This Damn Noise in the PA When I Plug The Laptop's AC in...

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HatHead
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This Damn Noise in the PA When I Plug The Laptop's AC in...

Post by HatHead » Thu Jun 17, 2004 5:26 pm

This damn noise in the PA when I plug the laptop's AC in is driving me crazy - just started getting portable with my laptop and this is happening everywhere I go. I can't go upgrading all these clubs' and reheasal spaces' old electrical systems - what do you cats do?

tnx 4 any help!

peace!
[:)

dell inspiron 8200, windows 2000, motu 828, midiman 4X4, various midi controllers...

Guest

Post by Guest » Thu Jun 17, 2004 5:34 pm

why don't you plug in your laptop first, then turn it on, then once your software is up and running, turn your master out all the way down, and plug into the PA. Then turn it back up and set it. why would you plug in your laptop after being hooked up?

Michael Mango

Re: This Damn Noise in the PA When I Plug The Laptop's AC in...

Post by Michael Mango » Thu Jun 17, 2004 7:08 pm

HatHead wrote:This damn noise in the PA when I plug the laptop's AC in is driving me crazy - just started getting portable with my laptop and this is happening everywhere I go. I can't go upgrading all these clubs' and reheasal spaces' old electrical systems - what do you cats do?

tnx 4 any help!

peace!
[:)

dell inspiron 8200, windows 2000, motu 828, midiman 4X4, various midi controllers...
I just picked up a Dell Inspiron as well, and noticed some crazy noise coming out of the speakers as well. I'm running a M-Audio FireWire 410, and am hearing HD noise and such. It's starting to scare me as I have my first live show next week!!!

Doesn't make any sense why a digital connection via firewire would pick up harddrive noise?! I thought the signal was all digital?! Anyways, if anyone could help out, it would be mucho appreciated!



MM
Symbolic Studios
K-Dub

Guest

Post by Guest » Thu Jun 17, 2004 8:28 pm

are you plugging in right into a legit firewire port on the dell? If so, who make the controller for the firewire (you can check it settings>control panel>system>hardware>device manager>IEEE 1394 Bus host controllers>??? I have the Texas Instruments controller, which is supposed to be the best for audio. Others, like motorola, have caused problems on some systems. Are you totally sure that your 410 is the soundcard selected in Live? Is the 410 plugged in with power supply? Latest drivers? Do you have any usb devices or controllers hooked up? Does Live function well besides these noises, or is it sluggish? Is the laptop plugged into AC power? Do you have shared graphics memory? Are you using a pcmcia to firewire adapter or usb hub? Am I asking to many questions? Just trying to help--these are some of the possible things that might be causing issue, but you are right, that is wack to hear harddrive noises coming out of your 410 (sure its not just latency clicks and pops and stutters?). Post all of your system info, check on your firewire controller, post answers to some of these questions, the clock is tickin on your gig!

Ryan

Mehalic
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Post by Mehalic » Thu Jun 17, 2004 8:57 pm

Anonymous wrote:are you plugging in right into a legit firewire port on the dell? If so, who make the controller for the firewire (you can check it settings>control panel>system>hardware>device manager>IEEE 1394 Bus host controllers>??? I have the Texas Instruments controller, which is supposed to be the best for audio. Others, like motorola, have caused problems on some systems. Are you totally sure that your 410 is the soundcard selected in Live? Is the 410 plugged in with power supply? Latest drivers? Do you have any usb devices or controllers hooked up? Does Live function well besides these noises, or is it sluggish? Is the laptop plugged into AC power? Do you have shared graphics memory? Are you using a pcmcia to firewire adapter or usb hub? Am I asking to many questions? Just trying to help--these are some of the possible things that might be causing issue, but you are right, that is wack to hear harddrive noises coming out of your 410 (sure its not just latency clicks and pops and stutters?). Post all of your system info, check on your firewire controller, post answers to some of these questions, the clock is tickin on your gig!

Ryan
Thanks for responding Ryan! Answers to your questions are below:

I am using the Texas Instruments controller for the IEEE 1394 port
FireWire 410 is selected in Live, and the appropriate ASIO drivers are loaded
410 and laptop is plugged in via AC adapter
latest drivers installed
Have a USB Oxygen 8 hooked up via USB
Live works like a charm besides this noise I'm hearing
Using an internal FireWire port
I believe I have shared graphics (graphics card = 64MB NVIDIA® GeForceTM FX Go5200 Go)
Dell Inspiron 8600
Pentium Centrino 1.4Mhz
1G RAM
60G 7200RPM HD

I'm 99% sure it's not latency as I've experienced that before - seems it's everytime it uses the HD I get this noise, which leads me to belive the noise is coming from the HD.

Thanks again for the help, mucho appreciated
MM
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Guest

Post by Guest » Thu Jun 17, 2004 9:48 pm

crap. That is weird--that system should freaking fly, the specs look great, nothing stands out as bad. How long have you had it, have the problems always been present? Is the 7,200 RPM drive the internal drive, if so, is it factory or aftermarket? Have you tried other musical apps to see it this problem is across the board with your setup (maybe even download a demo of something if all you have is Live to test)? All I can think is that for some reason the 7,200 RPM internal drive might be causing problems--have you considered getting an external firewire drive for your audio files, and using the internal for the apps? This is the best way to go. I guess a poor man's test for this if you don't have or want an external drive would be to open a Live set and play with it to verify that your problem persists. then try to set ALL of the clips in the whole set to RAM mode, and play around again--it would seem if the problem is still there, it is deeper than where your audio is coming from, it would be down to the internal drive causing noise when simply running the app. That would be not good. Let me know if it's an aftermarket drive, or if it is factory, have you contacted Dell or cruised their homepage to see if others have had this problems. surely if it is factory, many other audio enthusiasts have tried it out, so you might get some help from someone who's experienced the same thing. The only other possible cause would be the usb connection of the ox8--try this test. Open a Live set with the ox8 hooked up as usual, play around and verify the problem persists. Then, close the live set. Then goto the pref menu and unselect the ox8 as a midi in. Then close Live, unplug the ox8 completely, and shut down completely for a cold boot (don't just restart, shut down, wait 10-15 sec, restart). Now open Live up, verify in prefs. that the ox8 is still NOT selected as a midi in (theoretically, there shouldn't even be a usb .... option for the midi ins if its unplugged). Now re-open the set that you just used with the ox8--are the problems still there? If so, maybe try one more cold boot, after that, you can be sure its not the ox8.

Ryan

HatHead
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Post by HatHead » Fri Jun 18, 2004 6:03 am

Hello folks - sounds like some good advice here!
Anonymous wrote:why don't you plug in your laptop first, then turn it on, then once your software is up and running, turn your master out all the way down, and plug into the PA. Then turn it back up and set it. why would you plug in your laptop after being hooked up?
I'll try this sequence but am not sure what it has do with the order of hooking up the laptop up to the PA. It seems simply having the laptop on the same electrical circuit produces interference/noise on the line, resulting in a buzz in every speaker in the audio chain that makes the set-up unusable. I have had to resort to battery in a couple of situations. Things are OK on battery but plug the adaptor in and, bang, buzz...zz.zzz.z.z.z

And I'm suffering the same problem as mr. mango! it is driving me crazy - makes me think that maybe the interference is coming from the laptop itself somehow (monitor or graphics card) but I'm not sure if the power supply should have such a dramatic effect. doesn't matter if i'm using live or cubase or even anything - the damn thing just buzzes. In fact, as the Dell fireport is quite loose and easy to jiggle a disconnect, you can hear a lot of noise as if jiggling the wire would fix the problem (it doesn't).

I have even resorted to playing with my bios settings to try and get rid of this problem. good summary of my problem: http://forums.us.dell.com/supportforums ... 0&sort_by=

There was no buzzing from my IBM thinkpad (which is no longer strong enough to run these kinds of apps anymore).

Here are my specs:

Dell Inspiron 8200
- texas instruments-OHCI Compliant IEEE 1394 host controller
- pentium 4, cpu 2.4GHz with 1MB ram
- audio files on external firewire hard drive, apps on internal hard drive
- graphics card: ATI Mobility Radeon 9000 (6228)

MOTU 828 with the appropriate ASIO drivers and using the Dell firewire IEEE 1394 port.


USB MIDIMAN 4X4

If you can help - you are the man!

peace!
[:)

Mehalic
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Ground Loop

Post by Mehalic » Fri Jun 18, 2004 1:05 pm

Well, it looks like it is a ground loop. Like Hathead, as soon as I unplug the AC adapter from the laptop, the noise stops! So it has to be a ground loop according to some info I found on Sound on Sound user forums. It also doesn't help that Dell likes to put the video card and 1394 port on the same IRQ (although when the laptop is running from battery power, I hear no noise what so ever). Here is more on it:

http://sound-on-sound2.infopop.net/2/Op ... =642103801

http://sound-on-sound2.infopop.net/2/Op ... 1613068467

Found on Dell's forums here:
http://forums.us.dell.com/supportforums ... 600#M17886

Anyone know if this would be worth looking into? I've heard these boxes you can buy to get rid of a ground loop are expensive?! Thanks again for the help....
MM
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Guest

cut off the ground wire

Post by Guest » Fri Jun 18, 2004 1:13 pm

When you run your laptop on battery - silence.
When you run your laptop on AC adaptor - noise.
So the AC adaptor is the cause.
I suppose your AC adaptor has a ground connector (all Dell laptops do...).
Cut the ground - voila! - silence.

This is the only real solution. Since we've begun to use a power extender with unconnected ground pins for our laptots, we haven't experienced this problem in any club anymore...

nadlabak
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Post by nadlabak » Fri Jun 18, 2004 1:21 pm

Hmm, I could swear I was logged in when I posted the solution above, but... Now I'm just checking that my username is working...

Mehalic
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Re: cut off the ground wire

Post by Mehalic » Fri Jun 18, 2004 2:59 pm

Anonymous wrote:When you run your laptop on battery - silence.
When you run your laptop on AC adaptor - noise.
So the AC adaptor is the cause.
I suppose your AC adaptor has a ground connector (all Dell laptops do...).
Cut the ground - voila! - silence.

This is the only real solution. Since we've begun to use a power extender with unconnected ground pins for our laptots, we haven't experienced this problem in any club anymore...
Thanks Nadlabak! If you could be more specific in how to cut the ground (sorry, not an electrical whiz by any stretch of the imagination) - or are you talking about the actual prong? Thanks again - hoepfully this will clear things up!
MM
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drez
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Post by drez » Fri Jun 18, 2004 5:21 pm

sorry I saw this thread late. I have a Dell Inspiron 5150 (actually have had 2 of them) and I've always had to go to Radio Shack and pick up a ground lift (little gray plug...ask them for one) and it fixes the problem.

Guest

Re: cut off the ground wire

Post by Guest » Fri Jun 18, 2004 6:52 pm

Mehalic wrote: If you could be more specific in how to cut the ground (sorry, not an electrical whiz by any stretch of the imagination) - or are you talking about the actual prong?
it is the actual prong that has to be disconnected somehow, either with a ground lift plug between the power out and the adapter, or ripping the third prong right off.

Most venues have suprisingly poor electrical facilities :( I guess they just wanna rawk :-/

anti-banausic
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Post by anti-banausic » Fri Jun 18, 2004 7:09 pm

I have a question for everyone. Do you hear this static when you are using headphones, or through speakers at home? Or is there something specific about all the electrical equipment in the club?

I was worried about this with my laptop, I am using the Echo Indigo DJ (PCMCIA controller is Texas Instruments). When I am plugged in and listening through headphones or connected to hi-fi speakers, there is no hum. Would I hear it in a club?

Thanks!
Macbook c2d 2.0, 2G RAM, 160G HD 5400 RPM, OSX(10.5.5), XP Home, LIVE6, BCR 2000, UC33e, Yamaha P-200, Logic Studio, KRK V6 II

HatHead
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Re: cut off the ground wire

Post by HatHead » Fri Jun 18, 2004 8:15 pm

nadlabak wrote: When you run your laptop on battery - silence.
When you run your laptop on AC adaptor - noise.
So the AC adaptor is the cause.
I suppose your AC adaptor has a ground connector (all Dell laptops do...).
Cut the ground - voila! - silence.
Very likely! However, symptoms and causes are not always the same (things you learn in QA).
Mehalic wrote: If you could be more specific in how to cut the ground (sorry, not an electrical whiz by any stretch of the imagination) - or are you talking about the actual prong? Thanks again - hoepfully this will clear things up!
Hi Michael - did ya cut the chord? or get a ground lift? I remember those little grey plugs but think they are no longer available here in Canada due to the CSA.

Thanks and peace 2 all!
[:)

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