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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

My speakers are picking up radio stations!


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o8strider8o

 
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Okay so I have external speakers plugged into my macbook, and they're picking up radio stations and playing them out. It's very quiet but I can't leave the speakers on or you can hear it when you don't have itunes going. is there any way to stop this?
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Noels

 
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o8strider8o,

Other than turning your speakers off, I don't think so... the speakers apparently aren't sufficiently shielded from outside rf signals and that's why you're getting the radio stations. It's a function of your proximity to the stations and their signal strength.

You could try your Sound Preferences and turn the Line-in input down some and see how that affects the signals...

Noel
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o8strider8o

 
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Is there any way to shield them with say... aluminum foil or something on the back or is that the worst idea ever?
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you could always buy wire shielding for the cables, I don't know how expensive it is though.

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o8strider8o

 
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I'm trying to avoid money. is there a quick fix?
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Might try a Ground-Loop Isolator, but I' not sure its going to solve your problem. What speakers do you have?
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o8strider8o

 
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i have Cyber Acoustics CA2015 2.0 Computer Speakers
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According to The Unofficial Apple Weblog you can use a Red Bull can (or in your case, most probably several Red Bull cans) to shield electronics from radio interference.

Of course, most any can, such as a US$.59 can of RC Cola would work. But whatever floats the boat.
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o8strider8o

 
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would i put them around just the speakers?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by o8strider8o View Post
Okay so I have external speakers plugged into my macbook, and they're picking up radio stations and playing them out. It's very quiet but I can't leave the speakers on or you can hear it when you don't have itunes going. is there any way to stop this?
I had an old pair of Radio Shack external speakers that did that as well. Apparently, they weren't very well shielded. Just swapping them out for a better pair of speakers did the trick in my case.

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Lucion

 
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My cell phone causes my cheap ($20) computer speakers to go absolutely crazy if I use it near the computer. The only thing I found that works is to turn them off. I've never had any issues with radio stations thankfully. As others mentioned, it is likely your speakers are just poorly sheilded. I know mine are!
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When I was still using my landline telephone, back in the day, it picked up a radio station that was about half a mile away. A telephone technician came in and installed some sort of filter that cleans up the signal. You may want to look at those little magnetic noise reducers that come on the cable on most laptop power bricks? Not sure if it's the same thing but worth a try if you have one handy.
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This problem happens a lot w/ unshielded electronics. First take the speaker apart and then go to the kitchen and get some aluminium foil. Use it to line the inside of the speaker enclosure. When putting it back together be very careful and make sure that the foil you installed does not act as a path for electricity, otherwise you could hurt yourself or your equipment.

Miguel
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