One of my friends was having trouble with pops and clicks and noise while exporting some audio recently, and asked me for advice. He wasn’t in a high-powered, pro level studio situation, but there were still some things that could be done to help. Here’s the list I sent him:

  • Make sure the session is on an external drive. If not, move it to one before opening and exporting. Ideally, export to a different drive.
  • Put the computer on do-not-disturb. On a mac, do this by clicking the upper right corner of the desktop to bring up the tab with all your notifications, then scroll up on that tab. Above the top of the screen is the do-not-disturb button.
  • Turn off wifi
  • Quit everything but your DAW
  • Make sure your DAW’s video engine is disabled
  • This is something odd I noticed when I used to be a Logic user, though it may have been my bedroom studio setup at the time: after you click export, do not touch the mouse or trackpad until it’s done. It caused some light crackling.
  • Make sure power is plugged in with a grounded adapter, not a little two prong adapter or battery power. ADDENDUM: if you’re not plugged into a high quality power conditioner, unplug and use battery power.

Hope that helps. If you’ve got a tip for making a basic audio setup more stable, please leave it in the comments.