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Sound Issues
#1
So I am fairly new to all of this but I just received my version 2.1 kit yesterday and am running into some sounds issues. The whole kit went together very well but upon first boot-up, I noticed a lot of white noise coming from the speaker. I thought it would die down when playing games, so I loaded up some NES games. When playing all of them, the game audio is barely audible. It is almost entirely drowned out by the white noise. The connections look good and so at this point, I am not sure what could be causing it or how to fix it. Anyone run into this issue or have any ideas? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
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#2
Is it possible to post a photo of the backside of the speaker? I've just noticed that one of our batches of speakers is really poor quality. I don't know if that would be the problem or not.

Another thing to check is if the sound volume is turned up to about 90% in the menu system. When you're in the menu, just hit the start button and it's there somewhere under sound or something like that. If it's lower, it will be too soft. If it is higher, it will cause amplification problems.

Also, there is an experimental setting to help with background noise.

Please check out the white noise fix step number four at https://github.com/RetroPie/RetroPie-Set...und-Issues
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#3
(04-21-2017, 11:32 AM)Flavor Wrote: Is it possible to post a photo of the backside of the speaker? I've just noticed that one of our batches of speakers is really poor quality. I don't know if that would be the problem or not.

Another thing to check is if the sound volume is turned up to about 90% in the menu system. When you're in the menu, just hit the start button and it's there somewhere under sound or something like that. If it's lower, it will be too soft. If it is higher, it will cause amplification problems.

Also, there is an experimental setting to help with background noise.

Please check out the white noise fix step number four at https://github.com/RetroPie/RetroPie-Set...und-Issues

Hey Ed,

Thanks for the help. My system volume is correct but I will give step 4 a try today and see what I can come up with. I have also posted a picture of the included speaker.

Thanks


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#4
I should have asked for these before, but could you also post a photo of the back side of the Raspberry Pi itself? Like, take the same photo you just posted, but show the entire board with the Pi. We'd like to look at the soldering on the Pi.

There are 2 more tests that can clue us in on what might be the problem.

1) While there is a game playing, can you adjust the volume knob and put pressure on the disc/wheel? Does that make sense? If there were a problem with the wheel itself, this might cause the volume to actually sound correct (like while you're pressing down on the wheel).

2) Use headphones. Does it sound really good when you're using headphones? The headphones do not go through the amplifier/speaker, so this can be a good clue as to where the problem is coming from.

If I'm remembering the different speakers correctly, that speaker is not one of the batch we thought might be flakey. I'll make sure about that and get back to you in a bit.

Also: Are you running on Pi Zero or Pi Zero W?
Card Fighters' Clash 2 English Translation ( http://cfc2english.blogspot.com/ )
Neo Geo Pocket Flash Cart and Linker Project ( http://www.flashmasta.com/ )
Avatar art thanks to Trev-Mun ( http://trevmun.deviantart.com/ )
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#5
(04-22-2017, 04:50 AM)Flavor Wrote: I should have asked for these before, but could you also post a photo of the back side of the Raspberry Pi itself? Like, take the same photo you just posted, but show the entire board with the Pi. We'd like to look at the soldering on the Pi.

There are 2 more tests that can clue us in on what might be the problem.

1) While there is a game playing, can you adjust the volume knob and put pressure on the disc/wheel? Does that make sense? If there were a problem with the wheel itself, this might cause the volume to actually sound correct (like while you're pressing down on the wheel).

2) Use headphones. Does it sound really good when you're using headphones? The headphones do not go through the amplifier/speaker, so this can be a good clue as to where the problem is coming from.

If I'm remembering the different speakers correctly, that speaker is not one of the batch we thought might be flakey. I'll make sure about that and get back to you in a bit.

Also: Are you running on Pi Zero or Pi Zero W?

1. So I did notice that there was slight pressure still on the volume wheel when trying to spin it. I cut back the case a little more and it sounds much better! Before, the game sounds was completely drowned out by the white noise. There is still some noise but the game sound is coming through much stronger at this point.

2. I did try headphones and it sounds perfect when using them. There is no white noise produced when using them at all.

Its very likely this could all be an issue of a bad solder connection on my part, so I did include the photo requested. My joints are all but good and I really need a new tip for these smaller connections. Let me know if you see a connection that may be the culprit and I will redo it. I am using a Pi zero and should be getting a wifi dongle today and will be able to try step 4 on the document you referenced. I will let you know later today if that cleans up the audio.

Thanks


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#6
You can pretty easily do that "step 4" thing by popping your SD card out of the Pi, inserting it into your PC/Mac, and editing the file. It's on the "boot" partition, and that's easily usable on any PC.

I don't see any obvious solder problems. The pin and pad on the top-left looks slightly uncovered, but I think it's still making good contact.

I think that after your case mod around the volume wheel and adding "audio_pwm_mode=2" to /boot/config.txt, you will have nice audio.

If you don't, definitely let us know. All the systems we've built do have some "white noise" in the menu system, but the games sound good.

If the headphones sound good, that should mean that the volume wheel and the connections to the Pi are good. If the speaker still has problems after that, then there could be a problem with the amplifier chip or the related components. I think that we've encountered one GPA that had a problem like that one time. It needed a small repair.
Card Fighters' Clash 2 English Translation ( http://cfc2english.blogspot.com/ )
Neo Geo Pocket Flash Cart and Linker Project ( http://www.flashmasta.com/ )
Avatar art thanks to Trev-Mun ( http://trevmun.deviantart.com/ )
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#7
(04-24-2017, 09:08 AM)Flavor Wrote: You can pretty easily do that "step 4" thing by popping your SD card out of the Pi, inserting it into your PC/Mac, and editing the file. It's on the "boot" partition, and that's easily usable on any PC.

I don't see any obvious solder problems. The pin and pad on the top-left looks slightly uncovered, but I think it's still making good contact.

I think that after your case mod around the volume wheel and adding "audio_pwm_mode=2" to /boot/config.txt, you will have nice audio.

If you don't, definitely let us know. All the systems we've built do have some "white noise" in the menu system, but the games sound good.

If the headphones sound good, that should mean that the volume wheel and the connections to the Pi are good. If the speaker still has problems after that, then there could be a problem with the amplifier chip or the related components. I think that we've encountered one GPA that had a problem like that one time. It needed a small repair.

Hey Ed,

Thanks for all the help. Step 4 seemed to have worked in combination with relieving the pressure on the wheel. The in game audio is now static-free and sound great! I have it all up and running atnnd it works flawlessly. I am currently in process of adding LEDs to my transparent orange buttons and it looks pretty good. I will post some pictures once I have it finished and buttoned up.

Thanks again
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#8
Awesome! Thanks for the news, Osmondn. I think this new "audio_pwm_mode=2" fix is really good for everyone that's tried it.
Card Fighters' Clash 2 English Translation ( http://cfc2english.blogspot.com/ )
Neo Geo Pocket Flash Cart and Linker Project ( http://www.flashmasta.com/ )
Avatar art thanks to Trev-Mun ( http://trevmun.deviantart.com/ )
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#9
I had a similar issue where the volume wheel was a bit tight and there was almost all noise from the speaker.

Immediately following the first boot up, the sound seemed to work great, but after a little tinkering the sound went all noise.

First, rather than cutting the case around the wheel I simply loosened the bottom corner case screw, which relieved the pressure and the case is plenty secure.

I then went into the RetroPie --> Audio menu and chose to 'reset' the ALSA sound, which helped quite a bit with game sound but the noise was still present.

Then i added 'audio_pwm_mode=2' to the /boot/config.txt , and that totally fixed the Noise issue!

Ed i would suggest updating the retropie image file with the audio_pwm_mode setting, as i would think all users would need this on the zero-w
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