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2 questions about balanced/unbalanced mixer console patching
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Lorenzop
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#1
16th March 2013
Old 16th March 2013
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2 questions about balanced/unbalanced mixer console patching

Hi
I have a mixer with both balanced & unbalanced ins/outs do I'm confusing over signal path patchings:

1. If I take mixer unbalanced outs, and I connect to a a gear (unbalanced connection therefore), then take the same gears Balanced outs into my mixers balanced in, what signal am I actually getting on 2 bus?
(mixer -> gear = unbalanced, gear -> mixer = balanced) Is it unbalanced, or actually balanced - except that the original source into gear is unbalanced?

2. If I connect to my mixers Balanced ins different sources, some balanced some unbalanced, what does this actually mean? That I have some balanced+unbalanced signals together or will my overal signal path be unbalanced?

Thanks and sorry for nooby confusion!!

Peace!
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16th March 2013
Old 16th March 2013
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The internal workings of your mixer are unbalanced. No matter whether you use balanced or unbalanced connections. 99% of gear is built this way.

The only time to be concerned about balanced and unbalanced signals is connections between your gear. Not inside of it.

So no need to worry!
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Lorenzop
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17th March 2013
Old 17th March 2013
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Yes thanks but I think you misunderstood, I am connecting gear to mixer! That's why I ask.
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17th March 2013
Old 17th March 2013
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Well, I guess my post was rather vague and didn't address your questions very precisely. My apologies. I'll try to answer more specifically.

Quote:
1. If I take mixer unbalanced outs, and I connect to a a gear (unbalanced connection therefore), then take the same gears Balanced outs into my mixers balanced in, what signal am I actually getting on 2 bus?
If you use the balanced 2-bus outputs of your mixer, your signal will be balanced. If you use the unbalanced 2-bus outputs of your mixer (if it even has unbalanced outputs), then the signal will be unbalanced.

Quote:
2. If I connect to my mixers Balanced ins different sources, some balanced some unbalanced, what does this actually mean? That I have some balanced+unbalanced signals together or will my overal signal path be unbalanced?
Thinking in terms of "overall signal path being balanced or unbalanced" has no relevance. Each individual part of your signal path is either balanced or unbalanced. And it can change from one connection to the next. It all depends on each piece of equipment's inputs and outputs. The signal can change from balanced to unbalanced in various parts of the chain.

Balanced output -> balanced input = balanced connection

Balanced output -> unbalanced input = unbalanced connection

Unbalanced output -> balanced input = unbalanced connection

Unbalanced output -> unbalanced input = unbalanced connection


And remember that even if you have an unbalanced signal at the input of a piece of equipment, you can still have a balanced signal coming out. Or vice versa. This is because the internal circuitry is all unbalanced, like I was explaining before. At the output of the device, there is a differential amplifier or a transformer which converts the signal to a balanced signal. This allows you to connect it to another piece of equipment with a balanced input to create a balanced connection. But once the balanced signal reaches the next piece of equipment, it is converted to unbalanced again, because, again, the internal circuitry of that gear is unbalanced.

I don't know how else to explain it...does that make sense?
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17th March 2013
Old 17th March 2013
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The levels will usually be different, but otherwise it's all OK. Just be sure to use shielded cable on everything except power connections.
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Lorenzop
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17th March 2013
Old 17th March 2013
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Thanks xander the second part if your answer is exactly what I was trying to get my head around.

Question: what do you mean shielded cables? I thought any old stereo jack will be balanced mono signal ( if connecting balanced in -> balanced out) ?

Thanks again.

By the way is it possible to mod any gear or mixer ins/outs to make them balanced?
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18th March 2013
Old 18th March 2013
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mijome07 is offline
If you're referring to the M-312, it has (un)balanced outs. Flip the switch.
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