Author Topic: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?  (Read 271 times)

Offline WurlieNewbie

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What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« on: August 31, 2020, 02:12:04 AM »
Hi guys... Need the forum's help here to troubleshoot an issue I'm having with my '74 Mark I stage 88.

Whenever I hit a note anywhere in the middle of the keyboard, I hear an electric buzz.  The buzz doesn't seem to be present when I'm not playing, only when I hit an actual note (especially Mid D up to an octave).  I'm not sure if the problem is over the entire keyboard and I'm only hearing it more in the middle of the keyboard due to the frequencies there (I have a feeling that's the case because if I hit other notes in other octaves very hard, I hear it as well).

Also, the buzz is more pronounced the higher I turn up the treble on my Vintage Vibe preamp.  I've taken off the lid and checked for loose wiring but couldn't find anything.

Anybody have a clue as to what could be going on?  Is it a preamp issue?  Or could it be something with my pickups? I'm baffled as to why I only hear it when playing a note.  Normally, when there's hiss or noise from something (a noisy pedal, grounding issue, etc), you hear it ALL THE TIME.  But not this. 

Any ideas or thoughts would be appreciated.  Thanks!

Offline pianotuner steveo

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2020, 06:31:34 AM »
I've never heard of Rhodes pickups making this noise. If you can solder, just try resoldering  the ground wire(s) for the pickups. You may want to ask VV if they've ever heard of an issue like this with their preamp.
1960 Wurlitzer model 700 EP
1968 Gibson G101 Combo organ
1975 Rhodes Piano Bass
1979 Wurlitzer 206A EP
1980 Wurlitzer 270 Butterfly Grand
2004 Hammond XK3
2009 73A Rhodes Mark 7
2009 Korg SV-1 73
2017 Yamaha P255
2020 Kawai CA99
....and a few guitars...

Offline Jenzz

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2020, 07:37:00 AM »
Hi .-)

Check for metallic debris around the pickup's magnets... This will often cause strange and distortion-like artifacts...

Jenzz
Rhodes tech in Germany
www.tasteundtechnik.de
www.spontaneousstorytelling.net

VintageVibe 64 ACL + DOD FX25B, Tone City Sweet Cream, Rocktek PHR-01, Washburn SCX7
Adams Solist 3.1 Vibraphone

Offline mvanmanen

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2020, 11:35:41 AM »
Another easy thing to check...check to make sure all of your pick-ups are screwed tightly down.
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Offline WurlieNewbie

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2020, 03:07:07 PM »
Thanks everyone for the troubleshooting tips... Sounds like everyone is thinking it might be a pickup issue?

Jenzz, how exactly would I check for debris around the magnets? Do I wipe them clean or something?

Offline vortmaxx

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2020, 04:05:49 PM »
First thing I'd probably do is get an rca -> 1/4" cable and go direct off the harp, just to rule out the pre-amp.

Next step would probably be check the ground wire going from the pick-ups to the rca.

Offline WurlieNewbie

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2020, 11:23:16 PM »
Well, I went directly off the harp and still heard the buzzing when playing notes... which means it's not the preamp.

I checked the ground wires but wasn't sure what I was looking for.  They seemed screwed in tight and when I wiggled them, there was no change in the buzzing. 

If this were some kind of grounding issue, wouldn't I be hearing it all the time, instead of just when I hit a note?

Offline mvanmanen

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2020, 10:59:06 PM »
Are you able to upload or send a link to a recording of what you are hearing? It seems very odd that it is limited to the middle section of the keyboard...
Wurlitzer 200a
Wurlitzer 145
Fender Rhodes (1966, 1971, 1975)
Hohner Clavinet Pianet Duo
Hohner Clavinet D6s and C
Hohner Pianet T
Hohner Pianet N and Combo Pianet
Hammond B3

Offline Jenzz

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Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« Reply #8 on: September 02, 2020, 05:52:04 AM »
Hi .-)

It should NOT look like this: (see pic)


If it does, the best way to dust off is using compressed air...

Jenzz
Rhodes tech in Germany
www.tasteundtechnik.de
www.spontaneousstorytelling.net

VintageVibe 64 ACL + DOD FX25B, Tone City Sweet Cream, Rocktek PHR-01, Washburn SCX7
Adams Solist 3.1 Vibraphone