Macbook Volume dropouts
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  1. #1
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    Default Macbook Volume dropouts

    Heya guys I'm having a trouble with my macbook when I'm gigging, doesn't happen at home on my hi-fi but when there plugged into the pa system at my venue after 5-10 minutes of mixing the volume drops down 1 bar and when iv been DJing for over 1-2 hours the volume bar drops down half in size. Not good when I'm playing in front of a crowd!!

    Im running a early 2008 Macbook with the latest Traktor, and a Hercules Rmx plugged into the laptop. Also when gigging i have a RCA coming from the mixer to aux in on laptop


    Has anyone got any solutions for this, it only happens on my macbook not on my PC!

    Sorry for the long essay, just trying to explain my situation best as possible!


    Many thanks Alex

  2. #2
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    Could be a few reasons. I wont get into the club issued side as seeing its nothing much you can do personally.

    Audio can take a back seat if your USB ports are getting dropouts in the transfer rate. The mac book pro you have should have two USB slots on the left. On most 2008 models the USB slot that is closer to the top/screen has more power directed to it and has a faster transfer rate. I would recommend always plugging your Traktor Audio card into that slot.

    Good call is to check out your Activity monitor to check on your RAM and overall system usage. Thats located under Applications -> Activity monitor. There is a tab system memory that you can check. Make sure you have traktor running and nothing else. For a 2008 model you probably only have 2/4Gb of ram seeing apple used to supply the 2008 base model with two 1gb of RAM.

    Your battery seeing its from 2008 is also on the turned side of passing well over 500 cycles. Check this under Applications -> System Profiler -> Power located on the left. Even if you have your mac plugged into power, you mac is drawing power from the batter which in turn is being charged. This could result in further USB dropouts alongside your controller.

    Which brings me to the next one! Your Controller is also drawing USB power. If you can connect that to an external power supply to take the load off from your mac as well your traktor soundcard. (Not sure if you need to plug that in, not like serato where it functions to draw from your USB).

    On the polar opposite!!! You could actually be running your master output way too hot! Either on the external mixer or sending it out from traktor on its internal master gain. On many club systems they have a Gate connected pre-master out that will clip the signal thats coming in WAY to hot! That can chop your sound in half.

    Yes its a long list, but I hope this helps and good luck!

  3. #3
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    Anyone ?

  4. #4

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    Why aren't you hooking into the remix?? Why are you using the aux on laptop to hook into the PA system mixer?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucidstrings View Post
    Why aren't you hooking into the remix?? Why are you using the aux on laptop to hook into the PA system mixer?
    Im also hooking a rca from m rmx into the mixer but for some reason doesn't work, as soon as i add another rca from mixer into laptop sound comes from speakers.

    Anyone got any solutions for volume dropouts?

  6. #6
    Tech Guru deevey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macco View Post
    Im also hooking a rca from m rmx into the mixer but for some reason doesn't work, as soon as i add another rca from mixer into laptop sound comes from speakers.

    Anyone got any solutions for volume dropouts?
    Only things I could think of are

    1. You are hitting the volume key on your mac by accident in the dark of the club
    2. You have a short or bad cable somewhere affecting the circuitry on the club mixer over time.
    3. Mixer channel is dodgy
    4. issue with Rmx

    Does the master or channel volume change within Traktor when this happens ? .. if Yes then you potentially have a dodgy master/line/gain control on the RMX which is being affected by the bass in the club.

    I'd first advise you to check all your routing for the RMX, as it sounds like you are using aggregate sound cards or something.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by deevey View Post
    Only things I could think of are

    1. You are hitting the volume key on your mac by accident in the dark of the club
    2. You have a short or bad cable somewhere affecting the circuitry on the club mixer over time.
    3. Mixer channel is dodgy
    4. issue with Rmx

    Does the master or channel volume change within Traktor when this happens ? .. if Yes then you potentially have a dodgy master/line/gain control on the RMX which is being affected by the bass in the club.

    I'd first advise you to check all your routing for the RMX, as it sounds like you are using aggregate sound cards or something.

    My macbook is out of reach so its not me knocking it, ill check tonight if the master or channel volume changes, but at the moment its the MacBooks own volume that drops and you can hear the pop pop as if you wear pressing it yourself?

    Thanks for the reply. Macco

  8. #8
    Tech Guru deevey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macco View Post
    My macbook is out of reach so its not me knocking it, ill check tonight if the master or channel volume changes, but at the moment its the MacBooks own volume that drops and you can hear the pop pop as if you wear pressing it yourself?

    Thanks for the reply. Macco
    In that case I reckon dodgy/too sensitive keyboard key on your mac affected by the bass.

    However if you have the hercules outputs set up correctly this would not happen at all as your output card would be the hercules output and not the macbook.

    Quick fix is to set the default device in Audio Prefs to something other than the sound card you are running your mixer master on or disable the volume key by changing the default top row of keys to standard function keys (in prefs).

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