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  1. #1

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    Hi Everyone.

    Im getting a lot of noise from my 2018 Ibanez AF95.
    I tried it in two amps, a JC120 and DVM little jazz.
    When the volume on the guitar is turned all the way down, there is no noise. It is only present when the guitar volume is up. From what I've read on line, its EMI as opposed to a 60 cycle hum.
    Funny, I can hear the washing machine rhythm 2 rooms away through my amp. Oddly enough, i do not have this problem with my AF75.
    I bought the 95 on Ebay a couple of weeks ago.
    Does anyone else have this problem? Is the nature of the Super 58 pickups?
    Can anything be done?


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  3. #2

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    Does it go away when the washing machine is off. If it’s a digital one you may try unplugging it. They are notorious for producing serious EMI.
    Dies the noise ramp up with the volume or does it appear suddenly at full throttle.
    Before blaming the pickup all the grounds in the guitar should be checked, solder connections on the pots and Jack. Was a mod done somewhere in the wiring that’s sloppy?
    Those are probably Super 58 Customs not MIJ Super 58s, but even still they’re a decent pickup and I would be surprised if it’s noisy. I have an AF95 too.
    Good Luck

  4. #3

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    doubt it's the humbucking pickup...did you try a different instrument cable? (notorious for picking up noise)...if not that... work backwards...check your guitar output jack/wiring, and then the wiring to the pots, grounds, etc, etc



  5. #4
    It's not a digital washing machine. The washing rhythm goes away when the cycles change. When it's off, the him is a steady one. The microwave and stove are digital but not operating when I'm playing.
    I believe ibanez used super 58's starting in 2013. Also the guitar has the trapeze tail piece as opposed to wood.
    The noise ramps up when I increase volume. It can also change intensity just sitting on the guitar stand. No cell phone in the room. No fluorescent bulbs in the house.
    This doesn't happen with my af75.
    As far as I know, they're weren't any mods done.
    I'm guessing I need to remove the pickups to check grounds, wiring and solder joints?I
    I tried 2 different cables also.

  6. #5
    I just saw a video how to change/ repair the input jack.

    Is using a wire the best way to do this or would a specialized tool help?
    Last edited by d115; 11-25-2020 at 08:12 PM.

  7. #6

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    EMF can be caused by a lot of things. Computers are notorious for it. Check the string ground, that's often a cause of noise. The strings should be grounded to the pickup covers, assuming the covers are soldered to the pickup, and certainly there should be continuity from the strings to the input jack exterior. Bluetooth and wifi are in the same frequency band, and they can induce noise. I get hum anytime I put my guitars, any of them, on one wall hanger while connected to the amp. It comes from the wiring in the wall. 60Hz hum has a distinctive sound, if you can recognize it.

    A specialized tool can help to hold the jack in place while the nut is tightened, but I've never seen the need. I usually use a used guitar string to pull the jack into place, and the star washer inside the body holds it well enough. Without that star washer, the jack tends to rotate, but it's manageable.

  8. #7
    Just realized if I hold the guitar in a certain position, a non playable one, the hum is gone.

  9. #8

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    A couple years ago I encountered a similar hum coming from my electric acoustic. It hadn't been played through an amp in years. The noise was only present as I turned up the instrument's volume. It was sensitive to what room of the house I was in, which had me fixated on an external source (e.g. computer, led lights, etc). It also seemed like a grounding issue (but not from a cable) since it dissappeared when I would touch the metal on the input jack or a screw on the amp. I trouble shooted for weeks and eventually gave up and took it to a tech.

    The problem was simply build up on the metal components, not allowing a good connection and effective grounding. Quick cleaning of all metal connectors fixed the problem. I live near the ocean and suspect that's partly to blame. Not sure if my story will help but it's possible your new acquisition has been sitting in a case unused for years.

    Good luck

  10. #9

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    Should not the noise gone, if one touches the strings by hand, in case of string ground problem? Just asking because, then that is an easy diagnostic method

  11. #10
    I tried touching everything metal on the outside of the guitar in different combinations to see if it was a particular component, no change. I also tried turning off the wifi and still no change.
    From all the suggestions i've been given, it seems i have no choice but to start taking out the components one by one to see if its a wiring issue. Also see if i see any corrosion on any contact points.

  12. #11

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    You need a multimeter for this, but if you have one, check for continuity between the strings (any string, but it should be all) and the output jack exterior. The problem sounds to me like a grounding problem, allowing the guitar to be an antenna, picking up (probably) 60Hz hum from electrical wiring. If holding the guitar in one position eliminates the noise, that indicates to me that it's EMF, and not likely to be internal corrosion of parts. It's also possible that there is a loose connection inside, though, and a solder joint might be partially loose.

  13. #12

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    Here’s Fralin’s tip sheet on grounding.
    Understanding Guitar Grounding And Common Mistakes | Fralin Pickups

    It might help to describe the noise more fully or even post a recording. You might also try more experiments. Changing the position of the guitar was a good one. Another might be to try turning off all devices around the house and see if that eliminates it. If so turn them on one at a time to learn which one(s) produce the noise. Those results might suggest other experiments.

  14. #13
    Using a meter, i had continuity on all metal parts. output jack to strings, PU covers, PU adjustment screws, toggle switch. Did not have it on the 4 screws that hold the pickups in, dont know if thats an issue. Also not on obviously isolated screws and end pins.
    Ill try shutting off appliances over the weekend to see if that helps.
    I have an AF75 that doesnt have this issue.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!

  15. #14

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    The screws in the pickup rings only go into the top, and are not grounded nor connected to anything. If you get continuity to anything through them, you have a problem. It seems the guitar is acting as an EMF antenna for some reason, from some source. Impossible to troubleshoot from long distance.

  16. #15

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    Touching all the metal parts of your guitar causes no change in the noise? That seem unusual. Generally, if a guitar is picking up EMI touching metal grounds your body which reduces the noise. It makes me suspect you have a bad connection. Did you touch the shield/ground side of the jack? If touching that reduces the noise but touching other metal doesn’t you’ve found a problem.

  17. #16
    I touched the part of the jack that protrudes outside the body and had continuity to strings, etc.. Im pretty sure i tried touching it with my fingers but I'll try again when i get home today. Over the weekend, I'll drop the circuit breakers in the house one by one.

  18. #17

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    Given that it’s positional, that sure sounds like ground-level hum. In other words, you are completing the circuit for an EM field.

    It is probably at heart a grounding issue, but that can be hard to track down. You might check to see if the jack is well grounded. If not, it’s relatively easy to run a ground wire to a metal part like the tailpiece. But trying to isolate and fix other issues—cavity shielding, etc.—can be a fool’s errand.

    Once I had a guitar that was causing problems after I replaced the pots. I found that the pot was touching the foil shielding. I turned it a couple of degrees and that solved the problem.

    There can also be issues with the amp not being properly grounded. I had an Ibanez acoustic amp that would pick up and play NPR from the local transmitter almost as loud as the music. Had to get rid of it.

    However, the easiest solution would be an EHX HumDebugger. This will get rid of 90% of hum problems without majorly affecting the tone, IMO.

  19. #18
    Last night i cleaned the input jack with contact cleaner. I turned on the amp and there was hardly any hum. I came back an hour later and it was humming again. Touched everything, tried to wiggle wires through the F hole, no change.
    This morning it was pretty much silent again...for about 15 minutes then it started again. Nothing changed in the house that im aware of.
    It might just be the way this guitar is.
    I agree with Doctor Jeff's comment about this turning into a fools errand to fix.
    Last edited by d115; 11-28-2020 at 06:00 PM.

  20. #19

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    Sounds more like the amp, but it's impossible to diagnose from here. Are you sure it never makes any noise with any other guitar? Is it quiet with the cable disconnected from the guitar, but still in the amp?

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by sgosnell
    Sounds more like the amp, but it's impossible to diagnose from here. Are you sure it never makes any noise with any other guitar? Is it quiet with the cable disconnected from the guitar, but still in the amp?
    Exactly my thoughts-sounds like a dry joint warming up

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  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by d115
    This morning it was pretty much silent again...for about 15 minutes then it started again. Nothing changed in the house that im aware of...
    Do you live near any overhead electrical wires or transformers? Or are you near neighbors who might have turned on a TV or other device in the morning?

  23. #22

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    This has the hallmark of a solder joint that is ‘cracked’. Contact seems ok, after having some current go through for a while some part swells and the crack opens. That would be the joint of an earth connection. Just strange that it seems to be in the guitar, maybe it warms up from you.

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  24. #23
    I compare the noise with my AF75 because they're both humbuckers, as opposed to my telecasters. When the 95 is noisy, i unplug the jack from the guitar and put it in my 75. There is no hum. This holds true if i use my DVM little jazz or JC120. The amp is silent if a wire is plugged into it without the guitar. I even went as far as waving the end of the cable around to see if it changes anything. That's why i believe its an issue with the guitar.
    There are overhead power lines in the backyard about 50 feet away.
    I have a neighbor next door. He doesn't look like a HAM radio operator but who knows. Anyway, the 75 is really quiet and the 95 is not.
    Whatever bond I started making with this guitar is quickly fading away.
    Ill give it a little more time, then I'm going to sell it.
    By selling this and one of my telecasters, i could invest in a nicer guitar. Maybe something in the $1500 dollar range.
    I live in a beach town so the I don't know if i should stick with laminate or carved. I guess that's another thread to start when the time comes.
    Last edited by d115; 11-29-2020 at 10:16 AM.

  25. #24

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    Given all that, the next thing to try would be pulling the electronics out and inspecting/resoldering everything. It could be just a cold solder joint, or even a loose wire, but given the intermittent nature of the issue, I would guess a cold solder joint. Hit every joint with a soldering iron and reflow the solder.

  26. #25

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    Have you tried a choke on the power line to the amp or the cable from the guitar to the amp, or both? Might be enough to eliminate the EMI.
    an example (comes in different configurations): RADIO SHACK SNAP CHOKE CORE PACK OF 2 P/N: 273-0069 40293647605 | eBay

  27. #26

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    Confirming that it noise is unique to one guitar is good. You might try other experiments to get clues.
    Is the noise the same in all pickup switch positions?
    How does the noise change as you roll each volume pot down?

    I have an Ibanez AF105 that’s great at rejecting hum (60 & 120 Hz), but if dimmers or noisy powerlines can come through as a buzz. If I switch to both pickups and play with the two volume controls I can find a blend that bucks the buzz. I haven’t figured out how to totally eliminate the buzz, but it’s not that bad—much better than single coil pickups.

    But you describe your noise as a hum. Is it really more of a buzz?

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by d115
    Just realized if I hold the guitar in a certain position, a non playable one, the hum is gone.

    That sounds rather like picking up magnetic interference. Is the pickup actually hum bucking? You can check with a tuning fork whether both coils are active.

    Another test is whether the hum is maximum with the guitar volume up full. Electric interference often peaks when the volume is down by 6dB at which point the guitar output impedance is greatest, though this is not always the case.

    Electric interference can be caused by the amp not being grounded. Without a ground, the amp chassis will typically float at half of the line voltage. Some guitars don't react well to that.