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PlayinOcean

HX effects causing hum on 1, 3 5 strat positions

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I've never had any noise issues with my stratocaster + tube amp setup. 

However, since using the HX Effects I get a very noticable hum on my 1, 3 and 5 pickup settings, which disappears completely when I switch to my 2 and 4 positions.

I am aware of the difference between the pickup settings and why there is a difference. What I don't understand is why I suddenly have a hum in my setup, even with zero effects engaged.

And if the HX is causing hum, why is it only doing so on the 1, 3 and 5 positions?

 

Any feedback would be appreciated :)

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We'll need more info about the rig to try and diagnose anything... are you running the HX into the front of the amp, in an FX loop, 4CM?

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1 hour ago, PlayinOcean said:

I've never had any noise issues with my stratocaster + tube amp setup. 

 

If this is true, you're probably the only person on the planet who can say that... ;-)

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Thanks for replying. I have been quite lucky with my strat. No idea what pickups are in it, but they haven't caused any issues yet.

 

The setup is quite simple: strat --> HX --> Amp --> loadbox/attenuator --> speaker

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IMO it's unlikely the Helix is causing hum in the signal path. But if you only get hum when using it, maybe it's the source of EMF when you're in the non-humbucking positions. Have you tried plugging directly into the amp but having the Helix switched on at the time? Do you have hum then?

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This is an issue I have often observed when running critical signals (and true single coils defenitely produce a critical signal...) into something without much ground connection. Which would be true for the HX FX as the PSU isn't delivering any ground. It seems to me that without proper mass behind the ground connection, the guitar shielding suffers a bit as in becoming less effective. Hence the rather sensible single coil signal will pick up more of whatever interferences and such.

With my old GT-10 I sometimes got away with a little trickery. I had an extra cable that was just connected to the ground signal of a power outlet and connected that to the GT-10s case. Helped quite a bit in some situations. No idea whether the same would work with the HX FX.

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On 12/2/2019 at 7:20 AM, PlayinOcean said:

I get a very noticable hum on my 1, 3 and 5 pickup settings, which disappears completely when I switch to my 2 and 4 positions.

 

FIRST: That is how most modern strats are wired... excluding anything with humbuckers or noiseless pickups. That's how they work!

 

On many (not all) strats, the middle pickup is reverse wound... when combined with any other pickup (position 2 and 4) it becomes a humbucker... on their own, they are single coils and are subject to noise! When the middle pickup is NOT reverse wound... every position is subject to making noise. 

 

I doubt the HX Effects is causing the noise... it is just making it more noticeable - either through gain structure (including overdrive/distortion), compression or EQ. It is the GUITAR that is the source of the noise, the effects are enhancing it! This would happen with any pedal board! 

 

 

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Thanks for the replies. As I said, I am not at all surprised by the fact that my 1, 3 and 5 positions cause noise (I know how a strat is wired), but I am surprised by the fact that they didn't do so before. Also, there is hum without any effects in the signal chain, so the HX being true bypass (right?) shouldn't interfere. 

So I agree with SaschaFrank that it might be a ground issue. Will also look into EMF.

 

If anything makes this issue disappear, I will let you know.

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Funny, I have the same exact issue with my PRS, 1,3,5 really noisy, 2 & 4 quite as a mouse.

Guitar > G10 wireless>HX Effects> Amp

I have not tried my other guitars yet but at least I know I am not alone on this one.

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7 hours ago, jcats said:

Funny, I have the same exact issue with my PRS, 1,3,5 really noisy, 2 & 4 quite as a mouse.

Guitar > G10 wireless>HX Effects> Amp

I have not tried my other guitars yet but at least I know I am not alone on this one.

Interesting. Is it also the case that your guitar/amp combination usually has no noise on any pickup selection? And does it matter for you whether you have any effects engaged in your HX?

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14 hours ago, jcats said:

Funny, I have the same exact issue with my PRS, 1,3,5 really noisy, 2 & 4 quite as a mouse.

Guitar > G10 wireless>HX Effects> Amp

I have not tried my other guitars yet but at least I know I am not alone on this one.

 

Going wireless has a potential to cause issues, too, simply because the shielding is rather weak compared to a solid cable connected to, say, a grounded amp. On other occasions, wireless might even help because you won't run into any ground loop issues or such. It can become a critical thing, though.

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