Is this a grounding problem?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Ely, Oct 1, 2001.

  1. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

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    I'm experiencing a video problem that I believe to be a grounding issue.
    I have an RCA DRD303RA satellite receiver, and whenever the video-out is connected, I get horizontal bars moving up the picture on my TV. This problem will happen on all the inputs.
    If I disconnect power to the receiver, the bars go away. If I pull out the video cables from the receiver, the bars go away. HEre's a wierd part ... if I detach the cable-TV cable from the TV, the bars are still there, but become much less visible.
    Since the only way to completely get rid of the bars is to remove the satellite receiver from my setup, I will put the blame fully on the DRD303RA. A friend of mine has the exact same receiver, and it produces the exact same problem in my system. He's using the receiver on a very small TV, so I can't tell if he's having the same trouble at his house.
    Can anyone confirm if this is a grounding issue? Or many provide any hints to fix this problem?
    My cable-TV cable is properly grounded at the fuse box of the house.
     
  2. SamRoza

    SamRoza Stunt Coordinator

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    David, you have what are called "Hum-bars". It is a grounding problem, as you suspected. Although your cable is grounded properly outside the house, most of the time the difference in voltage potential still exists between the pole and your house.
    Also, make sure there is nothing motorized on the same circuit on your equipment.
    When I had grounding issues, they manifested as ground loop hums through my sub, and the only way for me to eliminate them was to purchase a power conditioner(Monster HTS-5000), that filtered everything, including cable lines.
    That's not to say that you'll see an improvement in audio or video, per se, but your hum bars should disappear. Also, you might not have to purchase such an extreme power line accessory as I did, but make sure you can connect your cable to filter out noise.
    Sam
     
  3. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

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    After plugging the RCA receiver in to a different outlet in the house, the horizontal bars dissapeared. I think I'm going to go to Home Depot tonight and get a cheater plug. Hopefully that will solve my problem until I can afford to have an electrician come and fix my ground.
    [Edited last by David Ely on October 01, 2001 at 03:18 PM]
     
  4. SamRoza

    SamRoza Stunt Coordinator

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    David,
    Your ground isn't necessarily "bad", but there exists a difference in voltage potential between your equipment, caused by the cable, not the box itself. That's why I suggested that you attempt to use some type of filter on the cable itself, or a power conditioner of some kind.
    Try the cheapest and easiest first...a cheater plug, or a filter.
    Sam
     
  5. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

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    Well ... I just found out that cheater plugs are illegal in Canada, so that's not an option. I'm wondering what type of filter I can find for my cable. Should I be looking for a ground loop isolator?
    Anyone have any idea where I could go in the GTA to get a cable filter tonight?
     
  6. SamRoza

    SamRoza Stunt Coordinator

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    David,
    My only thoughts on the subject are that you find a cheaper surge suppressor that also filters cable. When I had my ground loop, I first tried using inline filters on the cables themselves, but it didn't work. When I plugged them into my Moster power unit, it cleared it up as if it never existed.
    I think you can probably find a surge unit with cable filtering for $30-60 American.
    Sam
     
  7. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

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    In my VERY limited amoutn of time tonight, I was unable to find a surge protector that offered video filtering. I did find this surge protector
    B elkin Surge Protector
    I didn't buy it since it only mentions surge protection for the coax ports, and not filtering.
    I did however pickup an inline video filter and a cheater plug. Both of these can be returned if they don't work (as you stated, the inline filter probably won't help).
    If you think the above surge protector should help, or if you know another surge protector I should look for, please let me know.
    Thanks for all the help!
    [Edited last by David Ely on October 03, 2001 at 09:56 AM]
     
  8. SamRoza

    SamRoza Stunt Coordinator

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    David,
    For $55 it's definitely worth a try. Belkin makes quality products, and they would undoubtedly return it if it didn't work out.
    Did the inline filters work out?
    Sam
     
  9. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

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    The inline filter did absolutely nothing. The cheater plug solved the problem completely!
    I'm going to grab the Belkin surge protector tomorrow night ($50Cdn at Home Depot). I'm really hoping that will do the trick. I'm still not 100% comfortable using the cheater plug.
    BTW, while cheater plugs are illegal in Canada, Radio Shack does sell them. The way they get around the law is by calling them 'Travelling Adapters'. On the back of the package it clearly states 'Not For Use in Canada'.
    [Edited last by David Ely on October 02, 2001 at 01:19 AM]
     
  10. Henry W

    Henry W Stunt Coordinator

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  11. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

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    Henry,
    I took a look at the site you montion and I see their video isolator model VR -1FF. This is a 50Hz to 900MHz isolator. The 'filter' I bought at Radio Shack yesterday for $7Cdn was also 50Hz to 900MHz.
    Do you think the VR-1FF will be any better?
     
  12. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

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    YAHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I picked up the Belkin surge protector today and it fixed the problem completely!!!! I'm so happy that I don't have to use a cheater plug.
    SamRoza,
    Thank you VERY much for your advice!
     
  13. SamRoza

    SamRoza Stunt Coordinator

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    No problem David!!
    After the beating I've taken on this board by some of the newer chaps, it's good to see that I could help an old poster out [​IMG]
    Sam
     
  14. Henry W

    Henry W Stunt Coordinator

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    Yes, I looked at Radio Shack but could not identify the item I purchased at Jensen. The sales people could not help me. What is the Radio Shack item called? Did I waste the money I spent on the Jensen product? It works but I hope I didn't spend ten times the money it would have cost me to buy a Radio shack item.
    Best regards-Henry
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