Clicks and pops in audio file that AREN'T Drop-Outs

I’m a self-taught audiobook narrator/editor who needs help determining the cause of clicks that randomly appear in my audio. Details:

MAC High Sierra 10.13.6
I’m using an Audiotechnica AT2020 Cardioid condenser mic attached to a Xenyx Q802USB soundboard that plugs into my Mac Mini

Attached are images showing the types of blips that keep occuring in my waveforms.

The first two (1.1 & 1.2) look like a hardware issue, rather than a setting as some clicks happen ONLY above, or below the zero line. Is my cable shorting out? Bad connection?

The others occur when the waveform spikes in the middle of a word(2.1), or simply jumps straight up or down (3.1) rather than curving up and down as usual.

I’m at my wits end here, going back over each hour long chapter of my books listening for hidden pops and clicks to fix them with the “Repair” feature. That works, but is endlessly time consuming. I’d love a solution to prevent it happening in the first place. I’ve been told to shut of my Wi-Fi, but that seems bizarre.

Please let me know if any more detail is needed, I’m happy to provide what I can to help.

Many thanks!
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Bizarre, yes, but worth trying. WiFi may share resources with the sound card, and has been known to cause strange problems like this. It would be good to rule that out by testing, even if it doesn’t fix it.

Yeah, okay this seems to actually work. Thanks for encouraging me to try it, I never would have thought that was actually the problem. A little annoying not to have internet while recording, but at least I know what’s happening now.

at least I know what’s happening now.

Or maybe not. Do you use iCloud or any on-line storage or file management? Audacity hates that. So it may not be the connection as much as what you’re doing with it.


Interesting. I do use iCloud as well as Dropbox and Google Drive. Might all those interfere? Or just the native iCloud? I can try de-activating them when I record?

Remote storage seems to be a gift from the angels, but digital networks all come with transmission management. Collision Detection, Retry Timing, Routing Delays, etc. All that takes time and all the corrections change constantly.

Contrast that with local storage where Audacity needs to record something so it just sticks it on the hard drive.

You can get dropouts when iCloud needs to retry its connection to the Sunnyvale Internet Exchange Node at the exact instant you want to record chapter 2 of your audiobook. They don’t even need to be doing the same job.

Even hard drives don’t operate in real time, so Audacity has a buffer setting. You might mess with that.

Audacity > Preferences > Devices > Latency.