Another ridiculous connection question

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tallowwaters
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Another ridiculous connection question

Post by tallowwaters » Sun Dec 27, 2009 6:41 am

Okay, say I want to run two different preamps on two different sources into the same effects chain. Is it okay to use one of the dual 1/4" male to single 1/4" female leads and run my chain from there? Somebody once told me something similar they did caused some issue I can barely remember, but I am bit hazy on it right now, and likely won't remember this post come tomorrow. Mind you, I am talking about actual damage here, not some asinine issue with sound (which isn't the point)...

meh.
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Solderman » Sun Dec 27, 2009 6:58 am

post deleted-incorrect assumption.
Last edited by Solderman on Sat Jan 09, 2010 12:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Tchammosaur » Sun Dec 27, 2009 11:16 am

I've tried something like that with poor results, wouldn't recommend.

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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Ry-Fi » Sun Dec 27, 2009 2:29 pm

Is it even an impedance issue? I thought you simply COULDN'T passively mix two signals with a Y-cable, that only an active electronic mixing circuit can accomplish this (hence the existence of, uh, mixers)...

Now I'm all confused. Can someone please clarify: what does happen trying to use this method?? Seems bizzarro that it would accomplish anything, to me...

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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Stab Frenzy » Sun Dec 27, 2009 3:39 pm

Two quarter inch outs to one quarter inch in on one lead will result in the two output stages driving each other as well as the input. You'll notice the sound not being quite right first but if the outputs are hot enough you'll kill one of them. Like smoke coming out kill.

You can make up a passive mixing Y lead pretty easily, there's a drop in level but if you've got gain on input fx you can make up for it. Better than killing stuff.

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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by tallowwaters » Sun Dec 27, 2009 7:17 pm

Stab Frenzy wrote:Two quarter inch outs to one quarter inch in on one lead will result in the two output stages driving each other as well as the input. You'll notice the sound not being quite right first but if the outputs are hot enough you'll kill one of them. Like smoke coming out kill.
Exactly what I had at the center of all that hazy logic last night.

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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Cruel Hoax » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:01 am

Some preamps have 1/4" front inputs that are active simultaneous with their rear XLR inputs. (My main preamp is of this flavor.) You can get a similar effect by plugging the output of the first preamp into the 1/4" input of the second.

One thing I love to do is to plug a harmonica mic into the front while running a condensor mic from the back. Funky and midrangey, yet hi-fi and intelligible at the same time! Reminds me of some vocals that Tchad Blake or Mitchell Froom have produced, which -to me- is a good thing.

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oh - here's a thought: if you wanna get the effect passively (ie. can't be arsed with patching together your rack gear) what about using a direct box backwards? You have then two parallel inputs, and the input becomes the output. Of course, this isn't "proper", but I don't believe that you're going for "pristine and proper" in this case, right? I remember some churches, cheesy clubs, etc. actually doing this. Essentially, it's a low-rent reamping box (but the reamping box is labeled the "right" way around).
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by tallowwaters » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:10 am

Basically, I am wanting to run 2 vocalists using different mics and pres into one effect box. This is just for practice/live use, and I didn't want to add any more boxes into the mix.

Oh, and I did crystal/ceramic with condensers in the back all over the last few albums. I can't get enough crystal/ceramics into a tube box with mid range pushed up. Instant way to stand out in a busy mix.
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by piRoN » Tue Dec 29, 2009 5:21 am

Ugh... the number of times I've temporarily deafened myself with feedback from a crystal mic.
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Cruel Hoax » Wed Dec 30, 2009 6:25 am

So Stabby, I'll defer to your electrical engineering experience, which is both broader and deeper than my own, and ask:

How would tallow's original Y-cable differ electrically from using the Mult jack in the patch bay* (which we used to do all the time)? And -as far as I know- the mult jacks were always in parallel, not actively buffered, which is why you could use 'em to split inputs, outputs, whatever. Surely console manufacturers didn't expect meltdowns when doing quick 'n dirty summing, right?

Please enlighten me!

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* - or the Mult jacks of a Moogerfooger pedal, etc.
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Stab Frenzy » Wed Dec 30, 2009 7:15 am

Mults and patchbay splits are fine for splitting a signal but not for summing. Modern gear has generally got a low output impedance and a high input impedance, so if one low impedance output is wired to two high impedance inputs it still sees a relatively high impedance to drive. 100Ohm output impedances aren't uncommon, nor is 20k-100k on an input.

(2x 50k inputs = 25k seen by output)

If you've got two low impedance outputs and one high impedance input are wired together each output will see a much lower impedance, and rather than the input being driven the other low impedance output will draw most of the current. Obviously that's not what you want.

(50k input, 100Ohm output = 98Ohms seen by output)

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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by Cruel Hoax » Thu Dec 31, 2009 12:38 pm

Thanks - that's exactly what I was hoping to learn!

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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by dr.sine » Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:43 pm

tallowwaters wrote:Basically, I am wanting to run 2 vocalists using different mics and pres into one effect box. This is just for practice/live use, and I didn't want to add any more boxes into the mix.
if i understand this correctly, which i probably dont...

couldnt you just run both mic pres into a mixer then run the effect box through an effects loop and adjust the saturation on each mic pre channel to your liking rather than trying to split the signal?

or

get one of those cheapo radioshack 4 ch mixers that have nothing more than 4 inputs, 4 volume knobs and 1 output, run both mic pres into that then out to the effect box then into your amp source?
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by tallowwaters » Fri Jan 08, 2010 7:46 pm

Well, yeah, there are plenty of options, I just wanted to avoid having another box. No big deal really, I was just wondering how it would damage gear, which Stabby answered quite clearly.
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Re: Another ridiculous connection question

Post by EddieJG » Sun Jan 10, 2010 4:14 am

You wouldn't need a second box using an auxiliary bus from your mixer.

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