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#145644 - 01/07/12 06:01 PM [Off-Topic] What`s wrong with my HiFi?
Sandra Sherman Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 04/15/07
Posts: 770
Loc: Vienna, Austria
Hi,
Whenever I turned the volume up on my old HiFi Amp the sound started to crackle, sometimes I lost one side of the stereofield. Since it was a very old HiFi Amp anyway I bought a new one.
A couple of weeks later the same thing happened to my new Amp, I even lose the sound completely sometimes. What can that be? Before I go buy new stuff, I would at least like to have an idea about what`s going on.

It doesn`t always happen, but often.
Any suggestions?

Thnakies,
Sandra
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#145645 - 01/07/12 07:28 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Sandra Sherman]
rharv Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/30/00
Posts: 18594
Loc: Marysville, Mi. USA
Speaker wire shorting out? Switch them at the amp end and see if the crackling moves to the other side. (?)
..or check using meter (continuity across pairs)


Edited by rharv (01/07/12 07:29 PM)
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#145646 - 01/07/12 07:38 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Sandra Sherman]
ROG Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/12/11
Posts: 2436
Loc: York, England
Hi Sandra,

It could be all sorts of things, but it sounds to me like a problem with speaker cables? If there's a bad connection somewhere, as the volume increases and therefore the current running through the cable, the connection will start to break down. It's possible, of course, that it's the input to the amp, but the cables carry lower voltages and current so this is less likely.
Try fitting new speaker cables and if the problem persists, swap the speakers over and see if the other side goes off. If it does, you've got a faulty speaker.

If none of this works, give us some more detail about the system and we'll think again.

ROG.

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#145647 - 01/07/12 07:40 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: ROG]
ROG Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/12/11
Posts: 2436
Loc: York, England
Hi rharv,

Great minds think alike?

ROG

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#145648 - 01/07/12 07:41 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Sandra Sherman]
Don Gaynor Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 7618
Loc: Oklahoma, USA
sandra, before we bunch your skivvies, are we talking about (aboot in canadian) the same speakers? if so, i would suspect that your speakers "went south; belly up; landfill; kaput." it can fool you by seeming okay at lower volume levels. confirm it by substituting a known good pair of speakers. if that solved your problem then watch your bundestpost for mien bill. if it doesn't solve it, just take your receipts to wal-mart for a full refund.

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#145649 - 01/07/12 08:02 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Don Gaynor]
Lawrie Offline
Expert

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 1439
Loc: NSW, Australia
Hi Sandra,
a quick little test to eliminate something...

Try quickly turning your volume control a dozen or so times in each direction.

Does the crackle diminish or even go away? Does the missing channel reappear? If so then I suspect the potentiometer (the device used for the volume control) is probably "grotty" - by moving it quickly you can temporarily create a clean electrical path on the Carbon track and the sliding contact(s).

Just because this is a new amp it doesn't mean that this can't happen, though it is less likely than an old one.

Other than that, as suggested, swap the speaker leads and see if the faults change channel. If they do then the problem is in the speakers or wiring, if not then the problem is internal to the amp.
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#145650 - 01/07/12 08:10 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Lawrie]
Don Gaynor Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 7618
Loc: Oklahoma, USA
lawrie, that was my first thought based on the symptoms but, she said the new amp exhibits the identical symptoms. must be bad speaker wire or fried speakers, no?

Quote:

Whenever I turned the volume up on my old HiFi Amp the sound started to crackle



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#145651 - 01/07/12 08:23 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Sandra Sherman]
Mac Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/29/00
Posts: 38502
Loc: Chesapeake, Virginia USA
Quote:

Hi,
Whenever I turned the volume up on my old HiFi Amp the sound started to crackle, sometimes I lost one side of the stereofield. Since it was a very old HiFi Amp anyway I bought a new one.
A couple of weeks later the same thing happened to my new Amp, I even lose the sound completely sometimes. What can that be? Before I go buy new stuff, I would at least like to have an idea about what`s going on.

It doesn`t always happen, but often.
Any suggestions?

Thnakies,
Sandra




Hi Sandra,

That is very likely due to the Volume Control potentiometer getting dried out and dirty. This is internal and the HiFi must be opened up to cure. The cure is to have a reputable technician introduce some Control Cleaner/Lubricant such as DEOXIT or another brand equivalent.

Common problem, easily cured, most often is worth the investment for you should be able to get years more enjoyment out of the same unit once all the controls and switches have been properly cleaned and lubed.


--Mac
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#145652 - 01/07/12 11:11 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Mac]
seeker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/06/05
Posts: 4047
Loc: 80 Mi North of Sacramento CA
Was advised by you folks to use the DEOXIT.
Using this on my Mixer input connectors, externally and
with q-tip on the internal part.
Immediately worked and resolved my problems since then,
the last few months.

You want to be careful using the product over and above items,
and not use too much. It could melt or otherwise damage finishes
and parts of PC boards.

Dont think you have radio shack in Europe, but for U.S. folks
they sell cans for about $5 U.S.

Good luck !
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#145653 - 01/08/12 09:35 AM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Sandra Sherman]
Don Gaynor Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 7618
Loc: Oklahoma, USA
"Since it was a very old HiFi Amp anyway I bought a new one."
i must be missing something gentlemen. she bought a new amp! i'll stick by my speakers/wiring theory.

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#145654 - 01/08/12 10:12 AM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Don Gaynor]
MountainSide Offline
Expert

Registered: 12/06/11
Posts: 1020
Loc: Florida
Agreed, the problem is in the wiring or the speakers. Switch the left and right speakers...does the problem shift to the other speaker? Doesn't necessarily mean the speaker is bad, just yet.

Check the bare wires or terminals on each end of the speaker wires....do you have good metal to metal contacts...even if tinned, scrap the terminal ends of the wire down to get good contacts.

What about the speaker contacts...are they clean and bright or corroded?

What gauge speaker wire are you using? Should be at least 16 guage, I prefer 14. Older wire will degrade sound and performance....how old are the wires?
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#145655 - 01/08/12 10:53 AM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: MountainSide]
Sandra Sherman Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 04/15/07
Posts: 770
Loc: Vienna, Austria
First off: Thanks so much for your help!
I am in the process of testing what you guys suggested. Of course today everything works fine, I`m very sure though, tomorrow when I`ll be teaching it`ll appear again;-))

I thought about the wires too, since they are the same age the old amp was (hmm, I moved in in 1990 - daaamn;-)) But so are the speakers...

But to exclude the Poti theory I will plug the headphones into the amps the next time it appears again. If the crackle ain`t on the headphones it can`t be the volume poti.

I`ll let you know my testing results.

Sandra
_________________________
"GuitarVersum" YouTube Channel: (mostly English)
Online Guitar Lessons | Guitar Gear Reviews | Tutorials
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkT05N04ICdHgmDZrGYz-5A

Website (in German):
https://www.sandrasherman.com



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#145656 - 01/08/12 10:59 AM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: MountainSide]
Don Gaynor Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 7618
Loc: Oklahoma, USA
agreed, but the language barrier may trip her up (confuse her). 16 and 14 gauge refer to AWG (American Wire Gauge) and will be totally foreign (pun intended) to her. then try to explain that 14AWG is larger (meir gross) than 16AWG. exactly opposite to what she would expect.

sandra, please explain: you bought a brand new amp? not a older, one that has been used but is "new to you?"

mac, this is reminiscent of me trying to buy ferric chloride or ammonium per-sulphate etching solution in germany. i wanted to etch my own pc boards and nary a radio shack to be found.

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#145657 - 01/08/12 11:07 AM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Don Gaynor]
Sandra Sherman Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 04/15/07
Posts: 770
Loc: Vienna, Austria
Don: Yes it is a brand new amp. And of course there could be a problem with it. But I think it`s very unlikely that the same symptoms appear on the old and the new amp.

Thanks for explaining the AWG thing to me, but I just would have bought any good wire. I doubt it makes that much a difference between good wire and superior wire, as long as I don`t buy cheapo crap.

Sandra
_________________________
"GuitarVersum" YouTube Channel: (mostly English)
Online Guitar Lessons | Guitar Gear Reviews | Tutorials
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkT05N04ICdHgmDZrGYz-5A

Website (in German):
https://www.sandrasherman.com



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#145658 - 01/08/12 12:20 PM [Off-Topic] Re: What`s wrong with my HiFi? [Re: Sandra Sherman]
Don Gaynor Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 7618
Loc: Oklahoma, USA
small wire introduces unwanted resistance (actually, impedance) so degrades the signal quite rapidly and is a factor of the wire's length. you can get into high finance with just the speaker wire. audiophiles (purists) would say that you need OFC (Oxygen-Free Copper) but that would be expensive overkill in your application. 16 AWG (recommended minimum) is 0.0508 inch or 1.31 mm in diameter. 14 AWG (better choice) is .0641 inch or 2.08 mm in diameter. Considerably larger. i hope that this electronics 101 lesson was helpful.

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