Problem description: Friends ask, "Why does it sound like there's a groaning pig in the background of your mic? You need to record yourself and hear this. It doesn't sound better than your Realtek, it sounds worse."
For the most part, the pig sound only happens when I'm in CSGO. I believe it is EMI noise from components inside my case. I can recreate some noise when doing other intensive things like running 3DMark, but nothing compared to CSGO.
I've taken a large number of recordings to test everything out.
If you care to know those details, they are:
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V LK
CPU: Intel i5-3570k
GPU: Asus GTX670-DC2-2GD5
OS: Windows 8.1
Rosetta Stone VoIP Headset Mic
Creative Labs ACM Mic (used only with ZxR)
Clip-on Lapel Mic
Sound Cards and ports:
Creative Labs ZxR ACM Mic Port
Realtek ACM887 Front Panel HD Audio Mic Port
Realtek ACM887 Back Mic Port
Recording Software: Audacity 2.0.5 Link
Reference Wav: First 14 seconds of this public domain wav Link
Player: Nexus4 on 100% volume with X-Mini speaker at 50% volume.
Methods used to obtain recordings:
I used the reference wav because I hate the sound of my own voice. It is public domain so long as I name the source, and the particular segment of the recording is conveniently self-cited.
I noted the bitrate and sample rate configured in Windows and matched this in Audacity quality settings.
Gain settings ('mic boost') were also tested and noted.
In most recordings, my lapel mic was 8 inches away from my speaker. Other positions are noted as such.
Creative ACM recordings had the speaker held in front of my mouth at a natural distance from the ACM.
Rosetta Stone headset recordings had the speaker held near my mouth at a natural distance from the directional boom mic.
The final performance had the lapel mic clipped to my shirt in a natural position with the speaker held at my mouth.
Total recordings: 19
I've yet to really compare them or do any blind tests on subjects to determine what the 'best' hardware and configuration is in comparison to the reference wav.
The Final Performance is the main problem I am having. In this test you can hear me:
- Start the recording in Audacity
- Open CSGO
- Connect to my local LAN server
- Type-in the rcon_password and issue a bot_kick command
- Click my mouse shooting a pistol
- Play the reference sound
- Alt-Tab out of CSGO (the noise stops here, which coincides with the GPU going to a lower utilization %)
- Stop the recording
Characteristics: ZxR Lapel Mic via ACM, 90% mic volume, no effects, no alchemy, normal sounds settings in CSGO.
Here is that file: Link
(This 16mb file will be replaced by an mp3 at some point)
I did some more tests while recording inside of CSGO.
ACM alone: No noise
My lapel mic is 1/8" mono. I get pig noise when its plugged into the 1/8 mic input on the ACM.
Remove mic. Add a 1/8" to 1/4" adapter to 1/4 mic socket, no noise.
Plug 1/8 mono lapel mic into 1/8<>1/4 adapter, pig noise returns
Remove ACM 1/4" jack from back of ZxR, silent (of course)
Plug 1/8<>1/4 adapter into 1/4 mic jack on back of ZxR, low level white noise
Plug 1/8 mono lapel mic into 1/8<>1/4 adapter which is in 1/4 mic jack on back of ZxR, pig noise returns
I can't shake the it. Two different mics, it seems the only thing that can give me a clear recording is the ACM.
The only difference is these mics are mono. The ACM is stereo. Perhaps the ZxR has some non-optional circuitry to remove noise from a stereo mic? The 'noise reduction' is OFF in the driver. All of CrystalVoice is off.
Is the mono mic jack perhaps leaving a channel open on the ZxR input thus resulting in the amp circuit picking up all this EMI noise? Edit: No, I plugged plain stereo headphones into the 1/8" mic input on the ACM and got them recording as a very bad stereo mic, and the pig noise returned upon alt-tab into CSGO.
Edited by EarwaxDAC - 1/15/14 at 7:40pm