Question New PC Build has a Possible Grounding (or Other) Issue?

Jul 1, 2022
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Hello,

I am new here, but have often found Tom's Hardware to be a valuable source of troubleshooting advice in the past. But the issues I'm having now are weirder than ones I'm used to dealing with, so I figured it was high time I brought my own question here this time.

I recently built a new system, the parts of which can be viewed here (note: right now it only has 32gb ram, one of the sticks I got was dead/is pending replacement). Overall it's been a reasonably solid build... however, it has its quirks. One of them is that my audio and recording equipment is behaving strangely compared to my previous build. The USB microphone (AT2005USB) that had been working fine on my old computer now has a faint static sound in the background, and today, when I started rendering out a video, I noticed a static sound in my headphones that persisted as long as the render was running. It's never been audible before but I often play music, and it was very clearly tied to the render-- it stopped when the render stopped.

A common result while researching my microphone issues has been improper grounding, and it was a listed cause of mysterious static sounds, too. Those could also be caused by an improperly shielded video/audio card, which is something I'm still investigating, but the common result between these problems of improper grounding makes me think that may well be the culprit (along with the fact that the mic is usb and not plugged into the audio card). The problem is, I don't know anything about troubleshooting a grounding issue-- what I'm even looking for, what I need to check. The whole system runs through a UPS-- it's a desktop build so I don't want to leave it vulnerable to power flickers. I've heard that can also cause issues, but this UPS worked fine with my older PC. That said, I did just move cross country with it, and so I don't know if something could've jostled loose on the way.

How would I even go about troubleshooting something like this-- where do I even start? And am I even right to think these issues could be connected to the grounding, or am I barking up the wrong tree?

Thank you so much, and have a great day,
Jay
 

Lutfij

Titan
Moderator
Welcome to the forums, newcomer!

my audio and recording equipment is behaving strangely compared to my previous build.
Could you parse the specs to your older build? Did you migrate any component from the older build onto the new? BIOS version for your motherboard at the time of writing?

For your build, that Hyper 212 was moot, you should've looked into a 360mm AIO when dealing with an i9.

That white noise you speak of can be tied to the power consumption of your build(or namely, your processor). You might want to also see if relocating your wall outlet changes the white noise perceived on your audio equipment.
 
Jul 1, 2022
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Thank you! Glad to be here.

my audio and recording equipment is behaving strangely compared to my previous build.
Could you parse the specs to your older build? Did you migrate any component from the older build onto the new? BIOS version for your motherboard at the time of writing?
I didn't migrate anything over-- hoping to restore the old build as a secondary machine someday, but it broke as I was moving so considering I'd already been wanting to upgrade, it was easier and safer to do a new build than to try and figure out what the heck was wrong with the old one and risk not having a work machine until I could figure it out. The old machine had an i7, MSI X99A motherboard, and 1070Ti card, running Windows 8.1. The BIOS of the current machine says "American Megatrends Inc 1007 7/13/2021" from System Info.

For your build, that Hyper 212 was moot, you should've looked into a 360mm AIO when dealing with an i9.
Really? Is that still worth looking into? I have no experience with liquid coolers, and liquid + computer parts felt like something you should really know what you're doing for, so I erred for a fan instead thinking it would be safer.

That white noise you speak of can be tied to the power consumption of your build(or namely, your processor). You might want to also see if relocating your wall outlet changes the white noise perceived on your audio equipment.
Huh. I could see about moving it to the other outlet under my desk. If it's tied to the power consumption, is that fixable? What should I look into to improve it?
 

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
Just an insufficient CPU cooler. Evo 212 is typically rated as 140W cooler. 10900K can pull 150W easily at stock settings, and overclocked or with MCE defaulted to on, closer to 200W. Intel specs a max draw of 250W for brief periods. However, a lot of Z class motherboards have some of the limits disabled.

https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/intel-core-i9-10900k-cpu-review/2

If you don't like water cooling, just get a larger air cooler. be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4, Noctua NH-D15, and a few others that are the rough equivalent of a 240mm radiator.
 

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