see that many unrelated cables are near your speakers’ cables, causing interference in your cable management and plugging. If the cables belong to devices like your computer or router, the wires need to be away from the speaker’s cable.

It causes electronic interference, which will obviously lead to popping and crackling sounds. This issue is not noticeable as you may think cables of other devices will not cause any such problems.

Like your Pc will probably stay near your speakers, and you can neither switch it off nor move the cables. Adjustments need to be made. As we proceed, we will talk about them in the troubleshooting steps.

5. Equalizer issues 

As an unsatisfied user of your speaker, you probably could demand a lot of clarity in the music, loud bass, and high volume sound in your speakers. To get that, you might go through software and equalizers.

Doing so, you probably could cause some sort of malfunction in the system. Maybe a type of feature which has been added through the software that the speaker is unable to generate.

You may have overcompensated your speakers, asking for too much from them. 

6. Soundcard driver issues  

Settings on your Pc or Laptop’s driver might change unwantedly due to the installation of other programs and software. Because those particular programs have their settings based on the changes required in the driver.

So you may, without caution, have agreed on the change. So, your driver might be the issue for your popping noise as the default settings have been changed that used to give you beautiful crisp sound. 

How do I fix my speakers from popping noise?

How do I fix my speakers from popping noise

Now, let us talk about some of the ways we can troubleshoot and fix these issues.

Switching off electrical devices 

After noticing that there are a few electrical devices near your sound system then, it is totally up to your decision whether you will move the speakers or the electrical devices.

I have a friend who complained about various popping noises but was never concerned about the landline he had beside his speakers.

The landline causes disturbances in the frequencies of the sound waves. So, first and foremost what you have to do is remove all the electrical devices near the speakers but in case you see that there’s no other way, then you may need to get an amplifier that is adjusted to your speakers. 

Cable management issues

Any sort of cable displacement or loose connections can lead to many issues in your system, as we have talked about before. You need to inspect if the wires are entangled or not carefully.

If they are tightly or loosely attached, you could even see some cables slightly torn off. Like, For the 3.5mm cable isn’t rigid in nature.

If a bit of pressure is applied, then it might get torn off. The same goes for RCA cables. If you see them fragile then you may have to get a new 3.5mm cable and RCA cables. I would suggest even getting an adapter

Unrelated Cables

As discussed before, unrelated cables can cause interference in the system, leading to distorted sounds.

Now a lot of cables will stay in one place which is pretty obvious but to fix the sound issue because of a bunch of wires mixed, we could get those wire straps used in cable management.

This will not only fix the popping sound problem but also give a decent outlook on your setup. 

Receiver issues: 

After checking if all the cables are correctly connected or not, you may need to adjust the receiver’s settings. You need to check if the speakers are based on your speakers’ set if you’re using a 5:1, then apply the settings for a 5:1. The same goes for 3:1 or 7:1.

After that, if it still appears to not work, then you may need to factory reset your receiver. Often times receivers have unfixable internal issues that lead to many sound problems that are not just popping. If that happens, then you may have to get a new receiver.

Equalizer and Driver issue

The issue from the sound equalizer is relatively simple to fix. You just need to apply the default settings, and everything should be back to normal. 

And, as for driver issues, there are a couple of ways you can fix them on your Windows Pc. First, you may have to fix your DPC latency. To do that, you need to use a DPC latency check.

The app will troubleshoot and identify the issue. You may need to update the driver. Secondly, you have to check if ATI HDMI Audio is disabled or not.

Sometimes viruses can lead to consistent malfunctions in your sound drivers. It’s a rare scene, but it could happen, then you may need to get a new Windows

May Need To Replace With a New One

I have added a list for you to understand the issue and the tools you may need to make based on the issues. 

Issues Tools you may try
To avoid distorted sounds from other devicesPyle Amplifier 
If the 3.5mm cable has been torn Amazon Basics 3.5mm 
If the RCA cables have been tornAmazon Basics RCA
If various wires are messed upVelcro Cable Ties
If you’re down to changing the receiver Onkyo TX-SR393
Unlikely, but if you need to upgrade to WindowsWindows 10 Official

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

Is it bad for speakers to pop?

Yes absolutely as it can completely ruin your musical experience. 

Can certain sounds damage speakers?

Yes, it can damage the speakers and at the very least it is a caution to tell you that something is wrong with your speakers.


By now, you can understand the many issues and troubleshooting steps if you see that your speakers are causing popping noises.

You now know that some issues require a bit of inspection, and some require minor changes in the settings. I believe you clearly won’t feel irritated if the problem appears again. 

But, after everything, if you still see that the issues exist, you may need to take it to warranty service or get a new product.

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