The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
Mics lines, patchbays and normalling
Old 27th February 2003
Mics lines, patchbays and normalling

A question for the tech guys...

I have 16 mic lines on my patchbay coming in from the live room. 8 of those are normalled to console mic inputs and the other 8 aren't normalled to anything. If I have a mic in channel 1 and that mic then patched to an outboard pre it's also feeding the pre on the desk. Now, since the desk pres are transformerless IC based deals and all my outboard pres are transformer input am I loading things down and losing top or gain or doing other bad things? Or is it something I shouldn't lose any sleep over? Most of the studios I've been in with mic patching have them normalled to the console too.
Old 27th February 2003
Lives for gear
subspace's Avatar
It sounds like your mic lines are half-normalled to your console inputs, not fully normalled. The rule I've always followed for mic patching is full normals only, so any patching breaks the connection. This is what I've seen in other studios as well, as it prevents people from inadvertently splitting mic outputs between two pres like you describe. HTH
Old 27th February 2003
Shit. I figured it was bad... Time to crack open the bays and switch that.
Old 27th February 2003
7rojo7's Avatar

You can dead patch the in-patch to the board pre. With half normalled patches there exists also the opportunity to un-balance the signal at some point, beware.
For dead patches you can use the severed tips of broken patch cords. Or you could "fully" normal those patches with the help of a soldering iron and some silver solder.
Old 1st March 2003
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar
Correct, All mic inputs should be fully normalled. The connection should be completely broken when you patch to either input or output side of the bay.

Line outputs to console and/or tape inputs are very cool when half normalled. It's a nice way to mult a channel or device to another input.

In live recording, that type of microphone patchbay wiring would have bagged us right out of the gate - big time, especially when we may need to switch inputs because of a bad line, channel, etc...

Change it ASAP my man!
Old 1st March 2003
The rest of the bays are either half-normalled or not normalled to anything. Thankfully I'm in mix mode for a while so I'll have time to fix it before the next tracking date. If something else comes up before I have time to fix it I'll just dead patch it.

Hmmm... that might actually be my only option anyway. I have the Furman 1/4" bays and I'm not sure if there's a full normal option on them. Time to break out the manual and the soldering iron.
πŸ–¨οΈ Show Printable Version
βœ‰οΈ Email this Page
πŸ” Search thread
♾️ Similar Threads
πŸŽ™οΈ View mentioned gear