TRS or TS 1/4" for guitar to amp / wiring two rooms.
zulusound
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#1
8th May 2007
Old 8th May 2007
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TRS or TS 1/4" for guitar to amp / wiring two rooms.

This is a silly question- of COURSE use unbalanced 1/4" going from guitar to amp or to pedals, etc. But, I am running a permanent pair of 1/4" cables connecting rooms that will have multiple purposes, most often plugging a guitar and/or 1/4 DI output at the control room and connecting to an amp in the iso room, but would like the opportunity to use balanced lines if using TRS style gear. I can only run two lines.

I have been told that TRS balanced plugs are preferrable for guitars, as some grounding problems sometimes get helped even when using said unbalanced equipment. If anybody wants to chime in with experience, that would be great!

thx
Evan in Seattle
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8th May 2007
Old 8th May 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zulusound View Post
This is a silly question- of COURSE use unbalanced 1/4" going from guitar to amp or to pedals, etc. But, I am running a permanent pair of 1/4" cables connecting rooms that will have multiple purposes, most often plugging a guitar and/or 1/4 DI output at the control room and connecting to an amp in the iso room, but would like the opportunity to use balanced lines if using TRS style gear. I can only run two lines.

I have been told that TRS balanced plugs are preferrable for guitars, as some grounding problems sometimes get helped even when using said unbalanced equipment. If anybody wants to chime in with experience, that would be great!

thx
Evan in Seattle
at runs longer than say 15-20 feet you would run the risk of interference and signal loss.

You're effectively plugging an unbalanced instrument into a balanced tie line, but it doesn't balance the signal.

here is a link to mercenary, who sells the little labs STD
Little Labs Signal Transmission Device (STD) Mercenary Edition

you use the special cable to connect your guitar to your patch panel (you'd need to install one tie line with XLR connectors) run out through your tie lines to your live room, connect an xlr cable from the output panel to the STD XLR input, then into your amp and you're golden.
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8th May 2007
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I have considered running cable from my workstation to a couple of other rooms as well but havent' done it yet. What I was going to do was to use good quality mic cable and have adapter cords for each end that would go from balanced to unbalanced. That way I could use the straight mic cable for microphones and use the adapters for di guitar or perhaps from the direct out on the guitar amp. If you really want to get fancy you could have a box at each end that converted unbalanced to balanced and vice-versa.
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8th May 2007
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Dude, you want an STD.

You can't call yourself a slut if you don't have at least one.



Seriously, though > Little Labs STD.
#5
8th May 2007
Old 8th May 2007
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If you're using a lot of combo amps and really need to run instrument signals, definitely get the STD...

But, if you think you're gonna be using a lot of heads, or will have the option to pull the chassis out of the combo and leave it in the control room, I'd just run speaker cable to the other rooms. You'll probably run into a lot less noise issues.

Good luck.
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9th May 2007
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Another vote for the Little Labs STD. I've used mine quite a bit over long (~100') mic lines, and it's worked really well. I really haven't noticed a change in the sound vs. plugging straight in, which is more than I can say for the dedicated tie lines I've used in some studios.
zulusound
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9th May 2007
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I've actually spent my whole adult life dodging STD's..

Actually, looks like a cool unit. I'm only needing about 15-20 feet of 1/4" cable between the rooms, so it might be overkill.

Back to the original question, TS or TRS if 90% is unbalanced instrument level? What does a TRS cable do on a guitar cable other than short out the Ring? Would a TRS cable be the same quality as a TS cable on guitar-to-amp?

Thanks,
Evan
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9th May 2007
Old 9th May 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goliath|Audio View Post
If you want something that is actually going to hold up, get this.

Radial SGI sudio guitar interface
+1!!! I love this thing... In fact, I'm a fan of most of what Radial does...
#10
9th May 2007
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At the moment I'm using a shitty DI box to convert the unbalanced signal and send it over mic cable to my wall box, and then another XLR cable with an XLR to TS converter on the other end plugging straight into the amp. It's probably a grand total of 115ft of balanced cable. The sound is fine, not as good as an STD, but no worse to my ears than a 20ft piece of crap guitar cable.

The best thing is it didn't cost me a penny.
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11th May 2007
Old 11th May 2007
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If it's less than 25 or 30 feet, I would just use a TRS jack in the wall or, if you insist on using cables, a M to F TRS cable like a headphone extention cable would work too. Balanced cables get unbalanced when plugged into anything not made for them. The ring and sleeve on a balanced jack are connected together by the sleeve of the jack if there isn't another conductor there. TRS is like the rosetta stone of studio connections because you can plug practically anything into it- stereo (for headphones), XLR to TRS (for mics and preamps in the live room), and 1/4in TS to TS (for bass direct and synth/drum machine). I wired up my patchbay in my studio with 24 trs jacks because they're cheaper than XLR jacks, XLR to TRS cables are cheaper than XLR M to F cables, and you can plug anything in to them. If it's longer than 25 feet I would get any one of the DI boxes recommended. Obviously if you're mixer doesn't have hi-z inputs you'll need one anyway for direct.
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