MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

All about Steinberg's Advanced Integration DSP Studio MR816 CSX and MR816 X.
Mirabela
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MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:12 pm

Hi there !

Welcome to the other side (Dire Straits) :P

Is this forum working?
Let's resume our game, shall we?

C.
:D

Chris Beuermann

Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Chris Beuermann » Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:30 pm

Hello,

well, some info would be good regarding the problem :)

Cheers,

Chris

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Wed Dec 15, 2010 9:14 pm

Heya, Chris from Hamburg !

How about the crisis over there? :P

Actually, this is a long topic opened on the old forum, I just try to call the dogs back online, to resume our diggin'.
So, if you will wait for a few hours, I think people will find the way back home :-)

C.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Wed Dec 15, 2010 9:21 pm

Ooops, Chris, I see your locked message.
Are you from the support team?
If yes, I would have a question for ya....

C.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by sav. » Wed Dec 15, 2010 9:43 pm

Hi C,

Should be sending you some audio files shortly regards the noise.

sav.
C4/5 / i7 920 2.66 / 3gig / XP / MR816X / Tannoy reveal actives / Gtr Rig 3 / BFD2 / Trilian / T-racks3 / ik Arc system / and some foam :)

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Thu Dec 16, 2010 2:51 am

Hi sav !

Glad U've made-it here.

I've been experiencing some testing over here and I have this one for you: If you managed to get a TRS/TRS cable, please try to connect that one between the MR816 and your monitors.
Did the hiss disappeared?

C.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Guillermo » Thu Dec 16, 2010 12:47 pm

Hello guys,

Regarding "hiss noise",

As you know, MR816 has digital volume.
This volume controls inside DSP, with this mechanism, after D/A converter
is "Full-gained".
This means even if you down MR volume, amount of noise does not change
(amount of noise is fixed).
(This is demerit of digital volume)

So recommended setting for MR816 should be as follows,

1. MR816 volume setting : Largish
2. Speaker volume setting : Smallish

This makes actual S/N better.
(As I said, N is fixed, so increase S)

How to tell ?

(E.g.)
* Set MR816 master volume arround -6dB (by MR Editor)
* Then, please adjust your speaker level to fit you ears

I hope this helps.
Cheers,
GN
Guillermo Navarrete, Online Product Specialist
Hamburg, Germany
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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Thu Dec 16, 2010 2:22 pm

Oh, interesting post, never thinking about this...
LOOOL, now I wonder what would happen, if someone would measure the SNR on MR816 on half volume, let say.. :-)))

Well, good point, however, have you noticed the monitors without gain knob out there ?!?
Well, they are.

Sav is using some Tannoy monitors and they don't have gain control.
I'm using HS50 and my digital volume on MR816 stay on -50dB (this is only one led lit on MR816 control) and no noticeable noise out of my monitors (other than the normal noise that is present also with mr816 off).
The DAW volume on MR editor is 0dB, for the record.
So, the general volume is almost muted, still no noise, and the gain on my monitors is about half.
Setting the monitor's level control all the way up is bringing some hiss in, but one could notice that only at 15 cm distance of monitors (my room is not ISO, but is silent enough to record classical guitar without any external noise).

So, in my setup, the noise level, at extreme settings, still not "deranging".

I'm wondering if there is no other issue impedance related in Sav's particular setup (and this is not the only MR816 owner complaining about the hiss on MR816, so something IS going on out there.

C.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Guillermo » Thu Dec 16, 2010 2:38 pm

Hi,

There is another solution.
If he has kind of volume controller like Level Pilot (TC), Bigknob
(Mackie), Volume 2(SPL), add this is between MR and Speaker, it will be solved (MR volum setting would
be 0dB).

Cheers,
GN
Guillermo Navarrete, Online Product Specialist
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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by sav. » Thu Dec 16, 2010 2:55 pm

Hi Guillermo,

Thank you for your input and advice.
Not sure if you know the history on this but thought I would start by saying...
I love the MR unit (not physically! :shock: :lol: ) and have no intention of getting rid of it. I've owned my MR sinse Jan 09. I've had no running problems with the unit, sounds great to me (just this strange hiss/whitnoise issue :? )

I sent back my 1st MR (thinking it was faulty) and when I set up the 2nd MR I was getting the same noise.
I tried everything under the sun to fix the problem but to this day, without success.

I've lived with the noise because a) the noise doesn't record onto any tracks, and b) once I have audio playing through the monitors I can't seem to hear the hiss anymore,

Mirabela has kindly been helping me lately with different avenues to try, at the moment we havent been able to get rid of this noise or even change the sound of the noise, so im starting to think maybe its something to do with my speakers? Or that some speakers are amplifying this digital noise more than others, maybe?

Unfortunately, my active monitors don't have a volume control so I am unable to try your suggestion :(

Heres the specs if it helps any?
http://www.tannoy.com/products/165/uman ... Active.pdf

As ive said before, if I can't find a cure for this, its not the end of the world or the end of using the MR, as an engineer (repair man! ;) ) it frustrates me that I can't figure this out! :(

Cheers
Sav
C4/5 / i7 920 2.66 / 3gig / XP / MR816X / Tannoy reveal actives / Gtr Rig 3 / BFD2 / Trilian / T-racks3 / ik Arc system / and some foam :)

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Guillermo » Thu Dec 16, 2010 3:35 pm

Hi,

Sorry I couldn´t find the information on the thread.
You are using balanced cables (XLR), right?

Cheers,
GN
Guillermo Navarrete, Online Product Specialist
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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by sav. » Thu Dec 16, 2010 4:14 pm

Guillermo wrote:Hi,

Sorry I couldn´t find the information on the thread.
You are using balanced cables (XLR), right?

Cheers,
GN
Hi,

Yep, balanced XLR to 1/4 jack. Last year I bought some more expensive balanced cables, no difference.

Thanks for the idea on the Level Pilot, but I'm a little confused how this may work though? :(
...as it looks like just another volume control :? :oops:

In the MR editor I have all faders on the floor, reading -oo
The DAW fader is set to 0.00 (but even if I put that to -oo it doesnt ger rid of the noise)

This also confused SB help as they said if there is no volume or gain, then there should be no noise. Well, there is noise and it confuses me! :lol:

In previous posts Ive mentioned that when I select another sample rate, the noise stops as the lights flash round, once the sample rate locks in and the lights stop flashing the noise comes back, this confuses me too?
Im guessing thats the pre-amps/ internals switching off inside the MR as to not create a pop in the speakers while it does this?

The noise is what you would expect if master volume and gains were set high, but all volumes on MR are set to their lowest (even switching on all the input pads doesnt lower the noise)

In the Mr editor with everything set to -oo, if I select any of the ch's 1 to 8 and set one of them to 0db, then start raising the master volume, only when I get to -4db does it start to get any louder (again, I would expect this noise at these volumes) but its not a great deal louder.

Thinking it might be something to do with the home electrics, last year I set the MR and speakers up in different rooms around the house and have taken them to my place of work and still get the noise ( the noise is there even without the PC connected)

The fact that Ive had 2 MR units do this and others are getting the same issue (though a small drop in the ocean of MR owners) does make me think its more a compatability issue with some speakers rather than a fault or faulty batch of MR's

Not having this noise problem when my speakers were connected to my old Yamaha 02R, but get it straight away connecting it into the MR has had me scratching my head for about 2 years, now I have no hair! :shock: :lol:

Cheers
Sav.
C4/5 / i7 920 2.66 / 3gig / XP / MR816X / Tannoy reveal actives / Gtr Rig 3 / BFD2 / Trilian / T-racks3 / ik Arc system / and some foam :)

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Thu Dec 16, 2010 5:05 pm

Sav, by all means, please, stop doing that to your hair ! :shock:

I have long hair (yet) and I can't imagine the life you've been through for the last year :mrgreen:

So, for new readers, let's recap:

Sav's monitors do not hiss with the balanced audio wire unconnected.
Sav's monitors do not hiss with the balanced audio cables connected to MR816, having the MR816 off.
Sav's monitors DO HISS with the cables connected to the MR816 on, regardless the MR816 volume settings.
Sav's monitors do not hiss connected to the old audio interface.

Now, Sav, do you still have the old interface?
Can you have a short test now, plugging the monitors into it with the same cables (if possible) and listen for some music at a normal level?
Is there any kind of hiss in this setup?
What if you turn the volume up?

C.
PS: Too bad I don't live in UK, I'll probably be paying you a visit to check out those shakes you've got :D, I might be interested in some venom :roll:

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by sav. » Thu Dec 16, 2010 5:07 pm

never uploaded pictures before, so just trying to upload a pic of the MR editor (sorry if it doesnt work)
By the magic of the preview button, looks like it will work. Though the master volume in the pic is set to -54, normally it is set the same as the others (-oo)
Attachments
Mr set up1.JPG
(99.55 KiB) Downloaded 369 times
C4/5 / i7 920 2.66 / 3gig / XP / MR816X / Tannoy reveal actives / Gtr Rig 3 / BFD2 / Trilian / T-racks3 / ik Arc system / and some foam :)

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by sav. » Thu Dec 16, 2010 5:30 pm

Mirabela wrote:Sav, by all means, please, stop doing that to your hair ! :shock:
Too late! :lol:

do you still have the old interface?
Sold the 02R desk to buy the set up I have now.

Sav.
C4/5 / i7 920 2.66 / 3gig / XP / MR816X / Tannoy reveal actives / Gtr Rig 3 / BFD2 / Trilian / T-racks3 / ik Arc system / and some foam :)

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Thu Dec 16, 2010 6:06 pm

Now I've seen your picture.
Nice one :-)
Please tell me, if you are listening a commercial CD through MR816, having the DAW fader in MR editor set to 0dB, where will be positioned the general red fader, for a "normal" audition?

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by sav. » Thu Dec 16, 2010 6:48 pm

Mirabela wrote:Now I've seen your picture.
Nice one :-)
Please tell me, if you are listening a commercial CD through MR816, having the DAW fader in MR editor set to 0dB, where will be positioned the general red fader, for a "normal" audition?
Normally the master would be set around -50 for listening to commercial Cd's.

As the level of noise doesnt increase by raising the volume, by the time the level is at -50, the audio im listening to masks the noise, hence the reason why I can put up with it. Others I believe have not been so lucky, as when they raise the volume it increases the level of noise, from what I remember!?

For anyone reading all this, please don't think that I'm knocking the MR units, I honestly think they are great, it might sound like Im making a mountain out of a mole hill over this noise (more so as I said I can live with it) but its just one of those things that bugs the hell out of ya not 'knowing' what it is or why its happening.

I guess the only thing I can try (free of charge at the mo) is to take the MR to a shop and audition some different speakers and see if I can hear the noise!?

Cheers
Sav.
C4/5 / i7 920 2.66 / 3gig / XP / MR816X / Tannoy reveal actives / Gtr Rig 3 / BFD2 / Trilian / T-racks3 / ik Arc system / and some foam :)

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Thu Dec 16, 2010 9:26 pm

Yes, the "free" ticket would be that one.
Also to have the confirmation and my hair find peace for a while :ugeek:

I've checked my monitors, with the monitor level set as usual, my MR master level is at -50dB also, for a normal audition AND there is no noticeable noise (other than the normal speakers noise). So, looks like the Yamaha monitors are happy family with the Mrr ;;)

If you do take the trip to the audio shop, maybe (just maybe) you would be interested in taking one of your monitors (let say the most noisiest, if any) with you in the car, cause, after you will find out that the monitors are not a happy family with your Mrr, you might want to find a "dirty fix" (as an alternative of a new pair of speakers).

What comes to my mind is either an "on cable attenuator" (like this http://www.thomann.de/gb/cordial_ciw1_d ... dapter.htm, a little expensive, I think, you need 2) or a DI (Direct Input) WITH attenuator. You need 2 of those (one for every monitor).

Regarding the DI, there is a 2 channel DI (Behringer DI20) for around 19 Eu with attenuator (20dB or 40dB, I think what you need is 40dB) but this one is powered by a 9V battery (or phantom, you don't have phantom on outputs) .Having a battery may be not that convenient.

Important is however to try and see if putting a 40dB attenuator is lowering the noise at a convenient level, when still having enough room for loudness.
If so, and you don't want to buy a DI (I wouldn't, since there is a transformer involved that eats highs), you may also try this (http://www.thomann.de/gb/tc_electronic_level_pilot.htm) I think is the cheapest volume knob available.

But try it in the shop first, see if it cures the noise for sure.
If 58 bucks is still too much for the cure, I think we will find a DIY guy in your neighborhood to put 2 attenuators in your cable ( I think the resistors are 2EU all of them :P).
We just need to know for sure that the attenuator is curing the problem and if you need 20dB or 40dB (or somewhere in between).

Is snowing here,
C.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by ItemAudio » Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:29 pm

Sav: I hear you - and the squall of noise from my MR816.

For the record, this is just connected via a stock FW cable to a MacBook and on to Adam S3X-H via Vovox Sonorus TRS > XLR cables.

I'm also able to A-B the same setup with a Prism Orpheus here: whereas the Prism is dead quiet, the MR816 is abominably noisy: classic cheap resistor, white noise hiss. The monitors themselves aren't exactly silent, but I have been able to isolate the output stage of the MR816 as the culprit: both channels are equally noisy.

Exactly as you said, the only relief from the noise comes when switching sample rates. This problem is by no means trivial: if I can't shut mine up, it has to go back.

While we're on the subject, can I ask whether auto sample rate switching is on the agenda for future update?

Thanks
MW

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by Mirabela » Fri Jan 07, 2011 6:02 pm

Hi Mark !

One more question for you, please: your MR816 is X or CSX model?
Sav, you are still visiting this page, same question for you.

M.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by jlofling » Fri Jan 07, 2011 7:04 pm

Hey, I just got an MR816x and think I may be having a similar problem. My setup includes a late 2008 iMac 2.8 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 2GB of RAM, and I believe the Agere/Lucent firewire chipset. My previous interface was a Presonus Firebox, which was somewhat noisy (especially close to when it blew up/popped and started smoking), but lacked the new noise I'm having now.

As soon as I hooked up my new MR816x I noticed what sounded like a microphone outside on a windy day coming through my monitors, which also happen to be early 2000s Tannoy Active Reveals (with matching subwoofer). It is a very low frequency rumble that is almost always present when anything is played through the speakers, Itunes or Cubase. If the main master volume is turned off it usually goes away, but I swear the first time I powered on and the volume was all the way down on the MR816x it still made the noise, but now it doesn't appear to.

This is what I've noticed about it through some testing/debugging attempts. It happens with all outputs, only happens when the firewire cable is connected (directly or by being daisy chained to an external FW hard drive), and has a short decay. That is if I play sound (at low volumes so that it is really noticeable) and hit stop, it takes about a second to fade away. It also seems that the rumble is able to be present when no audio is played back, but this is not the usual case. It is detectable on any channel that too (doesn't matter if it's a bass or overhead track in cubase) and shows up on a frequency analyzer around 0-30Hz. If I run a high pass filter and set it all the way up to around 250Hz, the low rumble noise goes away.

That last part really baffles me. I can't record the low rumble, but I can filter it out live by running a high pass filter on any unmuted channel? For example, I have an overhead track that rumbles, throw on the hi-pass filter (on the track channel or main out channel) and it's gone, but it's not possible to work at such a high filter settings. I don't get it. And the fact that it can be present when no audio is passing through. Weird.

It really doesn't sound like this is the same problem everyone is talking about, but I have some of the common factors as others. I also get an unreasonable level of hiss/noise (like a preamp with gain turned up high) coming through my speakers that doesn't change at any volume level, but I can live with that (just bought a TC level pilot that I hope will fix this problem). But when the low frequency, wind like rumble, starts I cannot monitor at low levels anymore. It's driving me crazy. Also, all noise temporarily disappears when switching clock rates, like everyone else.

To complicate things further, it doesn't appear to be happening at all right now, which I guess is a good thing. I was beginning to wonder if the convertors are so good and I'm not used to them, that they're revealing low frequency noise that cheaper convertors missed. But the strange decay, the presence in professional recordings on Itunes, being present when no audio is playing, leads me to believe this is not the case.

I'm guessing it's some kind of interference with the Imac and external/internal hard drives. It also seems that a lot of Macs have had problems over the last year with firewire audio interfaces. So many variables and I'm not even sure if my problems are the same as others, or if mine is unique. Everything except the Imac is plugged into a Furman power unit, and everything is going to the same socket (maybe that's a problem). I have a laptop downstairs that I'm going to see if the same behavior occurs on it as well. I'll post any new findings I come across.

Sorry this post is all over the place. I really want this interface to work properly, it's got everything I want.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by jlofling » Fri Jan 07, 2011 8:45 pm

Okay, a little update. I think I'm having a multitude of noise issues. I'm not positive, but besides the intermittent outside microphone on a windy day sound, I'm pretty sure I'm having a ground loop hum problem as well. With no audio passing through the unit I can sometimes hear a low hum. Weird thing is, or perhaps it's expected, if I put a high pass filter on my main output in Cubase and roll the frequency up and down, the low hum disappears. Again this is with no audio passing through and nothing is showing up on the frequency analyzer, but I swear I can get the low hum to go away with the high pass filter. What do you think about this one?

Still not nearly as annoying as the low freq wind rumble, but still something I'd like to eliminate. By the way, the low rumble seems worse when the MR816 is at low volumes (master unit volume). If I increase the volume the rumble seems to drop away, but it can still come back. So damn strange.

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by ItemAudio » Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:21 am

Mine is the MR816X.

No LF rumbles or wind noise: just classic (but exaggerated) output resistor hiss . . .

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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by jlofling » Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:52 pm

GOOD NEWS!!!! Okay, this is kind of funny, but I've found the cause for my LF rumble. Recall how I had been quite stumped on why I would get this rumble with no audio playback, but was able to get rid of it by placing a high pass filter on the master out? Well, some plugins I use have analog output modeling of old units to simulate hum and buzz (50Hz and 60Hz selectable analog noise output). Since this added noise (intentionally added by the plugin mind you) is always on regardless of audio being passed through, this is why I am able to filter it out when everything is stopped. I guess in the past I just wasn't able to hear it with my old interface. So, I guess this is an example of how accurate/detailed the DAC convertors in the MR816 are.

I've also noticed I can hear low rumble in live room mics and even DI bass tracks that I never noticed before (as well as in professional recordings). Odd, kind of annoying, but at least I know now it is not a defect in the product.

I still believe I may be having my own periodic 50Hz/60Hz hum from my studio setup due to the computer and what not, but that is barely noticeable. I also want to point out that I do have the typical hiss from the MR816, but that's not too bad and I believe it will be eliminated when I get my TC Electronics Level Pilot and can set the MR's output volume at a decent level and reduce the volume on the analog side before it hits my active Tannoy Reveal monitors.

All in all, I'm happy today.

sav.
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Re: MR816 noise problem (from "The other side")

Post by sav. » Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:12 pm

Hi Mirabela, yep, still visiting, I have the MR816X

jlofling wrote:All in all, I'm happy today.
Thats great to hear! :D Please let us know how you get on with the TC Electronics Level Pilot

MW, hopefully this level pilot does the trick and we can all be HISS free!! :) (and you wont have to get rid of a nice unit! :) )

all the best
Sav
C4/5 / i7 920 2.66 / 3gig / XP / MR816X / Tannoy reveal actives / Gtr Rig 3 / BFD2 / Trilian / T-racks3 / ik Arc system / and some foam :)

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