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Laptop audio question


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I thought about posting this question in one of the other forums, but we keyboard players tend to have a lot of information about a lot of things... so I'm coming to you guys.

 

I've been using a dell laptop for playing music through a PA. This is not DJ type stuff, I'm just playing mp3s for the most part. Now here is my problem: I'm getting a hum. I don't think it is 60 (Hz) cycle; It sounds higher. And when I close the laptop the hum goes away, so I'm thinking it has something to do with the screen on the laptop.

 

I'm using the built in sound card. The quality of the sound is good enough for what I'm doing. The hum is the only problem. I'd rather not spend the money on another sound card unless that's the only way to get rid of the hum.

 

Does anyone know what is going on here?

David
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The hum that I've found with PC laptops has always been related to the power adapter. Try just unplugging and letting it go on batteries. If this is the case changing sound cards probably won't help at all. I got horrendous hum on a Compaq laptop and it was the same whether I used USB, cardbus, internal audio or a PCI card in a Magma chassis. On the other hand, my Sony Vaio is perfectly quiet.

 

Busch

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No I haven't. I'll try it. In a PA situations I can cue a set and then close the lid to stop the buzz, so I don't have to have the screen on all the time. The sound is not that loud anyway. It's mainly annoying to me. I was just wondering if there was a quick and easy fix that I was overlooking.
David
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Originally posted by DKeenum:

No I haven't. I'll try it. In a PA situations I can cue a set and then close the lid to stop the buzz, so I don't have to have the screen on all the time. The sound is not that loud anyway. It's mainly annoying to me. I was just wondering if there was a quick and easy fix that I was overlooking.

I would also try connecting it to a DI with ground lift.
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I get "screen noise" through my VAIO laptop. The noise changes with actions on the display (Sonar tracking through a piece). If yours is the same, you might try closing all uneeded programs and minimizing the MP3 playback program so so nothing is displayed. Also, if you're using Media Player or some other playback that has a "visualizer," try tutning it off.
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I have a same problem.I use dell laptop with Echo pc-mci card and when I connect to my other sound card[since there are 2 computers in sync in my setup]I get some noise,when I connect the laptop output straight to the reciver-amp the noise goes away?also if I connect the laptop to mixer[yamaha 01V]the same thing there is a noise.I think this is something like ground loop problem but I'm not sure,also I'm not sure how to fix this.!
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I have connected the laptop thru a direct box with the ground lifted. It didn't help. I think that Jimmie's suggestion gives me hope. I've tried everything else. I think it is screen related, and programs running sounds like a possibility. I do use media player, so I'm going to try turning off the visualizer.
David
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well seeing your laptop has a flourescent light (a cold cathode to be exact) as the backlight I am not surprised your getting inverter noise from the display. Thats the reason your sound goes away when you close the lid is that the display is shut off when the lid is closed. If you have the opportunity to use a CRT (standard monitor) you could try switching to the external display port and see if it goes away.
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