Apple has fixed the "snap, crackle, pop" audio problem that has bedevilled some Mac users since the update to Mac OS 10.4.10 was issued on 20 June.
The download, tagged as "Audio Update 2007-001, targets all Intel-powered Macs, said Apple. "[This] addresses an issue with version 1.0 of the Mac OS X 10.4.10 Update in which a 'popping' sound might be heard with some external speakers on Intel-based Macs," said Apple in the update's online notice. Macs equipped with the older PowerPC processors don't need to install this update, Apple said.
Within days of the Mac OS X 10.4.10 security and stability update, users reported an annoying noise coming from their machines, primarily MacBook, MacBook Pro and Mac Mini systems. On the Apple support forums, users narrowed the problem to Intel-based computers and even came up with several work-arounds, one of which required the installation of a "silent" audio file that kept the audio subsystem from powering on and off, the presumed source of the sound.
The fix can be downloaded from the Apple website or retrieved using Software Update.
Apple also re-released the Mac OS X 10.4.10 Update as v1.1 to add the audio patch to the system upgrade.