Unable to achieve (relative) silence though monitors
I have a pair of Yamaha HS50ms connected via balanced cables to a saffire pro 14, which is connected to my imac via firewire alone. My problem is that I can hear the signal even when the volume controls on the saffire are all the way down (headphones and monitors). I've tried all kinds of combinations of inputs/ outputs through saffires mix control software, but still have the same problem.
I also have the problem of hearing what sounds like cpu noise or hardware chatter through the monitors when the firewire is used. I solved this by cutting the shield and isolating it on the monitor end of some old balanced cables and using those between my saffire and the monitors. I don't want to be cutting up my newer balanced cables so if there's another way to sort this, I'd be glad to hear it.
I've had a look around and most people point me towards ground loops etc and suggest a ground lift of my imacs plug, which I don't want to have to resort to, hence the shield snip on the cables. As for the volume problem, I have no idea, everything was fine for a day or so after I installed everything, then all of a sudden I got the noise and volume problems together, almost as if theres a silly amount of gain on the line level across the firewire.