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Interference On All Home Electronics (Including Cell Phones) - Opinions Wanted

Discussion in 'Radio and Communications' started by MothBall, Oct 30, 2015.

  1. JimB

    JimB Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Bob
    No, I was not being derisive at all. If this effect is there, my first thought is that it is due to strong RF signals being picked up and rectified in the analogue audio stages of the phone or whatever device was used for recording.

    Wrapping the device completely in aluminium foil will create a Faraday screen around the device and considerably attenuate any incoming RF signals, thereby reducing, if not removing the problem.

    On a different note, it looks as though the OP (MothBall) has not been here since Saturday.
    It would be nice to know if he has a solution, or it was just a bit of a wind-up.

    JimB
     
  2. Brevor

    Brevor Member

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    Sorry JimB, I must have accidently bumped the report button.
     
  3. cowboybob

    cowboybob Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    There's an "Undo Rating" selection, should you choose to use it.
    My thoughts as well.
     
  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. Brevor

    Brevor Member

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    Done, Thanks!
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  6. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    I apologize with the late reply...I was really busy hanging out with my boy.

    Love the foil hats, Mikebits. Hah!

    I've done the antenna (FCC) search just like you...and although I've come up with a few results, there's nothing really close. However, these are only "legal" antennas, Ham operators and what not. Who knows who is running unlicensed stuff.

    I haven't really asked the neighbors but I should. And I've asked a couple of the neighbors that have been on this block a while if they know of anyone heavily into radio, electronics, ham, etc. No one really knew of anyone.

    I didn't do the recording with the phone wrapped in foil yet. I did, however, record for a couple hours with a 90's Sony Handycam. Again, it gets the same results as a phone...but somehow, it still sounds a "little" different. Strange enough, I've added a few of the clips to my Drive for you to check out.

    Sony Hamdycam clips -
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B1jBL-nrWZtoeXRVcTliYzdzc1k

    EDIT - I should also state that if you dig far enough, the noise / voices / sounds are 24/7..this is just the stuff that jumps up and is easy to boost and post.

    There is also a vary narrow line in a lot of recordings when looked at in spectral view. The line is right around 15900 HZ. Like a steady tone.
     
  7. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    Here's a spectral view of the Handycam audio.
    The stuff in the low HZ range is the "interference"..
    You can also see the 15900 HZ tone.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. JimB

    JimB Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Curiouser and curiouser said JimB.

    Looking at your spectral display, I could convince myself that the line is actually below the 15800Hz marker, can you take a closer look?
    The reason I ask is that 15750Hz is the line scan frequency of an American NTSC standard TV receiver.
    To the best of my knowledge the USA has all moved to digital TV so the 15750Hz thing may not be relevant any more, however there may be some odd thing or system nearby which is still using this.

    JimB
     
  9. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    JimB,

    Thanks for another reply and your interest. As I said before, I haven't really shared it with anyone...and it just drives my wife nuts. Hah.
    Funny you mention that. I caught stuff on an old school, mini TV as well..and through AM radio

    As far as I know, all TV in this area has been changed to digital. I was theorizing before that it could be ULF or VHF. But I'm really not schooled in the science of it like you guys are. Just speculation. However, I've learned quite a bit since this began.

    It appears you are correct. As each lines represents 200 (15200, 15400, 15600, 15800, 16000), it falls between 15750 and 15850.
    This frequency can be found in A LOT of the recordings. A constant line.
    Here's a closer look -

    [​IMG]

    Also, this is close to the tone some people have had in their ear here as tinnitus. When someone would complain of it, I'd use a tone generator to try to match it. I have no idea if this particular tone is related. However, it is strange that people who had had no history of ear or tinnitus problems having it only here.
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2015
  10. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    Here's one I just threw together for comparison.

    How close would this stuff have to be to be causing this kind of interference in all electronics? At the very beginning, I thought maybe a short in my recording gear or something was picking up radio..or possibly the computer itself....but then phones were picking it up...then the Handycam proved to me it didn't have to be anything wireles or modern.

    Here's the Mp3 clip that has been untouched. No noise reduction, hiss reduction, EQ..nothing.
    Then the screen cap of the spectral view of the actual Mp3 included

    Mp3 -
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1jBL-nrWZtoM2laS25rc0t1UW8/view?usp=sharing

    Spectral -
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2015
  11. cowboybob

    cowboybob Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Sounds like a man's voice under the noise.

    The Spectral file didn't upload.

    I filtered out the noise to highlight the lower register "voice" from the file you posted in Post#29:

    Mp3 -
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bxb3ZuCpllSgX2ZvTHAzLXlLOWc/view?usp=sharing

    This portion: upload_2015-11-4_9-16-14.png sounds like: "Just a moment, please...", like someone answering a phone, or the door or is on the john...:woot:.

    Just a thought; does a neighbor have a wireless baby monitor?

    (Not sure I've used the Google drive link correctly)
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2015
  12. Tony Stewart

    Tony Stewart Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    I have done RFI testing for decades since the 70's and never seen this situation, but most certainly is caused by high E-fields of AM RF.
    Does your house construction have any metal like plaster wire metal roof, which at some frequencies instead of shielding may act as an antenna?
    Does it occur outside the home? e.g. near your car or inside the car, which offers good shielding to long waves.

    If you have an analog or digital voltage meter, these use diodes to convert AC to DC for internal measurement and ought to be sensitive enough to pick up Electric (E) fields. Ignore 60Hz E fields for now, they are harmless. trust me. It has to be high power, in the medium to short wave range to travel a great distance.
    It sounds like TV single-sideband type noise to me which results in mainly higher frequency audio distortion from simple Amplitude demodulation.

    Try this experiment. Using a broom or stick, connect a long wire to the meter and use your finger for the -Ve input or connect it to earth ground somehow ( PC ground ) See if you can find any E field signal variation with direction on the meter. Anything < 10mV is not significant. If you get too close to AC lines, you may get false readings from 60Hz E fields which can be 50V per meter but harmless low frequency. ( like touching a 10 Meg scope probe with your finger will get > 50V is harmless low current ( e.g. 500 nanoamp )

    This won't determine the carrier frequency but may detect E fields as a crude detector.
    More exotic methods may exceed your bandwidth or skill at the moment and Spectrum Analyzers are very expensive but can be made cheap with great skill using TV tuners. (50~800MHz)

    You can also tune a SW or AM portable radio off channel and try this, but it is too narrow band.

    Once we locate the source , either conducted via power lines or radiated through the house, we can discuss Faraday shielding methods with chicken wire in the attic.

    Also try inside and outside your car and see if there is any difference..

    If it were me I would use a portable antenna and handheld Spectrum Analyzer from 1MHz to 9GHz, and last time I did this was for a friend in Georgia for sniffing GPS/GSM radios planted in cars for security threats. But I am in Toronto, so you would have to pay my expenses.
     
  13. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    Cowboybob,
    Thanks for your reply and your post of the Mp3. Most of it is, in fact, voices. I've listened to probably hundreds of hours of this stuff and never heard anything that resembled "tv" voices, music, commercials, anything. I've listened for it all. It's 24/7 garbled voices with something breaking in once in a while over the top. On one recording, there is even what sounds like "x-rated stuff". To be quite honest, it sounds deliberate.

    Some facts about our situation -

    *No baby monitors that we know of. All the kids on the street are over 5 years old.

    *I've searched for antennas, and unless someone is hiding one in an attic or is a disguised antenna, I don't see one. There are a couple old school TV antennas on the street and a directional antenna on top of a neighbors house.

    *Lots of Direct TV dishes on the street.

    *In summer of 2014, we had a guy come sweep the house for bugs. We really didn't understand the situation and were worried about some creepy neighbor planting RF devices in or under our home (crawlspace). He kept getting hits on something and would say, "Shhhhhh!", but the hits would vanish. This guy actually said (a bugsweeper, mind you) that it may be paranormal. I scoffed because I have hours and hours of obvious radio and "tech" sounds. To be honest, I don't think he was that skilled.

    *My garage out back will pick up signals as well. But not nearly as strong as the house.

    *Our cars DO pick up signals when recorders are put in them (I've recorded for up to 12 hours at a time in each car)

    *Outside will pick up signals..HOWEVER, the bangs, clanks, clicks and scraping sounds aren't present in these recordings. When you put the recorder in the home, everything gets MUCH louder. This house seems to be the focal point.

    *We have lived here since 2012.

    *I went back and found recordings from 2012 that seem to have anomolies as well. However, it's much stronger now. Also, people and family members weren't having physical symptoms that we knew of before 2014.

    *Our home is a wooden home with vinyl siding and a wooden roof. It's a very small home (around 900 square feet) with a crawl space. One story. There's nothing on the home (that I'm aware of) that makes it different than any other home around.

    *The more noise there is in a recording, the more the "sounds" seem to jump up. Whether this is noise in the home or noise from an instrument. When I play an overdriven guitar, the voices/sound can jump way up on a recording.

    *Everyone in the home has has strange cramps, headaches, eye pain, spasms and the mentioned tinnitus since spring of 2014. This includes a 7 year old who shouldn't be dealing with anything remotely like that.

    *I've recorded strange sentences in the recordings. Swearing, what sounds like someone saying "human antenna", "check out my soldering skills" and the like. It honestly doesn't sound like tv or radio. It sounds like someone's continuous loop.

    *We removed the smart meter off our home and installed an old school GE analog meter. So we have no RF coming from the electric meter.

    That's just what I can think of right now. There is a LOT of info.

    Tony Stewart,
    Thanks for your reply. I added some more facts above that answer a few of your questions. As I said, it does occur outside the home, however, it's not nearly as strong. I do have a voltage meter...but it's for automobiles. I'll have to get one for the home.

    I need to re-read your post and try your experiments. I think my father probably has a voltage meter he isn't using anymore that I could borrow.

    I'm very thankful for your input..as I said before, it's a head-scratcher. When I search for this stuff online with keywords, it literally always takes me to conspiracy pages. Not science or facts.

    EDIT - I did test with an AM radio at the very beginning..doing a bunch of stuff. I also have a small, handheld AM radio I used...it would get bursts of fuzz and I have some recordings of the interference coming through that I will post.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2015
  14. Tony Stewart

    Tony Stewart Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    OK it appears to be generated inside. But the bugsweeper should have been able to locate the source if he had the right equipment.

    How much does it vary throughout the day, week, month?

    You could even use an unshielded microphone cord plugged into a laptop as an antenna. THis can pick up both magnetic (current) and Electric (voltage) fields by the audio front end demodulating the RF Carrier.

    I wonder if there is any ozone smell in the house. THis would indicate the source of noise and ozone is an arc somewhere. ( RF modulated AC arc can produce these effects.)..nevermind... sounds with no AC ...

    How about Telephone lines... THese can carry RF from the outside inside the home.

    It still sounds like SSB audio...This tuner at 5:25 minutes is tuned. but detuned is more distorted. SIngle Side Band (SSB) saves on transmitted bandwidth but does not sound right with simple detectors.
    although this is music.. 14.3MHz is a channel often used for Hurricane warning and covers all of USA.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2015
  15. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    Right. That's what I thought. But the guy showed up with a relatively simple RF detector, swept the house, took our money and left. In 2014 (at the time), I thought he'd use more than a simple RF detector considering the technology being used today. I mean, simple and silly apps that I download including Vibration detectors, radar detectors, etc. are picking up something. You'd think a bugsweeper would have more advanced gear.

    I did go around the home and yank extra cable line, old phone line, etc. I'll have to see if there is still a phone line connected to the home. But I did cut the cable. That's another tidbit of info - We have no cable or cable internet. We only use a hotspot and we watch netflix. We have no landline...but there still may be a phone-line connected. I will check.

    Can you elaborate on the ozone? Because not only have we had this overt interference since 2014, we've also had a plethora of other physical things happen in the home..including a rust colored substance that has showed up in the bathtub, the kitchen sink and other places. When we've cleaned it certain areas, our hands will itch. I'm not outright connecting the two..they just happened at the exact same time. This also happened in a bunch of silverware soaking in a glass jar. So I put some plastic over the silverware, stuck it in the garage and bought new stuff. Another physical symptom everyone in the home is experiencing - Itching. Everyone is constantly itching...which for clean people, is strange. I also heard that is a side-effect of RF..but again, you guys know your stuff. I'm still a noob.

    EDIT - The changes you asked about - It tends to get stronger at night, it seems. And if you listen to audio at triple or quadruple speed, you'll hear a swooshing sound that continuously changes...like the "hiss" is constantly changing and "swooshing"...best I can come up with. Hah!
     
  16. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    Here is a recording I did last night for another example.
    This is a Kenwood tape deck. Old school, magnetic tape cassette.
    This was a brand new cassette that I pulled out of the plastic. Nothing had been recorded on it before.
    There was no microphone or anything attached to the tape deck. I just hit record, let it run out and then analyzed
    it. This was the part that jumped up the highest.

    Kenwood Tape Deck Clip -
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1jBL-nrWZtoNFNCQUlDdUZSLVU/view?usp=sharing
     
  17. MikeMl

    MikeMl Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    I used to maintain (Ham, CAP, Commercial) VHF and UHF two-way communications repeaters on mountain tops. These repeater sites are co-located with or in close proximity to TV and FM broadcast stations on the same mountain-tops. Your recordings sound like the intermod that drove me crazy. It got into everything, even shielded wiring.

    In one case, our repeater was located about 1mi (as the crow flies) from a commercial radio site that has 8 TV transmitters, about 15 FM transmitters, as well as dozens of smaller VHF transmitters. I figure that the effective radiated power from that site exceeded 1,000,000W. The RF was rectified by any semiconductor device at our site, and if "listened" to, would sound like your postings, just a caucacophony.

    I know you looked for nearby radio transmitter sites, but maybe you need to expand your search a bit. Look for TV, FM, and AM broadcast transmitters out to several miles from your house.
     
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  18. Tony Stewart

    Tony Stewart Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    sounds like random thermal Brownian noise with microphonic ceramic caps picking up vibrations
     
  19. Tony Stewart

    Tony Stewart Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    If there were high levels of RF in the area, the 1st physical effect over a day's period would be bloodshot eyes.
     
  20. MothBall

    MothBall New Member

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    Tony, we've actually had that. I wouldn't even know it. My wife would look at me and say, "Your eyes look terrible"...I'd look in the mirror and it looked like I'd been partying for three weeks. Then it would seem to go away rapidly. All symptoms we've had have had rapid onset and then gone away rapidly as well. I don't worry about that stuff too much except for my son.

    Here's another recording from March of 2014.
    This was late at night while we were sleeping. It's continuous. But I just isolated this clip -
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1jBL-nrWZtoOTZwMzRLcFRXVFE/view?usp=sharing
     
  21. atferrari

    atferrari Well-Known Member

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    What about calling the FCC?
     

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