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Anthem: Unusable level of noise after 2-3 hrs on fresh battery

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  • Anthem: Unusable level of noise after 2-3 hrs on fresh battery

    I start getting distortion and crackling after 2-3 hrs of playing on a fresh battery. Sounds like a low-battery issue, but all five battery level lights are lit, and it's only a few hours into a fresh battery like I say. This is a split-saddle Anthem (Lowden guitar) if that matters. New Anthem (installed 7 days ago). Seems to clear up after a day of non-use, but after a couple hours' play it again comes back. Possibly an installation issue? Like some connection heats up over time and gradually acts like power loss? Has anyone seen this before?

    I used a highly experienced, very reputable luthier, but Lowden is a relatively uncommon guitar. If there's any information I could give him about where the problem might be it would be much appreciated.
    Last edited by DrBill; 12-16-2021, 07:36 AM. Reason: Accuracy

  • #2
    Hey DrBill,
    Do you know what model/brand battery you're using right now?

    I've seen a few situations now where "industrial" batteries like the Duracell Procell will actually cause noise issues with the Anthem. In each one of those cases I've seen, using a standard battery has completely solved the issue.

    That may not be the situation here, but it's worth checking.

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    • #3
      I've seen a few situations now where "industrial" batteries like the Duracell Procell will actually cause noise issues with the Anthem.
      It's Duracell, but just your standard grocery-store check-out rack variety. Weird thing is I'd forgotten I had a similar thing happen with the Lyric I'd had in there before I replaced it with this Anthem. Didn't think of it until I saw my old post about it here. I never got a satisfying answer to that one b/c the problem "cured itself" and stopped worrying about it. Now I'm wondering if there could be some component from the previous installation that didn't seem to need replacing, like some part of the phone jack connection or whatever, that still has the same fault. A capacitor or something that builds up heat with length of use...? I don't know from electronics, obviously, but my luthier is going to call Baggs tech support directly, so maybe they can solve the mystery. Frustrating.I LOVE the way it sounds when it's working.

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      • #4
        I think your tech and I have been playing phone tag today, so I have yet to speak with him. Once I talk with him we should be able to figure out a course of action to get you up and running again.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Caleb_Elling View Post
          I think your tech and I have been playing phone tag today, so I have yet to speak with him. Once I talk with him we should be able to figure out a course of action to get you up and running again.
          This is correct. He received the replacement input jack you sent and installed it today. Problem still persisted, so he spent a lot of time making sure all the wiring inside was stabilized, as the noise sometimes seems to be triggered by mechanical vibration or positional changes to the guitar. Just got it home and the problem STILL persists. Right now I have the guitar plugged in and sitting on its stand, and it's emitting crackles and pops with no input, vibration or positional movement whatsoever. SO frustrating. I don't want to return it but I don't see any course of action we haven't already tried.

          ETA I've recorded the sounds it's making and can forward them if that would be helpful.
          Last edited by DrBill; 12-31-2021, 12:22 PM.

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          • #6
            Shoot me an email at [email protected] with your mailing address and I will see what I can arrange for you.

            I am so sorry this has been such a hassle.

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            • #7
              Been meaning to just drop a note here that Caleb has been super helpful and accommodating on this. Kudos for that.

              Turns out the issue was mechanical in origin, and there's an important detail about that. The problem is that in some Lowden models it's very tight fit to get the interior mic plus TWO transducer wires properly situated between the bracing. Vibration was causing one of the wires to buzz against the mic intermittently, causing a mechanical buzz and possibly buzz in the transducer signal as well. But here's the kicker:

              IMPORTANT FACT
              I spoke with one of Lowden's luthiers and after some back and forth, this:
              > I am interested to know whether you used one of the Anthems from the
              > Lowden online store, which come with special mouldings to allow them to be
              > fitted between the bracings of our guitars?


              There you have it. SMDH, as the saying goes. Their website doesn't go into that kind of detail, or at least I didn't see it, or I would have borne the extra expense and trouble of ordering from them. Currently trying to see if the moldings can be acquired separately in case I have to revisit the problem with my guitar. For now, though, the problem seems to have been stabilized.

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              • #8
                Hey Bill,
                As I mentioned in my email, the Anthem shouldn't even fit at all without those soundhole shims. If your installer did the installation without some kind of shim, it could cause a rattle.

                In any case, email me back about how you think the preamp was mounted and we can go from there.

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