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The "patch everything to everything" plan. Seeking advice.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #1
The "patch everything to everything" plan. Seeking advice.

Hello all. Since this question is about hooking up a plethora of electronic music gear it seemed like a better idea to post it here rather than on one of the GS recording forums, which I rarely frequent.

I'm currently in the process of wiring my entire studio into two (well, possibly three) Switchcraft StudioPatch 9625 patchbays. I've made a routing cheat sheet detailing how everything is going to be hooked up and, in doing so, have come across a dilemma concerning the amount of unbalanced connections and the cable run lengths required to make everything accessible to the patchbays. Despite more than 50 of the connections being unbalanced while the rest are balanced, it seems foolish to have so many TS to DB25 snakes made considering that they will all end up at a balanced patchbay with balanced TT patch cables anyway. Am I correct in thinking I should just use balanced TRS to DB25 snakes in place of the 30 foot long unbalanced TS to DB25 snakes I had originally intended? I'm splurging for nice patchbays and cabling to make everything interconnected so if I'm messing up by ordering my snakes based solely on the type of inputs and outputs coming from my synths and drum machines please stop me.

I kind of feel like I already know the answer to this and if these were short unbalanced runs I'd probably feel differently if not for the fact that, in the end, all of my gear is heading into a balanced patchbay. Is that factor combined with the 30 foot runs enough to go with all balanced TRS and XLR to DB25 snakes while simply accepting any volume drops that may result from going with that kind of setup? I've attached the original cheat sheet to this post so you can get an idea of what I'm wanting to achieve. I'm still waiting on the Hydrasynth and Zen Delay to arrive but everything else is in place and wired in a way that each instrument ends up sharing its input channels with other devices. Getting around this and being able to run any device through any other device while having room to grow is the master plan.

So what do you think? Before I order the rest of my cabling should I substitute TRS to DB25 cables in place of all the TS to DB25 cables? Any info is greatly appreciated!
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The "patch everything to everything" plan.  Seeking advice.-both-patchbays-master-file-v5.0.jpg  
Old 2 weeks ago
  #2
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While not cheap I highly recommend (and use) Art T8's . All my unbalanced synths (which is most of them) are plugged into a T8 which balances the signal and isolates the ground. They are positioned so my longest unbalanced cord is 1.5 meters or so long.

I then run an XLR from there.

I also ditched my patchbays for a Digital Mixer and Digital Snake combo. So all patching is done digitally.

My system is now virtually noise free with zero ground issues
Old 2 weeks ago
  #3
Quote:
Originally Posted by grasspike View Post
While not cheap I highly recommend (and use) Art T8's . All my unbalanced synths (which is most of them) are plugged into a T8 which balances the signal and isolates the ground. They are positioned so my longest unbalanced cord is 1.5 meters or so long.

I then run an XLR from there.

I also ditched my patchbays for a Digital Mixer and Digital Snake combo. So all patching is done digitally.

My system is now virtually noise free with zero ground issues
I had considered the ART T8's but the additional cost and space requirements of adding at least 6 of them scared me away from doing it. However, the more I think about it the more it seems like the best option. I've tried adding various digital mixers to my workflow over the years but they always end up being more in the way of my workflow than a helpful addition and get sent back. An analog recording console plus patchbays would be a much better fit for me than most digital mixers but I've got some saving to do before I can pull the trigger on anything in that "want" category.

It's a shame that ART doesn't offer a DB25 output on their T8 as that would save me a ton of money on snakes. Regardless, I know what I'm going to do now so thank you for the input!
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