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    Audio noise with NUC HNK


      greetings all,


      Have set up my new NUC HNK using 16gb single RAM, WD 500GB black PCIe m.2 SSD, HDMI into a 24" Samsung SB24750v monitor (with integral speakers). Audio is working as it should via HDMI (Only- no separate audio cable), but I by have somewhat annoying "60 cycle" noise present. Goes away when I mute, doesn't change with position of NUC, cables. It is reminiscent of the sound one would get when a turntable wasn't properly grounded in my old stereo system. Have installed the Intel NUC audio driver.


      Any suggestions on how to eliminate?



        • 1. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK
          Intel Corporation
          This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

          Thank you very much for contacting the Intel Communities Team, mrbillz. I will be more than happy to assist you.

          In order for me to assist you better, please provide me with the .txt file that the System Support Utility will generate. To attach a file, you must click the “Attach” option on the bottom right-hand corner of the response box.
          Also, I would like to know if this happens while gaming or playing a video? I would appreciate if you can provide the name of the application or game that you are running.

          Antony S.

          • 2. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

            Is there a constant level of hum regardless the audio volume position, or can you make the hum louder by turning the volume to 11?  If the first, probably internal noise source.  The second, probably external source.


            Any external sources connected to the system?  Disconnect everything possible, including any other sources connected to the video monitor.

            • 3. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

              Hello to my responders and thanks! Sorry for the delay in getting this followup-

              Antony, the requested SSU file is attached.


              Additional observations:

              all cables checked and removed un-needed ones. Care to be sure cables not routed near AC power cords.


              Hum present whenever there is an image present on screen of the monitor- a Samsung S24B750. Using HDMI1 with audio (the monitor has integrated speakers)


              Hum present from both front and rear HDMI ports


              Hum does not change w/ volume: present when muted, no variance w/ volume changes. No change with change output device selected.  Hands or objects around the cables, monitor, CPU, etc. do not affect the sound. No change with level of load on processor.


              Music plays fine; Playing music does not seem to affect quality or volume of hum.  The hum is constant in volume. (even with muting the sound entirely)


              Hum remains when audio devices are disabled.


              I do not have games installed so I can't test effect of game on sound but as stated hum is steady and persistent present at all times unless computer is off or sleeping. Playing a video (YouTube not DVD) does not affect hum.


              No change with windows update or other program installation. Hum stops when screen goes black during reboots, including when the screen flashes blank a couple of times in succession, but basically is present whenever there is an image on screen.


              I would also mention that I previously used a Toshiba laptop with this same windows 10 build, same cables and monitor, same device connections, network cables, cable routing etc. before installing the NUC and there was no hum.


              So.... with all this info, any suggestions on how to make it stop? All insight appreciated!


              Best wishes, BS

              • 4. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                If it really is an AC powerline hum (50 or 60 Hz) then that is the ultimate source. Since the NUC is powered by a brick that outputs DC (or do you not have a separate brick?) then the noise is not likely caused by the NUC directly.  If you still have that Tosh, check it with that again.  If I had to guess, a bad HDMI cable, even if the cable seems to work fine plugged into something else.  If you have another monitor, ...  Also, anything coming in from outside the dwelling, like an ISP cable, can be a contributor to hum.


                Disconnect everything that is external to the NUC except the power while playing an mp3, silent.wav.mp3 if you have, to the headphone 3.5mm output.  Hum?  No then you are halfway there.


                Otherwise, what connections are still present?  List all connections by name (from this/to that), including wall plugs if more than one.


                The above, now struck out, makes no sense.  If you still have hum after doing:  Disconnect everything that is external...  then there's nothing more you can do but return it because it's coming from INSIDE THE NUC!  If you are absolutely sure it is a powerline hum and not some sort of induced noise, like from house lighting, then it must be the NUC (and even if it were fluorescent lighting, that should not affect the NUC audio).  FWIW, my analog output is noisy.  Unacceptably noisy.  Not hum, not hiss, just annoying noise, steady-state, always-there, same level.  Maybe 60 dB S/N if I bothered to test it.  I use it for a single purpose, managed remotely, and audio is not it.  It's got a low-end Realtek in it, something like an ALC632, but that alone is not the reason, but it is a reason not to expect much from Intel in the audio department.

                • 5. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK



                  So, The Toshiba was connected by VGA cable video only. Audio was through the laptop speakers - no hum. I am using the Intel official brick. I'll try another cable and the 3.5mm in and and see what I get. It is plugged into a power strip- I'll take that out and recheck. Only other cables are the webcam USB cable ( Hum present w/ and w/o) and the network cable.

                  • 6. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                    Updated my reply above, about the strike-out.

                    • 7. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                      Intel has been getting a lot of these audio complaints. It seems to me that its strategy to make them go away is to requests lots of information from customers, make many requests of customers to install sound drivers, updated bios, etc,., with the final result of ultimately wearing out the customer. It seems to never have occurred to Intel support staff that if a lot of people are having this problem--although surely not all---then something is wrong with the design, current configuration, or manual associated with the current generation NUC.

                      • 8. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                        Ok, I will play devil's advocate here...


                        In those cases where customers are having problems that the support team cannot reproduce, requesting the additional information is an important step in identifying what is different. While the support team (and the development and validation teams behind it) have a lot of equipment for testing a great many number of real world scenarios, it is impractical to think that they can cover every scenario. Bottom line, they need all of this information if they are going to be able to ascertain the cause of the issue.


                        While it might seem like a lot of reports to you, it is actually very few. What about the many, many hundreds of thousands who are not having the problem?



                        • 9. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                          Hi Scott,


                          I understand your point but totally not understand why there is so much problem with the NUC audio (I have the problem with my 7th gen i5 NUC disappearing audio/volume icon).


                          I also have a Lenovo T460 (6th gen i5) which I used before the NUC and still has it.  I had 0 prob. with audio (same two monitors).  There is no doubt in my mind the prob. is with the NUC as everything is onboard (and users only need to add RAM/SSD).




                          • 10. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                            Another look, another concern.  Over hdmi, hum makes no sense except for an electrical fault between the NUC and the monitor.  The audio signal is digital and cannot have any hum added to it (...snip).  If it's not a bad hdmi cable (or the monitor), it's the NUC and there's nothing you can do but send it back/send it in.  For me, I'm calling this case closed, but will look here again one day to see what happened.

                            • 11. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                              Ok, thanks to all of you for your input.


                              So after complete isolation, the hum persists. Another way I would describe it is like an old CRT monitor it TV with the sound turned down. The "electron gun hum" .


                              Have switched out all cables, changed HDMI inputs, moved power bricks, plugged straight into wall, etc etc, still not able to affect presence at all.


                              Switching my monitor to "PC DVI" eliminates the hum but no audio from NUC. Tried headphones: No Hum! when monitor input set to PC DVI and headphones plugged in, audio working and no hum. Only thing I have yet to try is to plug in the audio directly to monitor w/ 3.5mm output and see if still no hum.  This does (at least to me) suggest the NUC / HDMI out is to blame...


                              FWIW I did notice that during the boot up, the screen goes black twice, and both times, the hum stopped briefly when there was no image on the screen. Have also tried disabling the audio drivers ( no effect) and changing / disabling the monitor drivers ( no effect).


                              Not sure at this point if it is worth the hassle of returning / replacing. Does anyone know if I could just swap my HDD into a new unit? Seems like I remember the installation is keyed to a hardware identifier such that the old OS seeing a new hardware would not be happy... Anyone from Intel care to enlighten me as to return / replace process?  I also can't afford  to be without a computer for more than a day or 2....

                              • 12. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK

                                I also attempted to replace my NUC to address the audio sound problems that Intel tech support couldn't resolve.  Yes, I was able to transfer the hard drive/SSD.  But I did find one significant problem: the Windows operating system required a new product key. Intel support said it couldn't help me with that problem, so I'd have to contact Microsoft support.  Fortunately, Windows allows a computer without a valid product key to still run Windows in a crippled mode.  After I spent about an hour with Microsoft support, including giving them control over my Intel NUC, they eventually gave me a new product key so I could launch Windows on the new NUC.  Apparently when Windows is installed with the OEM, this operating system transfer isn't a problem. The problem with the NUC is that the operating system is user installed.

                                • 13. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK
                                  Intel Corporation
                                  This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                                  Hello, mrbillz.

                                  By checking your report I can see that your graphics drivers and BIOS are outdated. Let us try the following:

                                  1. Click here to download the latest BIOS version and follow this guide to install it: https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/articles/000005850/mini-pcs.html
                                  2. Please find here the latest Radeon™ RX Vega drivers. Run the .exe file on the driver's file in order to install them.
                                  Let us know how it goes.

                                  Antony S.
                                  • 14. Re: Audio noise with NUC HNK
                                    Intel Corporation
                                    This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                                    Hello, mrbillz

                                    I would like to double check if you were able to perform the troubleshooting steps that I attached to the post above and the results.

                                    Antony S.

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