I use Ableton, and when using a focusrite interface, without having anything connected to it, I can hear noise if I increase the volume. I don´t know exactly what it is, but I would like to reduce it without the neccesity of using any EQ. I dont know if having noise is normal, or if its being caused by my computer componencts, like power source, GPU, motherboard, etc

  • 1
    Have you tried searching here? There are various questions on this topic already.
    – Matt
    Aug 12, 2020 at 7:31
  • Never tried a focusrite DAC, but judging by the number of complaints about the noise floor, probably never will - sound.stackexchange.com/search?q=focusrite+noise
    – Tetsujin
    Aug 12, 2020 at 16:44

3 Answers 3


The Focusrite interfaces are really good, and I think it’s actually your speakers’ built-in amps. Ive heard the tweeter amps are usually the culprit, and you need to spent ~$1000 to get really good ones. People recommended Neumann and Genelec but not specifically for the noise floor. I have Yamaha HS7 and they do still have a noise floor, but way better than my old BX8s, and I don’t notice it really

  • Not really, I made tests with out having any speaker connected, just recording clips and listening later- I bought a new wire for the guitar, in case that was acting as an antenna, but I found out the cable that I had was good enough. Probably I'm asking to much of this interface. Mar 3, 2021 at 14:51
  • @SantiagoSteib Ah, I thought you were talking about speaker output, not recording analog input. If I was you, I'd turn the source (guitar or whatever) up as much as possible. Recording analog will always have 'organic white noise' though I don't know how much relative to your actual source. I read online that the inputs are 'mono balanced' so if you have a 'tip ring sleeve' cable with 3 parts (not just tip sleeve) then you might get better noise rejection in the cable
    – neaumusic
    Mar 13, 2021 at 20:26

you are effectively trying to solve a non-existent problem. You say that the interface is noisy with nothing plugged into it. Consequently, you are measuring the noise of open ended preamps. Either plug some input source into the preamp, or ground the input pins so that you are not measuring the self-noise of free-wheeling opamps. Create a male XLR connector with all pins connected together (3->1, 2->1) and use that to ground the input. Then see what noise you get.


without having anything connected to it, I can hear noise if I increase the volume.

If you would not be able to hear noise when increasing the volume, the available gain range would be rather lacklustre. A typical sound interface has 100dB+ of dynamic range and can raise microphone input level by about 60dB. It would be unbelievable if you did not bring the noise floor into converter range at full amplification.

Additionally, you'd only use full amplification for low-level low-impedance signal sources (which typically have something like 200ohms of differential input impedance). When leaving microphone input(s) open, they typically have something like 2.4kohm or more of input impedance. This impedance comes thermal noise. So chances are that if you plug in a dynamic microphone (or a high-quality condenser mic, not a no-name "professional" or "studio" microphone for 20 bucks), you'll get less noise than when leaving the inputs open.

You need to evaluate your noise floor in relation to the signal level.

Also there are different kinds of noises: the unavoidable thermal hiss (though making sure the input stage does not overheat helps), power supply noises, phantom power inverter noise, digitisation noise, converter noise, various other digital noises and so on. Normally you'd expect not to hear anything more prominent than thermal noise on a microphone input.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.