crackling/popping noise from soundbar with fiber optic cable only

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by mibencks, Jul 6, 2011.

  1. mibencks

    mibencks Auditioning

    Jul 6, 2011
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    I have a big plasma flat screen with what appears to be all the inputs available (multiple hdmi, red/white, red/blue/green, etc...) and the geek squad recommended a fiber optic cable for audio. I have gone through 3 different cables and my current Monster fiber optic is worse than all the rest! Constant crackling and popping daily and every few days it will simply blare white noise static until I unplug and plug back in. Panasonic tv and Philips soundbar, above average but not highest end. Can anybody help end this crackling?!?! Thank you.
  2. Jason Charlton

    Jason Charlton Ambassador

    May 16, 2002
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    Baltimore, MD
    Real Name:
    Jason Charlton
    First off, running all your sources through the TV, then audio out via optical is not the preferred way to connect everything. The TV will most likely only output analog stereo (even over a digital connection) for all external sources (i.e. anything NOT picked up by the TVs internal tuner). So really, using the "digital" optical cable is likely to yield identical results as using analog red/white stereo cables.

    Have you tried running an optical cable directly from one of your sources to the sound bar? Does the crackling still occur? If your sound bar has built in decoders for 5.1 soundtracks to create a "pseudo-surround" experience, this is the way you ought to have digital surround sources connected, anyway.

    Optical connectors are notorious for being a bit finicky... also make sure the cable itself isn't strained too much around tight corners or where the connections are actually made.

    How about using a digital coaxial cable and/or analog stereo cables from a source (or the TV) directly to the soundbar? If no crackling, then you know the problem is related to the optical connection either on the TV, or the soundbar (if it happens for all sources).

    If the crackling happens regardless of connection type (optical, coaxial), then the problem likely lies with the soundbar.

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