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speaker hiss

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Anonymous
January 20, 2005 7:22:08 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
time.

More about : speaker hiss

January 21, 2005 3:35:40 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

DOA wrote:
> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max.
> Then I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that
> normal on all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the
> speaker wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just
> turining the volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem?
> thanks for your time.

It is normal to hear some hiss or even hum from speakers, when you go very
close. As long as you don't hear anything at the listening position. When
you move so close to the dome tweeter, the Sound Pressure is 64 times as
high (+36dB). If the gain control is set to the loudest position where you
hear music, and the loudest levels at your listening position is 90dB SPL,
then the noise of the amplifier is usually just noticable in silence. It
will be masked anyway with music playing, so this is the maximal allowable
hiss.
--
ciao Ban
Bordighera, Italy
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 3:36:07 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

DOA wrote:
> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
> I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
> all speakers?

It's not the speakers, it's the amplifier that is the source of the
hiss. Speakers are not capable of producing sound on their own.

Obviously, I realise that the hiss is *emanating* from the speakers, but
they are just reproducing the signal from the amplifier.

Yes, it is normal. All electronic equipment has some level of noise
inherent in it - passing a "clean" current through a resistor adds
noise. Well-designed equipment has less noise than average, but it's
still there.

Your amplifier has some electronics "upstream" from the volume control,
and if you have e.g. an idle CD player connected and selected, that will
also be contributing. The noise from that circuitry will be amplified as
you turn the knob up - that is what you are hearing. If you were
actually playing music at full volume, you wouldn't hear the hiss...

> Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
> wire?

Ho ho. Please don't ask that question in most shops, or you'll come away
much poorer, to no benefit. Let me re-iterate - the noise is coming from
the amplifier.

> Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
> volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
> time.

No problem. Different equipment (I'm talking boxes with knobs, not
speakers or cables) may give you more or less hiss, but unless it's
obstrusive and noticeable in normal listening, I wouldn't worry about it.

--
Mark.
http://tranchant.plus.com/
Related resources
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 3:39:12 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Relax. All electronic devices make some noise and, as long as it
cannot be heard at the listening position, it is probably normal. It
ain't the speakers, btw.

Kal


On 20 Jan 2005 04:22:08 GMT, "DOA" <doa411@hotmail.com> wrote:

>When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
>a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
>inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
>I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
>all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
>wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
>volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
>time.
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 3:39:25 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

No problems. Most amplifiers will have some residual noise. Connectors
won't help.
-Bill
www.uptownaudio.com
Roanoke VA
(540) 343-1250

"DOA" <doa411@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:csnblg0b79@news4.newsguy.com...
> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can
> hear
> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max.
> Then
> I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal
> on
> all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
> wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining
> the
> volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
> time.
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 4:06:15 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

DOA wrote:
> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
> I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
> all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
> wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
> volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
> time.
It's not the speakers that are causing that, it's the amplifier. You're
hearing the switiching distortion associated with Class A-B amplifiers.
The switiching distortion is usually very small when compared to the
audio signal. If you had a Class A amplifier connected to your speakers
you would here nothing at all, even at full volume. Class A design
virtually eliminates switching distortion. The drawback to class A is
that amps of that design consume alot of power and generate alot of heat.

Nothing to worry about. It's normal.

CD
January 21, 2005 10:16:01 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Codifus wrote:
> DOA wrote:
>> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
>> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
>> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
>> I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
>> all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
>> wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
>> volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
>> time.
> It's not the speakers that are causing that, it's the amplifier. You're
> hearing the switiching distortion associated with Class A-B amplifiers.
> The switiching distortion is usually very small when compared to the
> audio signal. If you had a Class A amplifier connected to your speakers
> you would here nothing at all, even at full volume. Class A design
> virtually eliminates switching distortion. The drawback to class A is
> that amps of that design consume alot of power and generate alot of heat.
>
> Nothing to worry about. It's normal.
>
> CD

No, it is not switching distortion that you are hearing! It is
definitely not an issue of whether it is a class A or class AB amp.

If the hiss level changes with the volume control, then the majority of
the noise is coming from electronics prior to the volume control: the
preamp buffers, and sources such as CD players, phono preamps, etc. If
the hiss goes away when the volume control is at low settings, then the
noise is most likely not coming from the power amp. The OP can find out
more about the noise origin by selecting different sources, or by
shorting inputs to ground. Or by disconnecting the preamp from the power
amp. If he can provide information on the power amp and the preamp, it
might help. By the way, the hiss is louder if the speakers have higher
sensitivity. But if the noise cannot be heard at the listening position,
at normal listening levels, then it should not be a problem.
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 10:23:10 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Great! thank you for all your replies. Just paranoid I wired my living
room myself. I installed good quality monster cable. through the walls
in the area. So now there is no going back. (well there is but I'm not
going to do it) Still buying more speakers to complete a home theater.
I bought stuff of of ebay ..from reputable people but then again I'm
just being paranoid.
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 10:32:29 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

i didn't see what kind of equipment you have for your system. being a
poor boy i've had to try to satisfy my champagne appetite with my beer
budget. what i did is buy pre-owned klipschorns which most here will
tell you are very efficient loudspeakers and will pretty much show up
any flaws you have in a system. the problem i encountered immediately
was the amount of hiss i got from the lesser quality reciever i was
trying to use. i hate background hiss and noise. after shopping around
i found some integrated components that filled my need. bought at
crutchfield they are proton integrated amplifier and tuner.
unfortunately the amplifier developed an annoying habit of dropping out
the right channel after a couple hours continuous use. i bought
another of the same model and after about a year's use it developed the
same problem, finally getting to the point where it would drop out
after only an hour or so. the only thing i could say for the unit is
it was nice and quiet compared to what i had before. i knew it was
time to look for another amp, however.

after asking around and doing some research i settled on an NAD
c320bee. the klipschorns dont need much power to drive them. the
amplifier is rated at 50 w.p.c. and i rarely get to crank the volume
control past the 1st or 2nd notch. best of all i dont hear any hiss
from them unless the volume is all the way up and i'm putting my ear to
the tweeter. so now i'm still using the proton tuner, no pre-amp, a
sony tape deck and a pioneer cd player. audiophile quality? hardly
but i've been told the system sounds better than any that my friends
have. and it does the trick for me.
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 11:08:15 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

On 21 Jan 2005 01:06:15 GMT, Codifus <codifus@optonline.net> wrote:

>DOA wrote:
>> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
>> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
>> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
>> I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
>> all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
>> wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
>> volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
>> time.
>It's not the speakers that are causing that, it's the amplifier. You're
>hearing the switiching distortion associated with Class A-B amplifiers.

No. Class AB output transistors remain on with low amplitude signals.
Switching only occurs with loud signals (How loud depend on the
biasing of the output stage)

Also, this is noise, not distortion.

The noise that is heard is the sum of all noise sources in the signal
chain. The reason it becomes louder when the volume goes up is that by
doing that the noise before the volume control stage dominates. The
noise when the volume is fully off is primarily from the power amp,
but also some from the pre-amp output stage.

The source of the noise likely mostly thermal and shot noise.

Obviously as long as you must be within 5 cm from the speakers to hear
it it is not a problem.

Wires are definetly a red herring.

>The switiching distortion is usually very small when compared to the
>audio signal. If you had a Class A amplifier connected to your speakers
>you would here nothing at all, even at full volume. Class A design
>virtually eliminates switching distortion. The drawback to class A is
>that amps of that design consume alot of power and generate alot of heat.

Actually if the noise is primarily thermal noise it will increase if
the device is hotter. Not that a class A design is neccecarily hotter
than a comparable AB design, it just generates more heat as you say.
(Those that are confused by this need to review their thermodynamics
:-)

>
>Nothing to worry about. It's normal.

Agreed.

>
>CD

--
They both savoured the strange warm glow of being much more ignorant
than ordinary people, who were only ignorant of ordinary things.
-- Discworld scientists at work (Terry Pratchett, Equal Rites)
Anonymous
January 22, 2005 7:23:11 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Well to answer some of previous questions about what I own. I don't
have a high end reciever. I have your run of the mill under 300 dollar
Sony Reciever STRDE695. My Speakers on the other hand are from Gallo
Acoustics. I own 2 Nucleus micros that I'm going to use as surround
speakers. I been running them in two channel mode just to see how they
sound with the MPS150 subwoofer that I purchased as well. And they
sound well matched with that combination. I own some old bose Speakers
which I am in the process of getting rid of and I thinking of buying
more Gallo Acoustic speakers. Thats when I began hearing the speaker
hiss I didn't notice it on my old Bose speakers and with my parnoia of
buying these Gallo speakers off of ebay set in and I thought something
was wrong. But after futher investigation in last couple of days I
noticed the bose speakers make a simular sound as well. But do agree
with everything that has been discussed on this topic. I plan on buying
more Gallo Acoustic speakers. I don't know about buying more Gallo
satellite speakers but I do like there product they call the Due and I
really like there Reference 3 speakers. I'll have to think about all of
it still I guess after all of this I would probably need a new Reciever
as well. Thank you for all the responses.
Anonymous
January 23, 2005 7:14:14 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

DOA wrote:

> I own some old bose Speakers which I am in the process of getting rid
> of and I thinking of buying more Gallo Acoustic speakers. Thats when
> I began hearing the speaker hiss I didn't notice it on my old Bose
> speakers and with my parnoia of buying these Gallo speakers off of
> ebay set in and I thought something was wrong.

Well, hiss is mostly high frequency energy, and you know the old saying,

"No highs, no lows, must be BOSEĀ®!" <G>
Anonymous
January 25, 2005 3:22:43 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Chung wrote:
> Codifus wrote:
>
>> DOA wrote:
>>
>>> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
>>> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
>>> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
>>> I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
>>> all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
>>> wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
>>> volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
>>> time.
>>
>> It's not the speakers that are causing that, it's the amplifier.
>> You're hearing the switiching distortion associated with Class A-B
>> amplifiers. The switiching distortion is usually very small when
>> compared to the audio signal. If you had a Class A amplifier connected
>> to your speakers you would here nothing at all, even at full volume.
>> Class A design virtually eliminates switching distortion. The
>> drawback to class A is that amps of that design consume alot of power
>> and generate alot of heat.
>>
>> Nothing to worry about. It's normal.
>>
>> CD
>
>
> No, it is not switching distortion that you are hearing! It is
> definitely not an issue of whether it is a class A or class AB amp.
>
> If the hiss level changes with the volume control, then the majority of
> the noise is coming from electronics prior to the volume control: the
> preamp buffers, and sources such as CD players, phono preamps, etc. If
> the hiss goes away when the volume control is at low settings, then the
> noise is most likely not coming from the power amp. The OP can find out
> more about the noise origin by selecting different sources, or by
> shorting inputs to ground. Or by disconnecting the preamp from the power
> amp. If he can provide information on the power amp and the preamp, it
> might help. By the way, the hiss is louder if the speakers have higher
> sensitivity. But if the noise cannot be heard at the listening position,
> at normal listening levels, then it should not be a problem.
I'm not an engineer but my experiecnce has been that Class A amps are
*dead* silent no matter what the volume. Class AB amps have a bit of
noise, noise that is still much much lower than any muscial signal, but
there nonetheless. And it's most noticeable by hearing it in the
tweeters when very close to them, as the OP was.

CD
January 25, 2005 5:25:41 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Codifus wrote:
> Chung wrote:
>> Codifus wrote:
>>
>>> DOA wrote:
>>>
>>>> When I don't have anything playing and just a bit of volume I can hear
>>>> a hiss from my speakers. But thats only if i put my ear up to it(2
>>>> inches away). But its more evident if I have the volume up to max. Then
>>>> I can hear it. Its not extrememly loud but its there. Is that normal on
>>>> all speakers? Or do I need to get better connectors for the speaker
>>>> wire? Now to reiterate I don't have anything playing. just turining the
>>>> volume knob. What do you think? Is there a problem? thanks for your
>>>> time.
>>>
>>> It's not the speakers that are causing that, it's the amplifier.
>>> You're hearing the switiching distortion associated with Class A-B
>>> amplifiers. The switiching distortion is usually very small when
>>> compared to the audio signal. If you had a Class A amplifier connected
>>> to your speakers you would here nothing at all, even at full volume.
>>> Class A design virtually eliminates switching distortion. The
>>> drawback to class A is that amps of that design consume alot of power
>>> and generate alot of heat.
>>>
>>> Nothing to worry about. It's normal.
>>>
>>> CD
>>
>>
>> No, it is not switching distortion that you are hearing! It is
>> definitely not an issue of whether it is a class A or class AB amp.
>>
>> If the hiss level changes with the volume control, then the majority of
>> the noise is coming from electronics prior to the volume control: the
>> preamp buffers, and sources such as CD players, phono preamps, etc. If
>> the hiss goes away when the volume control is at low settings, then the
>> noise is most likely not coming from the power amp. The OP can find out
>> more about the noise origin by selecting different sources, or by
>> shorting inputs to ground. Or by disconnecting the preamp from the power
>> amp. If he can provide information on the power amp and the preamp, it
>> might help. By the way, the hiss is louder if the speakers have higher
>> sensitivity. But if the noise cannot be heard at the listening position,
>> at normal listening levels, then it should not be a problem.
> I'm not an engineer but my experiecnce has been that Class A amps are
> *dead* silent no matter what the volume. Class AB amps have a bit of
> noise, noise that is still much much lower than any muscial signal, but
> there nonetheless. And it's most noticeable by hearing it in the
> tweeters when very close to them, as the OP was.
>
> CD

No, there are Class A amps with noticeable hum and hiss, and there are
Class A-B amps that are close to dead quiet. It depends on things like
how much gain there is, how efficient the speakers are, and most
importantly, how well designed the amplifier is. This is something that
is easily measurable on the bench, and there is simply no evidence, or
reason, why Class-A amps are quieter. Of course, a particular amplifer,
whether Class-A or AB, may be noisier than another, but that is not due
to the class of operation, but implementation.

The hiss is mostly coming from electronic stages *prior* to the power
amp anyway, if the volume control setting affects the amount of hiss.
Anonymous
January 26, 2005 3:28:21 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Codifus <codifus@optonline.net> wrote:

> I'm not an engineer but my experiecnce has been that Class A amps are
> *dead* silent no matter what the volume. Class AB amps have a bit of
> noise, noise that is still much much lower than any muscial signal, but
> there nonetheless. And it's most noticeable by hearing it in the
> tweeters when very close to them, as the OP was.

Class of operation has nothing in itself to do with the noise level.
Class A has to do with the quescient current in the active devices set high
enough that they are conducting with said current throughout the entire
signal waveform. For example, I had a class AB amp that had adjustments
for the output stage quescient current, and when one moved it into class A,
the noise actually increased, because the extra current draw caused increased
ripple in the power supply that leaked through into the stages that had low
power supply rejection. That was due to design oversight elsewhere, not
because of class A operation. The 120 Hz hum was still there when it was
operating in class AB, just lower in level.
Anonymous
January 26, 2005 3:33:31 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"chung" <chunglau@covad.net> wrote in message
news:ct4an501n6g@news2.newsguy.com...
<snipped>
> No, there are Class A amps with noticeable hum and hiss, and there are
> Class A-B amps that are close to dead quiet. It depends on things like
> how much gain there is, how efficient the speakers are, and most
> importantly, how well designed the amplifier is.
<snipped>>
> The hiss is mostly coming from electronic stages *prior* to the power
> amp anyway, if the volume control setting affects the amount of hiss.

Chung, my experience would agree with you on this. One amp I have is
dead quiet while the other, hooked to the same equipment and speakers,
hums. The second one which hums is designed by a well known engineer who
uses high gain as part of his magic in making his amps "musical". Once
the music starts, the hum disappears.
John
Anonymous
January 26, 2005 3:37:01 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Gene Poon wrote:
> DOA wrote:
>
> > I own some old bose Speakers which I am in the process of getting
rid
> > of and I thinking of buying more Gallo Acoustic speakers. Thats
when
> > I began hearing the speaker hiss I didn't notice it on my old Bose
> > speakers and with my parnoia of buying these Gallo speakers off of
> > ebay set in and I thought something was wrong.
>
> Well, hiss is mostly high frequency energy

No, it's not. Most of the generators of noise in this context
have a distribution akin to "white", which has a frequency
distribution that is the same per net constant bandwidth,
independent of center frequency. That is, the amount of
energy in a 1 kHz band at lower frequencies (e.g. 0 to 1 kHz)
is the same as a 1 kHz band at higher frequencies (e.g. 10kHz
to 11 kHz).

You might counter with the correct statement that an OCTAVE of
noise at high frequencies has more energy than on OCTAVE of noise
at low frequencies, but that's simply because the octave itself
has more total bandwidth at high frequencies than at low. For
example, an octave centered around 10 kHz extends from about 7100
Hz to over 14 kHz, a bandwidth of 7100 Hz, while an octave at
100 Hz extends from only 71 to about 141 Hz, only 70 Hz wide.
!