Update: iPod 4G Audio Problems | iLounge News


Update: iPod 4G Audio Problems

Updating our earlier news story regarding headphone port static and hard drive noise problems in Apple’s new fourth-generation iPods, iLounge has remained in contact with Apple and our readers over the past several days in an attempt to help the company determine the nature and extent of the problems.

iLounge’s editors returned both of their affected 40GB iPods at Apple’s request for testing, and replaced them with two new 40GB iPods yesterday. One of the new iPods exhibits no problems. The other exhibits the exact same defect as before. This brings our internal total of tested iPods to five, two (one 20GB unit, one 40GB unit) without the static issues, and three (all 40GB units) with them.

Of the 158 responses we collected from our initial story on the defect, 85 readers posted the results of their own 4G iPod testing, and of that group, 54 readers (63.5%) reported no problems, while 31 readers (36.5%) reported the same problems we had found. While we emphasize that the results of our inquiry are comprised of strictly voluntary submissions from readers, and should not be taken as scientific or conclusive, they do suggest that the problem may be more widespread than we had originally hoped. For a full discussion of testing procedures, please click on the “More info” link below.

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No problem with 20g 4G. Did notice some static in left channel when song is paused. This only occurs at high volume, my g3 15g has the same static issues. Both have supplied buds. I have to say I was massivly worried after purchase reading these post, but i am 100% satified with the g4 battery life and sound quality for me are noticeable better. Part of me wonder if the “problem” always existed and now we can just hear it.

Posted by josiah on August 9, 2004 at 7:39 PM (CDT)


I received a 40G 4G iPod today (FedEx from Shanghai) and it does exhibit the problem.  The hard-disk-associated whine in the headphone output is subtle but unmistakably present.  BJ

Posted by bj on August 9, 2004 at 8:43 PM (CDT)


Got a 20GB 4G yesterday.  No static problems.  I ordered it from the Apple UK store website.  It was shipped from the Netherlands.

Posted by James - UK on August 10, 2004 at 2:08 AM (CDT)


no probs with my 4g 20gig only one question i got mine here in australia via the apple website and the screen color is grey not blue :/

Posted by Infusion in Around the world on August 10, 2004 at 4:31 AM (CDT)


What’s taking so long to get feedback from Apple or Ipodlounge about the audio issue on the 4g Ipods!!!!!!!

Posted by DAYWALKER on August 10, 2004 at 6:55 AM (CDT)


I today purchased my 4th generation, 20gb, iPod, manufactured in China, from John Lewis, Brent Cross, London, UK.
I followed the test proceedure recommended by Jeremy Horwitz and can report I have NO PROBLEM of the type reported.
First impressions are good and I particularly like the click wheel.

Posted by Warren on August 10, 2004 at 4:42 PM (CDT)


So once I had a precious that was only a 10 gigger, survived a car crash (that the car didnt) me loved the precious and always kept it full.

Then last week whilst on vacation the battery of the precious started to die on me, oh no i thought my precious please dont go…

Then Smeagol heard about the 40 gig precious and decided master needs a new precious.

I slithered to the Apple Store in Memphis, TN today and got a new precious. Assembled in China by nasty fat little Hobbits, yes, but even with the Bose Noise cancelling headphones and apple lossless files absolutely NO audio static when going from song to song.

Life is good, my precioussssssssss…...


Posted by GOLLUM on August 10, 2004 at 11:20 PM (CDT)


this problem is making me worry about purchasing one.

Posted by deadstock on August 11, 2004 at 2:11 AM (CDT)


i just received my second 4g ipod: frist was 40gb, second is a 20gb. returned frist because when you have the unit on pause and connect any pair of headphones the unit powers up(wakes up).  the second does this too.  anyone know if this is normal or if they have the same problem? any btw i seem to have no audio problems when using hi end headphones or the supplied ones.

Posted by cigarman on August 11, 2004 at 7:18 AM (CDT)


Received my 40gb on Friday. Very impressive turnaround, fast delivery. However - it has the static problem when played through my Etymotic ER-4Ps, although not with Apple’s own. Talked to Tech Support and Sales on Monday, new one on its way, although I’m not confident!

Posted by Frustrated - UK on August 11, 2004 at 12:16 PM (CDT)


I got a 4G 40GB one from Shanghai 2 days ago, no problems, happy with it.

Posted by hexley on August 11, 2004 at 1:10 PM (CDT)


Finally something went right for me. Just got my first iPod. 4g 20GB from China and it works great. I could not be happier. Sorry some of you are having problems. The headphone ground connect seems to make a lot of sense. Wish you all the best in resolving your issues.

Posted by Marc -Orlando on August 11, 2004 at 2:49 PM (CDT)


no audio problems, but the dame thing, keeps freezing up, what the hell is that about ?????????????.

Posted by mossman on August 11, 2004 at 3:09 PM (CDT)


Unfortunately, my G4 iPod has this problem. The Apple supplied headphones create static only when playing some songs (usually songs of heavy metal). Also, the static arises when i turn my iPod’s volume to full..I don’t know what i should do: either contact Apple or deal with the problem.

Posted by Mark B. -Calif. on August 12, 2004 at 8:00 AM (CDT)


Where is the update on this issue?  C’mon, we want info!!  This is a very important issue for people waiting to buy an iPod right now.  Maybe we can put together a database listing ipods with and w/o the problem, where and when purchased and where maufactured?

Posted by Aniki on August 12, 2004 at 12:18 PM (CDT)


Most states have some form of a lemon law that applies to the purchase of consumer goods and which allow for refunds after 3 attempts to correct the problem, so if you’ve gotten 3 picxes of crap from apple get your money back and go buy the new sony or zen model.

I was about to go buy a new 40G G4 until I found this site and read your comments, personally I feel $400 + another $100 in acessories is too much for something that requires a DIY scotch tape fix. I wanted it primarily for my car, is the same problem present with the itrip and other car transmitters, and if so, with what brands?


Posted by ESQ.AZ on August 12, 2004 at 2:02 PM (CDT)


where do you get these “lossless” files to test your iPod????

Posted by iPod boi on August 12, 2004 at 6:30 PM (CDT)


my 4G iPod has the problems mentioned above as well…

i am very glad that this sound is heard by other people,too…

Posted by dorli in heidelberg,germany on August 13, 2004 at 9:10 AM (CDT)


So where is the new UPDATE from iPod lounge ???

What customers have to do ????

I have a 20Gb 4G iPod, with this audio issue !!!

Waiting for Update !

This one is 2 weeks old !

Posted by Nico on August 13, 2004 at 10:22 AM (CDT)


Bought my 20G iPod on 7/26; it’s marked as “made in China.” No static problems with the sound all this time.

As an engineer, if all of the earbuds come from the same manufacturer, I’m guessing there was a bad lot of earplug sockets used in a Chinese plant.

Posted by FloydC on August 13, 2004 at 10:26 AM (CDT)

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