Crackling questions... Trying to find the cause!!

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by RumbleMan3, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    Hey guys! (Not sure if this is the right forum to post this in, but anyway)

    I am experiencing some crackling... u know the type, when you’re messing around with your loose cables and stuff. Not feedback, just little pops and crackles.

    Here and there, it keeps coming up, ever since I discovered the push/pull knob feature on my active Cort artisan c4 (I’ve had this bass for over a year and only just discovered this feature :facepalm: it’s for active/passive. It’s a 2008 model, the latest models have the switch instead of push pull volume knob) anyway.

    I’m thinking maybe it’s cos I haven’t really used this feature before and it’s just warming up or whatever, “burning all the cobwebs out”. Ever since now I’ve always had the knob pushed in in active mode. Ever since I have discovered this feature, I’ve now been playing in passive mode with the knob pulled out (just prefer the simplicity), but I’ve been getting crackling when it’s in both active AND passive.

    It could be unrelated though. A high suspect of the random crackling is also my cheap lead from JB HI-FI (an electrical, video, audio entertainment store here in Australia) not sure on the brand, but it seems to be a cheaper brand, maybe no name. Have had the lead for at least 2 and a half years now, and I use at least twice or three times a week on average. So, regularly. Am looking to get new leads anyway, maybe Mogami Gold.

    It could just be a coincidence my lead is starting to die at the same time I started using this push/pull feature.

    I have had this bass for a year and roughly 4 months. I’m not too sure how much use it had before I bought it, because it was a demo model. All the basses at the store were out hanging. And I don’t know much about life span of hardware and electronics, maybe my input jack is wearing out? In very sure it’s not my amp jack, I’ve got a v3 rumble combo and have had for about a year, (in a week or so) so it’s fairly new.

    So, yeah! I apologise for the lot of info I threw at you guys! I’m sure it’s not a big problem, and at the very worst, which I’m sure is not the case, I have to replace a jack, which is not that big a deal. Thanks for all your help in advance!

    (Please also check out my post on some string suggestions! I could really use some expert experience and advice! :thumbsup:) String suggestions needed!

    Thanks everyone!
  2. saabfender

    saabfender Inactive

    Jan 10, 2018
    TL;DR. Is this a cable/cable end problem? Output jack secure?
  3. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    Not sure
  4. saabfender

    saabfender Inactive

    Jan 10, 2018
    That's where crackling comes from usually.
    sissy kathy likes this.
  5. That type of noise, especially if it’s occurring when you’re moving around or moving the cable around, makes me think the cable or the output jack. You could try cutting six inches or a foot off of the cord and resolder the plug on. Or get some deoxid and clean the jack.

    If it has a barrel jack it’s probably the jack and it should be replaced with a Switchcraft jack or open up the hole in the body and replace with an open frame Switchcraft jack.
  6. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    its a barrel jack. what a switchcraft jack?
  7. Roland GR 88

    Roland GR 88 Commercial User

    Sep 16, 2013
    Ontario Canada
    Retail store manager
    Cheap or worn out cables are usually the cause. Switchcraft is a brand of cable hardware and make a good quality cable ends found on lots of commercially available models.
    Buy a good quality cable and if the problem persists check the interior of the control cavity for a tightly installed output jack and a solid connection to the cable.
    RumbleMan3 likes this.
  8. Switchcraft is a manufacturer. Quality stuff. The Cort probably has an inexpensive barrel jack which are known to wear and / or fail prematurely.

    I don’t know who ships to Australia but I’d stick with a reputable company even if it costs a bit more to make sure it’s a real Switchcraft and not a fake.

    Jack - Switchcraft, 1/4", Stereo, 3-Conductor, Thick End Pin

    They don’t show it in that picture but it will have Switchcraft stamped in the jack somewhere. Again, I’m sure that can and probably has been faked so try to stick with a reputable seller.
    96tbird and RumbleMan3 like this.
  9. Check the jack. I had a “crackling” jack on a MIJ Squier Strat, I know a guitar, and when I loosened it I noticed that the lock washer was missing so it was loose. The geetar was giving to me used so I don’t know what had happened befor me.
  10. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    New England
    Trouble shoot with a different cable then the output jack on the bass first.
    RumbleMan3 likes this.
  11. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    yeah im due for new lead anyway so will get mogami gold or planet waves american stage or something. if im still getting crackling then i know for sure its the jack!
  12. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    Hey all. It’s now September 2020, haven’t picked up this bass in a while, and sorry to restart a thread that’s been inactive for a good while, but I’ve been wanting to play my cort bass and the crackling problem still exists.

    I’m still tossing up between keeping this bass or selling it, and either way I need this problem fixed. I can’t use it with this problem, and I can’t sell it to anyone else with this problem either because number one they might not want it to start with, but also I don’t want to dump this burden on them.

    I’ve spoken more to a few friends and they’ve suggested it could be a loose wire. I’m having a look at the inside cavity as I type and the output jack looks firm. I tried jiggling it around but it looks firmly in tact, not loose. The crackling still happens with different cables. Even replaced the battery and the crackling/popping is still there.

    The crackling and popping really only happens if I tap or knock the cable while it’s plugged in, but also if I’m moving the bass around it will out of the blue pop and crack here and there, even if I’m not directing touching or knocking the cable.

    It’s possible the jack is worn. I don’t know about loose. I really don’t know how to tell without replacing the jack I don’t know how to do that so I’d have to pay someone else to do it, which is what I want to avoid.

    The other thing is it could be a loose or faulty wire or something, but I don’t really know how to check for this, let alone fix it. I’m looking through the cavity and there’s nothing out of the ordinary I can see with the wires.

    Any further help I can get would be fantastic. It’s a beautiful bass, very sentimental to me, sounds great and very fun to use, pretty easy to play. I don’t want to sell it, but either way this issue has to be fixed so I can enjoy my bass again.
  13. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    Thanks guys.

    I’ll post some photos of the cavity... maybe you can spot something I’m unaware of?
  14. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    Hope these help. At least gives you an idea of what I have to work with here. The last thing I want to do os start replacing electronics because that will cost me a lot, because I’ll have to get someone else to do all the work for me. I don’t even have the tools to do it myself even if I learnt how to do it.

    Anyway, here are some photos:








    Sorry for the bad quality btw. Just took them quickly from my phone as the bass sits on my lap.
  15. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    Here’s the beautiful bass:


    Sounds and plays as good as it looks...
    Tonally, it’s basically a bolt-on Peavey Cirrus. Currently strung with well worn DR sunbeams.

    As you can see, it would be a real waste if this bass remained unplayable, as it is now. I would greatly appreciate any help I can get that would contribute to fixing this problem finally.

    Thanks in advance
  16. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    Did you ever try a second cable? Step is determining whether it's the cable or the bass.
    RumbleMan3 likes this.
  17. RumbleMan3


    Apr 14, 2018
    I have. The issue is still there, it must be the bass.
  18. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    IME, barrel jacks are a consumable commodity so replace it only if to rule it out as the culprit. What does the battery box look like? Is it a pop-up / slide-in or wires with +/- clips?

    RumbleMan3 likes this.
  19. I’ll agree with Zooberwerx. Your control cavity picture shows a barrel jack which would be my first suspicion with the symptoms you describe. I replaced one last year in a friend’s Peavey that was doing pretty much the same thing.
    RumbleMan3 and Zooberwerx like this.
  20. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician
    I agree with those who suggest it's the jack. Almost guarantee that's the issue. Replace it with a quality barrel jack or find someone who can fit up a conventional jack on a plate or an electrosocket.
    RumbleMan3 likes this.