Treating Ground Loop problems :(
I'm fairly certain this isn't OS specific, but since I'm running GNU/Linux, and only effectively using Ardour for audio, I think this is where I should post.
3.0 GHz Hyperthreading CPU, Gigabyte motherboard, Intel Integrated Video and Sound, Nvidia FX 550, 1.5 Gigs of RAM
I've been constantly and continually fighting this ground-loop problem with my system.
Basically, a device in my PC is causing a noise/feedback effect to be injected into the input in my Intel Integrated sound card.
It affects all input audio, jack and non-jack alike. Output is fine.
To be able to record ANYTHING without triggering an INTENSE AND ALARMING feedback/noise effect, I have to disable the 20db boost in my alsamixer.
The problem here, is that the noise is still there, only reduced. I also still get a BLAST of feedback and noise occasionally, like when many track are open (recycling the feedback), or just opening a project.
On top of that, I have to turn my instruments up much too loud to get a clean sample.
I've grounded every piece of hardware to the tower, but only by screwing in all loose devices. My HD and CD-ROM were loose, but this did not help at all. After hearing bad video cards can cause this, I removed my Nvidia card, and reverted to the onboard Intel i910 card. No difference, unfortunately.
So, at this point, I'm at my wits end.
I've followed the links at the bottom of my post, but most of the advice is too advanced for my knowledge of hardware. Ultimately it suggests tracking down the bad device, grounding it with some sort of calibrator, to drown or kill the looping noise/feedback.
As you must understand, as a person simply trying to enjoy and use all this Free Software, this stupid problem is very debilitating and frustrating. I'm documenting the whole process so I can write some documentation for others to use in the future, but I'm having a lot of difficulty sorting out what could be wrong.
Does anyone have any resources to share on hardware problems of this nature?
I know I should have a better sound card, but trying another sound card only worked temporarily, the noise spread to that card too. A new card won't solve the problem, I have to find the underlying problem to advance anywhere.
Please share any thoughts or ideas or resources you may have, I am greatly appreciative for ANY help right now :)
And here are the resources I have been following:
Thank you Dear Ardour enthusiasts!