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Tl Posts:

Posted - 1/28/2002 6:07:13 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
I have had the intermittent "banshee screeching" problem with the USR 3CP5601a modem for the past year. Thanks to a suggestion in this forum (using a Radio Shack $11 RF phone line filter), the problem has gone away. Thanks to all of you. Wayne
Tl Posts:

Posted - 1/28/2002 9:27:02 PM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message  v.Richards Homepage
And the bottom line is:
A RF filter shouldn't be needed on a well-designed modem.
A USR modem is not was it used to be...

Aloha! Richard.

Tl Posts:

Posted - 1/29/2002 6:35:39 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
Exactly! GetADSL IT rocks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Tl Posts:

Posted - 2/9/2002 10:10:10 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
Our 3cp325610a also does this .

It's not a phone line problem as we ran test with line filters and meters and the line was not the problem.

Here's what we noticed.

At about 75%+ humidity our modem starts the scratching noise and cant connect at all.

If the humidity is around or below 40% it starts doing it again.

We tried this in 3 different computer from cyrix to Pentium 200mmx to Amd Duron 800+ MHz systems and 2 seperate 5610a modems.

Same results.

Tl Posts:

Posted - 2/10/2002 2:37:53 PM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
I have had the same problem each time we have a snowfall. Most of the time I get very fast connect's 53+ .They started when I went to a shorter cable to my external modem.
I notice that the shorter cable causes the modem to pick up the rfi from my flat screen on my dell laptop.. (You can hear it on the phones when the modem is connected to the box at the same time you see the back light come on the screen). It goes away with a 5 foot cable. I think I will try the rfi filter Idea. Thanks.
Fred Garvin
Tl Posts:

Posted - 2/13/2002 6:24:48 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
There's one sure-fire way to fix all of your woes.

Throw the modem into the snow.

Go to your nearest computer outlet and purchase something better.

Tl Posts:

Posted - 2/13/2002 12:35:06 PM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
As one of the posters on the original page, I wanted to repost here and let all you know that I have determined the exact cause and potential solution to this issue (for my modem).

I had pretty much given up on using this modem and went back to my old Lucent LT. But, after re-reading these posts, and seeing that some folks were able to get the modem running again via RF filtering on the phone line, I wanted to see if a RF filter would work for me also.

Well -- I picked up the $11 RF telephone filter from Radio Shack and installed it on my line. While it did not 100% cure the issue for me, I noticed that the static/screech effect happened less often. I also noted that, like many people here have, the problem would ONLY occur at night.

Putting these facts together, I figured something that I ran at night was putting out a lot of RF in my house that was interefering with my modem. Last night, I noticed the static sound again -- and I carefully too note of all the appliances that I had running. I then turned them off one-by-one until I had determined the culprit.

It was my dimmer switch for my lights in the kitchen.
A little research on the net confirmed that dimmer switches can put out a lot of RFI. Switching the thing off allowed my modem to connect. Full-on (no limitation in current) also did not generate RF. But if the dimmer was limiting current, it would hose the modem.

I suspect those of you that had ceiling fans might also have dimmer switches on them to control speed and/or light output. Please check. For those of you in apartments, if could even be your neighbor's dimmer switch(s) that are giving you grief! Read the following FAQ from Lutron corp, look down the page to the part discussing RF:

There are two types of RFI, radiated and conducted.

Therefore the modem could be getting too much RFI through the air, or even the AC power lines, even though I run through an APC UPS and a surge suppressor. The FAQ suggests the following to eliminate/reduce RFI from your offending dimmer switch(s):

--Feed sensitive equipment from a circuit without a dimmer on it.
--Add a power-line filter to the sensitive equipment.
--Add shielded wire for all microphones and input cables. Also, use low-impedance balanced microphone cables, which are less susceptible to interference than high-impedance types.
--Make sure all the equipment is grounded. Connect all shields to the ground at one point. Ground lighting fixture metal housings properly.
--Use a lamp debuzzing coil (available from Lutron) to filter the RFI.

Tl Posts:

Posted - 2/13/2002 7:41:26 PM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message

There seems to be a set of recurring themes in this
3cp324510abanshee debate.

#1: Weather/atmosphere definitly seems to affect the modem, either by static or my too much humidity.

As these modems do not use the standard RELAYs to pick up the phone line (they use a solid state trigger).With solid state circuits there is the increased possibility of
static or humidity interfearing with the modems line connection.

#2: EMF (Electro Magnetic Flux). Translation: Dynamic and
stronger than usual Changes in the surounding Electrical and Magnetic fields. This includes ex. fans (ventilators).
Remember in movies when people in the next apartment ran a blender and it realy messed up the persons tv? Well this is
indeed true and computers are indeed even more suceptable.

There is another of the main problems as well. A few years back there was also a term called "buss noise" in sound cards, which when recording or playing back you could hearthe computers natural beeps, clicks and wheezes though the sound card.

A remedie for this was to place the sound card or modem in the ISA or PCI slot closest to the top or closest slot to the computers power supply bypassing the remaining busses. Also making certain that the modem or sound card was properly grounded.

#3: Line noise . This is by far one of the most disputed
of problems.. The funny this is that most that have a spare 56kb modem state that they get no banshee screech from ex.
a conextant, or gvc, or diamond, e.t.c. They also attained
approx the same speed (or better) as the USR modems .

We've tried a phone share device, which basicaly isolated the main connecting item such as a modem and routes it directly to the outgoing phone line via a thickly shielded
RJ54 cable with a rj11 converter on the end.

This did make a small improovement (very small infact: a 1.37% improovement).

Here's a bit of fact USR made another blunder.

When we researched the 3cp325610 modem it was calssfied as
HCF (hardware configure). Which refers to physicaly changing jumpers on teh modem itself to set the IRQ and ports addresses.

This modem has no jumpers. It's a controler modem , and not
a winmodem (aka: software modem).

But who in thier right mind would set a modem to auto install on COM5: IRQ 12.

USR's own dosmdm.exe can't set IRQ 12 in dos..

Also notice that most Linux OS's won't take the modem.

Apart for debian, and Red Hat it's almost impossible to get this 5610a/b modem to work.

Oh yes so far to date I've never had the modem banshee screech on me in Linux. However that does not mean anything.

Thanks for listening



Tl Posts:

Posted - 2/14/2002 11:07:56 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
Hey friends. I just happened to stumble through here last evening in a last ditch effort to get my damn 5610B to work right. I have been struggling with it for a month with what appeared to be noise on the line intermittently. Yeah, I know USR ain't what it used to be. I started years ago with a sportster and then moved up to a Courier which I still have. I bought this damn 5610B based on that experienc. Duh!
Anyhow, I have been through the whole drill, phone co. out half a dozen times, USR TS as many times, rewired phone jack etc. Still had crackling, static like noise when connecting and 28.8 or lower connections after months of 46 to 50 kbps with a cheap software modem. When I could not connect at these speeds, hyperterminal always indicated a low SNR. It was intermittent. After reading this thread, I went to Radio Shack and got a filter, and so far today it is working perfectly. Connecting at 50.2 most of the time. Can't believe it. How can they sell a modem that can't filter out this garbage, when RS can sell you a $.02 gizmo that does it so well. I have spent countless hours trying to solve this and am just thankful I found this site. It is clear lots of people had this problem with the 5610A. I am here to say that the B version has the same weakness. I hope this fix holds. I just wanted to report this in case some other poor sucker buys this modem and can't get it to work. If you can't send it back and or want to shell out the bucks for another brand. Try the $11 filer.
BTY, I never had the screeching, siren type sound reported with the A version, just static like noise and a low SNR.


Tl Posts:

United Kingdom
Posted - 2/21/2002 9:39:48 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
i know thsiis not the modem being discussed but the six pages of replies to the original seem to be relevant to my problem.

I flash upgraded the above modem to V92. All went well in the upgrade. the modem connects much quicker to my ISP.

When i try to connect the modem goes to the handshake and then emits a high pitched squeal and it will not connect.

I just cancel and try connect again. The modem then connects properly. However I sometimes have to try and try again to get it to handshake properly. USR seem to not have a clue what the problem is.


Tl Posts:

Posted - 3/7/2002 6:33:36 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message
You know what, I sometimes also get a screwed up handshake. Its not a defective modem or bad drivers, its just sometimes your running lots of things in the back round or you start playing a game right after u click connect and because your using so much cpu your hand shake screws up. i also get that sqeaky noise when i use a games via modem connection to connect w/ my friends computer and we play together. im dialing with game so the handshake sometimes screws up. also if your putting 3 commas after telephone number....that also sometimes gives u a bad handshake...

PS this is what has happened to me....i dont know what might be wrong w/ your modem but maybe it is samething...

Tl Posts:

Posted - 3/7/2002 8:53:30 AM  Show Profile  Email Poster  Edit Message  
How much is your ping in games with this modem? and download rate?

I using a lucent 56k v.92 and get download at 5,5kb/s and my ping is 140 in quake world ( quake 1 ).

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