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Hum/Buzz issue with setup Pro Ject / Parasound / Audioengine

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Hoping someone might have an idea of what's wrong with my setup! I have a Pro Ject Debut Carbon and Parasound Z Phono Preamp going into Audioengine A2+ speakers. The TT and preamp are both about 3-5 years old & the speakers are brand new (replaced an old pair of A2s). I've noticed for awhile there's a fairly loud hum coming from the setup when I use the TT, otherwise the speakers are fine. It's harder to hear on louder pressings/hip hop records etc but on more acoustic stuff it stands out a lot. The wires are situated fairly close to one another and everything is plugged into a surge protector (that I also sometimes plug laptop/phone chargers into). 

 

I played around with everything the other day and when I took the grounding wire out of the preamp there was no audible hum, but I imagine leaving it un-grounded is dangerous. Even tried plugging the RCA cables from the TT directly into the speakers and though it was very quiet, there was no audible hum. I've also tried rearranging how everything's plugged in and no dice. Even tried shutting off the lights in the room. Not really sure how else to troubleshoot here. Anyone have an idea of what to do to eliminate the hum? Thanks!

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It's strange that there wouldn't be any hum when you take off the ground wire, but if for some reason it works fine, it's completely safe so there's no need to worry. 

 

Did you perhaps move the phono close to some power adapter, maybe close to any of the speakers? It might cause some interference. Also, maybe try plugging in the phono to a different wall outlet, or just rotate the power plug (or any other plugs) 180 degrees. I can't really imagine how/why there would be less hum without the ground wire connected.

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3 hours ago, slinch said:

It's strange that there wouldn't be any hum when you take off the ground wire, but if for some reason it works fine, it's completely safe so there's no need to worry. 

 

Did you perhaps move the phono close to some power adapter, maybe close to any of the speakers? It might cause some interference. Also, maybe try plugging in the phono to a different wall outlet, or just rotate the power plug (or any other plugs) 180 degrees. I can't really imagine how/why there would be less hum without the ground wire connected.

Definitely strange right? I plugged the phono straight into the wall, no dice. Tried taking the grounding wire out of the phono again and it's definitely a less pervasive hum...still a noise but less buzzy if that makes sense. Not sure what to do next

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Posted (edited)

@slinch I just unplugged the grounding/RCAs out of the TT and phono, with just the RCA from the phono going into the speakers. There is loud hum. It's gotta be coming from the phono.

 

Think I should reach out to the manufacturer? 

 

EDIT: swapped out the RCA cable/grounding I had with the original Pro Ject one and it got even noisier.

Edited by Ent

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Sounds like you might have a ground loop. Not grounding the cartridge is fine if it is already grounding somehow (lack of noise when you unground it implies that it is grounding somewhere else, maybe through the turntable or the tonearm plate etc). This is not ideal as the grounding may vary and ideally you can isolate that ground, allowing you to ground it in the normal manner. Options are run a second wire to another ground point to reground it, leave it unplugged if it sounds correct or look for where the loop is occurring elsewhere in the system and try to remove it.

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Posted (edited)

I also have a Pro-Ject Debut. For some reason the wires going to my cartridge get loose, and when they do, I get a hum. I have to occasionally push them back. The hum disappears. Don't know if that is happening with yours. 

Edited by lexicondevil

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On 7/25/2020 at 11:31 AM, lexicondevil said:

I also have a Pro-Ject Debut. For some reason the wires going to my cartridge get loose, and when they do, I get a hum. I have to occasionally push them back. The hum disappears. Don't know if that is happening with yours. 

I chased a hum on my Debut for years and in the end it was a few things, but this issue is so easy to miss! I had one cable that had slipped back at the perfect angle to not easily slip back on the last 2mm, helped a great deal to remedy that.

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