Explosive Static Noise Sporadically

Discussion in 'Microphones & Recording' started by Samueldavisjrjr, Dec 12, 2013.

  1. Samueldavisjrjr

    Samueldavisjrjr Member

    Dec 12, 2013
    United States
    Using an AKG c214 condenser, a Saffire 6 usb interface, and Ableton Live 8 to record at home I occasionally get
    noise while recording, and I haven't been able to find anything online with a description matching the problem I'm having. Is it an issue with the mic?
    Like I said it's only sporadically, probably on average only like once every couple minutes, but having it ruin takes, especially with friends, gets pretty frustrating.
  2. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Apr 19, 2006
    Home Page:
    The likely explanation is that your computer is not set up properly for audio recording. For example, if you have not disabled the ethernet interface, then the TCP I/P drivers will be active every minute or so looking for a server to talk to. This network activity is a bus hog, and can have the effect of causing samples to be dropped in audio applications. Try disabling the ethernet driver or adjusting the audio buffer size (making it much bigger) to see if the effect disappears, or at least reduces.
  3. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Well-Known Member

    Nov 25, 2012
    Akron/Cleveland, OH
    Home Page:
    I'm with Boswell on this, this sounds like a buffer issue, and as a followup to what he mentioned, make sure that when you are adjusting your buffer size that you don't need to do it in two places... for example, in Sonar, you can adjust the buffer size in the Options/Audio menu, but if you are running a separate Asio driver (like Asio4All ), you also need to get into the Asio menu, and set the buffer size there as well, to match that of your DAW's buffer settings.

    I'm not saying that your set up requires this, I'm just mentioning that it's a possibility that you may have to.

    Can you tell us what your current buffer size is?
  4. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    Dec 18, 2008
    Western Pennsylvania, USA
    Your static does sound more like a digital problem than a bad cable, but that doesn't mean the mic cable shouldn't be checked. If phantom power to your mic is disrupted or degraded it can cause very ugly noises.

    Also, be mindful of where your cell phone is during all of this. Smartphones (and even relatively dumb cellphones) are emitting and receiving signals every few minutes to see if you and your friends have any new messages, or just searching for the nearest cell tower - whether you're actively using the phones or not. Although cellphones transmit in a completely different part of the frequency spectrum, sympathetic signals can still pollute audio gear. I've seen (and heard) my LG phone interfere with a number of pieces of audio equipment during a mixing session at a friend's place. All pretty good gear (MBP computer / Presonus USB Interface / Focusrite / Avalon / Event ) on well-grounded and conditioned power, and all balanced using very short high quality quad mic cables. The fact is, it could as easily cause interference along the USB cable as any audio cable. It was very intermittent and took a while to figure out what was causing the problem. The good news, the fix for that was easy - turn the phone off.

    If I have my phone on the desk when I'm editing video, one of the older CRT monitors I use for reference will make a very distinct sound every few minutes when the cell phone is pinging the tower. Moving the phone to the opposite end of the desk is enough to avoid that noise.

    Good luck!

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