Humming sound ... help please

Jared B

New Member
Joined
May 22, 2021
Messages
2
I have a Standard 24, new. I have been playing it for a while and it sounds great, but... I get a humming sound when I don't play it while it is plugged in. When I put my hand on the strings the hum goes away.

When I plugin I use the church system which is a Behringer Xair 16 channel. There is a power amp GSC GX3.

I don't know much. What do I need to do? Is there something wrong? Do I need a piece of equipment?

Thanks!
 

Wakester

Re Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2018
Messages
4,056
Location
south western New York
1. There is a ground issue if the hum goes away when you touch the strings. Check your wiring and gound solder joints.

2. If the above does not change anything, are you going into a DI on stage? If yes, toggle the ground lift switch to see what happens.

Thats a start. Beyond that, i would actually have to come to your church to look over how and where everything is laid out.
 

CandidPicker

Building with Fireproof Materials
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Jan 26, 2019
Messages
4,716
Location
NW Connecticut, USA
I have a Standard 24, new. I have been playing it for a while and it sounds great, but... I get a humming sound when I don't play it while it is plugged in. When I put my hand on the strings the hum goes away.

When I plugin I use the church system which is a Behringer Xair 16 channel. There is a power amp GSC GX3.

I don't know much. What do I need to do? Is there something wrong? Do I need a piece of equipment?

Thanks!

Jared,

If you're using strictly a PA system for guitar amplification, have you checked if the input to the mixer is set for line level? If the mixer is set for anything other than INST or LINE, the impedance may be wrong for your instrument connection. The mixer should have buttons to switch from INST/LINE to MIC. Be sure the switch is set for INST/LINE.

If you've confirmed that the guitar cable input is actually set for INST or LINE, it also may be the quality of your cable that is causing the problem. Use a decent quality instrument cable (spend more than $35, if possible). If the cable quality is not the problem, there may be a ground loop issue. If the mixer has a ground lift button, try switching that in and see what h happens with your guitar signal.

If the mixer does not have a ground lift button, one last option is to invest in a quality (used is OK, Radial makes good ones) DI (direct input) box that has a ¼" jack input, and an XLR (microphone) output. You'd also need a decent XLR cable to plug from DI box to mixer. The DI box you choose should have a ground lift switch that should correct any ground loop issues the mixer may have.

Lastly; you said you were playing a Standard 24 humbucker PRS. There may be a ground issue within your guitar that may be causing the problem. Have a qualified tech take a look under the hood and check for continuity and grounding.

That's all I've got for this. Others may suggest something better; I don't know what else could be the solution.
 

slater529

New Member
Joined
Dec 2, 2020
Messages
55
...When I put my hand on the strings the hum goes away.

That right there indicates the guitar wiring is good.

The solution is to turn the volume knob on the guitar all the way down when you aren't playing.

Ever watch guitar or amp demos on You Tube? You see guys doing that all the time... That's because it's normal.
 

CandidPicker

Building with Fireproof Materials
Joined
Jan 26, 2019
Messages
4,716
Location
NW Connecticut, USA
As a side note, my amp (HeadRush Gigboard & FRFR108s) uses a noise suppressor at the input of the signal chain. Once the guitar is plugged in, and rigs created, there's usually this explosive noise caused by the input signal's noise-to-volume ratio being much too high.

The solution is lowering the cutoff level at which noise occurs. Depending on any of my rigs, that number can be between -85 dB and -93 dB. Above these numbers, the guitar will sound clearly through the amp. Below these numbers (heading towards larger negative numbers), the noise is cut off from making it through the signal chain.

If your church has either the funds or incentive to improve its sound through the PA, you might ask if (with your financial help) you could place a noise suppressor in front of the mixer, in case the noise occurs prior to the mixer. Remember that this is the only place you can put a noise suppressor. Between mixer and power amp won't do any good because the signal is different than from when it first entered the mixer.

For suggestions; TC Electronics makes the best noise suppressor on the market today, the "Sentry." The pedal has a learning curve and you'll need to read the owner's manual to dial it in correctly. Once you do, though, you'll realize that the noise that was driving you nuts could have been nothing more than some EMI/RFI from overhead lights or a fan.

The hum is typically 60 KHz cycle hum found in all AC circuits, some with cleaner power than others. Some circuits when used extensively (read: many items drawing power from one or more outlets on the same circuit breaker) draw too much current which contributes to the hum. If your church has old-fashioned lighting and ceiling fans, this can contribute to the problem. The. immediate solution is not replace the lighting or fans, but consider the least invasive approach: the noise suppressor. A used Sentry on eBay or Reverb might cost $80 to $110. Just do your homework and if necessary wait for a good deal before you make a purchase.
 
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