Leica M
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Dec 26, 2020

After a replacement, the crackling has gotten worse on my NC700 - Why are these headphones so bad?

So I am on my second replacement pair of the Limited edition Eclipse NC700 and I have a consistent crackling sound - what is worse is that the second replacement pair has another issue where the headphones have a stuttering or machine gun crackling sound when I receive messages or when the phone is literally doing nothing - for example when I am between apps or between songs. 

Bose product name: 
Limited Edition Eclipse NC700

Country: Australia

Firmware Version: 1.8.2-11524+e0f7590

App Version: 4.2.4

What devices were you using that were affected and what version are they on: Google Pixel 3XL

 

A detailed description of the issue and steps to reproduce: Crackling and popping - Occurs when the phone is not producing sound and I press a button, or scroll, the headphones pop and crackle loudly. Also occurs when I stop using the phone for more than 3 seconds and I press a button and the headphones crackle and pop. Also occurs when I am waiting for a message on a chat app (for example, FB messenger) and while the message is being typed from the other end, the headphones start to sound like a machine gun stutter and crackle for minutes (sounds like ptptptptptptptptptpt.)

The only way to stop this from happening is to play music non-stop (literally) and it has to be played at a loud volume otherwise the crackling occurs nonetheless.

 

What environment do you experience the issue in? In all environments - I tested this in my quiet bedroom, then again with a fan and again in a shopping centre and once in the garage with the car running. The issue only happens when using my phone without sound playing and happens when the phone registers a touch - or starts machine-gunning an endless crackle when waiting for a message or at random times when the phone is on standby (for example, this was noticed when I put my headphones down and closed my music app so I could get the door - when I came back, even with all my apps closed and no sound playing, the headphones were making a ptptptptptptptptptptpt sound like a machine gun.

 

When did you start to experience the issue? Did it work correctly previously? I experienced the crackling issue from day one of the first pair, and I experienced the crackling and machine gun static issue from day one on the second pair.

 

Any troubleshooting steps you took: I looked up forums and reset my headphones several times. I checked the firmware and updates. I used the PC updater. I called Bose tech support in my region several times - they replaced my headphones from the first instance. Tech support for the second pair has been... disappointing. In fact, the reason why I am making this post is that I have been waiting for several days for a return phone call I was promised to resolve the issue, and I had to call them after several days and then told they would call me back AGAIN. Still waiting for tech support. The only way to stop the crackling (but not the machine gun static effect) is to completely mute my phone - that means turn off all the sounds, turn the volume, and everything down. Great - now I can't hear anything in the headphones.

 

It has now been 2 months of waiting and replacement and no support on the issue - Even being a loyal Bose customer, it has been extremely disappointing to feel like Bose released a subpar headphone knowing full well that it was subpar and still decided to charge $700 (AUD) for their limited edition headphone.

4 REPLIES 4
Jessie_O
Moderator

Re: After a replacement, the crackling has gotten worse on my NC700 - Why are these headphones so...

Hey Leica M, 

 

Thank you for your post! 

 

I'm sorry to hear that you are experiencing such issues with the sound cracking. I will be more than happy to help you in any way that I can. 

 

Can you tell me if this happens when you connect to 2 devices at the same time? 

 

I look forward to hearing from you! 

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Leica M
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Re: After a replacement, the crackling has gotten worse on my NC700 - Why are these headphones so...

1) This happens both when connected to a single device and when connected to more than 1.

2) My issue is very specific - it happens when I press on my phone screen - I found it crackles when my phone makes "touch" sounds. If I am typing, it crackles on the first press then goes away, and my headphones register the "tap sound" of the phone. But if I stop for a few seconds, then it crackles again when I touch the screen.

3) The repetitive crackling static sound occurs when I stop using my phone and there is no sound - say for example I am on the youtube app and I am scrolling, and then suddenly my headphones start sounding like a static machine gun. It also occurs when I leave my screen on and no sound plays - it can happen randomly.

4) I tested this on a pixel 3, pixel 2 and a Blackberry Priv - all experience the same issues with varying degrees of static and crackling - I also tested these devices on their own..

5) On my Blackberry, I noticed the worst performance where the sound drops out and the crackling happens even when my phone isnt being touched - I leave it alone and it pops and splutters for no reason (occurs once every 3-5 seconds). My pixel 2 pops for no reason as well (once every 10-15 seconds) but I noticed that if I turn off phone sounds and tap sounds, the crackling only happens when I lock and unlock my phone. This issue can be replicated on my pixel 3.

6) When I turn off the "touch sounds" on my pixel 3, the issue is resolved mostly, but the lock and unlock actions cause the crackling to return and the machine gun static/popping slows down and sounds like a raffle wheel spinning slowly (4 pops a second as opposed to dozens of pops a second from before) The moment I turn on "touch sounds" on my phone, the crackling returns when I touch my phone/type/scroll and the popping/static/machine-gun sound when I leave my phone alone for a few seconds returns at a faster pace.

7) The biggest issue is that the pops and crackles are linked to "touch sounds" and scrolling. But it still occurs.

8.)The ptptptpt (machine gun) sound still occurs when I am: Waiting for someone to send me a message on a messaging app. When I am not touching my phone. When I am reading something like a book and not scrolling or touching the screen and the sound returns. When all sounds are turned off and the sounds return, the only way to turn off the ptptptptptpt static (machine gun sound) is to turn on my sounds, then press a button or play music or a video to stop the static machine gun sound.

 

These are $700AUD headphones - why are they all consistently horrible? I keep reading how bad the crackling is and it hasn't been fixed since 2019. This is my second pair, I have followed all the solutions offered on this forum and from my local phone support. What is worse is that I have asked for help on the 1.8.2 firmware announcement in November, and after almost a month of waiting for a response, it feels like Bose is happy to charge a premium price but abandon its users after purchase.

 

I seriously only ever used these headphones to test the issue - since I purchased this in November, I have not been able to play these headphones to enjoy them, just to troubleshoot them and to test its features to figure out what is wrong with them. It is rather tiring and my wasted time is becoming elongated with the limited support this company has offered - and upon reading other people's issues, it seems to be a widespread and ongoing issue with limited solutions.

Jessie_O
Moderator

Re: After a replacement, the crackling has gotten worse on my NC700 - Why are these headphones so...

Hey Leica M, 

 

Thank you for coming back to me with this information. This is super strange to have the crackling so specific to your source devices and the touch controls. I'm afraid there is nothing I can suggest to you that you have not already tried. Therefore, I would recommend that you reach out to our team for further assistance. You can do so by clicking the LINK HERE, selecting your country, and scrolling down to 'Contact Us' We will be happy to do all we can for you!


I'm sorry I could not be of more help to you at this time. 

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Leica M
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Dec 26, 2020

Re: After a replacement, the crackling has gotten worse on my NC700 - Why are these headphones so...

I have been, and I am now on my third pair - and I'm told that I will have to wait yet another 4 weeks for my third pair to "process" before they mail it to me.

 

I have had some dismissive emails and conversations with the support team - the dismissive conversation came in the form of a tech support member who was "at the top of the supervisors" who said that even though I havent really used my headphones as I have sent them back as soon as I lodged a warranty claim, I am not eligable for any kind of compensation or any kind of assurance my new headphones would work.

 

The first pair had battery/firmware issues (with some crackling), the second had non-stop crackling.

 

I would also like to point out that the last person I spoke to "the top supervisor" on the phone, said that I would no longer get any more replacements if I keep sending them back for crackling. I think this is an egregious threat and against Australian consumer law. She accused me of saying it was likely my device (just like the dismissive email from tech support who wrongly claimed it was only happening on one device) and because it happened twice because both had crackling (but the first pair sent back was not because of the crackling, it was a battery issue - this took her 15 minutes to understand and accept.) Becasue she believed the crackling was the reason for both pairs to be returned, she said the third pair was my last replacement pair (because the headphones were not repairable.) This is an unacceptable threat to the customer, especially when I DO want the limited edition pair, as well as I offered and requested a repair as I received a pair that didnt have a major battery problem.

 

Your support staff that you requested I speak to were so dismissive, they assumed my issue was the run of the mill crackling issue and that my time wasted was not worthy of any kind of compensation at all. As a Bose customer of around 10 years, this will be the last Bose product I will have purchased and I will continue to recommend against this brand until proof that your products are not rushed - as the crackling issue is still a problem 2 years on. Meanwhile, Sony can release the XM3, receive feedback on their product, and then a year later have the XM4 released with little to no firmware, hardware, and software issues - and Bose still has issues that plagued its products from the day of release, 2 years on. It is laughable that the people you said I contact not only dismiss my issues as non-genuine, but I am on my third pair for a $700AUD product that cannot work out of the box - with issues from 2019.