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Electrical Interference in 3.5 Outputs

post #1 of 11
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So I have a new rig I built, which has been pretty decent as of so far, but with a few problems. First and foremost, I have a whine in my 3.5 outputs (both front panel and back; same whine) which also seems to correspond with various program interactions such as clicking around in After Effects. My power supply (Corsair CX500 Builder Series) emits a high-pitched whine occasionally, and I've read it may have something to do with a bad set of caps or coils in the batch. Now I can't say that the tone mimicks the power supply's whine, but they certainly sound similair. I'm planning to RMA (newegg) the power supply as soon as I can find one for as good a price as I got this one, and I don't have a an extra PSU that I can test with in the meantime.

My video card is a Radeon HD 4550, so I doubt that's the problem, and I've unplugged all peripherals. I've also disabled every other audio jack in the system via the CP. Muting the system/cranking it to 11 has no effect, the sound is the same.

So what do you guys think, the power supply? Terrible shielding in the case (Silvestone PS05B)? Shoddy Mobo (MSI P67A-C43 (B3)? Some altogether different?

Note: No OC'ing has been done, and I'm running only with the stock fan included in the case.
    
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post #2 of 11
The unfortunate reality of many onboard audio solutions is that they exist predominately because no motherboard manufacturer would dare launch a product without them, lest their product be missing something the others all have. Because of space constraints, budget constraints, etc, they're rarely great designs.

Whats that assessment mean for you? It is certainly possible that a faulty PSU could be putting some extra noise into the lines and making noticeable glitches in your sound, but I've also seen a good many onboard chipsets just make noise based on peripheral usage, CPU activity, etc. I'd send the PSU back home for a checkup, but know there is a strong possibility that some noise will remain just based on the limitations of onboard audio.
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post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the response. Do you think any DIY shielding of the cables would help, or do you think if it is the mobo, that the sound is traversing diretcly through the board itself and not a result of the sound being absorbed through the cables themselves? My case is the one listed in my sig, and it has a really convenient top of the case audio jack that I would hate to lose because I need to run my sound through an audio card in the back of my PC.
    
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post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by CallMeHal View Post
Thanks for the response. Do you think any DIY shielding of the cables would help, or do you think if it is the mobo, that the sound is traversing diretcly through the board itself and not a result of the sound being absorbed through the cables themselves? My case is the one listed in my sig, and it has a really convenient top of the case audio jack that I would hate to lose because I need to run my sound through an audio card in the back of my PC.
If you were getting RF interference (which would be the most likely environmental cause of the type of noise you're getting) it takes specialty products to really be effective at the kinds of frequencies you'd need to control. You certainly could give it a shot, but I'd be a bit skeptical about how much improvement you'd hear. A simple test might be to move that long cable around to all different positions while listening. If if is picking up RF from something within your case, there is (hopefully) not enough power to the RF source that it will emit more than a few feet from where it begins - you might find there is a "quiet" position to hold the cable in, and can begin trying to isolate the cause of the noise from there. If it is indeed seemingly tied to things you do (moving the mouse, etc) I'd expect the noise to be coming through the audio chip itself or perhaps the bus it runs on, not from RF.
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post #5 of 11
I really doubt it is from the cables, 98% of the time it is from the board itself. The case probably has nothing to do with it. Just get a PCI dedicated audio card. I had the same problems. I got a old Creative Audigy 2 from a friend for free, totally fixed it.
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post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipp View Post
If you were getting RF interference (which would be the most likely environmental cause of the type of noise you're getting) it takes specialty products to really be effective at the kinds of frequencies you'd need to control. You certainly could give it a shot, but I'd be a bit skeptical about how much improvement you'd hear. A simple test might be to move that long cable around to all different positions while listening. If if is picking up RF from something within your case, there is (hopefully) not enough power to the RF source that it will emit more than a few feet from where it begins - you might find there is a "quiet" position to hold the cable in, and can begin trying to isolate the cause of the noise from there. If it is indeed seemingly tied to things you do (moving the mouse, etc) I'd expect the noise to be coming through the audio chip itself or perhaps the bus it runs on, not from RF.
Whoa, ok so there does seem to be a bit of a sweet spot with this cable. I managed to cut it down by routing it a bit differently. Sucks for airflow, but is cutting down on that noise for sure. And it does seem to be the power supply. The only problem now is maintaining that sweet spot. Do you think a ferrite choke would help? I have one (somewhere) and I think I could finagle it on even though it's made for coax.

Then there's the onboard audio that the speakers are plugged into, that is still going to buzz because I'm certainly not going to desolder the jacks from the board and move them. Not on this board at least.
    
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post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by crimsontears809739 View Post
I really doubt it is from the cables, 98% of the time it is from the board itself. The case probably has nothing to do with it. Just get a PCI dedicated audio card. I had the same problems. I got a old Creative Audigy 2 from a friend for free, totally fixed it.
I'm not well-vesrsed on PCI soundcards, so bear with me, but is there one that comes with a HD Audio pin block that I could attach the front onboard audio to?
    
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post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by CallMeHal View Post
WDo you think a ferrite choke would help? I have one (somewhere) and I think I could finagle it on even though it's made for coax.
Definitely worth a try.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CallMeHal View Post
I'm not well-versed on PCI sound cards, so bear with me, but is there one that comes with a HD Audio pin block that I could attach the front on board audio to?
All PCI sound cards are only on the back, so you would loose your convenient audio ports on the top of the case. (The only exception is a $200 sound card made by Fatlity).

You could try a card reader with build in HD audio to remove the noise, but i am not sure if this would work. But it would give you audio jacks on the front.

Edit: Here is another idea. You could try something like this--> http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16829128010 . Does you case have USB ports on the top? You could sit the external sound card on top of you case. That way you can still have convenient audio ports on the top of your case, and the USB would bypass any interference. Just a idea.
Edited by crimsontears809739 - 4/17/11 at 10:00pm
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post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 

Haha! So I managed to find a picture of what I'm now looking for. Unfortunately, it's just a picture. now I have to go track down the product...

Is there really only a flavor of this card in the 200 dollar range? That just doesn't seem right to me.


EDIT: In response to your edit. Good call, I didn't think of that! A DAC with headphone amp might be a decent step up also.

EDIT2: Found one!


Edited by CallMeHal - 4/17/11 at 10:21pm
    
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post #10 of 11
OMG, i'm so sorry for confusing you. I was thinking about PCI sound card that would mount CD drive style in the front of your case for $200. Sorry, i was thinking about some crazy idea that would never work. lol Just ignore that comment.

Nope, you can use a $20 one with a generic front panel connector. Like $40 for a decent one. Sorry again for the confusion.

EDIT: The thing you picked out on amazon should work just fine. ^__^
Edited by crimsontears809739 - 4/17/11 at 10:48pm
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