External Hard Drive Noise

I have a Seagate 3 TB external hard drive that I think is part of my noise issue. I have a small quiet hum. I have to have my ear by the speaker to hear it. I unplug the external drive from the laptop and the hum goes away. All of my components are plugged into a panamax. I tried a different usb cable and the noise is still there. Just the laptop by itself doesnt have any noise or hum. Only when the external drive is plugged in.

The Seagate uses a wall wart. Any suggestions on getting it quiet or the hum to go away?
Den: Lumin D1,Wireworld Silver Eclipse, KEF LS50 Wireless, Velodyne SPL1200, Technics 1200, Denon DL160, Jolida D9,

Living Room:,T+A PA 1530R, Tyler Highland H2, Aries Mini, High Fidelity Reveal RCA, Grant Fidelity Tube Dac 11, W4S recovery, Wireworld Platinum Starlight, PS Audio Direct Stream JR.

Have but haven't used in a while: LH Labs VI Dac, Cayin SCD50T

Comments

  • So is the seagate plugged into the panamax as well? Does it use a 2 prong or 3 prong connector at the wallwart?

    Have you tried another generic wallwart to see if that will clear things up?

    Have you tried another usb cable for giggles to see if that helps any?

    Are you using USB out of the laptop to a DAC, are you using Coaxial, Optical, etc..
    "....not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." William Bruce Cameron, Informal Sociology: A Casual Introduction to Sociological Thinking (1963)
  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 4,904
    I did try another usb cable from the laptop to the dac2. I am using usb from the laptop to a w4s dac2.

    The usb cable from the seagate is not a standard usb cable. The end that plugs into the external drive itself is strange looking and I am not sure what that type of connector is called so I have not tried a different cable from the drive itself to the laptop. I don't even know what to look for since it looks like its their own non standard type of connector.
    The wallwart is 2 prong and it is plugged into the panamax as well as the laptop, AR pre, W4S dac2. All of it runs through the panamax.

    When I unplug the drive cable and only leave in the usb to the dac2, the noise goes away. If i cant figure it out, I think my next step might be to get a better usb case that doesnt use a wallwart and just pull the hard drive out of the stock case. I understand a lot of manufactures of the external drives use cheaper power supplies to keep cost down but, they definately do introduce noise into a system that is for sure!

    OR just stream it wireless from the NAS up stairs.. But, that is a bit slower vs hard wire. Right now I rip flac to the usb drive, and it backs itself up to the NAS up stairs.
    Den: Lumin D1,Wireworld Silver Eclipse, KEF LS50 Wireless, Velodyne SPL1200, Technics 1200, Denon DL160, Jolida D9,

    Living Room:,T+A PA 1530R, Tyler Highland H2, Aries Mini, High Fidelity Reveal RCA, Grant Fidelity Tube Dac 11, W4S recovery, Wireworld Platinum Starlight, PS Audio Direct Stream JR.

    Have but haven't used in a while: LH Labs VI Dac, Cayin SCD50T

  • Gotcha... I've got a Seagate HDD too connected to a WD Live TV then to my system.... but its a different monster there... I know what your saying about the USB cable into the Seagate, its a USB 3.0 connector likely so it looks wierd.

    Have you tried just another 12v wallwart or even a brick that supplies similar power? You may be able to just replace the wallwart part and be good. You should just need something like 12v to use, so should be fairly easy to find something lying around... Heck I might even have something I may be able to send you, will look around tonight when I get home.
    "....not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." William Bruce Cameron, Informal Sociology: A Casual Introduction to Sociological Thinking (1963)
  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 4,904
    I have not tried a different wallwart.

    Hang on, if that connector is usb3, I wonder why my laptop is only seeing it as usb2... I need to look into that. I might be missing out on some extra speed!
    Den: Lumin D1,Wireworld Silver Eclipse, KEF LS50 Wireless, Velodyne SPL1200, Technics 1200, Denon DL160, Jolida D9,

    Living Room:,T+A PA 1530R, Tyler Highland H2, Aries Mini, High Fidelity Reveal RCA, Grant Fidelity Tube Dac 11, W4S recovery, Wireworld Platinum Starlight, PS Audio Direct Stream JR.

    Have but haven't used in a while: LH Labs VI Dac, Cayin SCD50T

  • Likely because the laptop port is USB 2.0.

    I'd see if you have another wallwart that would work with it. Maybe one with a powerbrick or something....
    "....not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." William Bruce Cameron, Informal Sociology: A Casual Introduction to Sociological Thinking (1963)
  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 4,904
    I will have to look when i get home. I thought it had both 2 and 3. It is an HP with an I 7 processor. I wonder if HP only made part of the ports 2 and the other part 3.
    Den: Lumin D1,Wireworld Silver Eclipse, KEF LS50 Wireless, Velodyne SPL1200, Technics 1200, Denon DL160, Jolida D9,

    Living Room:,T+A PA 1530R, Tyler Highland H2, Aries Mini, High Fidelity Reveal RCA, Grant Fidelity Tube Dac 11, W4S recovery, Wireworld Platinum Starlight, PS Audio Direct Stream JR.

    Have but haven't used in a while: LH Labs VI Dac, Cayin SCD50T

  • steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 18,987
    edited September 2014
    Can you flip the HDD walwart upside down and plug it in? Hums can be a PITA, and sometimes the solutions make NO sense.
  • AsSiMiLaTeDAsSiMiLaTeD Posts: 11,717
    Your USB 3 ports on the laptop will be blue so easy to spot.
  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 7,135
    edited September 2014
    Have you tried to plug the wall wart into another outlet? Just a hunch, but a two prong wall wart means any grounding will go through the USB cable ground to the laptop. (One of the reasons USB to SPDIF or I2S adapters implement isolation). My external drive has a three prong plug and is system quiet when connected to the laptop. Don't have any two prong wall wart external drives to try.

    External drive have metal housing? I'd grab it and ground myself to a piece of gear to see if that makes a difference. Not the safest thing to do as if something is shorted you'll know it, but I've been known to have a touch of crazy for instant discovery. ;)
    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • agfrostagfrost Posts: 2,259
    Just a touch? :p
    Jay
    SDA 2BTL * Musical Fidelity A5cr amp * Marantz DV-9500 * Modded Adcom GDA-600 DAC * Rythmik F8
    Micro Seiki DQ-50 * A hodgepodge of cabling * Belkin PF60
    Preamp rotation: Krell KSL (SCompRacer recapped) * Manley Shrimp * PS Audio 5.0
  • SCompRacerSCompRacer Posts: 7,135
    Well, crazy, like other things is relative...kinda like being velocitized...lol
    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's * Audio Research Reference 3 * Bottlehead Eros Phono * Park's Audio Budgie SUT * Krell KSA-250 * Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ & Pro 11+ * Signature Series Sonore Music Server w/Deux PS* Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC * Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive * AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm * AT33PTG/II & Denon 103R * Richard Gray 600S * NHT B-12d subs * GIK Acoustic Treatments * Sennheiser HD650 *

  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 4,904
    I have not tried plugging it into a different plug. I was going to try a humX to see if that helped. I use one in my DJ rig for the LCD. For some reason when I have the LCD in my dj rig for Karaoke, i get a slight hum and the humx does remove it.

    This weekend I discovered something though, The preamp I was using was the AR SP16. I have been burning in a Parasound P5 SS preamp. The hum is gone! The SP16 on sacd, turntable, cassette, or redbook through the coax on the w4s dac, no hum when I am next to the speaker but, soon as I put the W4s dac on usb i get a slight hum. I think Rich is right on with the usb is grounding to the laptop. Maybe the tube AR is more sensitive to it vs the SS Parasound?
    Den: Lumin D1,Wireworld Silver Eclipse, KEF LS50 Wireless, Velodyne SPL1200, Technics 1200, Denon DL160, Jolida D9,

    Living Room:,T+A PA 1530R, Tyler Highland H2, Aries Mini, High Fidelity Reveal RCA, Grant Fidelity Tube Dac 11, W4S recovery, Wireworld Platinum Starlight, PS Audio Direct Stream JR.

    Have but haven't used in a while: LH Labs VI Dac, Cayin SCD50T

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