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Anybody notice electronic beeps during Emmys?
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ibook_steve
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Sep 19, 2011, 03:30 AM
 
For some reason, during the entire Emmys telecast tonight (all 3 hours), there were series of subtle electronic beeps in the background, that sounded like the old handheld LED video games from the '80s. The noise was constant and did not occur during commercials. Even my wife noticed it.

Did anybody else hear this or was it just me? Googling hasn't brought up any similar reports.

For the record, this was the Fox 2 (KTVU) broadcast (SD) on DirecTV in San Jose, CA.

Steve
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Sep 19, 2011, 05:03 AM
 
Without knowing a thing and taking a complete stab in the dark, maybe it was the cue to STFU and get off stage.

Or maybe Al Qaeda?
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Animonster13
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Sep 19, 2011, 06:23 AM
 
Here I was thinking I was going crazy! I recorded the Emmys to my dvr earlier this evening I am now watching them. I'm about an hour in and I've already paused, restarted, turned the volume up and down, held my ears to the TV, etc... AT LEAST 10-15 times! After hearing no beeping during the commercials, I decided to google it. Let me tell you, I was certainly relieved when I found that others had posted about the same noise... So relieved in fact, that I registered with this site just so I could respond to your comment! lol ..
..I'm guessing it was some sort of sound affiliated with the crew documenting the show.. like the sound guys were picking up beeping sounds from their machines or possibly the camera guys' machines.. meh.. I don't know... All i can say is IT'S DRIVING ME CRAZY! ... and I love the Emmy's .. I've been looking forward to watching them for weeks now and this is really ruining the experience ... ::sigh::: >_<
     
audiobob
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Sep 19, 2011, 07:55 AM
 
Most definitely noticed it. I have a good deal of experience with television sound, and I can tell you it seemed to be tied to the audience mics. Perhaps some kind of control signal accidentally mixed in with the audience mics?
     
ibook_steve  (op)
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Sep 19, 2011, 11:08 AM
 
Yay, I'm not alone! Which Fox station were you watching and what method (cable, satellite)? I was thinking it may have just been in my particular feed and not the whole country since I've seen 0 reports about this elsewhere.

Steve

Edit: I just found one reference, might be a satellite thing: http://www.pajiba.com/miscellaneous/...y-liveblog.php
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ort888
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Sep 19, 2011, 12:11 PM
 
Wait, someone watched the emmys?

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bstone
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Sep 19, 2011, 12:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by ort888 View Post
Wait, someone watched the emmys?
     
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Sep 19, 2011, 08:02 PM
 
And all this time I thought it was my washing machine telling me my clothes were done!

Heard about 3 or 4 of them.

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Kelvington
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Sep 19, 2011, 10:39 PM
 
I use DirecTV via the NY Fox Feed. I heard them through the entire show. I think it sounded a lot like computer cues sent to analog equipment. Similar tones used in radio stations, but typically beyond are ability to hear. These were going on between every camera take and every graphic load. It was incredibly annoying!

Would love to find out the real cause! And yea I registered here just to make this post!
     
brassplayersrock²
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Sep 19, 2011, 10:55 PM
 
I had this happen during a live indoor performance I was working. Turns out that when some cell phones are on silent, and receive a call, that the signal screws with the speakers. Same thing on some home speakers, right before it starts ringing, the speakers go.
     
ibook_steve  (op)
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Sep 21, 2011, 04:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by brassplayersrock² View Post
I had this happen during a live indoor performance I was working. Turns out that when some cell phones are on silent, and receive a call, that the signal screws with the speakers. Same thing on some home speakers, right before it starts ringing, the speakers go.
I know that sound. This was not that sound.

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brassplayersrock²
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Sep 21, 2011, 06:36 PM
 
aw okay.
     
Kelvington
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Sep 23, 2011, 10:53 PM
 
Tonight while watching Fringe on my DirecTV DVR and watching FOX New York East Coast Feed, I could clearly hear the beeping, because there are less totally quiet scenes it wasn't as noticeable as it was during the Emmys. Here is the RAW off the SAT Feed of a short scene where you can clearly hear the beeps.

http://kelvington.com/TEMP/FringeBeepingSample.mpg

It's a 35mb file, and is fairly short, but you can hear them clearly when they cut to the male agent looking from right to left. (and a few other places too)
     
raptor1677
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Sep 24, 2011, 01:26 PM
 
I also registered purely to post on here..... I heard it during the emmy's, had kinda forgotten about it, but then, lo and behold I turned on Fringe and there was that noise again.... I have no idea, but considering it was in a scripted show and a live show, I'm going to go with an issue with Fox... feel free to throw out guesses. I caught both on the fox 29 Philadelphia feed through Directv.
     
CharlesS
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Sep 24, 2011, 02:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by brassplayersrock² View Post
I had this happen during a live indoor performance I was working. Turns out that when some cell phones are on silent, and receive a call, that the signal screws with the speakers. Same thing on some home speakers, right before it starts ringing, the speakers go.
That's a GSM thing. If your phone has a 3G/4G signal, you shouldn't get that.

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PGalore300
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Sep 25, 2011, 09:51 PM
 
Yes, I also heard the beeping during the Emmys. On Twitter, someone suggested that it had something to do with Nielsen ratings. I know nothing about how that process works, so I do not know if there is any truth to that. I view the Fox network out of Philadephia.

After the Emmys I didn't think much more about the beeping until I also heard it while watching Glee on Fox. Then I heard it again during the Eagles/Giants game today. I'm not sure what is going on with Fox, but it is getting quite distracting!
     
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Sep 25, 2011, 10:29 PM
 
It can only be one thing, and this one thing only. Aliens are trying to communicate with us!!! (and not the pesky kind that are illegal, and take our jobs)
     
djsndrf
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Sep 29, 2011, 01:25 PM
 
I also felt compelled to sign up for this board just to post a reply...

I have a theory as to the beeps, as I do a lot TV and Radio audio editing.

In Radio and TV, sometimes there is something called a "watermark" which allows for the program to be identified as a copyrighted material, so it can't be used without knowing it was an original...this is what I believe the networks are doing. I first heard it during the Emmy's and then House, Glee, Fringe and The X Factor. Depending on the show, I think it's much easier to hear, like a drama or suspense show, where there are lulls in the audio making those beeps more pronounced. There seem to be about 6 or 7 distinct tones equally spaced apart in time, about 7-10 seconds. Also, it should be noted, I have also heard this exact same sound on not just FOX, but ABC and NBC as well. I have heard them during The View, Rachael Ray, and most recently, Terra Nova. I thought this since the emmy's, but I can tell you for sure this a network thing, and is definitely on purpose. It's not a cell phone issue, as you might have read in earlier posts, like the signal you hear on your computer speakers just before a call comes in. Again, it's just a guess, and as far as I can tell, this is the only post on the net about this issue. If anyone has more info, or anyone from the networks has an answer, we would all love to know the TRUE source of these beeps.
     
Kelvington
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Sep 29, 2011, 02:55 PM
 
A water mark is a good thought, there is also a ton of data that comes down from the network about when commercial breaks are coming and just promo data, etc. You can sometimes see this if you record the feed on a computer as a constant series of blips and dashes at the very first line of a video signal, it seems possible that if not properly tuned, these might have audible cues meant only for the network equipment, but is being send down/up the pipe to the satellite for DTV.

I would be curious if these are heard over air, and via cable, or even on DVD's. Then I would be very apt to believe they are a watermark of some type. This is actually very interesting. It would be funny if we just found out it's some background computer data beeps that just aren't being fine tuned out before broadcast. Sort of like the kind we hear if you have head phones plugged into a computer, and you can hear the data coming off the drive.
     
willer
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Oct 1, 2011, 06:17 PM
 
We first noticed it during the Emmys and have noticed it on several other shows including Breaking Bad. We're in the Philadelphia market and have Comcast. It's also on the NLDS Phillies/Cardinals game. We thought it was maybe something to do with us having an older TV, but I'm glad to know we weren't going crazy.
     
del3245
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Oct 2, 2011, 01:52 PM
 
I signed up to discuss/complain about this as well. It is an extremely distracting tone and frankly we probably dropping comcast cable (and saving $100 a month) if this is not resolved.

I cannot play the above .MPG with my player (VLC) but the descriptions surely sounds like the same thing. The sound is an electronic warble (doo do da doo da da doo is what my ears hear). The warble lasts about 2 seconds and it repeats about every 5-10 seconds depending, I hear it very clearly, way too often. Most of my family can hear it except my dad (long time shooter with bad tinnitus).

We currently have comcast w/digital cable but the TVs are old CRTs, non-HD.

I first heard this warble on Fox Sports broadcasts starting in the 2010 All Star Game if I recall correctly. It was DEFINITELY in the Phils playoff games last year as well as the Eagles games on Fox Sports. It was again present for all Fox Sports broadcasts this year. Every Saturday Fox baseball game, the All Star Game, and once again, football on Fox.

I do hear it on some, but not all, commercials as well. It is of course harder to hear because they amplify the commercial sounds, and it seems to be only the first three tones as well. (I just heard it on a Sprint commercial on the Eagles-49ers game as I write this, and then loud and clear when the game came back on for 30 seconds. Commercial again now, an the warble was present on a GE commercial and now a Miller Lite commercial - Man up).. The key seems to be where the commercials originate. The network's commercials have the warble, but local commercials (put on by comcast, I guess?) do not seem to have the warble.

In addition, it is also now on AMC during some of their shows, and was again on the TBS broadcast of the Phils-Cardinals game Sat Oct 1 2011.

If you have comcast on demand, you can hear this sound during episode 11 of Breaking Bad. It becomes very clear in a quiet desert scene near the end of that episode. The On Demand counter is at 50 minutes out of 104 minutes.

Watermark or whatever, it has to stop. No way are we paying $100 a month for that. For the last year it was only Fox Sports, but it seems to be spreading.
     
del3245
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Oct 2, 2011, 02:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by willer View Post
We first noticed it during the Emmys and have noticed it on several other shows including Breaking Bad. We're in the Philadelphia market and have Comcast. It's also on the NLDS Phillies/Cardinals game. We thought it was maybe something to do with us having an older TV, but I'm glad to know we weren't going crazy.
I am calling comcast right now and complaining, I highly suggest EVERYONE do so and let them know about this issue. We are not paying FOX, we are paying our providers. Only the providers will be able to talk sense into the networks doing this.
     
del3245
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Oct 2, 2011, 02:19 PM
 
I just called Comcast and they are going to look into it and contact Fox. The lady said they will get back to me in 24-48 hrs. I forgot to mention the Emmy's, since I didn't watch them, but I mentioned the problems on AMC, Fox sports broadcasts, and the TBS/TNT broadcasts.
     
Spheric Harlot
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Oct 2, 2011, 02:46 PM
 
I see this thread is tagged "mind control"?

     
Demonhood
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Oct 2, 2011, 05:52 PM
 
That may have been me. Maybe.
     
Spheric Harlot
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Oct 2, 2011, 05:58 PM
 
I guessed as much.
     
del3245
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Oct 3, 2011, 10:20 AM
 
Here is another link mentioning it; also still unresolved.
What is that annoying background noise on the fox football broadcast Lion/Viks? - Yahoo! Answers

I'm curious what answer comcast will get back to me with.

I watched last night's Phils Cards game on TBS at my brother's house...he has a different provider. He has this nice big HD TV upstairs but can't the TV/cable box/something to change the channel. So, we watched it downstairs where he has a big CRT TV. The game is broadcast by TBS but the first inning was actually carried on another channel. The warble was present, and remained throughout the game.

I first heard this last year during the Phillies playoff run, and remember going on the internet at that time to see if others were complaining about it. First on the phillies.com board,and then a search using google. I was not able to find any threads about it. Other than Philly sports, I don't watch network TV, so I didn't really notice again until this summer when the games were on Fox on Saturdays. When we heard it on AMC's Breaking Bad last week, I decided to search again because it was very clear in that quiet scene.

I need to watch some games on an HDTV to see what if it is present only on CRTs or what the deal is..as noticeable as it is, I can't believe there are not more internet threads mentioning these tones. I consider myself to have good hearing but don't believe it is that much more sensitive than others.
     
ibook_steve  (op)
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Oct 3, 2011, 02:11 PM
 
Originally Posted by del3245 View Post
I signed up to discuss/complain about this as well. It is an extremely distracting tone and frankly we probably dropping comcast cable (and saving $100 a month) if this is not resolved.
I think that's a little extreme. I think there are better reasons to drop cable and save money than a beeping that will hopefully get resolved soon.

In any case, I've been contacted by an engineer at Fox. So that indicates that they are aware of the noise and are actively trying to fix it.

Other shows these past weeks I've heard it on: Fringe (as was stated), Terra Nova, Glee. I don't watch sports so I can't comment on that.

But I didn't know that people are hearing it on stations other than Fox. There must be some commonality here. Has anyone who has heard the noise heard it in HD or just SD? Narrowing it down to just one or the other might help. As I mentioned (or did I?), I'm watching in SD.

Steve
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ibook_steve  (op)
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Oct 3, 2011, 08:06 PM
 
I got a reply back from Fox today. They've narrowed the problem down to a few select cities and they're working with the local stations to fix the problem.

Sounds promising.

Steve
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del3245
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Oct 3, 2011, 11:17 PM
 
That does sound promising. I wouldn't doubt that someone at Fox was contacted by Comcast today.

The initial answer I got from Comcast was that it was not their problem; it must be something with the individual broadcast stations that they cannot control. I replied, in that case, I will be cancelling cable due to this noise. Their tune immediately changed to a more serious probe for information and a promise to contact FOX and the other networks to track the issue down. The fact is, I do not pay FOX or any of the stations, I pay the provider. I cannot directly influence the networks, but I can influence the cable company, and they can influence the networks.

I have a regular old TV, the same Phillips/Magnavox that I've had for probably 10 years. Another TV in the house is a similar old Orion, and the sound is present there as well. Neither TV has a built in digital tuner so both have to tune the channels through set top boxes. The TV I watched last night at my brother's is also a big CRT but he did not have a set top box on that one so it may have a digital tuner built in. It was probably around a 2005 model. The noise was present there, as well.

The tone/warble is present on the Yankees Detroit game that is on right now. TBS baseball broadcast. I'm beginning to wish I had ruined my ears with loud music in my youth so I could not hear this do da da do da da do.

The clearest example that I can point to is that episode 11 of Breaking Bad, quiet scene in the desert near the end of the episode (50 minutes/104 minutes on the comcast on demand counter).
     
roadruntim
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Oct 6, 2011, 02:49 PM
 
It appears to be digital audio compression artifacts.

Highly compressing a more random sound, like audience applause or crowd noise, is more difficult than
other sounds, so the metallic tones seems to be the result of it.
     
Kelvington
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Oct 6, 2011, 02:58 PM
 
I'm pretty sure the problem has been solved. I didn't hear anything during the NFL on Sunday. So it looks like they sussed it out! Well done Fox!
     
del3245
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Oct 6, 2011, 10:56 PM
 
I didn't watch football on Sunday so I don't know whether it was fixed on Fox. It is definitely still present on the baseball playoffs on TBS. Hearing it right now while watching the Yankess losing 3-1.

I kinda doubt it is crowd noise somehow causing it because it is easiest to hear when it is fairly quiet. It seems to be the same tone repeating for the most part at a set rate which doesn't make sense as being artifacts. But, who knows.

I asked another buddy if he heard it and he knew exactly what I was talking about and said that its "really annoying"...but apparently not annoying enough for him to call anyone about I guess that is why stuff like this happens, most people just say "baa" and chew their cud. do da da do daa da do!
     
billerson
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Oct 9, 2011, 10:01 PM
 
I am watching Batman Begins right now on AMC and can hear the noise. I know that there is technology that helps online advertisers to know what you are watching on TV while surfing the internet. This technology supposedly uses the sound of the show and the mic built into your computer. I wonder if that has anything to do with the noise?

Unfortunately, I can't find the article where I originally read about this, so maybe I am just bonkers
     
jaybento
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Oct 11, 2011, 09:15 PM
 
sometimes when i hear the radio at work, or watch television, i hear these beeping sounds ive been trying to figure out what it is and found this forum, idk i am hearing it on nickelodeon right now but ive heard it on a bunch of different channels
     
del3245
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Oct 13, 2011, 12:16 AM
 
Heard it on ESPN a couple days back. First time for that. It seems to be spreading to more stations.

Did not watch the Eagles again this week (I'm a Vick hater) but relished their loss on the radio. So I still can't say if Fox has it fixed or not.

Did not hear it on Breaking Bad 4-12 on demand, but did hear it once again on 4-13 on demand. Go figure.

Now I am currently hearing it watching an episode of Frasier on We network, channel 117 on Comcast.

I don't know what the heck this noise is but it doesn't annoy me quite as much as when I'm really trying to concentrate watching a ball game. The Phillies bowing out without a fight has lessened my exposure to TV and that sound.
     
   

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