John Beckman - W4BTX HAM RADIO "A PAST TIME FOR A LIFETIME"
"Back in the day" about the only noise we worried about was cars with their old-fashioned ignition systems passing by. We could hear the popping oft he spark plugs in our Hammarlund HQ-129Xs. All we had for noise suppression was a crystal filter which, if I remember correctly, didn't do anything on or off! Today things are different. Way different.
I mentioned in a previous page how I was tracking down noise on my radio that came frome things in my home. My baseline noise level was S-7 to sometimes S-9 on 75 meters. . I do have a "noise detector" that works well when tracking down noise from sparking electric poles and leaky cable lines. Yes, there are FCC limits as to how much TV cables (which have pre-amps placed randomly along them) can radiate but the cable comppanies don't pay much attention to the rules. Inside my home the noise detector found noise in almost everything. I did use it to eliminate a lot of LED light bulbs but there are, as I discovered, lots of things that make noise in my Icom 7700.
.While I have wide-screen TVs, I don't have "smart" TVs, but I have found that just by turning off the TV my noise level drops considerably. So I went around the house and turned off almost everything (kitchen lights, den lights, TVS, office lights, bathroom lights) and my noise level dropped to S4 to 5 and I can live with that. It's not going to get any better unless I move to the boonies and I'm too old for another move and another shack.
My shack is in the basement and is on a utility electric box separate from the house circuits. But flipping circuit breakers on and off didn't prove anything. Lots of the noise is coming through the floor above my shack. So I've tried an empirical experiment. (I've always loved the word "empirical" which just means "cut an try" until something works.: By turning things on and off I have found lots of noise producers.
Of course the obvious noise makers (old flourscents, wall-warts, even the switching supply for that new transceiver of yours) all contribute to noise. And you can't control neighbors who buy Chinese junk that always exceeds the FCC limits on radiation But unless you have a house full of kids running all kinds of electronics, you can reduce noise interference by shutting off everything and seeing if your noise level drops. If it does, then at least you know the sources. Whether you do anything about it or not is up to you.
Thank you for dropping by...Send comments HERE. Until next week 73 and Straight Ahead ->