Squeaking noise randomly appearing in recording

So after some time of trying, i’ve managed to record one test recording that has no buzz and its very good with just the normal background noise that can be removed very easily and then the recording will be perfect. For my ears, there is very big difference between the first one i posted and this one. (Most of all at the beggining part of both test recordings.)

There is one thing i need to clarify also - i am not from english speaking country. And for me all the audio noise describing words are difficult to use, because to be honest i am not 100% sure if they mean what i think they mean and if they describe the type of noise that i am thinking of in my language. So maybe you are not hearing “buzz” because there is perhaps no buzz and the noise i am talking about is called differently :smiley:

I know. We got that. I’m trying to find common words. The hiss noise the microphone normally makes sounds like rain in the trees. Of course, if you’re from a part of the world that doesn’t have rain or trees, that’s not going to work.

This latest sample will give us a direct comparison between broken and not broken.

My last post was important. That little pop or tick at the beginning of your clips is not normal and it could be a result of an unstable recording system. Are you wearing headphones while you record? You should not have speakers while you’re recording from a microphone.

Have you heard a live performance when the performers got the microphone or public address system wrong and it starts to sing? …eeeeEEEEEEEEE. Just before it does that, it still works, but it’s unstable and the sound is really odd and damaged. It’s possible to make the computer sound pathways do that by accident. It’s true. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

And it can drive you insane.

Do you set up your computer to record YouTube or other internet sound? Some of those settings can cause problems. Remember up the thread was the comment that the voice didn’t have enough bass or low pitch tones? An unstable recording system can cause that, too.


I’m not at a good place to listen to the samples.


This microphone uses the analog soundcard inside the computer.

You can unplug the microphone cable and clean the plug with alcohol, glass cleaner or vodka. Use clean rags or paper towels and dry when you’re done. Plug, unplug and replug several times to make sure the connection is good.

You’re using headphones, right? Can you hear yourself a little late while you’re presenting or recording?

Audacity > Edit > Preferences > Recording > [X] Playthrough (select)

Start an Audacity recording, listen carefully to background noise in the headphones and move the microphone around your desk. I bet it gets noisy when you move the microphone close to your monitor. Old glass monitors create tons of electronic noise, but even some flat panels can make funny noises if they get too close to a microphone. Other computer equipment can do that, too.

I had a noisy bass speaker cabinet as part of my musical keyboard system and that’s how I found it. I couldn’t hear it just by walking around the room, but I put the microphone next to it and the noise was very loud.


The Trust microphone is an unbalanced computer microphone. It uses two wires for the sound and it’s important to have good connection when you plug it in. Even if you do everything right, putting one too close to a monitor or even the computer itself can make it be noisy.

Higher end microphones use a three wire system. The XLR type connector…

…is heavier and it’s much easier for it to make a good connection. The extra wire is a protection copy of the sound signal so even if something goes wrong the performance may work anyway.

XLR type microphones also typically use electronics outside the computer.

You can buy a simpler, smaller package, but I don’t have a good picture of that. XLR systems are more expensive.

The computer is a very noisy place. If you have a desktop computer and you buy a custom soundcard, the instructions usually tell you to install it as far away from the noisy video card as you can.


There still is 50 Hz hum in the new buzz-test3 recording, but not as loud. On the other hand you have more “hiss” noise in this later “buzz-test3” recording which is covering up the lower level of hum.

(I renamed the first recording to “50 Hz hum”).
50 Hz hum.png

That was my finding. The buzz goes away but the overall rushing rain sound goes up. The poster commented on this effect.

I have had troubles like this with a computer microphone bad connection. Some soundcards treat the outer shield in the microphone cable as an active connection rather than simple ground or earth. This can help with an electrically noisy environment (fake balance), but it can give you magic such as making hum and buzz come and go by touching the microphone or laying your hand on the cable.

There is another shadow as well. The connection to the computer is Tip-Ring-Sleeve and nowhere does it say this is a dynamic (moving coil) microphone even though it looks like one. It would be far cheaper to put an electret condenser element in there instead of the magnet. This would require computer 5 volts which would be the ring connection in the plug.

The extra wire doubles the possibility of a bad connection creating noise.


There’s only one source for user experience for this mic. Amazon.de:


Atm 52 user reviews. Most seem real.

Some seem to have noise problems. And worse, some seem to have a level problem too.

I feel a lot of these problems could be avoided by using a dynamic mic. Some of the mics sold for use with mobile phone kits for cars can be very good for voice. You can find them for less than 10 €. You just need to find a dynamic one. Parrot and TomTom seem to have nicer ones.

Trust doesn’t even bother telling anyone if this is an electret and needs pip power. I mean NO specs? Not even on your “industrial” specsheet? Come on, Trust, get real!

I think in this case, the mic gives inconsistent result because of the pip power supplied by the computer. As Koz already suspected too. Any electret will sound bad if supplied with noisy power.

And there’s always the odd case where the computer’s power is so bad it’ll ruin any sound…

You’d need either a second computer, or a second mic to test.

All true, but that doesn’t account for sound errors that change over time.

I recorded it multiple times and finally got a good one.

That’s not bad design. That’s something broken.


It’s the only reason I can think of, if the mic produces different levels in time, as some Amazon reviewers reported…

Of course, there’s still Windows’ audio system too. That’s why I’m interested to see how this mic behaves with another computer. Or the same computer with another mic.

Once again thank you all for your time and great and helpful comments. (even though i was little bit lost reading some of them when they started to be a little bit more above my audio tech knowledge :smiley: )
Today i did some more testing and i have couple things to say regarding your comments, tips and my tests:

  • yes i am using headphones while recording. I have to. But i tried recording without headphones and there was no difference.
  • after setting both audacity and windows to 48000 hz / 16bit audio rate, it seems it is now much more stable. What i mean by that is that before, i could start 20 recordings in a minute, and almost each of them would sound a bit differently, sometimes the buzz was there, sometimes not, sometimes louder, sometimes more subtle. But now it is mostly ok and is most of the time the same as in my second test recording i uploaded here.
  • i tried the “playthrough” audacity option to listen while recording and i tried moving the mic all around. I moved it towards PC, towards monitor, left, right and centre, up or down, just everywhere and weirdly enough, the sound was not changing at all. Only thing that made the recording buzz/humm more was when i tried to turn on my table lamp (but that is not the issue, because when i record i don’t do it at night so it is never on). One other thing that was making more buzz was docking charger for my wireless PS4 controllers. But the mic had to be very near it and i have it on my table for like a week and the buzzing problems were there much longer. So it is not caused by this. (But i will place it somewhere else either way, it doesnt need to be there)
  • the trust starzz microphone is nothing really fancy, but it was performing admirably well for a year maybe before the problems begun. It could be caused by the mic as some of you said, but if yes, then something must have “broke” because it was not always like that.
  • i wouldn’t mind buying some better microphone, but there is so many of them and almost everyone has some people saying it is great and some people saying they have this or that noise problem etc. So i am afraid that i will spend a lot of money for “better” mic but the quality wont be better and/or the problems won’t dissapear. Another thing i am afraid of is the set up of the better mics with the XLR connectors and those amplifier stations (or what they are :smiley: ) because i have no experience with that. So i will be glad for any recomendations (i am recording a lot, almost daily for my youtube channel) thanks again

just everywhere and weirdly enough, the sound was not changing at all.

That’s good. That means the buzz and funny noises are probably not coming from the stuff on your desk or in your room.

i was little bit lost reading some of them

That’s OK. Sometimes more than one forum elf posts and we talk to each other and not you. The forum helper elves live across nine time zones, so we drop in and out depending on where the sun is. The sun is over California. My turn.

Did you try the cleaning? I had trouble with a computer microphone when I got a little dust on the plug by accident. If I moved the cable a little, I would get funny noises and power sounds with my voice. I move it again and the noises go away and my voice is clear.

Pull the microphone plug out of your soundcard and rub it with a clean rag or paper towel and a little alcohol or unflavored vodka (same thing). Dry the plug and put it back in two or three times.
Try announcing.


Hi everyone.
some may remember me (probably not :smiley: ) because i was having an issue with weird squeaking noise in my recordings and i was trying to solve it here maybe year or two ago here but i wasn’t able to solve it. But i think i may have found something that would help experts here to solve it.

So the problem is that whenever i start recording in audacity, the recorded audio is randomly in one of two versions - it is either silent with just the classic background noise which can be fixed by noise reduction after the recording which is the desired version. Or the second version is that it has this weird squeaking noise that is very annoying and even noise reduction won’t help to clear it completely. And when i say it is random - it really is. I may start 50 short silent test recordings quickly one after another and sometimes it will have the problem and sometimes not.
I have tried everything imaginable to idendify the problem, but i wasn’t able to even with your help year ago. It just one day started happening less often so i just tried to live on. But now it is happening more often so it is bothering me again.

:exclamation: But this time, when i was checking different settings in audacity and different viewing options etc, i have found something!!! When i switched the audio track view form from the default “waveform” and switched it to “spectogram” (i don’t even know what it is :smiley: ) the difference between the normal OK recording and the squeaking recording is visible!!! When the recording is squeaking, there is this up and down line around 5K that is not there when the recording is ok.

Can you please tell me what could that be? See the attached pictures. Thanks

I’ve merged your new post with your original topic so that we have all the information in one place.

As illustrated previously by Trebor: https://forum.audacityteam.org/t/squeaking-noise-randomly-appearing-in-recording/42457/10

Trebor also commented that there is not just one “buzz” but three.
There is a low frequency (50 Hz) “hum” that is present in both left and right channels. This is without doubt “mains hum” (see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_hum)
In the Left channel only, there is a high pitched “whistling” that oscilates between about 4 to 6 kHz at a rate of 50 cycles per second.
In the Right channel only there is an almost inaudible, extremely high pitched whistle that oscillates between about 15.5 to 17.5 kHz at a rate of 50 cycles per second.

Here I’ve mixed to mono for the first track to show the constant 50 Hz hum. and split the channels for the next two tracks to show the 5 kHz and 16 kHz whistling:
Without doubt, all three noises are the result of electrical interference. The difficult things to ascertain are:

  1. Where is the interference coming from? In the case of the 50 Hz hum, that is simple: it is “mains hum”. For the high frequency noises, it is less obvious.
  2. What is picking up the interference? My guess here is that it is the sound card at fault. It may be the mic that is picking up the 50 Hz mains hum (or more likely the microphone lead), but I think the high frequency whistling must be from the sound card because it is different in left/right channels.

Is your computer a laptop or desktop?

But why the randomness of it? This is the weirdest part of it. How is possible, that within short space of time, i can try for example 10 recordings, and some of them will record without the hum/buzz/squeak and some of them with it. If the problem was for example sound card, wouldn’t it be constant problem? I have a standart desktop computer.

Perhaps it is picking up interference that is sometimes present and sometimes not.

There are many possible sources of interference. It could be something inside the computer, or something outside the computer.
Outside the computer it could be something as simple as a mobile phone checking for messages, or a fluorescent light switching on in another room on the same electrical circuit, or a lighting dimmer switch, or a refrigerator, or 1001 other possibilities.
Inside the computer it could be intermittent due to power saving modes, or wifi scanning for new connections, or bluetooth scanning for new devices, or 1001 other things.

A good, high quality sound card should be largely immune to interference, though not all devices are, and no devices are immune if the interference is very strong.

To try to isolate the source of the interference, you could try switching off all electrical appliances in the house, including lights, mobile phones, iPads, and other portable devices, and making a load of test recordings. Ideally, though perhaps not practical, you could try moving your computer to another room, or better, to another house.
Do you still get the problem? If yes, then it’s probably something in the system (PC, sound card, mic, etc.)

Buy or borrow another mic. Do you still get the problem? If yes, then it’s not the mic.

Buy or borrow a USB sound card. Does that fix the problem?

Sorry but there are no easy answers to this type of question. You just need to try different things and try to make the problem better or worse. If you can make the problem worse, then that can give a strong clue as to what is causing the problem.

…all three noises are the result of electrical interference.

The 50Hz one is, but there’s question about the other two.

But why the randomness of it?

I’m having flashbacks.

In analog electronic design, you shoot for unconditional stability as well as whatever the actual goal is. Most analog design involves clever management of intentional feedback, so this is harder to deal with than you would think.

If you hit the goal but miss the ‘unconditional stability’ part, you could get undesirable, audible feedback inside the electronics.

Worse, it might change with stimulation or condition. “I get a high-pitched tone or whistle when I try to use my device…but it doesn’t always do it.” If you really offend the electronic gods, you can have hardware moon-phase errors. "The last three days have been clean, but today I want to start my audiobook and I have this frying, whistling sound.

Any of that sound familiar?

Since we will shortly be on forum chapter 5, I suggest we’re not going to solve this across many time zones and some professional, hands-on trouble-shooting is needed. That’s not to say there is no desperation method. There is. Replace everything but the room. If the problem is not solved, it’s probably your environment.

Nobody said you can’t have more than one problem. See: 50Hz hum plus 5KHz whistle.

I can think of one thing which could cause both of those. Bad power supply in the computer. Hummy instability? Oh, yeah. So fast.