Frustrating random crackling in Ableton, doesn't seem to be latency related

I've been having a pretty irritating issue with Ableton where I get this wave of bizarre crackling/static sounds every 5 - 8 minutes or so. It happens when playing through my interface, so mic or guitar/bass signals and it does seem to be exclusive to Ableton, I opened Logic and played for a while through that without issue. I have tried literally EVERYTHING I can think of, including sending my interface (Focusrite 2i4) in for repair - which apparently was not the issue.

I have uploaded a few clips so you can get an idea of what this sounds like:


Things I've already tried which it has persisted through:

-adjusting buffer/latency sizes, 64, 128, 256, 512 etc

-running class compliant mode

-plugging into a powered USB hub

-plugging directly into the macbook

-testing with & without phantom power

-unplugging power, and every other peripheral BUT the sound interface -switching cables

-buying a voltage regulator, in addition to the already decent surge protector -disabling all wifi, bluetooth connections from my mac


I have a more than capable setup, its as follows:

-Retina Macbook 15" Mavericks 2.7 Ghz i7 quad, 16GB Ram

-250gb SSD with plenty of free space

-Focusrite Scarlett 2i4


The only thing which HAS worked was setting up an old M-audio USB interface, I can play & record through that and have never had any static issue, but it is not nearly the quality of the 2i4, doesn't have phantom power and again I sent my 2i4 in for repair where they agreed to swap out the board for me even though they could not replucate the problem. I CAN play/record fine in Logic Pro with the 2i4, so it is not my interface.

Any help would be so appreciated.


colurer 2 years ago | 1 comment

3 answers

  • slayczar
    1 answer
    2 votes received
    2 votes

    Hello everyone,

    One day I rearranged my studio putting the 2i4 on top of the studio monitors and suddenly the crackles and static appeared for me as well. I never had this problem before moving things around. So I moved my focusrite 2i4 AWAY and BELOW my studio monitors and the problem magically stopped. Needless to say I didn't move it back to test if that indeed was the problem for fear that it will start up again! 

    Hope this helps you with this extremely troublesome problem :)


    2 months ago | 0 comments
  • cReePyLunatic
    1 answer
    1 vote received
    1 vote

    Same problem here to
    did everything to fix it
    the problem lures deep in ableton

    1 year ago | 1 comment
  • djstory
    3 answers
    4 votes received
    1 vote

    Sounds very much like the problem I'm having with a fairly new Focusrite 2i4/Ableton Live 9.6. I'm running a macbook pro with 8 gigs of ram. I am working on a song, and get loads of crackles until I disconnect/reconnect the interface. The "D" indicator is not lighting up, so I don't think it's HD dropouts. I have the buffer all the way up. Could just be too many layers in the track? I'm not sure what is causing this weird lo fi glitch.

    7 days ago | 0 comments

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