Dealing with "data noise" from Alienware system

My system specs are attached. All drivers and BIOS are up-to-date.

I thought I start with a post here, but I’ll be putting this on an Nvidia forum and Dell’s support.

I’ve attached two examples of this noise. One was recorded from my speakers using my phone, the other is what was recorded from my microphone into a Focusrite Scarlett 4x4 3 gen. The mic recording is not room noise.

It sounds like a continuous chirping noise, crickets. Like bubbling soda…
The noise will change if I stress the GPU (using Aida 64).

I’ve done everything I could think of to isolate this noise. It’s not coming from any peripherals, nor from the Focusrite, nor from my mixing board, nor from my displays, nor from my ethernet… etc.

I’ve isolated it to the computer.
Even after unplugging all in/ouputs except the USB3 cable to the Focusrite, the noise persists.

If anyone has any tips, I’m still under a general warranty with Dell and I’d like to get this resolved if it’s resolvable… argh!

Lisa W.

Data noise from speakers: Data noise from speaker.m4a - Google Drive

Data noise from mic input (I tap on the mic a few times):

System specs: System Report.txt - Google Drive

Is this a desktop or Laptop? You have more fix-it options with a desktop machine.

This is most likely due to shielding issues in your hardware, the motherboard or another component. It’s really tough to find the culprit. Could be the video card, if it’s removable have you tested with it removed? Could even be the USB cable.

Does the noise get recorded onto disk though, if you record, say, room tone with monitors muted?

Can you hear it in headphones connected to the focusrite?

Maybe you need a Faraday cage (mostly kidding on that one

If it’s a laptop does it stop if you unplug the the mains and run on battery?

Sounds like a shielding/grounding issue, yes. Here’s the Focusrite support page entry on possible ways to resolve it.

It’s a desktop…

I’ve seen this page before, but I’ll take a closer look. I’ve already addressed balanced vs unbalanced issues and that’s not the problem.

From my work yesterday, I’ve been able to isolate the noise to the computer. I get the same “data nose” from the motherboard’s on-board sound. So it’s not the USB cable.

Thanks all!

So it sounds like you need to have an isolated USB port. I know others have turned to using a usb card. There are also usb isolators. I haven’t looked into it myself as I don’t suffer from the problem

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An isolator, that sounds interesting. Thanks!

I worked today with increasing gain on my devices and was able to reduce this noise a lot. Signal to noise ratio… science!

But I’ll still look into isolating the USB…

Thanks all for your help!
Lisa W.