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Desktops (Apple) Microsoft Portables (Apple) Windows Apple Hardware

Boot Camp Might Damage Speakers on 2016 MacBook Pro (digitaltrends.com) 116

An anonymous reader writes:One of the things an Apple Mac can do that Windows 10 machines can't do -- at least easily and completely legally -- is run both Windows and MacOS. Interestingly, it's Apple's Boot Camp utility that makes this feat possible, which essentially enables Macs of all flavors to boot directly to Windows 10 and use the Mac as if it were a Windows machine. Usually, this is a fairly straightforward process that works well, with the resulting Boot Camp configuration doing fairly well at mimicking a Windows 10 machine with a few hardware limitations. As of the 2016 MacBook Pro machines, however, it appears that Boot Camp might be causing some serious and uncharacteristic audio issues. It appears that the new speakers running on the refreshed MacBook Pro line aren't working so well with the obsolete drivers provided in the current version of MacOS Sierra Boot Camp. Users are reporting the issue on all models of the 2016 MacBook Pro, and they are not experiencing the issue in MacOS. Virtual machines using Parallels or other software are also not experiencing the issue, providing more support of a bad audio driver causing the problem in Boot Camp.
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Boot Camp Might Damage Speakers on 2016 MacBook Pro

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Really feeling that Apple quality right now.

    I'm sure steve jobs would be fine with this.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Jobs would fire both Cook and Ive. TBH they should really spend money to poach real engineers because this is all downhill. Android is better than ios and chinese and korean phones are getting very good. Macos is fine but I would use ubuntu all day if they would allow ios dev on it.
      Fuck anyone who wants to run winshit on mac hardware. Let them burn!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 29, 2016 @02:25PM (#53387213)

    I'll take "Stuff that shouldn't even be possible" for $1000 Alex.

    • Oh wow, this comment made my day.
    • I'll take "Stuff that shouldn't even be possible" for $1000 Alex.

      I'll take "didn't even read TFS" for $1, Alex.

      Nothing to do with boot-loader, everything to do with a shoddy driver.

      • "But these go to 11"

        • by tomxor ( 2379126 )

          "But these go to 11"

          They go to 65536 if you hack the soundcard firmware, this enables the hidden dancing speaker diaphragms dangling from speaker coils feature. it's the latest trend and it takes COURAGE! get with the programme.

      • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Tuesday November 29, 2016 @02:53PM (#53387471)

        Nothing to do with boot-loader, everything to do with a shoddy driver.

        Nothing to do with a boot-loader or a driver and everything to do with a hardware design which doesn't have a basic protection circuit.

        • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

          I'd love to know how this happened. At first I thought they might be being cheap, but then it occurred to me that maybe they are trying to get better sound out of the speakers.

          Laptop speakers are often quite tinny sounding, i.e. lacking in bass and mid-range. In the past Apple has done some heavy sound processing to get around this, much like Bose do. Speakers respond differently to different frequencies, and can be driven harder at lower frequencies without damage than at high frequencies. Thus you can mak

      • The speakers are supposedly damaged over time according to the article. no driver or boot loader should be able to do that regardless of how shoddy, this is more shoddy hardware design then shoddy software.
        • It happened instantly to Lon Seidman (Lon.tv) when he plugged an Xbox One controller into his 2016 MacBook Pro running in bootcamp. https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

          As soon as the controller was plugged in he heard a loud crackle/pop, magic smoke and what he believes were sparks. The only upside was the laptop didn't die, only the speakers.

    • http://www.dell.com/support/Article/us/en/04/557836/EN [dell.com]

      If audio/video playback is continuously done using VLC Media Player with volume higher than 100% over a period of time, even if the volume is kept at a lower level later, sound would be distorted. This distortion is permanent.

      If you are using VLC or any other amplification software, ensure that the:
      Update the device drivers from Dell Drivers & downloads website. Installing Microsoft Windows from Ubuntu will use only the native device drivers

  • by dcavanaugh ( 248349 ) on Tuesday November 29, 2016 @02:26PM (#53387221) Homepage

    Speakers joining RAM, SSD, and batteries on Apple's growing list of components that can never be swapped out?

    • Speakers joining RAM, SSD, and batteries on Apple's growing list of components that can never be swapped out?

      No, not quite yet. Ironically, they haven't quite mustered the courage to remove the audio jack from the new MacBook Pro.

      Give Apple another year for them to give birth to the final iteration of iBorg hardware in a hermetically sealed box. Of course, this new hardware will drive the industry standard, so don't think for a second other vendors won't follow suit. There's way too much profit to be made with the Apple hardware model.

      And yes, we have the iLemmings to thank for nothing stopping the inevitable n

      • by irving47 ( 73147 )

        I don't like the trend one bit, either, but you act as if the "other side" was gleaming and pristine the whole time. Windows Vista? Windows 8? How many Mac users do you think were even remotely tempted to switch over, as the hardware started getting locked down more and more? "What, we've got to go to *THAT*? Even the most die-hard windows fans are ready to lynch Bill and Steve..." (Yeah, windows 7 was fine. There's a small shop in my town that still had a sign up that says, "We can install windows 7" a few

        • Apple fanboi loses his head in 10.. 9.. 8.. oh, no, there it was.
        • I don't like the trend one bit, either, but you act as if the "other side" was gleaming and pristine the whole time. Windows Vista? Windows 8? How many Mac users do you think were even remotely tempted to switch over, as the hardware started getting locked down more and more? "What, we've got to go to *THAT*? Even the most die-hard windows fans are ready to lynch Bill and Steve..." (Yeah, windows 7 was fine. There's a small shop in my town that still had a sign up that says, "We can install windows 7" a few months ago.

          Regardless of how fucked up Windows has become since 7, I believe we were specifically talking about proprietary bullshit in hardware design, not software.

          At least I can legally purchase and install Windows on pretty much any consumer or DIY Intel-based PC. The same can hardly be said for OSX.

        • Vista was fine, it was just a bit early as the RAM requirements shot up by 8x overnight and the consumers weren't quite prepared for it, even the non technical ones.

        • In fact I wish we could get Windows 8 with the Vista GUI. Windows 7 has about the same taskbar as 8 and 10, this is where they went a bit more application oriented and a bit less document oriented. Windows 8 has a better kernel (6.2 or 6.3 vs 6.0 and 6.1)
          Also, Vista had : quick toolbar, 95/NT4/2000 small start menu, classic theme with color schemes.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    One of the things an Apple Mac can do that Windows 10 machines can't do -- at least easily and completely legally -- is run both Windows and MacOS.

    1) So Apple Macs are Windows 10 machines.

    2) "Legally" is not really a very interesting distinction.

    3) Except that clearly it can't run Windows nearly as well as every other PC compatible.

    • 3) Except that clearly it can't run Windows nearly as well as every other PC compatible.

      There was a story not that long ago (maybe a year back?) about a line of Dell or HP laptops that had the same sort of issue with the user being able to set the volume to levels that would cause damage to the speakers, despite them being designed to work with Windows from the get-go. So, contrary to your statement, yes, Apple managed to hit the bar set by their competitors.

      Mind you, most laptops, whether from Dell, HP, or Apple, don't have that issue in the first place, so it's a bit of an outlier, regardles

      • So, contrary to your statement, yes, Apple managed to hit the bar set by their competitors.

        At the prices Apple charge for their laptops I expect them to far exceed the bar set by their far cheaper competitors. If they only meet it then there is nothing to justify the far higher prices...which is a big part of the problem with the new MBPs: they are average laptops with an insanely high price.

        • So, contrary to your statement, yes, Apple managed to hit the bar set by their competitors.

          At the prices Apple charge for their laptops I expect them to far exceed the bar set by their far cheaper competitors. If they only meet it then there is nothing to justify the far higher prices...which is a big part of the problem with the new MBPs: they are average laptops with an insanely high price.

          This is an early-Production issue, and will be quickly fixed with a software update.

          Remember, the new MBPs boast much louder (and better-sounding) speakers. I would bet that they have upped the amplifier-power as well, and testing this particular thing slipped through the cracks.

          An understandable growing-pain, considering it is a fairly obscure thing to test.

          • So, contrary to your statement, yes, Apple managed to hit the bar set by their competitors.

            At the prices Apple charge for their laptops I expect them to far exceed the bar set by their far cheaper competitors. If they only meet it then there is nothing to justify the far higher prices...which is a big part of the problem with the new MBPs: they are average laptops with an insanely high price.

            This is an early-Production issue, and will be quickly fixed with a software update.

            Remember, the new MBPs boast much louder (and better-sounding) speakers. I would bet that they have upped the amplifier-power as well, and testing this particular thing slipped through the cracks.

            An understandable growing-pain, considering it is a fairly obscure thing to test.

            I don't even want speakers in a laptop. I never use them. Put batteries in the space otherwise taken by the speakers please.

            • Amen to that, though I'd rather the industry do so with TVs first. Laptops move between locations, not all of which are similarly equipped, so there are times when those speakers get use, but a TV is stationary. Why do they insist on including tinny speakers covered by ugly grills on sets that cost thousands of dollars, when it's pretty much a given that anyone buying the set already has an AVR and speakers, or at the VERY least a soundbar?

              • Yet another reason I wished TV had stayed on 4:3, there would be room for speakers on the sides, built-in or not.

              • by GNious ( 953874 )

                You can get "TV"s without speakers, but they don't call them TVs, and they charge a few times more for them.

              • Amen to that, though I'd rather the industry do so with TVs first. Laptops move between locations, not all of which are similarly equipped, so there are times when those speakers get use, but a TV is stationary. Why do they insist on including tinny speakers covered by ugly grills on sets that cost thousands of dollars, when it's pretty much a given that anyone buying the set already has an AVR and speakers, or at the VERY least a soundbar?

                It's a holdover from a time when at least some TVs actually had almost decent speakers. I agree that the speakers that are being built-into TVs these days are ALMOST worse-than-nothing. But rather than excluding them entirely, I'd rather see just a LEEETLE bit of engineering-effort be put into them to make them sound at least as good as your average portable TV in the 1960s. They could go a LONG way simply by molding an "enclosure" around the speaker, turning it into an ersatz "acoustic suspension" system.

            • So, contrary to your statement, yes, Apple managed to hit the bar set by their competitors.

              At the prices Apple charge for their laptops I expect them to far exceed the bar set by their far cheaper competitors. If they only meet it then there is nothing to justify the far higher prices...which is a big part of the problem with the new MBPs: they are average laptops with an insanely high price.

              This is an early-Production issue, and will be quickly fixed with a software update.

              Remember, the new MBPs boast much louder (and better-sounding) speakers. I would bet that they have upped the amplifier-power as well, and testing this particular thing slipped through the cracks.

              An understandable growing-pain, considering it is a fairly obscure thing to test.

              I don't even want speakers in a laptop. I never use them. Put batteries in the space otherwise taken by the speakers please.

              I'm sure that Apple should act on the .0005% of the laptop-buying public that agrees with you.

              • So, contrary to your statement, yes, Apple managed to hit the bar set by their competitors.

                At the prices Apple charge for their laptops I expect them to far exceed the bar set by their far cheaper competitors. If they only meet it then there is nothing to justify the far higher prices...which is a big part of the problem with the new MBPs: they are average laptops with an insanely high price.

                This is an early-Production issue, and will be quickly fixed with a software update.

                Remember, the new MBPs boast much louder (and better-sounding) speakers. I would bet that they have upped the amplifier-power as well, and testing this particular thing slipped through the cracks.

                An understandable growing-pain, considering it is a fairly obscure thing to test.

                I don't even want speakers in a laptop. I never use them. Put batteries in the space otherwise taken by the speakers please.

                I'm sure that Apple should act on the .0005% of the laptop-buying public that agrees with you.

                Well it worked for headphone sockets on the iPhone.

        • At the prices Apple charge for their laptops I expect them to far exceed the bar set by their far cheaper competitors.

          As do I, but that's a different topic than the one I was addressing. I was merely pointing out that the OP was incorrect in his belief that Apple was failing to live up to the standard set by its competitors given that the competition has dealt with this exact same issue in the past (albeit, infrequently, as I pointed out, and just as I expect that this issue will be for Apple).

          If you want to argue about the value proposition, that's a dead horse that's been beaten to death. While I agree that this model is

        • So, contrary to your statement, yes, Apple managed to hit the bar set by their competitors.

          At the prices Apple charge for their laptops I expect them to far exceed the bar set by their far cheaper competitors.

          He said Dell and HP. So not really cheaper. Oh, and of course Dell claims that it happens because you used something like VLC, which voids you warranty (at least for the speakers). So the repair is certainly more costly to you.

    • I mentioned this in the past - w/ PCs costing as little as they do - down to $250, why would anyone wanna share Windows and Mac OS on the same box, and risk things like say, a Windows 10 update screwing up Boot camp? Just get a separate toy for Windows. If you like the shiny stuff, get a Mac book pro on one side, and a Surface on the other. You'll be set
      • by Anonymous Coward

        also, why not buy different colored ones for each day of the week while your spending $ wastefully? idiot

        • How is someone spending money the way they want spending wastefully? It's their money. They can do with it what they want. I am sure you buy things that others would consider a waste.

          Also, speaking of idiots, the word is you're.

      • by mlts ( 1038732 )

        It is nice to have all data in one place. What Apple needs to look at is some virtualization technology, either by licensing VirtualBox, VMWare or Parallels, or rolling their own hypervisor. Ideally, a tier 1 hypervisor like Hyper-V would be the best, but a tier 2 would be better than nothing.

      • Some people are forced to buy a MacBook. Not all iPhone developers are diehard Apple fans but if you are one you need an MBP anyway so it would sure be nice to run Windows 10 on it when you need it.
        • Some people are forced to buy a MacBook. Not all iPhone developers are diehard Apple fans but if you are one you need an MBP anyway so it would sure be nice to run Windows 10 on it when you need it.

          So a Mac Mini won't do because you are being a fluffer and a nutter again. And why would anybody need to run Windows as an iPhone developer anyway?

          • When you are compiling hundreds of times a day, compile speed really starts to matter. Just because people are an iPhone developer it doesn't mean you don't also develop Windows applications. Use your head, really.
            • When you are compiling hundreds of times a day, compile speed really starts to matter. Just because people are an iPhone developer it doesn't mean you don't also develop Windows applications. Use your head, really.

              You claimed people are "forced to buy a MacBook", you dumbfuck troll. At least try to make it seem you are using your head.

              As for being forced to use Windows 10 - just do it. The problem you are pretending exists has been fixed a week ago, and even if it weren't, you don't need build-in speakers in pristine condition on your notebook to compile iPhone apps, nor Windows or Android programs. But then, you pretend you have to compile your shit hundreds of times a day - which means you suck as a programmer

              • Well, if a person has a job that involves in part developing an iPhone app, you tell me how they accomplish that without a mac of some type. Most travel from home to work and work in both places so that pretty much requires a laptop. It benefits my company to allow me to work from wherever I am. You seem like a very unreasonable person though so I am going to stop here and not waste my time.
                • Well, if a person has a job that involves in part developing an iPhone app, you tell me how they accomplish that without a mac of some type.

                  You didn't say "mac [sic] of some type", fucktard. You specifically tried to pretend that one needed the MacBook Pro we are talking about (and failed by leaving the "Pro" part off) Don't try to weasel your way out of this.

  • by jeffb (2.718) ( 1189693 ) on Tuesday November 29, 2016 @02:30PM (#53387255)

    If the anonymous reader or the msmash had done more than copy-pasting the first three paragraphs of the article, adding a link -- if they'd even read what they copy-pasted -- they might have realized this. If they lived in this fairy-tale land where editors edited, they might have gone so far as to summarize the bit about "pops" which appear to damage the speakers over time.

    • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Tuesday November 29, 2016 @02:57PM (#53387509)

      None the less there's a reference in TFA about damage, clicking through goes to threads about damage, the first post goes to a person who has confirmed to received damaged speakers.

      https://www.reddit.com/r/apple... [reddit.com]

      Not to mention a quick google for any article related to the issue will find plenty of sources that say you can hear one pop and then the speakers sound forever distorted even when rebooting into MacOS.

      • None the less there's a reference in TFA about damage, clicking through goes to threads about damage, the first post goes to a person who has confirmed to received damaged speakers.

        https://www.reddit.com/r/apple... [reddit.com]

        Wow, a claim on Reddit - then it must be true.

        • Wow, a claim on Reddit - then it must be true

          It's quite consistent with every other IT issue that's been reported.
          A claim on Reddit, multiple stories in the media, a long thread on Apple forums, and some douche-bag on Slashdot denying everything.

          • Wow, a claim on Reddit - then it must be true

            It's quite consistent with every other IT issue that's been reported.

            It didn't say it must not be true. You claimed it must be true, pointing to a source that is reputed with spreading false information. If you can't tell the difference... wait, you are trolling, right?

            • It didn't say it must not be true.

              Then maybe you should learn how to format for emphasis. Emphasising certain words has the same effect in written and spoken text. You sounded like a douche-bag.

              You claimed it must be true, pointing to a source that is reputed with spreading false information.

              No. I claimed it was true. Then I pointed to a single source. I never said that was the only source, and I'm not your mind nanny. Google your own shit.

              • It didn't say it must not be true.

                Then maybe you should learn how to format for emphasis. Emphasising certain words has the same effect in written and spoken text. You sounded like a douche-bag.

                Whoooosh. Or rather whoosh-bag. Yes, that's what you are: a whoosh-bag.

  • by BenJeremy ( 181303 ) on Tuesday November 29, 2016 @02:40PM (#53387355)

    Is this the guilty command in the boot loader?

    POKE 59458,62

  • bold.

    You're not listening to it right.

  • So the way I understand this is that the potentially damaging issues happens within BootCamp itself which Apple makes and provides the audio driver and this is before you boot into Windows and therefore Linux also? I am going to sum up the paragraph I could otherwise write: how do you fuck that up?
    • how do you fuck that up?

      Well I suppose one way would be to spend all your engineering time shaving 2mm off the thickness, designing keys which hardly move, removing other keys and replacing then with a piece of the screen and finally attempting to remove all the ports. After that you probably don't have much time to spend on less important stuff like making sure you can't overdrive your speakers.

  • When did Slashdot start accepting submissions from people who don't know the difference between a bootloader and a driver?

  • Obviously Apple has put a limited effort into bootcamp. I'm running Windows 7 (natively booted) on late 2013 model. Gripes:

    - I've remapped some keys using Windows built-in functionality, and the reaction time on these remapped keys is slower. It misses normal duration keystrokes, so I have to be extra slow for these keypresses to register.
    - After waking up from sleep it clings onto the last active wifi network for tens of seconds, sometimes minutes, before realising the machine has just woken up in a differ

    • Its long been known that Bootcamp is a least effort delivery, being that the power management is abysmal and the heat management is abysmal (fans on a lot more aggressive strategies than on OSX).

      • by kuzb ( 724081 )
        It's because mac hardware sucks and they still haven't figured out how to properly engineer ventilation.
        • Its much better managed in OSX though...

          • by kuzb ( 724081 )
            If by "managed" you mean any time a mac has to do anything that looks like work it throttles to 3/4 or less of its normal clock speed then sure.
        • Totally disagree. Ventilation and fans are absolutely the best engineered aspect of MacBook Pro Windows notebooks! It is one of the main reasons to buy this hardware. It runs inaudibly with most normal light uses (browsing, document editing, watching full-screen movies). The fans only start being audible when there's something heavy to do.

          Bettery life under Windows in 4 h (light use), 3.5 h (medium-load work like Photoshop editing). That's not as long as MacOS but plenty good enough for me. Heavy gaming can

        • P.S. Dust accumulation leads to poor cooling, in all notebook designs. Try to carefully blow some compressed air in the ventilation slits, or remove the back cover and blow everything over. You'd be surprised how much dust and lint flies out. This practically has to be done every year in most notebooks, to keep them performing properly. Be careful not to apply too much air pressure and not break the fan blades. MacBook Pro fans are quite strong, but I have seen fans in other cheaper notebooks broken apart b

      • by DrTime ( 838124 )
        I've been using Macs since the MacPlus. Lately, everything Mac related from Apple is "least effort delivery".
  • They'll blame the user for it and make you pay for it.
  • Give it a couple of years of Apple pretending the issue doesn't exist, a class action lawsuit, eventually they'll be forced to acknowledge it and refund repair costs. But none of it is without a fight and without paying for the repair in the short term.

    Seen it over and over and over again now. Thanks but no thanks.

    • The same thing will probably happen with touch strip. Suddenly the laptop known for it's resale value drops to 0 after 3.5 years.
    • Give it a couple of years of Apple pretending the issue doesn't exist, a class action lawsuit, eventually they'll be forced to acknowledge it and refund repair costs. But none of it is without a fight and without paying for the repair in the short term.

      Seen it over and over and over again now. Thanks but no thanks.

      Or, A) Apple acknowledges the problem, B) fixes this under warranty (or rather hands you a new machine), and C) already updated the driver a week ago. Which coincidently is what's actually happening. Or rather was happening when this was still a current issue.

  • With virtual machines, why not run Windows in a VM. The last time I dual-booted was way back with Windows 2000 and 98 or some shit.
    • I was just going to make this comment as well. Virtualbox even seems to work fine.. swish, there's OS X, swish, there's Windows 10. I'm pretty sure there wouldn't be much difference if run natively. Low latency SSD makes a big difference to a VM too. One could argue that it would be nice to have more than 8Gb RAM for that though.
    • by mccalli ( 323026 )
      Games, or more accurately processes which are graphically demanding. I have a bootcamp'd iMac purely set up for games. I also run several different VMs for different actual work purposes, via VMware Fusion with macOS acting as host. The performance difference is still enough that it makes graphically intensive things worthwhile.
  • Clever click-bait advertising:

    One of the things an Apple Mac can do that Windows 10 machines can't do -- at least easily and completely legally -- is run both Windows and MacOS. Interestingly, it's Apple's Boot Camp utility that makes this feat possible, which essentially enables Macs of all flavors to boot directly to Windows 10 and use the Mac as if it were a Windows machine. Usually, this is a fairly straightforward process that works well, with the resulting Boot Camp configuration doing fairly well at mimicking a Windows 10 machine with a few hardware limitations. As of the 2016 MacBook Pro machines,

    And the Bait after the Advert

    it appears that Boot Camp might be causing some serious and uncharacteristic audio issues. It appears that the new speakers running on the refreshed MacBook Pro line aren't working so well with the obsolete drivers provided in the current version of MacOS Sierra Boot Camp. Users are reporting the issue on all models of the 2016 MacBook Pro, and they are not experiencing the issue in MacOS. Virtual machines using Parallels or other software are also not experiencing the issue, providing more support of a bad audio driver causing the problem in Boot Camp.

    I understand /. needs to 'keep the lights on' but can it be done without completely selling out?

  • Must be those drill sergeants at Mac Boot Camp yelling up close and personal at the equipment. You'd get damaged also.

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