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Thread: Electrical interference?

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    Default Electrical interference?

    I currently have the SuperFlower built EVGA SuperNova G2 750W powering my PC. Things were peachy until this scenario happened:

    I was plugging in my Nvidia Shield's USB cable to my case's front USB 3 port. Something I have done many a time before. The Shield was not connected at the time. It was just the bare cable. My PC immediately shut off. Ever since then, I've been noticing a strange audio crackle/static that appears in certain programs and scenarios. I know it wasn't there before, and I'm not crazy. Certain games have it, while others do not. One guaranteed scenario I've found is ePSXe. I never had any audio problems of any sort before, and now it's a crackle/pop fest. This issue occurs on ALL my audio devices. Motherboard onboard, AND my external USB DAC (which is powered with its own A/C brick and therefore isolated)

    Now, originally when it happened, I suspected the motherboard (MSI z97 Gaming 5). I had just gotten it, and it seemed like a mobo sort of issue to me. So I swapped it. I'm now running an Asus Maximus V7 Hero. Same issue. The rest of my hardware was pulled from my old computer (which had no problems like this) and is free of suspicion. I've tested without the graphics card, tested the memory, reformatted Windows, the works. It's been driving me mad. The ONLY thing that can't be ruled out is the PSU as it's also brand new. I'm starting to suspect that it has to be the culprit. Possible dirty power on the +5V line perhaps?

    tl;dr - computer shut off and since then sound crackles and pops plague my computing experience yet everything else works flawlessly. Could it be the PSU? I feel like it has to be, but I know these are good units...


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    Did you tested your rig out of the case, on a bench?
    Did you connected the mains power cord to a different socket?
    Dont' you have any spare PSU?
    Best, Luca

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    Quote Originally Posted by quest for silence View Post
    Did you tested your rig out of the case, on a bench?
    Did you connected the mains power cord to a different socket?
    Dont' you have any spare PSU?
    I haven't taken it all out of the case, but I did disconnect the front panel in case there was a short somewhere. The case has always worked before though. And yes, I connected to a different socket. I also used a different power cable to the PC.

    And no, but I'm can go to the store to get one to test. Was just wondering if it's possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ice445 View Post
    Was just wondering if it's possible.
    Anything is possible: but my feeling is that very unlikely you may have such an issue with the PSU (obviously this feeling may well be wrong).
    Can you test the PSU with a different, perfectly working rig?
    Best, Luca

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    Quote Originally Posted by quest for silence View Post
    Anything is possible: but my feeling is that very unlikely you may have such an issue with the PSU (obviously this feeling may well be wrong).
    Can you test the PSU with a different, perfectly working rig?
    The only other computer I can put it in has an Athlon 64 in it, haha. Not sure if it would be a valid test?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ice445 View Post
    The only other computer I can put it in has an Athlon 64 in it, haha. Not sure if it would be a valid test?
    You're looking for an interference due to a supposed already faulty PSU, so why not?
    Best, Luca

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    A different motherboard, and disconnecting the front panel ports should eliminate the case as the problem. I don't think it likely this can be a PSU issue, but agree to swap in another PSU just in case.

    The ONLY thing that can't be ruled out is the PSU
    I don't see where you have tried a different set of speakers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Digerati View Post
    A different motherboard, and disconnecting the front panel ports should eliminate the case as the problem. I don't think it likely this can be a PSU issue, but agree to swap in another PSU just in case.

    I don't see where you have tried a different set of speakers.
    Sorry, I should have mentioned my external DAC runs my headphones. Problem exists on both headphones and speakers.

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    Problem exists on both headphones and speakers.
    Assuming you have tried the headphones and speakers from a source other than the external DAC, not sure what else it could be after swapping motherboards, and reinstalling Windows too.

    It seems nothing is left but the PSU. I would make sure your wall outlet is properly wired/grounded. If not grounded properly, outside RFI/EMI could be factor. Every home and computer user should have access to a AC Outlet Tester to ensure your outlet is properly wired and grounded. I recommend one with a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupt) indicator as it can be used to test bathroom and kitchen outlets too. These testers can be found for your type and voltage outlet, foreign or domestic, at most home improvement stores, or even the electrical department at Walmart.

    And though this is with two motherboards and after a fresh Windows install I would want to ensure this is not a High DPC Latency issue too, as noisy/stuttering audio is a common symptom of that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Digerati View Post
    Assuming you have tried the headphones and speakers from a source other than the external DAC, not sure what else it could be after swapping motherboards, and reinstalling Windows too.

    It seems nothing is left but the PSU. I would make sure your wall outlet is properly wired/grounded. If not grounded properly, outside RFI/EMI could be factor. Every home and computer user should have access to a AC Outlet Tester to ensure your outlet is properly wired and grounded. I recommend one with a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupt) indicator as it can be used to test bathroom and kitchen outlets too. These testers can be found for your type and voltage outlet, foreign or domestic, at most home improvement stores, or even the electrical department at Walmart.

    And though this is with two motherboards and after a fresh Windows install I would want to ensure this is not a High DPC Latency issue too, as noisy/stuttering audio is a common symptom of that.
    I tried connecting to the onboard too. It's quite the strange issue, especially since there's no issue in a lot of programs. It just seems like certain ones and certain sound samples that trigger it. It really does seem like more of a software issue, but I've run my PC's the same way for years now, and it definitely started after that random shutdown (that has never happened again).

    I checked latency and it never seemed to go above 140ms. I also have one of those power strips that has a light that lights up if it detects a grounding problem (or is supposed to). It seems fine, but I guess I can pick up a tester somewhere to make sure. I even just spent an hour going through all the wires and redoing everything (I even removed my fan controller and switched to the motherboard inputs, since it was unshielded).

    So aggravating and bizarre. I did notice something, although I'm not sure if it's relevant. When I threw the cutoff switch on the PSU, I got a pop of feedback through my speakers.

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