Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Long Island, NY
Buzzing when plugged into amp
Hey guys, this is my first post here at Jemsite. I've come here in hopes that you guys could help me figure out what exactly is wrong with this little Ibanez GIO series GRG170DX I recently bought. I've lurked around this board for a while, and I think I came to the right place. Now, on to the problem...
I've been playing for about a decade, and I'm embarrassed to say that during those years I neglected to learn anything about the inner workings of this instrument that I love. I never swapped any pickups on the guitars I've owned, nor set them up by myself, etc. Changing the strings and cleaning them is about the extent of my handiness.
So I recently saw an Ibanez GRG170DX on craigslist for a low price. I finally decided I would learn how the electronics on guitars work. Since I didn't really want to rip open one of my current guitars in the name of education, I bought this 170DX for that purpose. It's in pretty decent shape except for the fact that it buzzes terribly when plugged into my amp. It's not the amp itself, since other guitars of mine sound good through it. It's not the cable, since the other guitars work fine with that cable. I changed the strings, cleaned the fretboard and the pickups, still the buzzing persists.
Here's the interesting part about the buzzing: it gets worse when I do one of a few things. First, it gets worse if I touch the strings. Second, it gets better if I touch the jack input plate (is that even the correct terminology? oh boy...) Thirdly, it gets worse as I rotate the tone knob up (i.e. the shriller the tone the more intense the buzzing). Because of this, my rudimentary knowledge makes me think this has something to do with a ground.
I opened up the back and the input plate. Everything in the back looks soldered just fine. There was a terrible soldering job on one of the ends of the wire that was attached to the jack input, though. It was barely hanging on. After touching it only gently, the one section of wire that was soldered came off completely.
So, do you guys think this horrendous buzzing could be from something as simple as that crappy soldering job? I'm not sure if someone's messed with the input before, but my guess is yes, The screws holding the plate in don't match (one phillips, one flat), and there's a bit of electrical tape around the wire.
Thanks a million, everyone, and I'm sorry I wrote you guys a novel.