I decided to implement a patch bay in my home office/studio so that I could use all devices (laptops, audio & video monitors, synths, rack, etc) without ever having to rewire. Here is my current (active) set up, for you gear junkies:

  • Behringer Ultrapatch Pro PX3000
  • American Audio Media Operator Bluetooth Receiver
  • Dbx 286 preamp/processor
  • Lexicon MX400XL FX
  • Behringer Ultragraph Pro EQ
  • Focusrite Scarlett 18i20
  • ART PRO VLA2
  • MicroKorg Synth
  • Presonus TubePre
  • Steinberg UR-22
  • Rode NTK Tube Condensor
  • Presonus Faderport 16
  • M-Audio BX5
  • JBL Nano Patch
  • ProTools 12 | Studio One Professional | Reaper64

All of the equipment in the rack is connected to the rear of the patch bay. For example, the BX5 monitor inputs (controlled by Nano Patch) are connected to ch 1 & 2 input on the rear of the patch bay. As you can see below, most of my channels are color-coded and labeled, making it easier to connect outputs to outputs and inputs to inputs.

But how can I access channels 1 & 2?

Using HALF NORMAL mode for channels 1 & 2, I'm able to patch its inputs to the American Audio Bluetooth outputs. Here's how:

American Audio Bluetooth outputs are wired directly into the patch bay instead of the BX5's! The blue and red wires pictured above ("Monitor IN") on channel 1 & 2 represent the actual input signal for my BX5's, so I've simply patched the signal from the American Audio Bluetooth outputs (channel 23 & 24) to the BX5's using the patch bay's front panel.

Why...this just seems cool?

Not only am I set up for home studio sessions without having to wire and/or rewire equipment, I'm saving setup time by having access to all inputs/outputs via the front panel of my patch bay. Some of favorite features so far:

  • Access to BX5 inputs and a Bluetooth receiver at all times. Otherwise I'd have to plug the BX5's into which ever device I'd like the final signal to come from while recording, and into the bluetooth receiver whenever I'd like sound from my Macbook (or any other BT device)
  • I can do non-production related sound processing such as send signals from my Macbook to the American Audio Bluetooth, then out of bluetooth into the Lexicon for FX, and finally out of the Lexicon into the BX5 inputs just by patching wires to their respective channels on the patch bay's front panel. It's been great for learning the Lexicon dual effects power!
  • Signal routing into DAW – I really enjoy the ability of recording with effects but withOUT processing. The patch bay allows me to easily send a signal from all devices (synths, FX, compressors, EQ) to a dedicated channel in my DAW.  

I recommend anyone with a workspace that requires signal routing from multiple devices to invest in a patch bay; it will make your set up time much easier 🙂  

Available for consultations! 💰💸