Have you ever noticed that when you turn off your studio monitors, they make a popping noise? It may not seem like a big deal, but this small sound can cause significant damage to your speakers in the long run. So, why do studio monitors pop when being turned off?
If your studio monitors pop when being turned off, it could be due to a sudden discharge in its capacitors or inductors. Still, excess DC voltage in the mixer output, a bad AC distribution box switch, and a design flaw can cause the popping sound when turning your monitors off.
This post will explore why studio monitors pop when being turned off, and, more importantly, how to prevent that from happening. Stay tuned!
Table of Contents
- Reasons Monitors Pop When Shutting Off
- How To Prevent Monitors From Popping
Reasons Monitors Pop When Shutting Off
A studio monitor can pop due to many factors. However, when it comes to these devices popping during a shutdown, three main reasons often stand out:
The Capacitors Are Discharging
When a monitor is turned off, the capacitors in the monitor will suddenly discharge their stored electrical charge, creating a popping sound.
In addition, the sudden discharge of electricity can cause problems for the circuitry in the monitor, leading to deficiencies in sound quality or even permanently damaging the speaker.
For example, the capacitor discharge can create a less-than-ideal signal-to-noise ratio, making it more difficult for producers to achieve professional results.
In simple terms, the signal-to-noise ratio is the ratio of ambient noise in the background versus the sound you’re trying to hear. A high ratio occurs when there is more wanted signal than unwanted noise.
On the other hand, a low signal-to-noise ratio occurs when there is more unwanted noise than the wanted signal.
There Is an Electrostatic Discharge
Another reason studio monitors may pop when shutting off is electrostatic discharge. That happens when there is a build-up of static electricity in the monitor, and when it is finally discharged, it can cause a popping sound.
That’s more common in environments with a lot of dust or other particulates in the air, as they can act as an electrical conductor and help discharge the static build-up.
The Inductors Are Discharging
Another reason monitors pop when shutting off is due to inductors discharging. Inductors are electronic components that provide potential energy stockpiles.
When a monitor is turned off, the inductors in the monitor will discharge their stored energy suddenly. That can create a popping sound and can also damage the monitor.
Your AC Distribution Box Has a Bad Switch
In some cases, the reason your monitor is popping when shutting off is due to a bad switch in your AC distribution box. The AC distribution box is the electrical panel that supplies power to your home or office.
If the switch has a problem, it can cause a pop sound when you turn off the power. You may also notice that the lights in your home flicker when you turn off the power.
The Mixer Output Has Excess DC Voltage
Another reason monitors pop when shutting off is excess DC voltage in the mixer output. The mixer output is the connection between the mixer and the monitor.
If there’s too much DC voltage in the mixer output, it can cause the monitor to pop when shutting off. That’s usually due to a problem with the mixer itself, but it can also be caused by a bad cable or connection.
The Studio Monitor Has a Design Flaw
Sometimes, a design flaw in the monitor can cause it to pop when shutting off. That’s usually due to a problem with the capacitors or inductors in the monitor.
If the capacitors or inductors are not correctly designed, they can discharge their stored energy suddenly, which can create a popping sound.
Additionally, if the capacitors or inductors are not correctly sized, they can hurt the sound quality.
How To Prevent Monitors From Popping
Now that we’ve explored some of the reasons why monitors pop when shutting off, let’s look at how to prevent that from happening.
There are a few things you can do to help reduce the risk of your studio monitors popping:
Switch the Monitors off First and on Last
If you use powered studio monitors, always switch them off first and on last. That way, you can avoid sudden electrical surges that could cause the popping sound.
In addition, it’s a good idea to unplug the power cord from the outlet after switching off the monitors. That way, you can be sure that no power is going to the monitors.
I’ve written a tutorial on how to properly turn off and on your studio monitors. You’ll also learn when you should turn off your monitors. How To Properly Turn Off Your Studio Monitors
Replace the AC Distributor Switch
If your AC distributor box has a faulty switch, it’s time to replace it. Since this is an electrical panel, it’s best to leave this job to a professional. Otherwise, you could be at risk of electrical shock.
That said, here are the key steps to follow when replacing the switch:
- First, turn off the power to your home or office at the breaker box.
- Next, remove the cover of the AC distribution box.
- Locate the faulty switch and unscrew it from the panel.
- Screw in the new switch and tighten it securely.
- Finally, turn the power back on at the breaker box and test the new switch.
Use a Power Conditioner
Another way to help prevent your studio monitors from popping is to use a power conditioner. A power conditioner is an electrical device that helps regulate electricity flow.
It can help to prevent sudden surges of electricity, which can cause the monitors to pop. In addition, a power conditioner can help prolong your studio monitors’ life by protecting them from electrical damage.
For starters, try out this Furman Power Conditioner (SS6B) from Amazon.com. It features six outlets, so you can plug in all your studio equipment. It’s also surge-protected and has a protection indicator to let you know when the power is running smoothly.
Replace the Studio Monitors
If your studio monitors are popping due to a design flaw, it’s time to replace them. Unfortunately, there is no way to fix a design flaw.
Just be sure to consult with the manufacturer before replacing the monitors. In some cases, they may offer a warranty or exchange program.
There are a few different reasons why studio monitors pop when shutting off. In most cases, it’s due to a sudden surge of electricity or discharge of static electricity. However, it can also be due to a design flaw in the monitor or a problem with the AC distributor box.
Fortunately, you can do a few things to help prevent your monitors from popping, such as using a power conditioner or switching the monitors off first and on last. If these fixes don’t work, you may need to replace the monitors altogether.
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