Please try troubleshooting the following components:
Remove and reinstall the audio drivers
Please try using speakers or different headphone.
It is recommended that you put the volume on the speakers themselves at a maximum of 75% and then use the volume control under Windows to set the desired level. When you use the upper part of the volume range, you are significantly magnifying the noise (like the the initialization "pop") and distortion (especially that in the amplifier in the speakers) in the overall sound system. As you have found, you definitely want to avoid this...