Speaker Buzz...

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Ronald.H, Feb 24, 2004.

  1. Ronald.H

    Ronald.H Agent

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    I've had my theater done for about 4 months. I've been having trouble with speaker buzz. I thought that I would get used to it, but instead, it's bothering me more and more.

    The buzz is only in my surrounds and center, not in the right and left front speakers. It also seems to happen only with processed audio. For example, when playing a DVD, it is silent, then the buzz starts for the THX logo, then silent, the buzz for the start of the movie. In between these "chapters," no buzz.

    The buzz also seems to be related to my lights. I have Lutron Spacer System dimmers connected to my 4 sconce lights and single ceiling can light. When the lights are on, buzz. Lights off, no buzz.

    The buzz is pretty quiet, but definitely noticeable (although my wife claims she can't hear it).

    What troubleshooting steps can I take to try to alleviate this annoyance?

    Thanks!

    Ron

    My Theater - The Bryant Street Theatre
     
  2. AndrewErickson

    AndrewErickson Stunt Coordinator

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    Get rid of the dimmers.
     
  3. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    Well, it seems like the dimmer switches are the likely culprit. Do you have any kind of power conditioning units like those made by Panamax or Brickwall? You could give those a try. I suppose the worst case scenario would be having to run your lighting wiring to a separate circuit, but then I'm no electrician.

    Nice dedicated room, by the way!
     
  4. Ronald.H

    Ronald.H Agent

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    Andrew...

    Thanks for taking the time to read and respond to my question, however "get rid of the dimmmers" isn't the kind of advice I was looking for. [​IMG]

    Cameron_Y...

    I do not have a power conditioner installed. I'll do some research to see about these units to see if maybe that will help. Beyond that, should I start checking my wiring to see if the equipment and lights are on the same circuit? I wonder how difficult it would be to move them to separate circuits...

    Thanks!
    Ron
     
  5. Michael__M

    Michael__M Stunt Coordinator

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    What Andrew said has some merit. The dimmers are probably on the same circuit and are adding noise in the system. I'm not an electrician but the way most dimmers cut the power to the lights somehow adds the humming and buzzing that you are speaking of. Seperate the circuits and you should be better. If that is not possible, then as he said ...
     
  6. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    I would check into the circuitry first. If they are on the same circuit, moving them to separate ones would be the most straightforward and likely to produce a result. The power conditioners seem like more of a gamble - they may work, they may not. Where's Chu Gai? I know he could answer this conclusively.
     
  7. Ronald.H

    Ronald.H Agent

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    Fortunately, I have a brother who knows a thing or two about electrician work. I'll have him over to help check the circuitry.

    Of course, I'm kicking myself. I had this room built myself, and did not bother to ask the electrician to put the equipment outlet on its own circuit. Live and learn, right?

    BTW - I saw in another forum a discussion about dimmers. Personally, I'm using the LUTRON Spacer System dimmers, and I love them (buzz aside). The lights dimming when I hit the "Play" button the remote provides the biggest "wow" factor in my theatre.
     
  8. David Michael

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    I had almost the same problem with a different dimmer setup.I didnt want to a drop a 700 dollar nut on a line conditioner,but i did and it worked.Buy the conditioner from a local store with a good return policy.Take it home and try it.If it works keep it and headache gone,if not take it back and rewire dimmers to a different breaker.IMHO power conditioners with surge is nice to have anyway.
     
  9. Ronald.H

    Ronald.H Agent

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    I've done some checking and my equipment is on a breaker by itself (I guess my electrician was smarter than I thought), separate from the lights.

    I guess my next troubleshooting step would be to put a regular on/off switch on the lights to see if the buzz goes away.

    David Michael - What brand of line conditioner would you recommend?
     
  10. JohnGil

    JohnGil Stunt Coordinator

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    Do you have a cable box in your room?
    I have the spacer system as well. All was fine untill zi pluged the comosite wall cable into the hdtv cable box.

    I fixed the buzz by running the composite cable into a panamax surge protector/filter firtst and then to the hdtv cable reciver.

    I dont know if this will help you just thought I would let you know how I fixed mine.
     
  11. Ronald.H

    Ronald.H Agent

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    Really??? I do have cable in the room, and an HDTV cable box. I'll have to check that out tonight.
     

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