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Dafydd

Hardware background noise

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Hi

I have a pretty decent mic, by no means a studio, but a pretty silent room. I've noticed that no matter how hard I try, I'm getting a lot of noise when recording anything.

Listen to this: http://www.ngst.nu/buzz.wav

I begin by just leaving the mic on, then turn it off (that's the first pop), leave it off, then turn it on again (second pop)... and the noise is the exact same when the mic is on as when it is off. So the noise is coming from the hardware. I have a Sound Blaster X-Fi. I know many people dislike it, but its makers make a big deal of it being a good sound card. What can I do to eliminate this buzz noise, other than get another, better, sound card? Is there a disturbance in the force? Could the buzz be caused by fans in the computer, magnetic interference (cell phones, speakers, wireless comms)?

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Clearly THAT noise is coming from the PC, or better said the Soundblaster. Checked it, it's no ground loop, and no fan noise, but the typical hissing of the Analog/Digital converters from their "gamer card series" (they always write on them how good they are, but the sad truth is always different).

There's nothing much that you can do about it, but to either use a highpass/lowcut filter (to remove the floor noise up to 80Hz) and a noise reduction module to get rid of the hissing while you're recording silence (a gate would also work)...

Or... the IMO better solution than massive filtering, get proper equipment, and try it again. I guess you try to record either a dynamic mic or a small membran condenser (we didn't get further info from you in this section - so I have to assume what's up) with the Creative Live Mic-In directly. This might work for Podcasts and Team-Speak applications, but not for serious recording. I recommend you to get a cheap/decent mic preamp and another recording device (some overview should be in the stickyfied threads) to reduce the noise as much as possible, and trust me, you'll have way more for your buck.

Or... get one of those large membran USB microphone solutions (Samson, Behringer, etc), where you have all in one already. They're cheap, they're good, and they can be used for more than just voice (singing/podcast) and "selected" acoustic recordings.

Hope that's helping.

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I guess it answered my question, yes. I'm pretty content with my mic (I think). Are you saying there's a way to record microphone through USB? Could you give me a specific example, more specific than make? I don't know anything about these things and am not in the mood to get another sound card (at least not yet).

EDIT: Is this the stuff you're talking about? http://www.zzounds.com/item--BEHUCA202

And I'm guessing this won't do the job, if the buzz is coming from the soundcard itself... http://www.zzounds.com/item--BEHHD400

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