Ok, so -
I bought some Nuforce NE-6s a couple months ago for use with my Sansa Fuze. The first pair developed a serious short in the cord after a few weeks, so I returned them.
The second pair had a different problem out of the box - they made a continuous popping/crackling sound whenever the cord was moved. I read that the Sansa Fuze can have issues with certain headphones if their plugs insert too deeply into the jack, so I tried plugging the headphones in more shallowly and also tried an extension cable - they made the same crackling sound either way. I tried plugging three other pairs of headphones directly into the MP3 player and also into the same extension cable, but couldn't replicate the noise at all - so I returned the Nuforces for another exchange.
I'm on my THIRD pair - and these have the same problem! And after a few hours of frustrating experimentation, I've discovered a bizarre quirk - they only make the popping sound when the Fuze is in my shirt pocket. I can't replicate the distortion if I vigorously shake the Fuze or the cable, nor does it make any noise if I jump around with the player in my pants pocket. It also doesn't make a difference whether they're directly plugged in to the MP3 player or plugged into the extension. If I lift my left arm or lean forward, there's that same crackling sound - even while plugged into the extension cable with the Nuforce cord held firmly in my hand! Other headphones plugged into the Fuze or extension didn't do this at all.
I took out my old Sansa Clip just now and found the exact same phenomenon.
Any ideas? I swear that I'm not imagining this. I'm assuming that the first pair also made this noise but I just never noticed. I only heard the popping on the second pair because I happened to be listening to spoken word at the time. These aren't subtle pops though - they're as obtrusive as surface noise from damaged vinyl.
I'm keeping the Nuforces - I'm just wondering what could possibly cause this sort of issue. Some sort of innate incompatibility with the sound circuitry shared by the two Sansa players? I'm at a total loss.
Edit - I just replicated the exact same effect with my PSP. It doesn't take any effort to produce the popping - all I have to do is put it in my shirt pocket and then move my arm slightly.
Edited by moleface - 3/20/11 at 5:54pm