Calling all surround speaker owners...

  Gary 21:46 10 Jun 03

I am having problems with a set of Creative Inspire 6700 speakers. Initially, I had a "popping" sub, but that was a known issue so Creative replaced it. However, when the new sub arrived, the Centre channels hissed. Creative, to give them their due credit, have worked hard with me in trying to get this resolved and have sent me lots of replacement parts, including a new soundcard (I use their Audigy 2), but nothing seems to resolve the problem. I have even tried the speakers in another location to check that it isn't my electricity supply.

Both Creative and I have now run out of ideas for things to test, but the Centre satellite speakers are still hissing. I know all speakers, by their nature, suffer from static interference and hiss very faintly - all the satellites do but you can only hear them if you put your ear against them - the centre ones are so loud that I can hear them from the middle of the room!

Does anyone who uses these speakers have problems with hissing through the centre channels?

I am thinking of getting a refund and trying a different manufacturer, but don't know how to choose any different ones - none of the suppliers in my area do presales demonstrations so I can't listen to them first. Does anyone use non-Creative speakers that they could reccommend? I am prepared to pay up to £100.

Maybe it's your PC. Try messing about with different sound settings to remove the hiss. Also, have you checked to make sure there is nothing wrong with the cables?

  soy 21:54 10 Jun 03

Hi, You may have the speakers set to 'digital output only'.

Go into your Creative folder in the start menu and look for a program called 'Surround Mixer'.

Click 'Advanced mode' to open up the extra options and there should be the 'Digital Output only' option.

Uncheck this to see if it makes a difference.

  Mysticnas 21:59 10 Jun 03

i had the same problem with my 6700's!

Firstly they replaced the power adapter saying that they packed the wrong adapters. The problem was still there so they sent me out a replacement woofer.

That seems to have solved the issue. Seeing as you've had so much grief try haggling for the Crambridge soundworks 610 THX ones. Seeing as you've had all this grief tell them you want the those ones as compensation!!!

  Gary 22:33 10 Jun 03

I should have said that Creative have replaced every single part (including cables) at least once. The computer settings haven't changed since the original set which worked OK (until it developed the popping issue).

Creative have offered to give me the Cambridge Soundworks MegaWorks 650D as replacement/compensation, but the Subwoofer is physically too large to fit in the space I have. They have also upgraded my soundcard to the Platinum Audigy version as a gesture of goodwill. As I said above, they are due a lot of credit for the ways in which they have tried to resolve this, but I think we've hit a brick wall now, with nothing we do making any difference, which is why I think I maybe need to look at different speaker sets.

  Mysticnas 22:36 10 Jun 03


do you want my 6700's??? if you take the 610's off creative i'll swap them with mine!!!!

is it a deal???

  Mysticnas 22:38 10 Jun 03

i meant the 650's.

  Murray 23:08 10 Jun 03

As creative have swapped the entire set up - leads us to believe the speakers are not at fault.

so swapping them with your (Mysticnas) wont help.

Does the sound cable (are they 3/4 jack plugs (like headphones) or one digital cable) run past any mains cabling, large electrical devices, speakers, TV, etc. I know this sohuldnt affect it, but if they run next to a mains AC cable, you might get interference.

Also double check you have the right simple settings on your sound card. what happens if you mute all the channels? if that solves it, try muting all but one of the sub channels. I find that the 'line in' often causes lots of noise- even if nothing is plugged in.

Do you place the centre speaker next to any electrical objects - speakers, monitor (mine is on top of CRT, with no probs, but best to eliminate all possible probs).

Have you tried the speakers on another computer. try plugging in each channel in turn into a convenient headphone socket (on a radio or something) just to test each speaker works.

  Gary 23:19 10 Jun 03

One simple test answers most of your questions in one go - if I disconnect the cables from the computer entirely at the subwoofer end (so that the satellites are stil connected to the subwoofer and the subwoofer is still powered up but has no inputs) the hissing persists, allowing us to erase the computer from the equation.

The speakers are not near any electrical devices - and even give the fault in the middle of a friend's lounge - I took them there at Creative's suggestion to ensure that the problem was not just my electricity supply.

It's really strange and nothing seems to be working as far as solving it is concerned. Those people who have 6700s, can you confirm whether the inherent static hiss you get through the speakers is significantly louder through the centre channels than the Left/Right?

  Murray 23:33 10 Jun 03

so just to clarify, creative have replaced the whole set and you get the same problem in another location? - ie your friends lounge.

try swapping the centre speaker round - swap the connectors round, so the (hissing) centre one is plugged into the rear left channel, say. which one hisses now? Is it always the spk plugged into the centre channel off the sub?

I'm afraid my only other suggestion is that you are hearing things! ;-)

  Gary 23:42 10 Jun 03

Yes - that is correct. Have had 2x complete 6700 speakers sets plus an additional 3 subwoofers and 3 additional centre speakers all of which hiss both here and in another location. Creative have also sent me a set of Cambridge Soundworks 550Ds to try, and these don't hiss but are too big to fit in the space I want them in.

I have already tried swapping connectors around so that the front left satellite (for example) is connected into the centre connector on the subwoofer and then that satellite hisses - so it would seem the problem lies within the amplifier for the center channels inside the subwoofer.

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