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Noise From Guitar Amps, Any Solutions?
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Gatsby
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#1
12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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Noise From Guitar Amps, Any Solutions?

So I own some Fender Telecasters and a couple amps with my main amp being a Fender 59' Bassman. My issue is that my amp makes a lot of noise. There isn't any hum, just a lot of white noise that doesn't sound good when recorded. Anyways, I'm pretty new to recording and I wondered if there were any solutions to this and I wanted to know if this was pretty much normal with guitar amps. So I have a few questions...

Is the noise a normal problem with the majority of amps or/and are there higher end amps out there that do more to keep the noise down? Could my amp just happen to be pretty bad in regards to noise?

What causes the noise? And does having certain pickups, or pickups versus humbuckers affect the noise?

Will using a descent power conditioner say from a company like Furman that filters the electrical signal to be clean and isolates outlets minimizing intercomponent interference actually help me in any way, or is that a waste of money?

Is this pretty much a problem only addressed by recording techniques and the use of hardware/software?
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12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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Sometimes this works for me, sometimes it makes the tone of the guitar sound strange. Record just the white noise to a separate track and flip the phase to cancel it out. I will also sometimes employ a broadband noise reduction like DINR, X-Noise or similar. More often than not I ease up on the compressor settings and live with it.
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12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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How old are the preamp tubes? Did you try to reseat them yet?
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12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatsby View Post
So I own some Fender Telecasters and a couple amps with my main amp being a Fender 59' Bassman. My issue is that my amp makes a lot of noise. There isn't any hum, just a lot of white noise that doesn't sound good when recorded. Anyways, I'm pretty new to recording and I wondered if there were any solutions to this and I wanted to know if this was pretty much normal with guitar amps. So I have a few questions...

Is the noise a normal problem with the majority of amps or/and are there higher end amps out there that do more to keep the noise down? Could my amp just happen to be pretty bad in regards to noise?

What causes the noise? And does having certain pickups, or pickups versus humbuckers affect the noise?

Will using a descent power conditioner say from a company like Furman that filters the electrical signal to be clean and isolates outlets minimizing intercomponent interference actually help me in any way, or is that a waste of money?

Is this pretty much a problem only addressed by recording techniques and the use of hardware/software?
There shouldn't be noise with that amp. Pedals make noise though, and are handled with a gate. Telecasters can make noise, effected from electronics or lights. One remedy that sometimes works is to move the guitar to different positions and find a sweet spot where the noise gets suppressed. Also, check the wiring in the guitar, make sure pickup is grounded.
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12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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Start with nothing plugged into the amp and the volumes off, quiet? Good. Turn up the volumes, should be quite quiet, just a little hiss until you get the levels up pretty good. If that's good then you're looking at cables, guitar, flourescent lights and so on. If it makes the hissing with nothing plugged in then replace your preamp tubes with known good ones. Still hissing? Then likely caps and it needs a tuneup by a good tech.
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12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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Les
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Quote:
Sometimes this works for me, sometimes it makes the tone of the guitar sound strange. Record just the white noise to a separate track and flip the phase to cancel it out. I will also sometimes employ a broadband noise reduction like DINR, X-Noise or similar. More often than not I ease up on the compressor settings and live with it.
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12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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Amps are noisy beasts at best.

Follow all of the excellent above advise.....but remember......

We have been recording amplified guitars for a long time and there is a certain 'authenticity' that can be associated with having some of that goodness in your tracks.

Embrace the noise. Your listeners will know for certain that you didn't use software.
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Gatsby
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27th May 2010
Old 27th May 2010
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Thanks for the replies, sorry for my late reply, no internet for a while.

Well unfortunately a some your suggestions were a bit over my head, but I'll look into them.

Ron I don't know how old the tubes are. I bought the amp two years ago new and haven't used it that much so I would think the tubes should be fine.

Thanks for the good advice Drbob. I'll have to try that test and see what happens. I hope that I don't need to replace the preamp tubes...

Nobody answered the question about power and power conditioners, could that be a factor and do power conditioners have a positive effect on amp noise that is noticeable and worth the money?
#9
27th May 2010
Old 27th May 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatsby View Post
Thanks for the replies, sorry for my late reply, no internet for a while.

Well unfortunately a some your suggestions were a bit over my head, but I'll look into them.

Ron I don't know how old the tubes are. I bought the amp two years ago new and haven't used it that much so I would think the tubes should be fine.

Thanks for the good advice Drbob. I'll have to try that test and see what happens. I hope that I don't need to replace the preamp tubes...

Nobody answered the question about power and power conditioners, could that be a factor and do power conditioners have a positive effect on amp noise that is noticeable and worth the money?
Last question first - no, not on a guitar amp and no, probably not.

About tubes - it really doesn't matter how old the tubes are as far as noise is concerned - some tubes (many tubes, actually) are noisy right out of the box. Since tube checkers do not test noise the only way to determine if a tube is noisy is to plug it into an amp and listen to it. Since many vendors will not take back a tube, especially if it has been put in equipment, this can get expensive -p it's a good idea to discuss return policy before purchasing, especially with pricey NOS tubes.

Tube noise is also a function of the circuit the tube is installed in - a tube that's just fine in a hi-fi might be noisy as hell in a guitar amp.

If the amp has been sitting for awhile take it to a tech and have the tube sockets cleaned. That will often take car3e of a lot of noise problems right off the bat.
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