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Roland Studio Capture hum and clicking noise on specific gain settings
Old 16th March 2015
  #1
323496 ๐ŸŽ™๏ธ
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Unhappy Roland Studio Capture hum and clicking noise on specific gain settings

I have come across this very strange problem with my Roland Studio Capture.

When setting the mic gain, there's a hum that increases up to a point. Then the interface makes a click, which can also be seen in the meters, and the hum disappears, only to increase again at another gain point. The most noticeable point is at 27.5 gain (big hum) which then goes to zero on 28 gain. This happens in three specific points, on every channel, and even with no microphone plugged in.

I have made a short video because it really is hard to believe:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/ufzvr982zj...%2039.mov?dl=0

Is anybody else experiencing this?
Old 20th March 2015
  #2
Lives for gear
Yes. I have the Quad Capture and it does this. I think it has to do with the auto-sens function. In practice it means there are settings with less gain that are noisier than settings with higher gain.

It's a weird box. I've relegated mine to just being a USB to MIDI converter box. I bought it as a travel interface to use the Hi-Z input for guitar, but on mine there is too much noise to get a clean recording.

It was a disappointment. I have a hard time reconciling the glowing reviews with the actual sound in use.
Old 21st March 2015
  #3
323496 ๐ŸŽ™๏ธ
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I can't contact Roland US support because I'm not in the US. They closed my support ticket because of this. Roland Iberia support hasn't replied, and I don't have my hopes up.

Here's what I found out so far:

-Channels 9-12 don't hum. Channels 1-8 and 13-16 do.
-The hum is not a deal breaker, but there's no reason for it to happen either. This pisses me off.
-The gain controls are "fake". There are a few fixed gain points, and everything in between is digital gain (or attenuation), amplifying every noise. Now this REALLY pisses me off!

Forgetting the hum problem for a moment, the unit works like this:

It seems that the gain steps work so the last digitally amplified gain point (i.e. 27.5) boosts a lot of the gain noise (hiss), and then you switch to the next real point (i.e. 28) the noise floor drops dramatically as the analog gain is applied. Not sure if my explanation makes sense.

A simpler summary: the digital gain applied between the real analog gain steps boosts the noise unnecessarily. And this also means that the preamps suck.

However, with this knowledge and a few external preamps, I can work around the issue until I find something better. Maybe the Antelope Zen Studio?
Old 21st March 2015
  #4
Lives for gear
I think your explanation is correct. I wish you luck with it, or with getting a nicer replacement.
Old 21st March 2015
  #5
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 323496 View Post
I can't contact Roland US support because I'm not in the US. They closed my support ticket because of this. Roland Iberia support hasn't replied, and I don't have my hopes up.

Here's what I found out so far:

-Channels 9-12 don't hum. Channels 1-8 and 13-16 do.
-The hum is not a deal breaker, but there's no reason for it to happen either. This pisses me off.
-The gain controls are "fake". There are a few fixed gain points, and everything in between is digital gain (or attenuation), amplifying every noise. Now this REALLY pisses me off!

Forgetting the hum problem for a moment, the unit works like this:

It seems that the gain steps work so the last digitally amplified gain point (i.e. 27.5) boosts a lot of the gain noise (hiss), and then you switch to the next real point (i.e. 28) the noise floor drops dramatically as the analog gain is applied. Not sure if my explanation makes sense.

A simpler summary: the digital gain applied between the real analog gain steps boosts the noise unnecessarily. And this also means that the preamps suck.

However, with this knowledge and a few external preamps, I can work around the issue until I find something better. Maybe the Antelope Zen Studio?

I'll test my studio capture tomorrow and let you know if i find the same issues or not
Old 24th March 2015
  #6
323496 ๐ŸŽ™๏ธ
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by t-bone View Post
I'll test my studio capture tomorrow and let you know if i find the same issues or not
Were you able to run some tests? I'm most interested in knowing if the hum is also widespread. I think the gain/noise thing is by design. The gain noise is easy to hear. In order to hear the hum you need to really crank the volume.
Old 25th March 2015
  #7
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 323496 View Post
Were you able to run some tests? I'm most interested in knowing if the hum is also widespread. I think the gain/noise thing is by design. The gain noise is easy to hear. In order to hear the hum you need to really crank the volume.
Yep, same over here 13.5, 27.5 and i can`t remember the other setting for the third one but yea there is a audible click when you hit that gain setting. I never noticed it before until your post. Not a deal breaker for me but still good to know. Besides that the studio capture is a dark horse in the audio interface department. You don`t hear to much about them but i took this over a rme ufx when i a b`d them i found the Roland a little bit darker maybe but that was it. Rock solid drivers and plenty of ins and outs. The only thing missing is some adat ports but you can link two units together which gives you something like 32 in and 20 out. Not bad at all
Old 28th October 2015
  #8
Lives for gear
Ok. I just bought the Studio-Capture knowing this thread.
I've tested this, can confirm it but that's not a big problem for me.
The main thing that disappoints me, really, is the noise and hum at outputs 1-2 thru my Focal Alpha 65 monitors.
It seems, as someone said, the knobs are fake.
The output is always too loud, even if there is no sound. It seems that if I turn up a little bit the level knob the monitors will "explode"!
Unfortunately my monitors don't have a volume knob.
I can even hear some sound thru my monitors with all knobs turned down!

I was used to a simple Scarlett8i6 and the monitors leve knob was real and the outputs were not noisy.
I think I was buying a better interface but maybe I was wrong.

Do you also notice noise and hum with your monitors?

I can even listen to MIDI knobs movements!!
Old 28th October 2015
  #9
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by camarao View Post
Ok. I just bought the Studio-Capture knowing this thread.
I've tested this, can confirm it but that's not a big problem for me.
The main thing that disappoints me, really, is the noise and hum at outputs 1-2 thru my Focal Alpha 65 monitors.
It seems, as someone said, the knobs are fake.
The output is always too loud, even if there is no sound. It seems that if I turn up a little bit the level knob the monitors will "explode"!
Unfortunately my monitors don't have a volume knob.
I can even hear some sound thru my monitors with all knobs turned down!

I was used to a simple Scarlett8i6 and the monitors leve knob was real and the outputs were not noisy.
I think I was buying a better interface but maybe I was wrong.

Do you also notice noise and hum with your monitors?

I can even listen to MIDI knobs movements!!
Yeah, I do, I get lots of hum. My Quad Capture is a noisy mess and I can't use it. It sits there being an expensive, poorly made USB>MIDI box. I won't buy anything Roland ever again. Such a junky, plastic company. Sorry for your troubles, hope you can get yourself a decent interface.
Old 28th October 2015
  #10
323496 ๐ŸŽ™๏ธ
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by camarao View Post
Do you also notice noise and hum with your monitors?
I don't. I have a pair of Yamaha HS8. It seems like a level mismatch. Your monitors have settings in the back:

Alpha 65 - Focal

Have you tried the sensitivity switch? That should do it.
Old 28th October 2015
  #11
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljefe View Post
Yeah, I do, I get lots of hum. My Quad Capture is a noisy mess and I can't use it. It sits there being an expensive, poorly made USB>MIDI box. I won't buy anything Roland ever again. Such a junky, plastic company. Sorry for your troubles, hope you can get yourself a decent interface.
I just notice this hiss and hum at the outputs 1 and 2.
I seems those outputs (as 3-4, 5-6 and 7-8) are toooo hot...
And turning down the levels in software doesn't help either.
Old 28th October 2015
  #12
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 323496 View Post
I don't. I have a pair of Yamaha HS8. It seems like a level mismatch. Your monitors have settings in the back:

Alpha 65 - Focal

Have you tried the sensitivity switch? That should do it.
Yes. Still hiss and hum.
Old 28th October 2015
  #13
been using an OCTA CAPTURE for years
never had a hiss problem
I use extrernal preamps and only use the roland pres when i need extra
i run outboard thru it as well
never had mm..hiss issues

been running genelec 8050 and ns10s out of output channel 1-2 and 3-4
no hassles.
Old 28th October 2015
  #14
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caramel View Post
been using an OCTA CAPTURE for years
never had a hiss problem
I use extrernal preamps and only use the roland pres when i need extra
i run outboard thru it as well
never had mm..hiss issues

been running genelec 8050 and ns10s out of output channel 1-2 and 3-4
no hassles.
The Octa-Capture isn't USB bus powered. Maybe that accounts for the difference in audio quality.
Old 28th October 2015
  #15
Lives for gear
Is there something I can connect between the Studio-Capture and the monitors?
Something with a volume knob?
Old 28th October 2015
  #16
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljefe View Post
The Octa-Capture isn't USB bus powered. Maybe that accounts for the difference in audio quality.
Neither Studio-Capture.
Old 8th April 2016
  #17
323496 ๐ŸŽ™๏ธ
Guest
I'm going to resurrect this thread to see if any fellow Studio-Capture owners have moved to a different interface, and noticed the change. I've gotten good use out of it, but the internal noise and the gain noise have me worried.
Old 8th April 2016
  #18
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 323496 View Post
I'm going to resurrect this thread to see if any fellow Studio-Capture owners have moved to a different interface, and noticed the change. I've gotten good use out of it, but the internal noise and the gain noise have me worried.
sent it back.
now I have a RME UC.
no problems at all.
Old 8th April 2016
  #19
323496 ๐ŸŽ™๏ธ
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by camarao View Post
sent it back.
now I have a RME UC.
no problems at all.
Thanks for the reply! Besides the hiss problems, did you notice any further quality improvements?
Old 9th April 2016
  #20
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 323496 View Post
Thanks for the reply! Besides the hiss problems, did you notice any further quality improvements?
The only thing I notice is that I don't notice the RME at all which is a great thing.
And the recordings are great.
Old 27th January 2017
  #21
Here for the gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljefe View Post
Yes. I have the Quad Capture and it does this. I think it has to do with the auto-sens function. In practice it means there are settings with less gain that are noisier than settings with higher gain.

It's a weird box. I've relegated mine to just being a USB to MIDI converter box. I bought it as a travel interface to use the Hi-Z input for guitar, but on mine there is too much noise to get a clean recording.

It was a disappointment. I have a hard time reconciling the glowing reviews with the actual sound in use.
I have the octa capture and really happy with it and I had no issues with crackling sounds while I turn the gain up.It must be a manufacturing mistake.But the onboard preamps are not ideal for vocals.But you can bypass the preamps by setting the gain at 0db and by using a trs jack
Old 15th June 2018
  #22
Here for the gear
 

I have the hum on INPUT channels 3 and 4. Even more troublesome, my audio capture will result in a garbled warbling sound. It almost sounds like a clocking issue, but it will do it for 1 or 2 record passes and then record cleanly. It has ruined several archival concerts that I was hired to record. I use MOTU Digital Performer 9.51 on a Mac MINI with 4 GB running El Capitan. I've also had the same garbled sound issue using the interface with my studio Mac tower running Yosemite. Anybody experienced this problem?
Old 6th April 2020
  #23
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ljefe View Post
Yes. I have the Quad Capture and it does this. I think it has to do with the auto-sens function. In practice it means there are settings with less gain that are noisier than settings with higher gain.

It's a weird box. I've relegated mine to just being a USB to MIDI converter box. I bought it as a travel interface to use the Hi-Z input for guitar, but on mine there is too much noise to get a clean recording.

It was a disappointment. I have a hard time reconciling the glowing reviews with the actual sound in use.
My apologies to ress this thread, but having read through, I just discovered that my Studio Capture has the exact same problem. It's actually how I found this thread, I wanted to know if other people had issues with this board as well, or if I was just "hearing noises". I am so disappointed in it that I thought I would sell it, but then I saw your post. Could you please explain what you meant here:

"I've relegated mine to just being a USB to MIDI converter box"

What do you mean, how do you do that? Does this mean that, even if I replace my interface I could still get use out of this thing by repurposing it like you said?
Many thanks!
Old 1st August 2020
  #24
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 323496 View Post
Channels 9-12 don't hum. Channels 1-8 and 13-16 do.
I'm testing out a Studio Capture and am seeing quite literally the same thing.

I get a low level 60 Hz hum on every channel except 9-12, increasing to fairly audible levels at the settings with the highest digital gain (13.5, 27.5). This happens regardless of what's connected, and even if nothing is connected to the input at all. I've tried multiple pieces of both balanced and unbalanced equipment with the same result. The only good news is, aside from the hum, both balanced and unbalanced equipment works absolutely fine connected with TRS cables.

The interface is also quite noisy at higher gain settings independent of the hum. At 28, the background noise (which is pretty much just white noise) is significantly louder than the hum. That's actually not such a big deal for my use, though. I don't have much need for high gain on the inputs.

The performance is pretty disappointing overall. I wasn't expecting the absolute best quality-wise given the price, and the feature set is great. But the hum is bad. I can filter it out in software, but I'll have to buy something else for any serious recording.

Update: It looks like the hum I'm seeing is actually a ground loop issue even though it affects inputs that are not connected (and doesn't affect some inputs that are connected to the equipment that seems to be responsible, strangely). Hopefully that's useful information for anyone else seeing this behavior. The interface is still a bit on the noisy side with the ground loop fixed, but it's much better (and the hum is gone).
Old 1st August 2020
  #25
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by andreim View Post
What do you mean, how do you do that? Does this mean that, even if I replace my interface I could still get use out of this thing by repurposing it like you said?
Many thanks!
The Studio Capture has MIDI in/out ports, so you can always use it as a really expensive USB MIDI adapter.

I'd just sell it and buy a cheap class compliant USB MIDI interface if that's what you want, though.
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