How to Fix Ground Loop Hum? Details With Video

Buzz is an audio system that annoys the listeners through music. It destroys the quality of music by creating unexplainable rattle into the ear. It not only destroys the quality of the sound but also reduces your listening ability.

Though you, as an expert, may find several sources buzz, most of the users may not know for which the buzz is created. You may know, the 60Hz hum is responsible for cable problem whereas 120 Hz hum is created from ground loop problem.

However, in this article, you will know several ground loop hum sources as well as the easiest way to fix them.

Way to Fix Ground Loop Hum

Here, as the hum has several possible sources, we have discussed the way to fix each source’s problem.

Power Supply

Power is the all in all for any electronics device. Hence a low-quality power sends the weak signal to the ground loop. Also, more than one device connected in the same power supply can cause loop hum to the sound. So, disconnect the computer from the power supply and runs it through alternative power. If the issue is resolved, then the problem is in your power supply.

If the issue isn't resolved, the problem is in other sources. However, you may need a replacement power supply unit. So, have a deep look at the specifications of the power supply whether it matches to the electrical devices or not. Otherwise, your device may be damaged permanently.

Gears

Audio can be routed through many different ways of your system. So, you have found the connected gears from which the buzz is emanating. Once you can identify it, the issue will be solved easily. However, to track down buzz, start by turning down the volume of your earphones or recordings. If the buzz is still heard after turning down the house volume, the sound may probably come from the monitors.

You can now follow the proper instructions given by the manufacturer. Hope, the problem will be solved. On the contrary, you should call to the brand to replace or re-engineer it.

Port problems

The input and output port of the speaker as well the computer can't match. If this happens, you must suffer for buzz problem. Also, some devices have the specific port for input or output. Unless the right jack you put into the port, it creates annoying sound.

However, you can test the port and cable swapping the channel with another device. If the buzz goes away after unplugging the signal chain from the port, the problem is in the jack. So, use the specified channel to experience buzz-free sound.

DI Box

DI box is an excellent inclusion for audiophile users. A DI box works as the connector of the audio devices and the speakers. It breaks the audio ground to reduce the hum to zero. So, no extra sound comes from the speaker. Also, it balances the audio cables for unbalanced audio sources. As the device is portable and distinctive, you can use it for any of your devices for anywhere. Moreover, as the DI box features a Ground Lift Switch, it fits and works with any audio device as well as mixer/ loudspeaker.

PC audio noise

Another internal reason is the sensitive materials inside the PC. They create lots of noise while producing sound. The internal audio solutions which you can find beside the motherboards can be susceptible and responsible for annoying hum. These noise and electromagnetic interference can’t be eliminated unless you change them. Also, if they aren’t fit well, they produce noise.

Here, you can go USB along with using PCI and PCI cards. These will help you out of the problem, but the solution isn't permanent. You better buy the highest quality interior materials from the renowned brand.

Balanced Cables

A cheap cable can’t supply much power or transfer much signal from audio devices to the loudspeakers. So, always use balanced cables which can transfer sufficient power and signal to produce music. Otherwise, the sound will be irritating. On the other hand, you mixer may provide both balanced and unbalanced signal, hence using a balanced cable will be excellent for eliminating hum.

Different Circuit

Now, you will know the most common test to fix ground loop. It is the most inexpensive and simple technique.

You may test it when you face the problem. You need several outlets and a different circuit to verify the issues. At plug the jack out of the port from your computer. Then plug the piece of jack into separate circuit of different audio devices' jacks. If you come to know that the jack has the problem, it's now easy to fix the problem. You may need to change the circuit cable or to move the audio device into a suitable place.

However, if you find that your jack is alright but not your audio device, it's complicated and expensive to fix the problem. Most of the time you may change the motherboard of the PC.

Unknown Sources

If all the steps as mentioned earlier are done, but the problem isn't fixed yet, you may try other technique. At first, you need an HDMI cable enriched with ferrite noise filter which can block spurious current. It creates a sound on the fault end for both at the audio device or at the speakers. Once the issue is found, fix it. 

You may also use a less resistive wire than HDMI cable. Usually, electricity follows the path of less resistance. So, current will run down to the ground wire instead of going to the cable’s shield. If everything is alright, the sound will play precisely.

Final Remarks

Though ground loop creates many problems for listening sound, it can be fixed quickly and quickly. Breaking the ground loop is not only a standard but also a dangerous practice. Never cut the ground wire with your equipment. It can electrify you unless you are ready. However, following the steps as mentioned above may bring the good result to fix ground loop hum efficiently.

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