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Power supply makes high pitched noise like a fork is scraping across a dish, or

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A while back I picked up a new hardrive an when I first fired up the computer I thought it was making this high pitched noise. The sound was like a whistle, or a screech, this is high pitched, but not extremely loud. It still is loud enough to be obnoxious.


I later found out it was not the hardrive when I disconnected it. How ever, the sound started to happen more. I first noticed it happening alot when I installed goggle earth, as long as the computer was drawing lines on the screen, it made the noise. then it would make it when videos would first start up, and finally just any time small things would start happening on the computer.


It has become to bothersome now because in the middle of the night it will make the noise for about a second every so often, waking me up.



What could cause this? It doesn't sound like a fan scraping.... and its definitely coming from my 500 watt Ultra - X connect power supply.


I'll probably have to get rid of this thing. I cant stand it!


Is this strange or what?

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Strange, no, not really.


I've heard this sound many times before as I've been building boxes for over 15 years now wink


The sound is due to a choke(or coil for you that didn't know), that is not as tightly wound around it's ferrite bead core. Basically pretty much all power supply units are of the switching kind and of course this means that some of the circuitry operates at high frequencies. Sometimes the harmonics of the switching cicuit will cause some of the chokes/coils to loosen from their cores a bit and this vibration can become audible to the human ear.


Most likely the power supply will work just fine however, since it's making an audible noise, you really can't just listen to it all the time you're using your machine so really the most cost effective option is to purchase a new one.


Yes you could attempt to find the noisy component by using a plastic or insulated tool to poke around in the open power supply cage, but that means having to remove it's cover, then laying your machine on it's side to have the open PS facing towards you and then having the machine turned on so you can locate this component. Takes a lot of time so you decide.


Also note that there are dangerous voltages inside these things, like messing about inside a TV, not really recommended for the average Joe/Jane wink

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