Alienware Aurora R4 - Front Headphone & Mic Input Jacks Static Noise

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Alienware Aurora R4 - Front Headphone & Mic Input Jacks Static Noise

  • I had an Alienware Aurora ALX a few years ago that experienced the front input jack everytime I plugged in my headphones.

    I now own an Alienware Aurora R4 (almost identical chassis) and it is experiencing the same issues.  Why?!?!

    I have to imagine that there is something going on with the way that they are being assemble.  Two different computers built in 2 years span seem to me weird that they have the same identical issue.

    If I connect the headphones and microphone to the back of the computer it works flawlessly.  But everytime I connect them to the front input jack I hear all that static.  It is pretty annoying.  Can anybody that have Alienware Aurora chime in and let me know their experience?  Also can anybody from Alienware Support help me out on this issue?

    Reading throw the forums, some peole say to remove the audio cable going from the cable management system since it is catching all the interference.  Does that sound accurate and possible a solution?

    Any help would be really appreciated!

    Thanks!

    JC

  • svpernova

    Reading throw the forums, some peole say to remove the audio cable going from the cable management system since it is catching all the interference.  Does that sound accurate and possible a solution?

    Thanks for searching first.

    Yes, re-routing the analog audio cables should help. You can also try a ferrite ring.

    You can also switch to USB headphones. The signal stays digital until it hits the tiny "sound card" on the USB cord outside the machine. <- easiest fix.

    Lastly (and maybe beyond your budget) ... connect a small amp or AVR. Run audio to amp via digital outs and then connect headphones to amp.


    Alienware Aurora ~ Intel i7-930 ~ 12gb ram ~ AMD HD-5870
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  • Wasn't the static issue before a bad ground or something like that? I wonder if they did it again on the R4?

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  • morblore

    Wasn't the static issue before a bad ground or something like that? I wonder if they did it again on the R4?

     
    That was the official response as they scrambled to explain and fix it.
     
     
     
    ... but the fact is that there is no separate Analog and Digital ground ... there is ONE ground ... that's just how electrical circuits work.
     
    It's a very common problem with all computers. And since we all insist on continuing to use analog headphones (when digital models are available) we are still battling it all these years later.
     
    Just had this same problem show up on an Android tablet. Had to send it back and buy a slightly different model.

    Alienware Aurora ~ Intel i7-930 ~ 12gb ram ~ AMD HD-5870
    256gb Samsung 830 SSD / 1tb HDD ~ LG Blu-Ray ~ USB 3.0 PCIe
    Dell 24" UltraSharp u2410 LCD ~ Dell 22" LCD

    All my Dell Machines and Specs

    Wiki-like Threads I've written and other Favorites

    Posting Tips:
    - Always provide machine make, model, specs and software versions.
    - Click the button if we answered your question.

    Registered Microsoft Partner
    & Apple Developer:

    Gaming when I'm not programming.

    I answer questions here, but
    I'm not a Dell employee.

  • Ok.  So I went home last night and I removed the audio cable from the cable management system that goes through with all the other cables (e.g. power cables, sata connectors, etc.)  Once I booted up my computer I can already tell that the noise/static was diminished by at least 85%.  However it is still there.  

    Using my headphones at a normal hearing volume acceptable level, the noise is gone.  If I blast my headphones, then the noise is there.  Not as loud but it is there.  But the issue comes back and it is amplified the second that I plug in my microphone.  My headset has both headphone and mic jacks.  But for the most part, I use my headphones and I have a external USB microphone so I may be OK.

    I looked at the cable again and it seems like it is tie wrap to the metal casing above the power supply.  So I still see that the cable goes through a few more power lines and maybe the metal casing is still causing the issue due to vibration and what not.  I was tired last night and did not cut the tie wrap to completely remove and isolate it but I will try to do it again today and hopefully I can take care of the additional 15% of noise that I hear though the headphones.

    I will post again tonight or tomorrow about my findings but I would like to see if Dell either adds some sort of audio shield on the cables, ferrite or at least isolate the audio cable so that future customers do not have this issue.  Front audio ports, usb jacks and anything that we can connect without having to throw ourselves on the floor and/or move our desktop to look at the back panel is a MAJOR PLUS!

  • Thanks for confirming that works (85%).

    More re-routing or ferrite rings might take care of the last 15% ... but it is analog so it will never be as clean as digital. Use metal case parts to your advantage (as shielding). Be sure your test file is perfect. A mellow song ripped directly from a CD to .WAV might be a good candidate.


    Alienware Aurora ~ Intel i7-930 ~ 12gb ram ~ AMD HD-5870
    256gb Samsung 830 SSD / 1tb HDD ~ LG Blu-Ray ~ USB 3.0 PCIe
    Dell 24" UltraSharp u2410 LCD ~ Dell 22" LCD

    All my Dell Machines and Specs

    Wiki-like Threads I've written and other Favorites

    Posting Tips:
    - Always provide machine make, model, specs and software versions.
    - Click the button if we answered your question.

    Registered Microsoft Partner
    & Apple Developer:

    Gaming when I'm not programming.

    I answer questions here, but
    I'm not a Dell employee.