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Macbook 2,1 w/sound but no volume control

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Old 17-10-2011
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 1
Exclamation Macbook 2,1 w/sound but no volume control

To go into a bit more detail, I have a Macbook 2,1 from 2007 running Snow leopard 10.6.8. Approximately a day ago, the volume controls stopped working for the internal speakers after using a headset for a good length of time. Sound does come out, but I cannot raise, lower or mute the volume by using the F3,F4 & F5 keys that correspond to volume or even by using the volume icon in my menu bar.

The little screen appears and it looks like the volume is going up, complete with the little water drop sounds, but it doesn't actually adjust the volume. If I plug the headphones back in, volume control is restored (but even that is no longer working properly). Everything is correctly set in System Preferences - Sound - Output - Built-in. Interesting enough, while checking those settings, I discovered that while none of the other volume controls work, the Output Volume bar in the Sound settings does allow me to adjust volume and mute. Weird right?

My current troubleshooting to date:
  • Restarted - problem continued.
  • Rechecked System Preferences and Audio Midi in Utilities. All good there.
  • Ran Applejack - cleared out a bunch of stuff, then restarted. Problem seemed to correct itself initially, but as soon as I plugged the headset back in, it began again. Had to restart again to get it working.
  • Reset the PRAM - not sure if that got it working again or if it was just the reset itself that did it, but again, it only worked initially. As soon as I plugged the headset back in, the volume control was toast again.

I have scoured various mac forums and gone over any and all posts that may apply, but have found no solutions as of yet. To answer some common questions I saw:

No, there is no red light coming out of the audio port.

My speaker settings have been checked and rechecked, they are correct and my volume setting is not greyed out or anything; the volume indicators appear when I press the button - they go up and down as if they are changing the volume, they just don't actually change the volume.

I have all current salient updates to OS X installed.

The only other thing of note I can mention is that a few days ago, I noticed my charger was acting a little odd. When it gets near a full charge, it's starts blinking, alternating from green to orange until it finishes charging. Sometimes it hangs at 99% without the orange light going off, but when I unplug it, it shows itself as 100% charged. I've not thought much of it though, because quite honestly, this battery is going on 5 years almost and still gives me over 2 hours of usage on a full charge. Not great, no, but can't complain considering it's age. It's still charging consistently and the diagnostics give me a health read of normal and a cycle count of 1619.

Without fail, as soon as I plug the headset in, it disables the volume control (again, I still have sound, just no control over it). If I could just leave it as is, I would, but I work online all day and go a little nuts without music. My partner, unfortunately, also works online all day and the music drives him nuts. Maybe notsomuch the classical or jazz, but the fact that I like to blast The Hives or SOAD as well pretty much means I need a headset about 70% of the time.

I would be leaning towards it being a hardware problem if it weren't for the fact that it consistently resets itself and I still have control through the Output Volume bar in the Sound settings (Sys.Pref.) even after the headset buggers everything else. If it were a hardware problem it wouldn't be doing that right?

Anyhow, I figured I'd ask the Yodas on here before bothering with actual tech support at a store. The laptop is waaaaay beyond it's warranty date and I live in Chile, where the Mac techs are 1) few and far between and 2) skills are questionable to begin with.

Cheers and thanks in advance

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Old 18-10-2011
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 383
Re: Macbook 2,1 w/sound but no volume control

The volume adjustment settings in Snow Leopard is really buggy. It is not easy to find the exact settings. After going through some number of threads on this forums, I found some help here. First if you can try holding down the Shift and Option key together at the same time you can manage to adjust the volume. There is a helpful link which can help you to get the exact settings for managing snow leopard sound.

Mac OS X 10.5 Volume adjustment
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