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Explain this high pitched sound.

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  • Explain this high pitched sound.

    Hi All, Splain this one. I am looking for a reason this sound was being produced.
    Outdoor street festival, band on a flatbed trailer as a stage, classic rock genre, audience size about 200. 5 piece Bass,Drums, Guitar X2, female VOX X3 - no keyboard. FOH is Bose speakers on sticks on top of Subs in front of stage L and R.( not the PA1 things). Normal wedge monitors on stage.
    As I walk up from behind ("back stage") this super high feedback type tone hits me. It's way up there around 18Khz. I check out he band, enjoying the performance walking around in front trying to see what is making this sine wave sound that is now even louder in front. No keyboard at all. The tone is higher than the highest note on a guitar. It stays at a consistent volume level as the dynamics of the band change. I could not find FOH sound person. If they had a tablet walking around I could not find him/her. The band was good and put on a quality show. They had modern equipment not hobbled together jam session gear.
    I still can't figure out where this sound was coming from. Any thoughts to solve the mystery?

  • #2
    Are you sure it was that high? (18kHz) That's at the upper limit of most SR gear, and I'm fairly certain nothing Bose sells would reproduce it....the Panaray 802 series III is 10dB down at 15kHz.

    You didn't state you age or that of the band or majority of the audience...Ironically, if you're younger, and they're older, it's entirely possible they didn't hear it at all...I know at 54 my upper limit is about 12kHz.

    Regarding the "what" part of this, my first guess would be a component failure somewhere in someone's gear was sending that signal...or not filtering it.
    Last edited by Craig Vecchione; 08-04-2016, 04:24 AM.
    "If you don't know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else" - Yogi Berra, 1925-2015

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    • #3
      Thanks for the response Craig. No, I'm not sure it was 18K. It was just way higher frequency than any notes being played or sung, Much higher than typical mike feedback. As far as age goes the band looked to be late twenties. The audience was children up to old folks around 60. As my fifty year old ears heard this I said "Wow" out loud to my forty year old date and she knew what I was commenting on.
      After looking at a picture of the Panaray 802 I can confirm that was the mains being used.
      I am just curios in an audio geek sort of way to identify what was generating this tone.

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      • #4
        I had a band mate once who had a pair of Behringer B215D speakers. They would whine around 10kHz whenever they weren't plugged into the same power bar as the mixer. I attributed this to poor power supply design. The owner didn't care, he was well over 60.
        Do daemons dream of electric sleep()?

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        • #5
          I recall experiencing this phenomenon as described. The cause was the negative speaker outputs of two different amplifiers were tied together... due to shorted together pins 1- and 2- on a Speakon NL4 patchbay running bi-amped monitors.
          I need to catch up with those guys, for I am their leader.

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          • #6
            I've once experienced guitar rig that had high pitch whine when he stop playing it wasn't guitar feedback either just unusual high pitch sound when he stop playing. Which i made him aware of it but just shrug it off so what. Although drove a lot people nuts. So use the mute button when he stop playing. Also had active sub that use to oscillate low frequency before it finally took a dump.

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            • #7
              As we see by examples, there are many potential causes for this type of problem, pretty much all are due to a failure or a miswire. Ironic how many musicians....who we'd assume care about sound, aren't the least bit phased by such annoyances....
              "If you don't know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else" - Yogi Berra, 1925-2015

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              • #8
                I've heard a similar sound in two instances; one was an effects processor receiving a signal from and aux send and being returned to board channel with that same aux on the return channel not quite turned down all the way. The other time was an extremely hot channel turned down cross talking into an adjacent channel.
                One more time kids; equalizers are not cross overs, vocal mics are not cymbal mics and pan knobs are not three position switches. As you were.

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                • #9
                  I had an interesting experience at an outdoor festival this past weekend. There were times of what sounded like sustained feedback - which surprised me because the FOH guy, who was also doing the monitor mixes, was on the ball and normally would have caught it right away.

                  The problem disappeared when an FM radio transmitter, which was being used to broadcast the event locally, was switched off.
                  As a human being, you come with the whole range of inner possibilities
                  from the deepest hell to the highest states.

                  It is up to you which one you choose to explore
                  .

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                  • #10
                    Pics of your date?
                    PA Unity15's over LS800p's. YX15's, YX12's IPR power, RM32AI

                    LightsMartin Minimac Profiles, Chauvet Intimidator Spot Duos, Blizzard 3NX, Fab5, Hotbox

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                    • #11
                      A high pitched annoying whine.... Could be my ol' lady.....

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