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Thread: Terrible static noise on SP13000 (internal audio)

  1. #1
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    Terrible static noise on SP13000 (internal audio)

    Finally got my carpc put together and thought I'd give the built-in internal audio a try first. What a disaster. I took all the precautions, such as: Keeping the power cables seperated from the signal wires, and using a common ground for the carpc and amp and also minimizing the length of the wires.

    I could live with a little noise, but this is huge! Whenever the hard drive is accessed, I can hear extra noise. If I run the GPS software, the data transmitted in bursts from the GPS unit can be heard. And I also get alternator noise too.

    Tests performed:
    1) Unplugging the RCA cables off from the amp and everything is silent and not even a hint of noise. This suggests that I don't have a ground looping problem.

    2) Unplugged the stereo mini jacks from the back of the SP13000 motherboard and everything is quiet (as expected). I took out my trusty notebook and inserted one of the stereo mini jacks into it and the sound is perfect. No Hard drive noise, GPS noise, or alternator noise.

    Since I reused the same RCA signal wire from the SP13000 and notebook, this rules out a signaling cabling problem.

    The notebook is powered by its battery and is essentially ground isolated, so that could be another reason why it sounds better.

    If I were to purchase an Audigy 2 NX would this solve my problem? I already wasted money on a preamp hoping it would solve the noise problem but it didn't.

    Suggestions welcomed.

  2. #2
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    I have the same problem in my car pc, Shuttle Xpc. I have tried almost everything, only thing that helped a little was hooking up the inverter to the bat directly, and installing an audigy. the audigy helped very little, but it helped. I am currently testing with higher level audigy now, ill post results

  3. #3
    Low Bitrate I302K's Avatar
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    try stooping by radio shack and picking up ground loop isolator i did the same test unplugged everything and no sound but they do help and work great

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    Thanks for the tip. I ordered some ground loop isolators from ebay.

  5. #5
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    Could also be noise on the DC in line. I added a DC filter to my set-up which helped alot. http://www.crutchfield.com/S-85bExkN....asp?I=003S15A

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    the filters will make your audio sound muffled IMO.

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    I think you're right as far as the ground loop filters are concerned since they're in the audio signal path, but the DC filter is between the battery & the PC. Don't see how that could effect sound quality. But I could be wrong, I'm definitely NOT an audio engineer! And it got rid of some terrible alternator whine so it sounds way better than it did before. ;-)

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    What if I skip the inverter entirely and go to a DC-DC power supply, will this fix my problem, or just give me a new one?

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    Thumbs up

    Update: I purchased two PAC SN1 ground loop isolators and the improvement are unbelieveable. No more static noise, and I can't even hear the hard drive noise either. My GPS wasn't working inside a garage so no info on that, but I didn't hear any noises from there either. I'll check for alternator noise later, but I'm pretty sure it'll be gone too.

    The PAC SN1 isn't your typical 1:1 ratio transformer. It boosts the input signal, so it's important you hook up the input to the input, and the output to the output. Unfortunately the male/female RCA jacks are completely backwards for me. This meant adding in another 10 feet of RCA cable that I had lying around and also adding another RCA adaptor. I'm so happy with the results so far. I purchased an USB soundblaster live 24bit external that I haven't even hooked up yet, now I'm wondering if I should even bother.

    PAC SN1: product info located here:
    http://www.pac-audio.com/products/pr...oise%20Filters

    I highly recommend these PAC SN1 ground loop isolators as they boost our already low voltage signal to a higher voltage signal by 1.3db.

  10. #10
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    Now that I switched over to an USB soundblaster live 24, here's what I noticed:
    [1] a large cracking pop when the sound card gets initialized, boo. My internal sound card gets initialized sooner and worked fine with the builtin 20 second amp turn on delay (Opus 120w).
    [2] the music is mucher louder even after reducing the master/wave volume level back to same level as the internal motherboard. This is no surprise.
    [3] front/rear speakers now work with road runner. With the internal audio, I couldn't get the rear speakers to work with road runner, but with it worked fine under the vinyl software test.
    [4] I can now make use of my wintv/fm tuner, as it requires a line in. The internal audio vinyl software only allows 2 or 6 speaker mode, so this was a dilema. I'm running the latest vinyl software from viaarena so this is frustrating.
    [5] Both the internal and external sound devices work fine with hibernation. Original volume levels are retained.
    [6] Warning, if you move your USB sound card to another USB port your volume levels will be reset to a high volume level. You have to re-adjust the volume again.

    I'm gonna look into having my serial port (DTR) to turn on my amp instead to avoid listening to a pop initialization noise.

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