Turntable hum is a frustrating issue.
It can significantly reduce the listening experience when playing your favourite vinyl.
And because turntable hum can be the result of any one of several different possible causes, it can sometimes be tricky to sort out.
That’s why we’re now going to take a close look at exactly how to fix turntable hum…
…and remove this irritation from your otherwise spotless audio sound!
How To Fix Turntable Hum
Turntable hum is a really common issue.
But it is not an issue that you need to live with.
Fixing turntable hum is usually pretty simple.
But, first you’ve got to properly identify the real cause.
And then you’ve got to know the proper way to sort-out the specific cause you’ve identified.
Let’s explore some of the most common causes of turntable hum and how to fix it.
Turntable hum can be fixed by ensuring that the turntable and speakers receive clean and stable power, grounding the system correctly, removing excess vibrations, eliminating feedback in the system, and replacing any faulty, damaged, loose, or incompatible wires and connections.
The most common causes of turntable hum include:
- Improper grounding
- Unstable power
- External vibrations
- Faulty connection
- Damaged or low-quality cables
Let’s explore some of the best ways to deal with these common and super-annoying turntable hum-inducing issues.
#1. Ensure Your Equipment is Properly Grounded
The number one most common cause of turntable hum is improper grounding.
To eliminate this issue, simply ensure that all grounding wires on your equipment are installed and attached correctly.
Every speaker and the turntable itself should have a grounding wire, especially if you are using a passive audio system.
Inspect the system, locate the grounding wires, and connect them properly where necessary.
This will remove the hum if it was caused by poor grounding.
#2. Ensure Your Equipment has Clean and Stable Power
Unstable power is another common cause of various hums, pops, and clicks in audio systems.
If you suspect that this is the issue, try moving your system to another room and plugging it into a different circuit.
If this solves the issue, move your turntable back to your preferred location, and use an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) or an inverter to clean up the power into your turntable system.
This one will cost you a bit of money but should remove the electrical hum very effectively.
#3. Eliminate Feedback
Unfortunately, feedback is often an issue with physical audio mediums and can be the source of various hums and whines in the audio signal.
The easiest way to eliminate this is to move the output sources as far away from the input source, especially low-frequency output sources.
This means moving all the speakers as far away from the turntable as possible and angling them away from the platter.
An easy one to test and hopefully resolve.
#4. Eliminate Vibrations
Vibrations can cause a tremendous amount of hum from a turntable.
When the needle is moved by external vibrations, those vibrations are interpreted as sound and output by the system.
If the vibrations occur at an audible frequency, they will cause a significant hum or whine in the system.
Eliminate vibrations in the system by putting a cork slipmat on the turntable platter under the record, apply dampers to the feet of the turntable…
…as well as the furniture that the turntable stands on.
Then you should ensure that the turntable is completely level.
Finally, make sure you’ve got a spotlessly clean stylus…of course!
If you take all these steps, your turntable should now be vibration and hum free.
#5. Check Your Connections
Hum in a turntable audio system can be caused by a faulty connection or a damaged connector.
Inspect the system to look for damage in all of these areas.
And look for any potential loose connections.
Replace any broken connectors, and re-establish any loose connections to eliminate this source of turntable hum.
#6. Check and Replace Cables where Necessary
Admittedly this is a bit of annoying one to resolve…
…which is why we’ve left it to last, when you’ve explored all the other possibilities!
If the cables in your setup are old, tarnished, or not fully compatible with other components in the system, this can result in an irritating audible hum.
Go through the system and replace all cables and connectors that look either worn, old, or low-quality, to remove this source of audio hum.
Even if this one does not turn out to be the source of your turntable hum…
…replacing low-quality cables for high-quality cables is one of the easiest wins when it comes to improving audio sound quality anyway.
Wrapping it Up!
Storing your vinyl records correctly will significantly extend their lifespan and keep them perfectly playable indefinitely.
Take steps to store your records well, and they will last you a lifetime.
Take care of your records, and they will always be ready for you when you want to listen to them.