Connect with us

Unidentifiable radio interference on vintage audio (listen!)

Discussion in 'Troubleshooting and Repair' started by waterboard, Dec 18, 2016.

Scroll to continue with content
  1. waterboard

    waterboard

    5
    0
    Dec 18, 2016
    Hi I've looked for assistance on this on AudioKarma but am still stumped. Hope someone here can help!

    Out of nowhere I've recently started hearing a high pitched noise in all channels in my audio receivers and anmp, sounding a bit like Cell Phone interference of yore ... a faint squealing noise a bit like a dot matrix printer. I've subsequently plugged in various solid state receivers including a Marantz 2230, Marantz 3330 + 140 preamp/amp, Pioneer SX 780 and an EICO HF-81 tube amp through different speakers, different power outlets and different rooms and am getting the same noises through all in varying degrees. The sound increases with turning up the volume, and listening in the preamp stages. I have a Sonos system running as well but do not hear the sound in these speakers (I've also disconnected this system to determine if it was causing the issue)

    I recorded the sound at a loud volume through the phono stage here

    LISTEN:https://www.dropbox.com/s/21uk4b2jc4...rence.m4a?dl=0

    Cleaned the pots/connections as advised, no luck.

    I've disconnected wi-fi routers, power strips and any lights that might be causing this but the problem persists. I live in an apartment building in NY. The problem started a few days ago and my neighbor has cited a strange noise in his clock radio - not sure if there's a relation. There are also somewhat new cell towers in the neighborhood but I can't imagine these are the issue.

    Any other ideas to help diagnose?
     
  2. davenn

    davenn Moderator

    13,866
    1,958
    Sep 5, 2009
    does should very much like the cellphone interference I have heard on occasions in my car stereo

    you shouldn't hear it unless the cellphone is close to the sound system
    it's more likely from a cell handset rather than from a local cell tower
     
  3. shrtrnd

    shrtrnd

    3,824
    519
    Jan 15, 2010
    I agree with davenn, sounds like RF problem.
    I will mention however that I've seen similar problems with something riding on the power-line.
    Do you know if anybody recently installed some kind of motor or something that could generate that high-pitched squeal directly on a power-line that could be connected to your incoming power source?
    Is this continuous, or occasional interference? As in, could this be something someone is introducing once in a
    while, or do you have this problem all of the time?
     
  4. waterboard

    waterboard

    5
    0
    Dec 18, 2016
    @shrtrnd , yes it's pretty consistent throughout the day. Though as you can hear, it's not steady
     
  5. shrtrnd

    shrtrnd

    3,824
    519
    Jan 15, 2010
    You said you're in NY. My guess is that one of your neighbors is running something (continuously) that is causing
    this. What I would do, is file a complaint with the US Federal Communications Commission. It may be a long time
    in coming, and a lot of their work revolves around the number of complaints in a specific area; but it's their job to
    investigate complaints.
    You can't be the only one who is experiencing this problem, and I'd file the complaint (and encourage anybody
    else in your apartment building to do the same). Something is generating this interference and it will continue
    until the source is unplugged.
    That's my advice. I don't think you're going to find some commercial off-the-shelf filter that is going to stop it.
    Good luck.
     
  6. waterboard

    waterboard

    5
    0
    Dec 18, 2016
    Hi there, I reached out to the FCC, however they cannot help with my consumer electronics: To the extent that the interference is caused by a design defect with your consumer electronics equipment, you might want to contact the manufacturers of the affected devices and request an appropriate shield and/or filtering device.

    I sense that this is an electrical issue. I've installed shielded speaker cables and interconnects, as well as an isolating power strip and have had no luck with this issue. Does anyone believe installing a dedicated circuit in my apartment would cure this?

    Reattaching a recording of the sound: https://www.dropbox.com/s/21uk4b2jc4kirxh/Interference.m4a?dl=0

    I should note along with the intermittent noise on all channels (on different receivers), I am also hearing a high pitched whine on the phono stage.
     
  7. Alec_t

    Alec_t

    2,969
    804
    Jul 7, 2015
    Do any of your neighbours have a cannabis farm, requiring high-power grow lights, powered by switch-mode supplies? :) :)
     
  8. shrtrnd

    shrtrnd

    3,824
    519
    Jan 15, 2010
    I don't know what your conversation with FCC involved, but somehow they've determined that one of your devices
    is the source of the problem, and not outside RF interference? Apparently you brought some electronics to NY
    with you, that is not compliant with US emission codes?
     
  9. waterboard

    waterboard

    5
    0
    Dec 18, 2016
    Sorry, I mistyped. This is an issue that just started occurring a few weeks ago on a number of receivers I've had in good working condition for years in this apartment. It's a bit random so I'm guessing someone in the another apartment in the building installed something that is causing the RF interference. I've actually just tried a few receivers in different rooms on different breakers and the issue persists.

    Instead of tracking down an errant smart home device or grow lights ;) , I'm happy to look into a dedicated circuit. I'm just wondering if that will solve this.
     
  10. davenn

    davenn Moderator

    13,866
    1,958
    Sep 5, 2009
    what did you mis-type ??

    the FCC said it was likely a device you owned

    if you are in NY, why is your location shown as Uganda ?

    not likely .... find the device causing the probs is the best way
     
  11. waterboard

    waterboard

    5
    0
    Dec 18, 2016
    Hi @davenn , I think the FCC is attributing the issue to my equipment, not the cell phone towers or interference in the circuitry of my building. However, this is a relatively recent problem I'm having on all my vintage stereo equipment that I have been using without issue for years.

    I've now gone to lengths to disconnect every powered device in my unit to see if anything I have plugged in is causing the issue. Going door to door to see what the neighbors have plugged in will be impossible (we're talking New York City here!) so I am looking a solution other than ditching all the equipment I have spent years and money fine tuning!

    ... And location corrected, the interference must be getting to my head!!
     
  12. 73's de Edd

    73's de Edd

    3,121
    1,315
    Aug 21, 2015
    Sir waterboard . . . . . . .

    Do you have a smaller battery powered portable AM and FM radio receiver . . .particularly for the AM aspect.
    And can you try it, with its volume set to max and OFF of any received station and then turn around its physical orientation into all 6 possibilities . . . while trying to pick up that signal.
    If so . . . . I now think that we can get you ever closer to tracking down that interference signal.

    73's de Edd
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2017
Ask a Question
Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?
You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.
Electronics Point Logo
Continue to site
Quote of the day

-