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Best Way: Patchbay, Mixer, Outboard to DAW Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 14th September 2011
Best Way: Patchbay, Mixer, Outboard to DAW


There have been plenty of posts about this, but I'm still having trouble conceptualizing the best way I should do it. If you see a post that can answer this, feel free to direct me!

1. I have all my raw tracks recorded into Protools LE 6.1 (digi 001) from my Soundcraft Spirit 328 mixing board.
2. I want to set up a patchbay (I have 2 x 24), so I can send these different tracks (one at a time) out through the patchbay and be able to route them to different outboard effects (reverb etc.), to the inputs of different synths, and to guitar effects pedals.

If I'm sending a track out of ProTools from the Digi 001 to the patch bay, then patching them to different modules and then sending them back through the patch bay to the Digi 001's inputs is that a problem? I always thought signals had to go through a pre-amp at some point.

Thus, should I have the outputs of the patchbay go through the inserts on the Soundcraft board?

Dude, I'm like soooo lost. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
Old 14th September 2011
Lives for gear

Depending on how it's set up, you should patch through the desk using tape inserts (this refers to the 'tape' or 'monitor' path, there should be a button on the console to select this.), and then print the signal from the desk back into pro tools.... essentially using pro tools as tape. Even though mixing with outboard gear isn't going to kill your cpu, it's still a good habit to bus your reverbs and delays.
Old 14th September 2011
Exactly what I was looking for - just needed to make sure I was on the right track. Thanks so much!
Old 20th September 2011
Thanks again for the tip.

Does this sound like the right setup? The only reason I ask is I have the day off tomorrow and I want to make sure I have all my ducks in a row:

1. 8 channels analog out of digi 001 into patchbay

2. 8 channels of analog out of patchbay into Alesis ADAT A13 inputs

3. Optical out of Alesis ADAT A13 to Tape Inserts Optical In of Soundcraft Spirit 328 mixing board.

4. Either optical out or analog mix outputs back to Digi 001.

Please let me know if you see any forseeable problems with this setup or if there's an easier way to do it. My board doesn't have analog tape inserts which adds an extra step. Thanks in advance for the help!
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