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FDP Forum / Home Recording Forum / Proximity to computer and single coil hum

Rob Jai

Calif Cap City

"Jai" pronounced "J"
Mar 5th, 2016 12:53 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Here's my problem. I want to record in GarageBand using an Apogee One as my interface. The idea is to play through an amp using the mic capabilities of the Apogee to record sound from the amp.

The problem is that in order to use GarageBand I have to sit next to the computer resulting in pronounced single coil hum.

Turning this way or that will lessen it or even eliminate it but when turned away from the computer I lose my ability to work the keyboard etc.

I want to record with a specific guitar and get specific tones from my amp so changing to a humbucker guitar is not really an option.

Is there a way to eliminate the computer induced buzz/hum or is this just not a viable way to record?

littleuch
Contributing Member
**********
****

Subtropical Florida

Mar 6th, 2016 02:05 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have no particular solution but just to bump this, do you have an old monitor? I had this issue back in the day but not with my current laptop. Of course I have filthy electrical issues in my condo, but it's not monitor related. I always dealt with it by finding that one position to sit in.

Some other options, probably not feasible. Have someone assist the pc operation while sitting farther away. Noiseless pickups. Guitar cavity shielding. Faraday cage :-p





Rob Jai

Calif Cap City

"Jai" pronounced "J"
Mar 6th, 2016 09:12 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

No, actually a brand new iMac but I sit literally 3 feet from it while playing. i'm sure that a lot of the problem is due to the wiring in my 50+ year old house.

I do seriously need to look into shielding my Jaguar though. It was buzzing pretty loud at the last live gig that I played also so it's not just a recording problem.

I can always fall back on my Gibson 339. It is totally quiet - just doesn't give me the Fendery tone that I like to hear from my Jag and/or Strat.

60 cycle hum is just a fact of life I guess and there may be no real solution.

Achase4u

U.S. - Virginia

Mar 6th, 2016 09:58 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have a brutal time with this in my house that was built by country folk in 54. I have the same thing. With the computer on, I have lots of noise. I have to find a small area to face where its nulled. It's usually two spots, 180 degrees from each other.

There is a reason studios have special electricians wire their buildings. Power conditioners may help but there are large issues at play...

Achase4u

U.S. - Virginia

Mar 6th, 2016 09:58 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have a brutal time with this in my house that was built by country folk in 54. I have the same thing. With the computer on, I have lots of noise. I have to find a small area to face where its nulled. It's usually two spots, 180 degrees from each other.

There is a reason studios have special electricians wire their buildings. Power conditioners may help but there are large issues at play...

Roly
Contributing Member
**********
*********

Whitehorse Canada

I don't get out much
Mar 6th, 2016 11:47 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Is your video monitor CRT?
Does shutting it off solve the problem?
If not...shut off your nearfields and listen to your guitar through the Mac headphone out.
Does that fix it?

Juice Nichols
Contributing Member
******

Panama City, FL

Same ol **** but my hair's longer
Mar 7th, 2016 01:36 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

If you have an iPad, download the iPad control interface for Logic (free). It will also control Garage Band and that will allow you to move away from your computer and still control the transport funtions.

Rob Jai

Calif Cap City

"Jai" pronounced "J"
Mar 7th, 2016 02:30 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

So, after trying some of your suggestions I have figured out that the buzzing is NOT caused by being close to my computer. I shut the computer down completely and there was no difference. Looks like this is just typical 60 cycle hum and can only be solved by finding that sweet spot where it goes away.

I DO have an iPad and will check out the Logic control app. That will at least give me a chance to move to a quiet spot and still have functionality.

Thanks for all of the input.

Roly
Contributing Member
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Whitehorse Canada

I don't get out much
Mar 7th, 2016 11:14 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi Rob

"I shut the computer down completely and there was no difference"

Now I'm confused....how are you monitoring yourself?

Rob Jai

Calif Cap City

"Jai" pronounced "J"
Mar 8th, 2016 01:14 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Roly - sorry for the confusion. I didn't mean shut down the computer and then tried to record. I just shut it down to see if the guitar was still buzzing without a computer being on next to it. Initially I was thinking that the computer was the source of the noise. Turns out it wasn't.

Achase4u

U.S. - Virginia

Mar 9th, 2016 04:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

That is a good sign that the comp doesnt cause it. Mine most definitely does. Hmmm.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
Mar 27th, 2016 07:54 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Power conditioners and ferrite beads on power cables help keep things quiet by blocking radio frequency (RF) interference from the AC power line. But that's only half the battle.

Shielding a guitar protects against ambient RF, but it won't block electromagnetic interference (EMI).

Anything that's motorized or that has a power transformer will throw EMI and/or RF into the surrounding environment.

A few examples of these 'noise generators' are

- Lighting dimmer switches
- Ceiling fans
- Fluorescent lights
- Refrigerators
- TVs
- Computers
- Guitar amps
- Outboard gear with step-down transformers

You have to consider not only about what's in the room with you, but also what's behind walls in adjacent rooms--as well as what's in the rooms above and below you.

Example: if you're in an apartment and the apartment's room below you has a ceiling fan, that motor is probably less than 10' from your guitar.

How you run your cables also matters. Shorter signal cables (guitar cables, etc.) are quieter than longer cables because shorter cables have less 'antenna effect'.

Keep your signal cables as far as possible from power cables. If you have to cross a signal cable over a power cable, make them cross at 90 degrees to one another. This reduces induced noise in the signal.


ECS-3
Contributing Member
**********

USA / Virginia

Mar 30th, 2016 05:26 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

If Garage Band has a "noise gate", try using that. You will have to fool around with the settings to get something that works, depending on the level of hum, background noise, etc.

I use a noise gate when I'm recording my old Hammond organ thru a Leslie because when you run a Leslie on fast you can hear the wind noise. But a noise gate will cut it out (at least when I'm not playing notes on the organ).

Coral Head

Sunshine State

Groupies needed
Apr 22nd, 2016 05:29 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

When I record guitar, I start the recording process early enough that I can step away and rotate to the null point before playing. When the part is finished, I stand there a few seconds until the notes have faded away, the return to the computer and stop the tracking. Then it's just a matter of cutting away the noisy bits before and after the important part. With digital recording, you can allow as much lead in and fade out as you need and then edit the extra away later. You can also add a noise gate plug-in to kill any sound while you are not actually playing.

heynorm

Omaha, USA

Apr 26th, 2016 07:07 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I just use the noise reduction in Adobe Audition for things like hum and HVAC fan noise. Sample a section where you're not playing and clean the whole file. Most of the time it works quite well. If it's really noisy the cleaned up file ends up sounding like it came from outer space, so it doesn't work every time. When recording direct with my Tele it's finding the right angle in which to stand in relation to the PC and/or old CRT monitor that I'll use until it finally burns up. the monitor, that is.

FDP Forum / Home Recording Forum / Proximity to computer and single coil hum




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