Weird POP if playhead is right at the beginning of the audio track


here is the issue:
Pop defined : - just a pop, not a crackle, not loss of audio, just a pop, singular, same one, every time.

If I start the playhead right on the bar that an audio track is on, then I get this weird pop happening about a second in. If the playhead is on the track already, then no pops. Happens only on audio tracks.
If the playhead is 1 bar or more before any audio, then no pops. if playhead is half a bar before then the pop will happen sooner on the audio file. So essentially the pop happens a second in (assuming bpm of 90). but if the playhead already on the track ( half a bar in or more) then no pops.

even on export there is a pop, if the playhead right before the audio.

so to avoid the pop, the playhead must be on audio. to not hear it, the playhead must come a bar or more before the audio.

does not happen if its midi or vst tracks. just audio.

also, only happens if the playback is stopped then resumed. if the track is playing, and i use locator buttons ( num pad) to skip around or the mouse while the track is playing then no pops. only when it starts.

The audio sample is fine, I tried many different ones - same thing.
Updated interface driver, asio driver, cubase to 10.5.20
changed from asio to the low generic audio.
tried safe mode - disabling plugins, settings.

increased buffer to 4000

I have searched numerous topics, and most of them either are old, or people had issues in different versions of cubase, related to drivers, or buffer size or poor audio. I have none of that.

running cubase 10.5
win 10.

Thank you for reading.