Please help me fix this mic noise! - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-09-2020, 11:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Please help me fix this mic noise!

I have what seems to be ground loop noise on my PC mic that I'm trying to clean up. The mic is a Modmic boom that attaches by magnet to my m50x headphones.

Here's a clip of the mic noise.
https://www.vocaroo.com/ikhXOh8yMKf

The noise only happens any time I use a separate interface for the headphones and mic. If I plug both the mic in to the onboard audio, or in to my Asus Xonar soundcard, or in to this cheap USB sound interface, there is no noise. Unfortunately, I very much want to use my Fiio USB DAC (which only has output, leaving my mic to the soundcard or onboard) because without it they don't get enough power and this does cause noise, no matter where the mic is plugged in. Additionally, I have a cheap 3.5mm headset that works, without noise, in any configuration (but it's a piece of junk).

Today, I got a 3.5mm ground loop isolator to put inline with the mic. With the Modmic, I now get NO sound. The cheap headset works fine with it.

And now I'm desperate and at a complete loss. I have a pretty decent set of cans, mic and DAC that are unusable after a not-insignificant investment and I don't have money to keep throwing at the problem. So I'm stuck using the uncomfortable, crappy sounding Walmart headset hoping one of you can tell me something helpful!

Last edited by qoncept; 01-09-2020 at 11:44 AM.
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-10-2020, 12:31 AM
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Originally Posted by qoncept View Post
The noise only happens any time I use a separate interface for the headphones and mic.
Could you confirm whether this noise is present from the Fiio USB DAC when playing something from the PC -- not the mic. IOW, if the mic is disconnected, does the noise still occur?

The noise reminds me of interference I have heard from my Chromecast dongle when it gets near certain audio wires. Digital burps. And then I have had worse noise using an external USB audio interface with my laptop, and I had to run the laptop on battery power to make it go away.
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post #3 of 6 Old 01-10-2020, 08:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Roger Dressler View Post
Could you confirm whether this noise is present from the Fiio USB DAC when playing something from the PC -- not the mic. IOW, if the mic is disconnected, does the noise still occur?
If the DAC is disconnected, no noise. Unfortunately, then I have underpowered cans. Looks like I have to choose between volume and sound quality/comfort. :\

Edit: I think maybe we're not quite clear - the noise is only on the mic line in. I can't hear the noise - my friends can when I use Discord to chat with them.
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post #4 of 6 Old 01-10-2020, 11:22 AM
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Heya - Antlion Audio (ModMic) staff here.

I suspect this noise may be related to the unblanced mic cable. We have a whole live support team on our Discord to help diagnose and fix this. You can find it on our website (Can't post links yet since this is my first post here. Hi everyone!)

But in case you can't make it or anyone else runs into a similar issue:

First, if you have a ModMic 5 check if you still have this issue if you remove the extension cables. Yes, I know you can't use the mic like that - If the problem goes away, simply replace that 3.5mm cable with another one, a simple Amazon Basics cable should work. We discontinued the ModMic 5 and modular cable design in part because it amplified problems associated with unbalanced cables like this.

If it is a ModMic 4 or the 5 has this problem even with a short cable, we're in a tougher spot. The first thing I would do is actually test if the problem gets worse as you move wireless devices in the room or house nearer the mic cable. Cell phone, router, mouse, keyboards, anything using an RF signal. For reasons unclear to me based on this post, the extra power from the FiiO may be somehow helping turn the ModMic cable into an antenna that is picking up these noises more than usual. If we can find the source of the noise fixing it will be as simple as moving it away or placing a small physical barrier between the cable and the mic (we're talking like, a cardboard box between you and the router).

The new ModMic Uni or ModMic USB (or ModMic Wireless of course) should not have this issue. So if it is a ModMic Uni or USB please contact us immediately.

Again, jump in our Discord and our staff can help you sort it out if none of these work. We're really here to help!

Sorry you're having some issues, analog audio can be a tricky beast at times!
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post #5 of 6 Old 01-10-2020, 01:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Joseph Lieberman View Post
Heya - Antlion Audio (ModMic) staff here.
Joseph, thanks for the reply! It's a Modmic 4, but I'm actually pretty close to my wifi router so I'm going to do some rearranging this weekend and cross my fingers.
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post #6 of 6 Old 01-11-2020, 09:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Joseph Lieberman View Post
Cell phone, router, mouse, keyboards, anything using an RF signal.
That was it! moved the router back to the basement and no more mic noise! Now I just need to get the media pc to boot again..

Thank you so much! I'm probably an idiot for not trying that sooner.
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