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The Ground loop is caused by the difference in electrical potential between different grounding points.
The main culprits are your subwoofer and cable or the satellite box feed at the entrance to your system. Reconnect the subwoofer from its input to the receiver’s output and disconnect the offending feed from the outboard box or tuner (disconnect the cable before any splitters). Connect the chassis screws on your sub and receiver with 14-gauge wire and then unscrew the ground loop screw on the back of your subwoofer.
Overmodulation is a painfully difficult process to translate accurately from telecommunication jargon into layman’s terms.
If your TV was purchased before 2005, there’s about an 80% chance that it’s a cathode ray tube (CRT) model. A ground loop typically produces a loud, low frequency buzz when you plug in audio or video components. One issue to consider is that transformer-based isolators are universally compatible with analog feeds, but may interfere with HDTV signals.


A crude analogy is that overmodulation is like dumping 5 gallons of water into a single measuring cup—the force of the water getting dumped into the cup exceeds the cup’s ability to contain the fluid.
Either at the cabin because you’re lucky any signal makes it that deep into the wilderness, or at home with a perfect home-theater setup that insists on mimicking honey bees no matter what you do to stop the annoying hum.
These are typically curved screens, and always massive, clunky, and absurdly heavy televisions that loom ominously in the corner of your grandparent’s house.
If your whole setup is connected, the sound will be constant while power is running to the system and won’t vary based on the images your TV is displaying (an important distinction between ground loops and overmodulation). When the video signal being sent to a TV is too strong, it causes distortions in the information being transmitted that manifest in a low buzz of about 60hz. In order to keep technical difficulties from ruining your upcoming Super Bowl party (and all your future TV-watching), we decided to equip readers with the knowhow to diagnose and fix their TV when it sounds like an electric toothbrush. The hum from these TVs is caused by the scanning frequency the tubes use as they shoot electrons at the screen. The buzz varies in intensity based upon the onscreen graphics because the sharp edges of a figure correspond to drastic contrasts in signal strength.


There are three prominent problems that can cause your TV to buzz or hum and each is accompanied by a distinct set of sounds and symptoms. This high-pitched tone is inaudible to some, but for those of us used to LCD displays and flatscreens, the whine of a CRT is an annoying relic of the past.
Despite the techy explanation, overmodulation is fairly simple to overcome and is common with analog TVs receiving digital signals.
These issues are CRT scanning, the infamous “ground loop,” or just plain overmodulation—which sounds more complicated than it is. If, in the end, none of the above tips help, then your buzzing is likely the cause of an internal problem inside your TV, which requires appliance-repair savvy.



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