unignorable buzzing in headphones using new Tascam multi

Discussion in 'Monitoring' started by artishard088, Sep 25, 2008.

  1. artishard088

    artishard088 Guest

    I purchased a Tascam DP-02fx/cd 8 track recorder yesterday, this is my first home recording purchase. I plugged my strat and headphones in and immediately had an annoying buzz constantly through both headphones, it's definately not the guitar. Also when switching from mono to stereo I only get sound in the left headphone, i'm doubting that thats normal but I am a newbie at this. I'm wondering if this is because of some error in how i've got the knobs, just a new product warming up, or if I should return the product and buy a competing one.

    Please help me out
  2. GeckoMusic

    GeckoMusic Guest

    Welcome to the world of audio recording! I hope you enjoy your stay. There will be many learning experiences like this one along your journey.

    The buzz is commonly caused by a ground loop or a difference in ground potential. It can also be caused by the electronics in your guitar picking up EMF from near by electronics like your computer, monitor, or TV. If you plugged your guitar directly into the recorder, or the line out of your amp into the recorder, the buzz would be normal.

    Try a microphone on the cabinet. That will generally give you the best sound. If that is not an option take your amp's line out through a DI box to the recorder.

    You may also be able to get rid of the buzz by using the same outlet for both the recorder and the amp, or flipping a "ground lift" switch on the amp. Just don't use one of those adapters that removes the ground pin.

    For guitar your input monitor mode should be mono. You need to connect both the A and B channels to monitor a stereo signal.
  3. hackenslash

    hackenslash Active Member

    How do you know it isn't the guitar? What pickup configuration?
  4. artishard088

    artishard088 Guest

    well I just bought the guitar yesterday as well, it's a fender deluxe players strat with noiseless pickups.

    "If you plugged your guitar directly into the recorder, or the line out of your amp into the recorder, the buzz would be normal. "

    do you mean as long as i'm playing through the recorder then i'm going to have the buzz? I had it set up in my room yesterday which has a TV in it but it wasn't turned on, should it still be affecting it?
  5. artishard088

    artishard088 Guest


    would plugging it into a power strip rather than straight to the wall be a cause of the level of buzzing?
  6. hackenslash

    hackenslash Active Member

    Can you record a clip and post it?
  7. GeckoMusic

    GeckoMusic Guest

    A sample would help expedite the solution to your problem. (But I kinda like this guessing game)

    Do you have an amp?
    If you do have an amp, make sure they are both in the same outlet.
    If not, and something else is on the circuit that draws a considerable load, (i.e. AC, refrigerator) it may cause problems, but most supplies will regulate out any noise that these introduce.

    In either case the power strip should not make a difference, but you may as well try it just to be sure.

    Do all the positions of the 5-pos switch cause an equal amount of noise?
    If Yes, the noise is after the pickup, but could be in the guitar. Try another cable.
    If No, then the problem is noisy pickups, and you'll have to live with it.
  8. artishard088

    artishard088 Guest

    the pickups in it are fenders "noiseless' and they're supposedly tip top pickups.
    i'll see what I can do about posting a clip later on today.

    thanks for the advice though, i'm really hoping I don't have to drive another hour back to guitar center.
  9. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Just a thought. In the back of the unit there is a "guitar/mic/line selector button for the guitar/mic/ine channel input. Have you tried making sure that this button is set properly? I would guess that if you have this button set to mic or line you are bound to get some noise.
  10. artishard088

    artishard088 Guest

    I tried it both ways but neither seemed to have any effect
  11. Greener

    Greener Guest

    Which port are you plugging the phones into?

    The mono/stereo issue makes me think the connectors on the plug don't match what the port is looking for.

    You can cheat when testing for ground loop. Get a neighbour on the next block to run an extension over for two mins.
  12. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Good point. Never thought of it.
  13. artishard088

    artishard088 Guest

    am I supposed to have a certain type of headphones
    because I just found out today that I need a condensor mic instead of the norm.
  14. Space

    Space Distinguished Member

    "I plugged my strat and headphones in and immediately had an annoying buzz constantly through >>>both<<< headphones, it's definately not the guitar. "
    How do you know this?


    "Also when switching from mono to stereo I only get sound in the left headphone,"
    This makes no sense when compared to the above statement.

    Maybe clarification of this would help too?
  15. GeckoMusic

    GeckoMusic Guest

    :? If you can plug them in they should work... Well, as long as it is not a telemarketer style head phone set. Whoever told you that you need a condenser is either tiring to make some money off you or has no idea what they are talking about. Any microphone made these days with an XLR connector will work just fine to get you going. The Shure SM58 and SM57 are the most recommended microphones and are dynamic!
  16. Link555

    Link555 Well-Known Member

    North Vancouver
    Is that pick up a single coil or a humbucker?
    Single coils will always have some noise.
    Humbucker will help cancel some of the noise.
  17. GeckoMusic

    GeckoMusic Guest

    I agree with you Link. 100%

    It's a Fender Deluxe Player's Stratocaster Electric Guitar which has "noiseless" single coil pickups.

    Without a sound sample, or some numbers we can't say if what you are hearing is typical single coil pickup noise or if it is something else. Even "noisless" pickups make noise. It's just a marketing term.

    Can you tell us what your SNR is, or post a sample of the noise and playing a chord so we can help you here?
  18. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Home Page:
    Simple test: walk round the room, carrying (but not playing) the guitar with its lead plugged in. Does the buzz change its character and amplitude as you move around?

    If so, your problem is most likely hum pickup in the guitar. If not, you have a grounding problem.

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