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Xitel debuts Ground Loop Isolator

updated 08:10 am EST, Thu March 4, 2004

Xitel Ground Loop Isolator

Xitel has announced its designed specifically to stop the ground loop hum that can result from connecting computers to home stereo equipment. "As the trend towards more and more consumers playing digital audio from their computers through their home stereo systems continue, many are discovering an annoying hum in their speakers. The most likely cause of this hum is not their PC or home stereo, but a ground loop in their home or apartment mains power wiring, which can occur through differences in resistance in the electrical system." It is available for $30.

"When a computer or audio component is connected to a stereo, a path is provided for electricity to flow from one wall socket to another as the electrical system tries to balance itself, causing the amplifier to generate noise, which is heard through the speakers as annoying hum.
Given that the volume of users who listen to music through their PCs continues to rise, Xitel has released a new Ground Loop Isolator to enable consumers to continue to connect their computer to their home stereo and enjoy pristine digital audio without any background interference. Xitel's new Ground Loop Isolator ($30) works by breaking the earth between a computer and stereo to ensure no ground path exists for current from an electrical imbalance to flow.
This simple and effective way of eliminating ground loop issues preserves the full fidelity of all digital music while preventing speakers from humming."




by MacNN Staff

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  1. MacNN.com Reader

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Radio Shack

    Radio Shack sells one for less money, and it's less bulky. I've use this one for years and it works great:

    http://www.radioshack.com/product.asp?catalog%5Fname=CTLG&product%5Fid=270-054

  1. MacNN.com Reader

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Ground loop from digital?

    Let's reword this, ground loop when using analog audio from a computer. If you're using digital, its not an issue! The best solution is to get a real DAC such as the ART DI/O, use the digital out from your Power Mac G5 or buy the cheapo M-Audio Sonica, and you'll get much better performance than the shoddy built-in analog circuits from your mac. Plus, no ground loop noise.

    FWIW, Radio Shack's isolator mucks up the frequency response and phase noticably. I don't expect Xitel's to sound much better, they are by no means good audio engineers.

  1. MacNN.com Reader

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Digital audio

    Please, too many mac users are confused with digital audio. How do I know this? Easy. Check out Macintouch and Macfixit and the complaints from users who said that the volume and mute functions on their mac had absolutely no affect on the audio spit out of their stereo hooked through digital audio connectors. Gee, who would've thought that would be the case.

  1. MacNN.com Reader

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Re: Digital audio

    even myself, a long-time mac user, was thinking the same thing, because that's what we are, mac users, not audio tech... for us the logic is simple: a lower "source" means lower output.. when we think Digital, we just assume that the signal is better because it doesn't have to go from Digital to analog to whatever.. After all, an OS control is considered "digital", so when I lower the volume in the menu bar, I send a digital command, which effectively lower the volume on my regular, analog, speakers...

  1. MacNN.com Reader

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Re: Digial Audio

    I'm not sure why you are riding that previous post. Ground loops will certainly be imposible with an optical connection. That was the point.

    You're right, just because you can solve one problem, doesn't mean you have avoided all others. But I'm not entirely sure that was your point. You seemed to suggest that Digial audio is somehow inferior.

    If you are serious about getting audio out of your mac, DIO is on top of the list, but not without consequence.

  1. MacNN.com Reader

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Amazing news, MacNN

    Is it such a slow day that the arrival of a Ground Loop Isolator is newsworthy?

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