Please report all spam threads, posts and suspicious members. We receive spam notifications and will take immediate action!
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Thread: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

  1. #1
    IT Hertz is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11

    Default FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    I get two different noises. One is a constant, random digital background noise which is noticeable at higher speaker volumes. The second, noticeable at even very low volumes, is a low frequency buzz/hum with hardware (HD, SSD) or video (APU, no secondary GPU installed) activity. By video activity, I mean any time there is a change in video, such as motion in a game or even simply scrolling a web page.

    It's gotten worse over time. I didn't notice it right after I assembled this PC (December 2012) or I certainly would have returned the mobo during the etailer return period. At this point, it'd be a manufacturer warranty claim.

    This bleed through occurs even with onboard audio disabled in UEFI. It does not, however, occur while in UEFI -- i.e., I can highlight/click icons and experience blissful silence. I presume this means the audio chip isn't powered up until after UEFI is exited. Btw, I did update to the latest UEFI revision; no joy.

    This is obviously not a driver issue, since it occurs with onboard audio disabled and audio device and driver uninstalled.

    This noise is highly annoying and, for one thing, it ruins the gaming experience during what should be silent moments and causes false sound cues (e.g., vehicle motor nearby when there isn't one). Also, I must keep speaker volume low or else suffer the constant sound.

    If this isn't a driver issue, then it's hardware. If it isn't a speaker/cable issue (I checked my cables, no grounding probs, and my 7.1 speakers work just fine with an X-Fi card on another PC), then it's the mobo. If it's the mobo, then it's a poor design and/or they cheaped out on components despite all the hype on their website to the contrary (e.g., uber quality gold Jap Caps).
    I am not impressed, at least not favorably!

    So, is there a fix in the works (UEFI update, maybe?) or am I looking at either being forced to use a sound card (defeating the purpose of buying this fully integrated mobo for this particular PC, and cross my fingers that it doesn't bleed into the sound card bus as well) or doing a warranty RMA (and suffering that downtime)?

    Specs:
    AMD A10-5800K cpu
    FM2A85X Extreme6 mobo
    Crucial Ballistix 8GB ram
    Antec HCG-750 power
    OCZ Vertex 4 256GB SSD
    Seagate Barracuda 3TB HD
    ASUS DRW-24B3LT DVD
    NEC FP2141SB CRT
    Creative T7700 speakers
    Logitech G15 keyboard (old version)
    Logitech G9X mouse
    Windows 8 Pro

  2. #2
    therube is offline Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    MD
    Posts
    108

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    General ground, ground loop issue (but doesn't sound like that's going to be the case)?
    Some ideas along that line, Why do the sub woofers "hum"?

  3. #3
    parsec's Avatar
    parsec is online now Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Bartlett, Illinois
    Posts
    3,492

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    I assume your speakers are connected to the boards rear I/O panel?

    Are your mouse or keyboard wireless? If so, is the receiver plugged into a USB port on the I/O panel, near the speaker connections? If so, try moving the receiver to a USB port on a USB hub that is connected with a cable to the I/O panel, or try a USB port on the front panel of your case. The radio connection of these devices can cause interference that you can hear. Can you notice a change in the noise when you simply move the mouse? For a test, if you have a wired USB mouse or keyboard, try using that to see if the noise stops, after removing the wireless device receiver.

    If you have any PSU cables near the left side of the board (as mounted in a case) moving them away from that area, where the audio chip is usually located, might help.

    Otherwise, in my experience when a board has a noisy audio source, there may be nothing you can do about it. I've had boards that are very noisy on the audio outputs, and others are quiet, and nothing I did could fix the noisy boards. I had to use the digital SPDIF output on the noisy boards, connected to an external DAC and amplifier, to use them as an audio source. Driver and BIOS updates will do nothing if the audio is noisy, IMO.

    A PC is a terrible environment for analog audio, all the digital chips create noise that is easily picked up by the unshielded audio traces on the board. It's a miracle that some boards have quiet audio IMO, and what the difference is I don't know. My (different) ASRock board has a quiet audio output, even using a wireless mouse and keyboard, but I have both receivers on USB hubs with cables running to the I/O panel, several feet away from the PC.

  4. #4
    IT Hertz is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    Quote Originally Posted by parsec View Post
    I assume your speakers are connected to the boards rear I/O panel?
    Correct.

    Are your mouse or keyboard wireless?
    Both are wired, the mouse being connected to the keyboard's built-in USB hub and the KB direct to mobo rear USB 2.0.

    If you have any PSU cables near the left side of the board (as mounted in a case) moving them away from that area, where the audio chip is usually located, might help.
    For this build, I used my old Chieftec Dragon mid-tower case (forgot to spec it in the OP); the Antec PSU is top mounted. The Realtek ALC898 on this board is very near the bottom. My cables are routed up top and nicely tucked away. There are no wires anywhere near the Realtek chip.

    A PC is a terrible environment for analog audio, all the digital chips create noise that is easily picked up by the unshielded audio traces on the board.
    ASRock touts their design and build quality, as do most manufacturers. But really, why even bother putting "HD audio" on the board if they're not going to ensure it has adequate shielding and filtering to result in quality audio output?!? Perhaps SOME of these boards are silent and it's just a matter of build/QC inconsistency.

    None of the reviews (pro or consumer) I read prior to purchase mentioned this problem. Either I received a rare lemon or there are lots of people who don't bother talking about it or they simply never bothered using onboard audio and went straight to sound cards with their new builds and thus are unaware of the issue.

  5. #5
    IT Hertz is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    Quote Originally Posted by therube View Post
    General ground, ground loop issue (but doesn't sound like that's going to be the case)?
    I agree that's quite common. As a long-time consumer electronics tech, bad grounding one of the first things I look for when the symptom is hum. That's why I made it a point to mention I checked my cabling and grounds. I also don't use plastic standoffs in my builds.

    If there's a grounding fault, it's on the mobo itself -- poor QC perhaps.
    It could be cold solder joints or defective thru-plating/pad to an internal ground plane layer, who knows..
    If it's an inner layer defect, the board is toast, as even the most skilled solder jockey can't repair most of those (I'm good, but not that good).

    If the issue is mechanical in nature, such as above, it could present problems with other hardware I eventually add/attach.
    This problem may already be or may become much more serious than just an annoying noise that is potentially worked around via sound card.

  6. #6
    Meeks is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    I am having the exact same problem with this motherboard. Any chance you have found a solution?

  7. #7
    IT Hertz is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    Quote Originally Posted by Meeks View Post
    I am having the exact same problem with this motherboard. Any chance you have found a solution?
    I don't think there is a solution short of replacement or using a different brand/model.
    If it's a design flaw, there's nothing we can do about it unless they fix it with a revision and are willing to replace our boards.
    If it's a manufacturing/QC problem instead of a design flaw, we might try swapping it under warranty and cross our fingers that we don't get a new board with the same or worse problem. I have opted not to risk it, considering this PC will go to relatives as soon as I build the Haswell machine this year -- it won't get used as much then, and will probably be good enough for their purposes.

    In the meantime, I've managed to make it bearable for the most part by carefully adjusting volume levels on my speakers' remote box and in Windows. You can also play around with the Realtek Audio Manager and see if changing those settings helps you any. If the volume is kept low, so is the noise.

    If you swap your board, do let us know whether the replacement suffers this malady.
    Last edited by IT Hertz; 07-31-2013 at 08:16 AM.

  8. #8
    parsec's Avatar
    parsec is online now Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Bartlett, Illinois
    Posts
    3,492

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    Since the noise is generated or picked up inside the PC, it is there regardless of the volume level. But as you said, reducing the output level from the PC will help to reduce the resulting noise at the speakers.

    Have you tried playing around with the Windows Sound option in Control Panel? The multiple level controls that can exist for one audio source is annoying, and you might find a surprise level setting set at or near 100%. It sounds like you know what you are doing keeping PSU noise out of the audio path. Still, a mother board is loaded with all kinds of digital noise sources that you cannot move.

    Digging deep into the PC audio bag of tricks, CPU power saving features can cause noise, apparently added to the power or ground lines. Try disabling them and check the noise afterwards. You can imagine all the ground traces on a board, that are not star grounded, which I imagine you are familiar with.

    I saw a review of the new ASR Z87 Ex 6 board, which included a test of the audio. The Purity Sound components look promising, but the THD that was measured was poor, higher than two other boards using the same ALC1150 codec chip, and overall the worst of the test group. The SNR tests were all at -110db+, but that was at a high sampling rate, and likely that of the digital output. THD is not as important as all the background noise.

    What I'm not seeing mentioned in the reviews are the Op-Amps used after the ALC1150 codec chip, which are the actual analog line level amplifiers. This ASR board uses NE5532's (made by TI at least, ~0.50 cents each for 1K quantity), which are not bad chips. They are commonly used in home audio components, and can be found in fairly pricey equipment. They are not a new design, about 20 years old. At least there are separate chips for the headphone and line level outputs. As the sole amplifiers for each task, they are better than the usual PC audio, but must be implemented correctly.

    Not easy to do, but have you ever tried removing components one at a time to see if you can isolate what might be causing noise? Any chance the third wire ground on your AC outlet is not connected?

  9. #9
    IT Hertz is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    Quote Originally Posted by Meeks View Post
    I am having the exact same problem with this motherboard. Any chance you have found a solution?
    Try it with headphones.
    Unplug all speaker cables from the mobo and plug in a decent pair of non-amplified headphones.

    Perform separate tests with phones connected to each output (lime, orange, blue, black).
    Remember to turn Windows/Realtek volume down before wearing the phones.

    Gradually crank up the phones as you check the outputs for sound via Realtek HD Audio Manager (in 7.1 mode with all speakers enabled).
    Load up a browser or other program that you can scroll pages on but that will make no sound of its own (i.e., no active video or audio pages).
    With Windows/Realtek volume turned up full, do nothing but scroll the window with the mouse and see if you hear noise.

    Report back.

    P.S. Remember to turn the volume back down before doing anything else in Windows that will generate sound.
    Last edited by IT Hertz; 07-31-2013 at 02:30 PM.

  10. #10
    IT Hertz is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: FM2A85X Extreme6 audio bleed through (leakage)

    Quote Originally Posted by parsec View Post
    Since the noise is generated or picked up inside the PC, it is there regardless of the volume level.
    Yup, even with the audio chip disabled, which should be nigh on impossible, but hearing is believing.

    Have you tried playing around with the Windows Sound option in Control Panel?
    Yep.

    CPU power saving features can cause noise, apparently added to the power or ground lines.
    Checked for that, too. No joy. I suspect you aren't far off, though, in terms of it being power supply related. I should maybe suspect the PSU, but being a long-time Antec user and never having used ASRock boards before (and not having this issue with previous boards from other brands), I'm leaning toward the mobo as the culprit.

    With that in mind, I may be tempted to look to a different brand for the upcoming Haswell build. OTOH, their 1150 boards with Purity Sound may not be as problematic. The hype specs look good anyway.

    Not easy to do, but have you ever tried removing components one at a time to see if you can isolate what might be causing noise?
    I assume you're referring to system components and not mobo components.
    The latter would be very not easy to do.
    But yes, in desperation I went on the easter egg hunt -- not difficult but annoying.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •