Recording Tips - Hum and Buzz



This is one of the most evasive and frustrating phenomena ever to invade our workstations. Let's get rid of it!

  1. Use only one A/C "breaker" line for your workspace. No shared appliances (ie: refrigerator, washer/dryer, dishwasher).
  2. Do not "daisy-chain" power strips, one after another. Use only one power strip per A/C wall outlet.
  3. Positively NO flourescent lights in your workspace.
  4. Separate A/C chords at least 8 inches from audio chords. At the very least, run them at (criss-cross) 90-degree angles.
  5. Move power amps as far away as possible; into the next room if you can.
  6. Be prepared to use "ground lifters" (3-into-2 A/C adapters). If you have buzz when you power-up and plug-in any piece of gear, then lift the ground on that one!
  7. Lastly, unplug everything except your monitor system. Plug in each piece of equipment one-by-one, while listening carefully for hum/buzz/noise. If you hear it, then consider moving that piece of gear away from the others.

Happy hunting . . .

by:

Brian Levi
Clear Lake Audio
Los Angeles, CA