I have had my US-144 connected to my laptop for a long time. I use Reaper for recording and when viewing streamed videos such as YouTube the sound goes through the US-144 then to my headphones. The US-144 is always on. This has worked well for a long time. However I recently started having problems. I started to hear constant pops and crackles through my headphones even with no applications running. YouTube became almost unwatchable due to constant stop-start jitters. I had tried everything I could think of to fix this. However I just disconnected the US-144 and plugged my headphones directly into the laptop. Voila, all my problems have disappeared. So the culprit must be the US-144. However I never changed a setting on it to create the problem. This is all very strange. Any advice appreciated.