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Speakers started randomly popping

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  • Sound Cards
  • Speakers
  • Components
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December 5, 2011 4:46:11 PM

EDIT: Update #2

Today I was present when the longest duration of the noise happened. Had to chance to test most fans. Stopping PSU fan or changing GPU fan speed made no difference. Tested rear and top case fans - no difference.

And, once again, the onboard mic didn't pick it up. Neither did I hear it from the speakers (which are connected to the onboard).

Still need to test front fans and CPU fan. When I stopped CPU fan it was when the noise stopped. With such a duration of the noise I could and should've tested all the fans, but I wasn't ready when it started.

If you want to hear:

http://soundcloud.com/asclepius123/popping-noise-new-record#

EDIT: Update #1

Well it came back again roughly at the same hour today... Left it playing music all day and no problems until now.

I had cleaned everything, re-seated sound card, re-plugged all audio connections.

I had a chance to do some tests before it decided to go away:

1. Seems like only the front speakers (closer to PC + electrical connections) produce the noise.

2. Even though the Microphone recording source is detecting the noise it doesn't mean the speakers will reproduce it as well. It seems to take some time before they do, or they don't at all.

3. Even with the subwoofer power disconnected and any audio connection between speakers and PC unplugged the popping persisted. This I confirmed by letting the audio recording the "microphone" (I say "microphone" with "" because there was no microphone plugged in.
It still captures noise though, mainly electrical. I did however notice that the noise from me tapping against the PC case was being recorded even with no microphone plugged in! How does that work?

Needless to say I think it's safe to say it's not the speakers at fault, but either inside the PC or electrical. Though the complete randomness of it still leaves me scratching my head on what is causing the noise and why it's making it. Anyway here's yet another recording: http://soundcloud.com/asclepius123/random-popping-again

Out of curiosity I've tried switching some lights on and off in some divisions of my house while I left my PC recording the electrical static and noticed each time I turned them on/off a single vertical spike corresponding to a faint popping sound appeared in the recording.

-/ /-

Original Post:

Just recently my Logitech G51 speakers, which I have been using without any issues since mid-2009, have started making completely random popping noises.

The first time it happened I wasn't doing anything in particular, just reading a website (not listening to music or gaming etc).

It started very briefly with just two 2-second instances of popping in a single day.

Two days later it seems to have gotten worse. Today I had three 30 second instances of sequential popping, no matter the volume or the type of sound that was playing. It started while I was playing a game at the time, but even after I closed it I had two more instances. It seems to be just the front speakers, but I didn't really paid attention at the time.

At the time this was happening I noticed in my Sound Settings that Microphone FP reported as capturing sound, even though I have no front port microphone, just a regular Microphone plugged to the G51 control pod.

The FP Microphone reported as capturing sound for a couple of seconds before and after the popping noises.

I had it disabled, but even then the popping persisted.

All recording sources apparently captured the noise even with the speakers muted. Here is a sample:

http://soundcloud.com/asclepius123/random-popping-noise#

Right now I'm listening to music and didn't have another popping episode... yet.

Anyone know what could be the source of this? Does the G51 also suffer from poor shielding issues?

I have my monitor + Corsair HX1000 PSU connected to an APC SmartUPS 1500. The UPS is connected to a surge protector, along with an external HDD, the router and the speaker system. The router is an ASUS DSL-N13 and its power AC adapter failed after 2 years of use about 3 months ago, but the replacement has been working fine since then. I wonder if the surge protector needs replacing or if I should call my electrical company?

From my sound sample do you think you can you determine the nature of the source (external interference, house electrical interference, PC interference, soundcard interference)?

My soundcard is an Auzentech X-Fi Forte with latest drivers (9th September 2011). On Vista x64 SP2.

Thanks

More about : speakers started randomly popping

December 5, 2011 5:01:50 PM

Asclepius89 said:
I have my monitor + Corsair HX1000 PSU connected to an APC SmartUPS 1500. The UPS is connected to a surge protector, along with an external HDD, the router and the speaker system. The router is an ASUS DSL-N13 and its power AC adapter failed after 2 years of use about 3 months ago, but the replacement has been working fine since then. I wonder if the surge protector needs replacing or if I should call my electrical company?

Thanks


First before I start - it is not reccomended to use your UPS - connected to a surge protector. The UPS has built in surge protection features - so having your computer connected to the UPS which is connected to the surge protector is creating unneccessary electrical resistance which can cause problems. So take out that surge protector and plug your UPS directly into the wall.

Now as for your speakers - hmm thats had to say. Do you have an extra PCIE/PCI slot you can try your sound card in?

I've seen problems where one PCI port gave noise/popping/static in one PCI slot whereas the slot next to it would give 0 issues.

Make sure none of your speakers or sub (if you have one) are on carpet - this can cause "popping" due to static.

One more thing - if none of these work - do you have a spare set of speakers to try out? If a different set works fine - maybe your speakers are going.
December 5, 2011 5:22:34 PM

plugged in tightly in the back of the tower ?........... anyways, I had a pair of logitech's. 2 days after the warranty expired they died. short life span. never purchased another set. have other brands that lasted for years. hope you find your answer.
December 5, 2011 5:37:06 PM

Quote:
All recording sources apparently captured the noise even with the speakers muted. Here is a sample:


Means is not the speakers, but the underlying hardware/software.

Quote:
The FP Microphone reported as capturing sound for a couple of seconds before and after the popping noises.


Just for kicks, try removing the microphone from the G51 control pod. A mic turning on and off can create that type of sound you are hearing.

Also, you might want to disable the front microphone port if you are not using it, just to make sure nothing comes out of it. You could be seeing a case of EMI being picked up by the soundcard...
December 5, 2011 6:50:56 PM

Chainzsaw said:
1. First before I start - it is not reccomended to use your UPS - connected to a surge protector. The UPS has built in surge protection features - so having your computer connected to the UPS which is connected to the surge protector is creating unneccessary electrical resistance which can cause problems. So take out that surge protector and plug your UPS directly into the wall.

2. Now as for your speakers - hmm thats had to say. Do you have an extra PCIE/PCI slot you can try your sound card in?

I've seen problems where one PCI port gave noise/popping/static in one PCI slot whereas the slot next to it would give 0 issues.

3. Make sure none of your speakers or sub (if you have one) are on carpet - this can cause "popping" due to static.

4. One more thing - if none of these work - do you have a spare set of speakers to try out? If a different set works fine - maybe your speakers are going.


1. The problem is I only have one wall outlet nearby, so I'm forced to have the UPS connected to at least a strip. It has been like this for 5 years now and didn't have any problems besides this. Unless perhaps I connect a power strip like this to the UPS and everything else into it? But as I said I never had my UPS go into battery mode at random or such.

2. It's on the lowest PCI slot so it's as far away from the graphics card as possible. I might try plugging it into the one above though.

3. Not on carpet, just tiling, but it's somewhat dusty. That could possibly cause the same issue? I'll be vacuuming it today.

4. I might have a Logitech 2.0 set, yeah. I just hope the popping either goes away for good or becomes less random so I can test it with more certainty.

gamerk316 said:
Quote:
All recording sources apparently captured the noise even with the speakers muted. Here is a sample:


Means is not the speakers, but the underlying hardware/software.

Quote:
The FP Microphone reported as capturing sound for a couple of seconds before and after the popping noises.


Just for kicks, try removing the microphone from the G51 control pod. A mic turning on and off can create that type of sound you are hearing.

Also, you might want to disable the front microphone port if you are not using it, just to make sure nothing comes out of it. You could be seeing a case of EMI being picked up by the soundcard...


I did remove the microphone and disable FP while the noise was happening, but it didn't stop.

swifty_morgan said:
plugged in tightly in the back of the tower ?........... anyways, I had a pair of logitech's. 2 days after the warranty expired they died. short life span. never purchased another set. have other brands that lasted for years. hope you find your answer.


Yes, I'll re-connect and re-tight it just in case though.

Thanks, let's hope I solve this mystery... This thing is so random I thought I was being contacted by aliens or my room is haunted :sweat: 
December 6, 2011 3:51:24 AM

Well it came back again roughly at the same hour today... Left it playing music all day and no problems until now.

I had cleaned everything, re-seated sound card, re-plugged all audio connections.

I had a chance to do some tests before it decided to go away:

1. Seems like only the front speakers (closer to PC + electrical connections) produce the noise.

2. Even though the Microphone recording source is detecting the noise it doesn't mean the speakers will reproduce it as well. It seems to take some time before they do, or they don't at all.

3. Even with the subwoofer power disconnected and any audio connection between speakers and PC unplugged the popping persisted. This I confirmed by letting the audio recording the "microphone" (I say "microphone" with "" because there was no microphone plugged in.
It still captures noise though, mainly electrical. I did however notice that the noise from me tapping against the PC case was being recorded even with no microphone plugged in! How does that work?

Needless to say I think it's safe to say it's not the speakers at fault, but either inside the PC or electrical. Though the complete randomness of it still leaves me scratching my head on what is causing the noise and why it's making it. Anyway here's yet another recording: http://soundcloud.com/asclepius123/random-popping-again

Out of curiosity I've tried switching some lights on and off in some divisions of my house while I left my PC recording the electrical static and noticed each time I turned them on/off a single vertical spike corresponding to a faint popping sound appeared in the recording.
December 6, 2011 11:33:56 AM

Whats bothering me is if the FP Mic is disabled [which you can do via the control panel], you shouldn't see it picking up any audio signals...
December 6, 2011 12:16:47 PM

gamerk316 said:
Whats bothering me is if the FP Mic is disabled [which you can do via the control panel], you shouldn't see it picking up any audio signals...


Yeah, what I meant is that even though I have no FP Mic it was picking up audio signals. I had it enabled in control panel.

When the popping isn't present though if I try recording with FP Mic with it enabled it's 100% silent. If I try recording with Mic (even with none plugged in) it records electrical noise.
December 6, 2011 1:46:14 PM

Yeah, this is sounding like its an electrical issue, and sadly, there isn't much you can do...
December 6, 2011 11:43:46 PM

Could it also be a worn fan bearing, specifically the PSU? My PSU's fan has been squeaking now and then... But I really haven't seen a connection between that and this noise yet (never heard both at same time).

This happening in the middle of music listening, reading or playing is really becoming a headache.
Hope it goes away by itself if I don't find what's causing it or I'll have to call the Ghostbusters...

Here's a 3rd recording, if it even helps at all :(  : http://soundcloud.com/asclepius123/random-popping-yet-a...
December 9, 2011 5:11:12 AM

Update #2

Today I was present when the longest duration of the noise happened. Had to chance to test most fans. Stopping PSU fan or changing GPU fan speed made no difference. Tested rear and top case fans - no difference.

I've enabled the onboard audio this time as well.
The onboard mic didn't pick it up. Neither did I hear it from the speakers (which are connected to the onboard).

Still need to test front fans and CPU fan. When I stopped CPU fan it was when the noise stopped. With such a duration of the noise I could and should've tested all the fans, but I wasn't ready when it started.

If you want to hear:

http://soundcloud.com/asclepius123/popping-noise-new-record#
!