Plasma TV buzz from dimmer switch

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Old 10-16-16, 09:35 AM
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Plasma TV buzz from dimmer switch

Hello,

I have a plasma TV that has a loud buzz whenever the lights in the room are turned on. I have 12 LED lights on track lighting powered by a dimmer switch. I have removed the dimmer switch and replaced it with a simple power switch, which did not produce a buzz. So I can confirm that the buzz is a result of the dimmer switch.

The LEDs are Hyperikon PAR16 LED Bulb, 8W, Dimmable, UL-Listed (Part No. 151170402)

The dimmer switch is a Lutron Diva DVCL-153P which is rated for 150W of LED bulbs

The plasma TV is a Samsung PN58A550S1F

I do not know how the house was wired as the house is from the 70s and I just recently purchased it. In addition, the basement below this room is finished. As such, there is no way I can change which outlets are serviced by which breakers.

Are ideas as to how to solve this without getting rid of the dimming capability? The buzz is loud enough to be really distracting and makes me not want to use the lights at all.

Thank you in advance
 
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Old 10-16-16, 01:09 PM
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Trying different brands of dimmers may be your only choice.
 
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Old 10-16-16, 01:25 PM
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The buzz is a result of the dimmer but not directly caused by the dimmer. The dimmers create noise as they dim and so do LED replacement bulbs. The fault here is 50-50.

You could try a Lutron Maestro MA/CL. I get good results from them.
lutron/en-US/Products/MaestroDimmerSwitch/Models.aspx

I also have to wonder why the TV is bothered. That is not a typical problem. That could almost point to a TV issue.
 
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Old 10-16-16, 04:27 PM
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I appreciate the input.

While I am not an expert, I don't think it is a problem with the TV since the issue only occurs when the dimmer switch is installed. I have read elsewhere of other people having a similar problem.

Some people mentioned that a power scrubber might work, but I don't have any experience with these devices. Any thoughts on this?
 
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Old 10-16-16, 05:32 PM
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We don't kinow whether the noise is airborne or wire-borne.

Is the noise the same on all channels and all inputs (Video 1, etc.)?
 
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Old 10-16-16, 06:15 PM
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Using an extension cord if needed try plugging the TV in to a receptacle that is not on the same breaker as the light. You might even go for a receptacle on the opposite leg. Repeat with the cable box.
 
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Old 10-17-16, 05:17 PM
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Is the noise the same on all channels and all inputs (Video 1, etc.)?
Sorry, I forgot to mention, the buzz is coming from the TV itself, not the speakers. But yes, there is a noticeable buzz on any channel.

Using an extension cord if needed try plugging the TV in to a receptacle that is not on the same breaker as the light. You might even go for a receptacle on the opposite leg. Repeat with the cable box.
I have done a few different tests.

Test #1 was disconnecting EVERYTHING from the power strips and having only the TV plugged into the outlet. With the lights on (with dimmer switch installed) the TV still produces a buzz.

Test #2 was with everything connected to the power strips as normal but the TV plugged into another outlet on a different breaker. With this, there was no buzz at all. I am honestly not sure if the other outlet I used was on a different leg or not, I didn't have time to trip breakers and find an outlet.
 
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Old 10-17-16, 06:24 PM
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but the TV plugged into another outlet on a different breaker.
That tells us us it isn't radiated but coming over the wiring. You could try a filter or just run a new receptacle for the TV on a different circuit. Filter example: https://www.amazon.com/X10-XPPF-Plug.../dp/B0002M5OJI
 
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Old 10-17-16, 08:01 PM
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Out of curiosity - is the plasmas plug 3 prong? If so, my suggestion is to try a cheater on the plug.

I would always get a 60hz hum with stereo gear and laptop, unless it was plugged in with a cheater.
 
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Old 10-17-16, 08:09 PM
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That tells us us it isn't radiated but coming over the wiring. You could try a filter or just run a new receptacle for the TV on a different circuit. Filter example: https://www.amazon.com/X10-XPPF-Plug.../dp/B0002M5OJI
I would run a new outlet if the basement below the room wasn't 100% finished with a fixed ceiling. This would be far beyond my capabilities.

The link you posted is apparently specifically for protecting X10 home automation systems. Do you think something like https://www.amazon.com/Belkin-BE1122...r+noise+filter would work? It claims to have power filtration and it has pretty good reviews.

Out of curiosity - is the plasmas plug 3 prong? If so, my suggestion is to try a cheater on the plug.

I would always get a 60hz hum with stereo gear and laptop, unless it was plugged in with a cheater.
Yes, the plug is 3 prong. I will see if I have a cheater anywhere just to test, but I wouldn't want to keep it in that orientation permanently.
 
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Old 10-17-16, 08:29 PM
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Your link is to a surge protector. Nothing about it acting as a noise filter. I reread my link and while it may be made by X-10 it is a noise filter and should work though I can't guarantee it will but what you need is a noise filter not a surge protector.

You could run a new receptacle to the TV from a basement receptacle (on a different breaker) using surface raceway (AKA Wiremold) or if there is an unfinished attic above through the attic.

Basement and Wiremold easy, attic not that difficult.
 
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Old 10-25-16, 10:26 AM
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Well, I purchased a surge protector that claims to have power filtration, but it did not fix the problem. I am not upset about this though because I really did need to buy a new surge protector anyway.

I have not yet purchased a cheater to test whether the problem involves the grounding or not.

I would like to avoid running any wire out in the open (I know they have options that don't necessarily look hideous). In fact, I would probably opt for a non-dimmer switch over running wire. The room in question has a 100% finished basement and upstairs below and above it, so running wire in the walls is also out of the question.

While looking at the X-10 that you mentioned before, I have also come across a few other devices in my searches that I wanted to get your opinions on. One idea was to use an in-line UPS to help. Another item I came across is a power conditioner like https://www.amazon.com/APC-LE1200-Au...er+conditioner. Any thoughts?

The one other question I had is whether using lights that are specifically approved by the manufacturer of the dimmer switch is important or not? The dimmer switch is an LED dimmer switch and the LED lights are branded as dimmable. The dimmer switch is listed as compatible on the light manufacturers website, but the lights are not listed as compatible on the dimmer switch manufacturers website.
 
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Old 10-25-16, 02:37 PM
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It is unlikely to be a problem with the grounding. All of these type of digital devices (dimmer, LED lamps and TV/computer displays) have a power supply which introduces harmonic noise in the neutral current. More expensive devices generally produce less noise and are more tolerant of existing noise on the line, but sometimes there is very little you can do if the devices don't play nice.

Running dedicated circuits to the problem devices may help. Choosing lamps and dimmers with mutual compatibility ratings should help. Oversizing the conductor (e.g. #12 wire on a 15A circuit) may help. Switching brands may help. The only type of filter that may help is an online conversion UPS, which is a feature found in the high-end professional type units which decouples the load from the source using an AC-DC-AC isolation converter.
This can be a sign of an overloaded electrical service or under-performing transformer, but taken in isolation is probably just an incompatibility with these specific devices.
 
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