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#1
I just traded an ES339 for a Les Paul. One of the reasons I got rid of the 339 is that it had some fairly significant RF hum, the kind that goes away when you touch the strings. I was hoping the les paul wouldn't have the problem, but it does the same damn thing. Neither guitar hummed in the store. I took the 339 in for repair on this issue, and they resoldered all the joints and checked the grounding, to no avail. My stratocaster doesn't hum when plugged into the same cable/amp setup.

The hum is kind of like a louder amplifier hum. It goes away when I unplug the guitar, when I touch the strings, or when I touch any metal on the guitar. The hum gets better when I unplug my computer from the wall, and when I power down the TV both of which are close by where I sit to play.

Various searches of the internet have revealed two differing opinions:

1) it's likely a grounding issue that can be fixed
2) it's normal behavior for a gibson

I am curious as to what others' experience has been. Is this normal behavior for gibsons? Is there anything that can be done, other than just play my strat?
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#2
None of my Gibson guitars have that problem and they are completely unmodified. It might be a grounding problem, and if you're picking up signals from electrical shit around you, then it is possibly a shielding problem. Have a tech look at it. It might be a very simple fix.
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#3
Quote by FatalGear41
None of my Gibson guitars have that problem and they are completely unmodified. It might be a grounding problem, and if you're picking up signals from electrical shit around you, then it is possibly a shielding problem. Have a tech look at it. It might be a very simple fix.


i have six and none of them do it, but also i have a power conditioner (also batttery backup and surge protecter) that i plug all my amps in to and never have any issues.
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#4
My Les Paul has P90s and hums less than most humbucker guitars. So...it's not a Gibson thing.
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#5
Quote by trashedlostfdup
i have six and none of them do it, but also i have a power conditioner (also batttery backup and surge protecter) that i plug all my amps in to and never have any issues.



god dayum!!! 6 gibsons?!?!?!? i wish i could have at least on low end les paul
#7
Quote by Silver Hilton
The hum gets better when I unplug my computer from the wall, and when I power down the TV both of which are close by where I sit to play.


computers, florescent lighting and televisions can all cause interference that will make noise.

how old is your house? old wiring in a home can also cause this.

so potentially both are working against you.

grounding your house will help with the house wiring issue, but not the items you are playing near that also cause the noise.

a decent power conditioner would probably do wonders for you.


try moving the gear away from the tv and computer, test the gibson again and report back.
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Last edited by gregs1020 at Aug 16, 2011,
#8
Quote by FatalGear41
you're picking up signals from electrical shit around you.


Butchered the quote a little, but this is the answer. I turn all my electrics (TV etc) off at the mains/plugs whenever I play.

And as for LPs, The buzz is worse with my single coil strat than for my LP.
call me ziggy.
#9
Now I'm discouraged. It has to be the electrical devices in the room. I don't think it's the wiring, because then the strat would hum too, no? But the strat is dead silent.

I disconnected the computer and moved it away from the playing area, and the hum is tolerable then. I'll have to experiment with shutting the TV all the way off. There aren't any flourescent bulbs or dimmers close by. As long as I have a finger on a string, the guitar is silent, so I think I can work with this. But it's kind of annoying.

This is the second gibson that has had this problem in my house, and I'm getting a little frustrated.
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#10
the pups in the gibby are hotter than the strat.

boom.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#11
don't all guitars hum a little when plugged in..?

also if i turn my gain up it will hum too and stop when touching metal part or unplug it.

my gibson les paul standard doesn't have annoying hum but like i said hums very quiet or much when gain is up.
#12
^ that's cap noise. a whole different Oprah show.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#13
I swapped the pickups in my Les Paul style guitar and I didn't solder the ground properly to one of the tone pots so I got a lot of hum off my neck pickup unless I touched the strings or a screw somewhere on the guitar. I re-soldered the ground connection and the hum went away.
#14
Isn't that kind of hum normal? My gretsch hums like a bitch if I don't have my hands on it, but some of my other guitars don't . Doesn't it vary from guitar to guitar? We have a section on this in the wiring thread.
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#15
Quote by grungebaby
Isn't that kind of hum normal? My gretsch hums like a bitch if I don't have my hands on it, but some of my other guitars don't . Doesn't it vary from guitar to guitar? We have a section on this in the wiring thread.


That's what I was trying to determine. This is the second guitar I've had that has had the problem, and it sounds like it may be the nature of the beast, rather than something broken with the guitar.

Any chance you could point me to the wiring thread? I couldn't find it with a search for "gibson hum".
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#16
I'm wondering it if might be an amp issue, possibly a lack of ground between the sleeve part of the jack in the amp and the chassis ground. Does your amp have a three-prong plug? if you have an ohmmeter you might want to measure the resistance from the sleeve side of the amp jack (or to the sleeve of a cord that is plugged into the amp jack) and the third (ground) prong of the power plug (with it unplugged, or course).

Have you also tried other cords between the guitar and amp?
#17
Quote by rschleicher
I'm wondering it if might be an amp issue, possibly a lack of ground between the sleeve part of the jack in the amp and the chassis ground. Does your amp have a three-prong plug? if you have an ohmmeter you might want to measure the resistance from the sleeve side of the amp jack (or to the sleeve of a cord that is plugged into the amp jack) and the third (ground) prong of the power plug (with it unplugged, or course).

Have you also tried other cords between the guitar and amp?


I've tried other cables, and other guitars, and other amps. The guitar hums in all cases, and my other guitar does not hum in any of the cases.

I'll check the grounding as you describe, just to be sure. Me and the guitar are going back to Guitar Center tonight, and I'm going to have the tech look at it.
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#18
Update:

I took it back to the store and plugged it into the same make and model of amp there. No noise whatsoever. It looks like the noise is associated with my house. I bought a power conditioner gadget, the Hum-X, and tried that out, no change. I think I'm just going to get an electronics grounding strap and use that when I play.
Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster
Epiphone Sheraton II, Seymour Duncan Jazz and '59.
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Epiphone Les Paul Custom
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Egnator Rebel 30
Hughes and Kettner Tubemeister 18
#19
I know its been suggested, but take it to a trusted tech, it's probably a problem with the pots, or the pickup fitting.
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#20
Just try moving your stuff around, it might have something to do with the enviornment. I moved my amps around one day when my stuff was buzzing and it went down significantly. Sad to see you trade in an 339 for a LP.
#21
If neither the 339 nor the LP hummed in the store then I think you have your answer right there.
#22
Here's a simple flow chart with the answers you desire:

Does it hum with gain? yes = grounding issue or amount of gain gain

Does it hum with cleans? yes = grounding issue, no = not a grounding issue, see "gain"

If you come to gain roll back the volume to 8-9 and compensate with the master volume on the amp.. This is typical with really hot humbuckers , which also explains why your low output stratocaster (assumption) does not feedback.
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Last edited by guitar nubsauce at Aug 17, 2011,
#23
Quote by Silver Hilton
Update:

I took it back to the store and plugged it into the same make and model of amp there. No noise whatsoever. It looks like the noise is associated with my house. I bought a power conditioner gadget, the Hum-X, and tried that out, no change. I think I'm just going to get an electronics grounding strap and use that when I play.

i wouldn't have recommended that unit for this circumstance.

it's one of those things that you have spend a decent amount on to get something of quality.

i had a feeling it was the house wiring from your description of the issue.

getting a house properly grounded isn't that difficult or expensive in some cases.

it depends on the situation though, i'd consider a better conditioner first unless my brother or best friend was an experienced electrician.

good luck.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#24
Quote by Silver Hilton
I just traded an ES339 for a Les Paul. One of the reasons I got rid of the 339 is that it had some fairly significant RF hum, the kind that goes away when you touch the strings. I was hoping the les paul wouldn't have the problem, but it does the same damn thing. Neither guitar hummed in the store. I took the 339 in for repair on this issue, and they resoldered all the joints and checked the grounding, to no avail. My stratocaster doesn't hum when plugged into the same cable/amp setup.

The hum is kind of like a louder amplifier hum. It goes away when I unplug the guitar, when I touch the strings, or when I touch any metal on the guitar. The hum gets better when I unplug my computer from the wall, and when I power down the TV both of which are close by where I sit to play.

Various searches of the internet have revealed two differing opinions:

1) it's likely a grounding issue that can be fixed
2) it's normal behavior for a gibson

I am curious as to what others' experience has been. Is this normal behavior for gibsons? Is there anything that can be done, other than just play my strat?


Sounds like a shielding problem to me, and is likely something to do with the pickup shielding, specifically. The pickups on the Gibsons aren't shielded as well as the Strat and they're picking up electrical noise from the TV, computer, and probably other sources as well. This is a safe bet, since you said things improve when you turn off the TV, computer, etc. When you do that, you're killing some of the noise sources. Do you have florescent lighting where you play? That could be another contributor.

Take the guitar to a good tech, tell him what's happening and have him check out the shielding of your guitar. It's likely the shielding can be redone or enhanced and will solve the problem.
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#25
I also have this problem with my Gibson, but not with any of my other guitars. It didn't hum in the store, but at home it is close to unbearable.
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#26
it's a grounding issue, just buy one of those hum cancelling plugs and you'll be set!
#29
Dawgman51 brings up a good point, I think. While it won't get rid of the hum completely, having your LP shielded will help reduce the affect the other electronics are having on your guitar.


Here:
http://www.guitarnuts.com/wiring/shielding/shield3.php

That's a DIY shielding site for Strats. I linked it only because it fully explains what shielding is. Find a tech you'd trust with a nice Gibson. This and a power conditioner could probably be the difference between night and day.
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#30
or you can just call your electric company and have them properly ground the house.


in most cases, it's free.


#32
Quote by SMTHSCN
it's a grounding issue, just buy one of those hum cancelling plugs and you'll be set!


I tried one of those, to no effect. I don't think it's a grounding issue at this point. I think I just have a house that has a lot of RF noise from all the computers, TV's, and applliances. I think I'm going to have to live with it.
Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster
Epiphone Sheraton II, Seymour Duncan Jazz and '59.
ESP Horizon NT II
Epiphone Les Paul Custom
Mesa 5:50 Express
Egnator Rebel 30
Hughes and Kettner Tubemeister 18
#33
Quote by Darkflame

and maybe you should've asked for advice before trading... 339s are better than LPs lol (in my opinion at least)

The 339 was sweet, but I wanted a change. I like the tone of the LP over the 339. It's all temporary anyway.
Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster
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ESP Horizon NT II
Epiphone Les Paul Custom
Mesa 5:50 Express
Egnator Rebel 30
Hughes and Kettner Tubemeister 18
#34
Quote by JustRooster
Refer to my sig.

what the hell is up your ass?


you gotta love it when teens with no real world experience know everything.

ever own a house? ever call an electric company?


Last edited by gregs1020 at Aug 18, 2011,
#35
Quote by SMTHSCN
it's a grounding issue, just buy one of those hum cancelling plugs and you'll be set!

Those Hum-X things have power filtering circuits in them, I'm sure.
If you've got a good power supply for your pedals already, I don't think it'll make a big difference.

Sorry you wasted your money on one.

Good meaning something like a BBE Supa Chargerr, Voodoo Labs Pedal Power 2+, T-Rex Fuel Tank Junior, etc...
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Quote by Silver Hilton
One of the reasons I got rid of the 339 is that it had some fairly significant RF hum, the kind that goes away when you touch the strings.

Normal.

Quote by gregs1020
computers, florescent lighting and televisions can all cause interference that will make noise.

how old is your house? old wiring in a home can also cause this.

so potentially both are working against you.

grounding your house will help with the house wiring issue, but not the items you are playing near that also cause the noise.

a decent power conditioner would probably do wonders for you.


try moving the gear away from the tv and computer, test the gibson again and report back.

+1


Why do I see people constantly recommending power conditioners? It's really not always necessary...And it doesn't necessarily "clean up" your power.
#36
Quote by JustRooster
Refer to my sig.


Wtf, bro?


TS what Greg said in post 7 seemed pretty accurate.

I had pretty bad hum on one of my Teles one time and it turned out that the grounding wire from the pickup wasn't installed correctly. Could be that too
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#37
Quote by JustRooster
Dawgman51 brings up a good point, I think. While it won't get rid of the hum completely, having your LP shielded will help reduce the affect the other electronics are having on your guitar.


Here:
http://www.guitarnuts.com/wiring/shielding/shield3.php

That's a DIY shielding site for Strats. I linked it only because it fully explains what shielding is. Find a tech you'd trust with a nice Gibson. This and a power conditioner could probably be the difference between night and day.



you're wrong.

and i'd change my sig, but that's a dick move.
instead i'll try to help the op.


the guitar isn't humming at the shops.
yes, please turn off all fans, dimmer lights, and move the amp to different rooms
like said,

but also, instead of buying Hum-x, try a better, shorter length guitar cable,
with those guitars.
and make sure the input jack is solid.
never been hand tightened.

*have you ever looked at the jack with it outside the guitar?

go directly to the amp, no pedals, and make sure the amp is the 3 prong variety.

yes. i know the strat isnt humming on that rig.
it isnt picking up the noise and that's great, but for now, treat that as an anomaly,

and maybe you can get the other guitars playing better, even in your house.

see how that works and post back.

worst case you can always return the cable.
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#38
Quote by JustRooster
Refer to my sig.



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#40
Quote by gregs1020
what the hell is up your ass?


you gotta love it when teens with no real world experience know everything.

ever own a house? ever call an electric company?





It's a joke, buddy. I did it to Dave, too.
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