My force plate signal is noisy

If your force plate signals are noisy there are a few things that you can check. Follow this guide to identify where the signal noise is arising from:

Zero the signal

Zero the amplifier and zero the device in Nexus. This is an easily over looked step and can hugely affect your force readings.

Allow the amplifier to “settle”

We recommend waiting at least 30 minutes after switching your amplifier on before using your force plate. While the amplifier is settling there can be additional noise.

Ensure your force plate is flat and steady

If your force plate is not flat it can alter the resting state forces of your plate. If your force plate is not secure, any movement of the plate will be recorded also, introducing a source of error and noise.

Check your cables are intact

Ensure that any cables used in your system are intact. Any damage, breaks or kinks in cables or shielding can create a source of noise or error in your system. Spliced cables are also likely to introduce noise as shielding of cables is often not sufficient.

Are you using the correct power supply?

Ensure that the power supply being used is the one supplied with your amplifier, accidentally changing power supplies in laboratories can happen when using standard sized power connectors. The power supply for the AMTI has standard connections but is of medical grade meaning that it does not have as much inherent fluctuations hen transforming power.

Check the pin-outs in Nexus

In Nexus you can check the raw signal from each of the signal pins. Right click on the device, select “raw” and you will be able to graph the pin outputs. Step on the plate and check the read outs, you may find that one of the pins is the source of your error.

Check the physical pin-outs if using an analogue system

Breakout boxes and connectors are a possible source of noise. Ensure that wires are securely attached and not overly bent.

Other questions when diagnosing

Is it one channel or all channels?

Is it one or all force plates? does it change if you swap amplifier connections around?

Is it wrong by the same factor for affected channels?

Has this started suddenly or is it a growing problem?

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