FIOS router causing static and popping noises on computer audio
Enthusiast - Level 1

Hi, I'm a less than two week old FIOS internet user and am loving the speed and service but I have one problem. The FIOS router seems to be causing static popping noises my desktop computers audio that is connected to the FIOS router by the yellow Ethernet cable. Theses noises don't occur on any of the laptops connected to the router by the wireless or when I connect a laptop to the router via a Ethernet cable.

Ways I found to eliminate the noises temporary:

    Restarting the desktop computer or shutting down then turning on the desktop computer.

Ways I found to eliminate the noises permanently

    Turning off and unplugging the router.

    Hooking up the FIOS router via the Ethernet cable to a laptop. I unfortunately do not have a wireless built into my desktop.


What I've tried and failed

    First I thought it was the Ethernet cable, so I replaced it. The noises did not go away.

    I thought it might be the headset I use which are connected to the computer by a usb port. Unplugging the headset and using earphones which are connect to the computer by the audio slot did not eliminate the noises.

    Then I contacted Verizon, and they thought it might be a faulty router, so they sent me a new one. The noises unfortunately did not go away.

    I then thought the noises might be occurring because the router was close to the computer. So I moved the router as far away as possible from the computer (its connect to the router by a Ethernet cable so it wasn't that far) but the noises didn't go away.

Notes & Points

The noises do not start the moment I turn on the router and computer, but a hour or two after.

I think I've narrowed the problem down to occurring only when the desktop computer is connected to the router by the Ethernet cable. Though replacing the Ethernet cable has not resolved the issue.

I also have found that location of the FIOS router also doesn't matter since the noises did not return even though the router was right up against the computer when I connected the FIOS router to my laptop.

I have Windows 7 Home Premium 64, 3.5 gigs of ram, and a dual 2.0 GHz processor.

So that sums up my problem. If you guys have any tips or ideas of how to fix my issue, it would be greatly appreciated.

5 Replies
Community Leader
Community Leader

Sounds like a shielding problem on the AUDIO cables or a grounding issue.   PC sound systems are notorious for having lousy audio cables feeding (I regularly pickup the local FM station on my speakers).

Try replacing the audio cables with better quality shield cables and see if that helps.

Are the router, speakers, and PC all plugged into the same outlet?  Are they all polarized plugs?  If note, try flipping the power plug on the non-polarized connections.

The sound could be coming from interference INSIDE the PC itself ... the proximity of sound cables inside and the audio chipset to the ethernet chipset.   You didn't indicate if the audio/ethernet are on the motherboard or seperate cards.   If they are seperate cards, try relocating the cards furfher from one another inside the chassis and also look at the audio cable (particularly the analog cable that runs from the CD to the audio card to make sure it's not routed past or near the ethernet electronics.

How far distant is the router from the PC?  If you pull the ethernet cable from the router (not turn if off, unplug the ethernet cable running to the PC), does it stop?


also make sure the router cables are not touching the PC Audio cables. because of the shielding that lasagna described,  if they are touching or in very close proximity they may be causing the noise issue.   

Enthusiast - Level 1

Thanks for the quick reply guys! I'll be sure to check in the PC to check the cables and such. But I can answer two of Lasagna questions right now.

I don't use speakers but the router and PC are all plugged into the same power strip. Not sure what polarized plugs are though.

The router is about a 12 inches or so from the PC. And yes after I pulled the ethernet cable from the router the noises did stop.

Thanks for your fast replies and I'll respond more once I look inside the PC.

Community Leader
Community Leader

So .... the speakers are builtin to the PC?  If so, I'm betting your picking up some crosstalk on the motherboard or perhaps a cable inside.

A polarized plug is one that has one prong bigger than the other so that you can only plug it in one way. 

I assume in replacing the ethernet cable you tried a really long one and move the router further away from the PC to see if the noise went away?

Enthusiast - Level 1

Did a quick look inside of the PC. While the Ethernet cable is hook up to the motherboard I think the sound card is separate. The sound card(at least I think its the sound card) is in the front with the headphone port, which I use for headphones and the usb port which I use for my headset. The sound card is then connected to the motherboard by a ide connecter (I think).

Speakers aren't built into the PC I just meant I don't use them. I just use earphones or my headset.

Yeah I first replaced the Ethernet cable with one I used for my DSL modem and moved it as far it would go which didn't solve the problem. Verizon also sent me a new FIOS router that came with another long Ethernet cable and I also tried the same thing. The noises didn't go away unfortunately.

As you can tell my experience with anything tech is very low so sorry if I didn't really provide you with anymore insight.
But I basically have a Dell E521, the only thing I added was a graphics card and a new power supply.

Thanks for taking the time to try and help.