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VT bass buzz

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by karankumar, Oct 14, 2013.


  1. karankumar

    karankumar

    Feb 6, 2012
    Ive been the proud owner of a VT bass for more than 3 years and its my always on pedal. I love the crap out of that little metal box but it doesn't love me back anymore.

    Whats happening is that when i turn it on, i get this distinct buzz. My gain, drive and character are usually around 11 o clock. sometimes i pull the the drive down but this buzz doesn't go.

    Is there anyone else who's faced an issue like this or can help me out? Thanks in advance!
     
  2. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    Try a different power supply?
    Try it witout anything else in the chain?
    Try it running on battery?
     
  3. karankumar

    karankumar

    Feb 6, 2012
    Ok ill try these and let you know. Thanks.
     
  4. 99/100 if you unplug the bass from the input the noise will be gone.
     
  5. karankumar

    karankumar

    Feb 6, 2012
    But i need a solution to this problem when my bass is plugged in. Because ideally i like to keep the bass plugged in while playing :p
     
  6. If unplugging the bass takes care of it you need to be looking at your cable or the bass for the source of the noise, not the pedal! Bad ground or incomplete shielding letting in interference.
     
  7. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    If it's the bass I would expect noise with other pedals or even direct into the amp though.
     
  8. I believe the sansamp drive circuit gets ahold of noise and amps it.
     
  9. tech21nyc

    tech21nyc Commercial User

    Aug 17, 2010
    Manufacturer: Tech 21
    If your instrument is picking up interference or 60 cycle hum it will be amplified. As you increase the drive it will amplify it more. This is normal and will happen with any device that amplifies.

    If you are by a computer monitor, fluorescent light, television etc. even an instrument with hum canceling pickups will pickup up a certain amount of noise.
     
  10. karankumar

    karankumar

    Feb 6, 2012
    Sounds like something i could try. Maybe its the active circuitry on my bass adding the noise. I'll try it with the bass on passive too. Thanks for helping out good sir!

    Thanks for the response guys. I'm really not aware of any hum that it could pick up. The buzz is quite prominent so if it is a hum issue, something is generating a LOT of it because of the sheer level of noise generated by the amp circuit.

    Quick question. I'm using a source audio wireless hot hand. Could the receiver of that be creating some interference? The unit is bypassed in my signal chain though.
     
  11. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    Unplug anything you suspect and see if that changes the noise ...
     
  12. tech21nyc

    tech21nyc Commercial User

    Aug 17, 2010
    Manufacturer: Tech 21
    Whenever you have a signal chain (bass, pedals, amp, pa...) and experience noise you need to break it down by each component. In your case if you are running an active bass, this means you already have a preamp in your bass (which will have its own noise floor), so you are running a preamp, into a preamp (VT Bass) into your amps preamp in addition to any other pedals you have in the signal chain. You also have to consider how you are powering everything as that can be a culprit as well.

    The first thing to do is make sure that your power is good. A cheap outlet tester will let you know if you have a grounded outlet. Sometimes even an outlet that shows its grounded may not be adequate for an audio application. Its a good idea to try your rig in a different location to rule this out.

    I know it seems boring but to trouble shoot these issues you need to start at square one. Start with your bass and a known good quality cable and plug directly into your amp. Set your amp and controls as you would for gig volume and just listen for any noise or hum. If your bass has an active circuit that can be bypassed, switch it in and out and listen to the difference. If you hear any noise that goes away when you turn off your guitars volume control that means the noise is not the amp but the instrument. Repeat this procedure with each pedal one at a time. Power the pedals by battery first as this is the quietest mode of operation. Try each pedal separately. If each pedal is quiet when used on its own add another pedal one at a time and repeat the test. If after all the pedals arehooked together and quiet try powering each one, one at a time with your power supply and see what happens.

    Let us know how you make out.
     
  13. karankumar

    karankumar

    Feb 6, 2012
    Looks like there was a grounding issue. I tried my rig somewhere else and no buzz. Thanks so much for the feedback!
     
  14. Randy S

    Randy S

    Jul 7, 2008
    Western WA
    Glad to hear your found the reason.

    Whatever it was, seemed to be the location.

    It is very common in commercial buildings to have the equipment ground and the grounded conductor (commonly but often incorrectly referred to as "the neutral") incorrectly bonded together at sub panels. According to the NEC and good electrical wiring practice, they must only be bonded together at the service entrance panel. Bonding them together at sub panels is not only dangerous, but it creates ground loops in the house power, before you even plug any of the band equipment into the power.

    Then there's all the sources of electromagnetic field noise in the typical bar: house and stage lighting dimmers, refrigeration units, fluorescent lighting ballasts, even your transformer in your stage amp, and on and on.

    I've played in places where I've had to lift the ground on my DI to get rid of noise, and others where I've had to do just the opposite.

    Your best defense against unwanted noise is in understanding how it gets introduced into your signal chain, and what your options are when it does.
     
  15. Could be RF interference noise from local source getting into something. You still need to troubleshoot it to stop it returning at random.
     

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