When I open Audacity a very loud and short "POP" sound sounds and then PC audio stops working

When I open Audacity a very loud and short “POP” sound sounds and then the audio of my whole PC stops working, unless I do one of the next 2 options:

  1. restar the PC or 2. change the audio outuput jack to another one that I wasn’t using (front/rear audio output).

This only happens with audacity, I can open any other program and this loud noise never appears, I can play something in audacity or any other program (like my DAWs or browser) and I can see the audio meter volumes sending signals but nothing sounds.

Any fix to this problem?

If you have Audacity set for Playthrough, what comes in folds over and then goes right back out again, and your soundcard is damaged so that it has DC Offset or very low pitch sound distortion, it could go into destructive feedback—and get stuck like that.

Audacity isn’t causing sound problems, it’s just revealing sound problems you already have.


I see, so then how I can deactivate the playthrough setting?

Menus > Transport > Transport Options > Software Playthrough

  • make sure it’s unchecked.

Note if the problem changes not just goes away. Sometimes resolving problems is multi-step.


I’m doing upside-down analysis. When we encounter an odd problem nobody has ever seen before, like yours, I pretend somebody paid me a lot of money to cause the problem. A broken soundcard with battery voltage suddenly racing through the speaker system would certainly cause a loud pop followed by silence or extreme distortion.

That’s not good for the speakers, by the way. Sudden long excursions of the speaker cone can tear it and cause bass notes to sound fuzzy and distorted. If you can’t turn anything up in the next few passes, you should probably stop using Audacity.


The option was already unchecked, so I guess I better leave it like this.

I was changing some options, and found out that if I change the Audio Server from “Windows WASAPI” to “MME” the problem is fixed so far, I can close and then reopen audacity and the audio is working fine, weird. I guess I can still using audacity with this solution now,

Well turns out there is the same issue again when I record something. At first the problem was only present when opening audacity. Now the problem appears when I record something (not when I play something in audacity), exactly the same with the POP sound, which is a shame because I often use audacity to record things with my mic and with the stereo mix, but now I can’t anymore :frowning: