Jim Hagerman's Tips To Remove Noise From Your Vinyl Playback System

Phono specialist/electronics designer Jim Hagerman of Hagerman Audio Labs recently published a PDF file containing really useful tips for reducing and hopefully removing from your system hum and other forms of phono playback noise pollution.

You can access here Hagerman's detailed suggestions. Also be sure to read the Stereophile profile of Mr. Hagerman.

OldschoolE's picture

All kidding aside, I often run into things such as this in publications as if it is an epidemic. Maybe it is, but I don't have those issues in either of my systems, which are nothing too special.
One system currently has a top of the line Denon AVR with a Denon DP-47f table running (of course) through a Musical fidelity Phonomena 2 pre with standard cables and I get none of those noises. (This system is about to be renovated).
My second system is vintage with a Sansui 8080db and a Pioneer PL-510A hooked directly to the receiver and again, none of those noises.
The only noise I ever get is from dirt that has not quite completely been eradicated with one cleaning or if it is a bad recording or pressing. Maybe I am just lucky in this? I really don't know.
Still, I saved the pdf anyway, one can never have too many tools for such things!
Nice post in the tips and help category as it were Mikey!

Tony 1954's picture

Thanks for the helpful information, but how do I place my turntable away from the amplifier AND keep the interconnects short? Might work in a black hole, but I live in a condo in Canada.

rijichert's picture

I do have "hissssss" caused from by Pro-Ject Tube Box DS2 phonostage. It becomes irritatingly obvious at the higher listening levels. I replaced the stock Tung-Sol tubes with Selected Telefunken. It dramatically improved the sound quality, but left the sssssss problem unaffected. It looks like I have to learn to live with it, as long as "the level of electrical hiss is lower than that of groove noise".

Rudy's picture

Are you using a moving coil or moving magnet cartridge? I have a Phonomena II+ and find it to have a lot of background hiss also. It is running with a Dynavector XX2 Mk II at the moment. Thing is, I know that a low output MC needs a lot of amplification, so some of it might be unavoidable. But on the other hand, the wall wart that ships with it is of questionable quality, and I have considered trying a good quality linear power supply. (Switching power supplies can produce noise.)

The ironic thing is that I really want to try a Pro-Ject DS2 in my system. Yet if it does not do better on the background noise, it may end up being a sideways move. (Although the tube rolling really appeals to me for a phono stage.)

LJSuau's picture

Did you ever solved the issue of the hissing sound? I changed phonostage and also got a Phonomena II+ but i'm waiting on the Linear PS. I have a strong hissing when I go up with the volume that is limiting my use of Low Output... I had to buy a High Output MC and use it as MM so at least the hissing starts a bit higher in the volume after my usual listening level.

Rudy's picture

I bought a linear power supply (a wall wart) and it made no difference in the noise level. I did speak with a representative at AXPONA but did not get a chance to follow through. As it is now, at the highest gain levels, the hiss is audible over the vinyl's background noise.

I am going to be switching to a Conrad-Johnson phono stage and a step-up transformer (a pair of Hashimoto HM-3s). Until I find a suitable C-J, I may get the Hashimoto and use it with the Phonomena II+. It is not ideal as I wanted an all-in-one phono stage, but at least once I get the C-J, it will work well with my C-J preamp.

Mcrusek's picture

I have struggled with a high pitch whine from my analog setup due to a refrigerator on the other side of the wall. It is not noticeable with many recordings, but it is with some jazz albums with quieter sections or between tracks. I wish I could move the turntable but that is just not in the cards. :'(