Since I bought my Mac Mini I have experienced horrible audio quality out of iTunes. The issue was only with iTunes. In an attempt to narrow the problem down I downloaded Songbird, which is Mozilla’s version of iTunes. Audio was fine in all other applications. I would listen to the same song anywhere else and it would sound great. In iTunes it was crackly and hissy. On my MacBook Pro I had never had these issues.
Through a complaint I posted out on Twitter, someone suggested that I delete iTunes and reinstall it. The problem still persisted. I also purchased a USB audio adapter to see if that would help, no relief.
I had almost given up on the issue. I did not want to completely delete everything that had anything to do with iTunes because I have playlists, podcasts and a ton of other stuff I would not want to set up and organize again. Out of no where it came into my mind that I should trash the preference files. The preference files have nothing to do with playlists or any of the organization of my files. I decided to give it a try, so I quit out of iTunes, navigated to the Preferences folder in my User directory and trashed the preferences for iTunes (see the image, click it to view it large). I then emptied the trash and restarted iTunes. I had to go through the welcome setup of iTunes. When it asked me if I wanted it to search for MP3 on my home drive I said no and when it asked if I wanted it to keep my stuff organized I said yes. Then iTunes opened up and everything was just as I left it. The best part of this story is that the audio quality was fixed and I now have no problems. iTunes even quits and loads much faster. I am going to make it a point to trash my iTunes preferences files from time to time. I also had to go and reset the equalizer to “Rock” which is where I like it.
The reason I am posting this is due to the fact that I noticed many people complaining about audio quality issues in iTunes but there were no answers as to how it could be fixed. I hope this post helps someone having similar issues.