Best way to split a guitar signal?

Recording Techniques, People Skills, Gear, Recording Spaces, Computers, and DIY

Moderators: drumsound, tomb

Post Reply
User avatar
Drone
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 656
Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2009 4:01 pm
Location: Uranus

Best way to split a guitar signal?

Post by Drone » Sat Dec 17, 2016 8:35 am

What would be the best (sounding, or cheapest, or easiest) way to split a guitar signal before it's amplified? I want to have a clean signal and one I can run to effect.

Ideas right now, are either bastardising some little DI transformers for an unbalanced to unbalanced split, and doing it passively, or knocking up a pair of FET buffers and running it from a 9V supply.

Thoughts, ideas, opinions, etc. welcome :D
The previous statement is from a guy who records his own, and other projects for fun. No money is made.

User avatar
ubertar
cryogenically thawing
Posts: 3684
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 7:20 pm
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Post by ubertar » Sat Dec 17, 2016 8:43 am

I think this would be the best sounding, and possibly the cheapest and easiest too: assuming your guitar has more than one pickup, just replace the TS jack with TRS, and send one of the pickups to RS and one to TS, then use a stereo to two mono Y cable out. If you want to be able to easily recombine to mono, just add a switch that connects R to T.

I think that's the simplest way to go, and the sound will be completely unadulterated. Make sure the amps have power polarized the same, and you'll get the least noise if you plug them both into the same outlet (use a power strip).

Splitting the signal from one pickup isn't going to sound as good, no matter what you do with it.
New Album!
https://paulrubenstein.bandcamp.com/album/one-eye-awake

"I'm also very much of a germaphobe, by the way. Believe me".

User avatar
Drone
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 656
Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2009 4:01 pm
Location: Uranus

Post by Drone » Sat Dec 17, 2016 11:13 am

Weird, I was thinking that too, but yeah, a lot of my instruments are one pickup only. I wonder what the playing possibilities would be for two pickup instruments though. Nearer one pickup for more effect, nearer the other for more direct, etc. etc. and a switch to swap pickup outputs around.

Something else that occurs, on things like my active bass, it already uses a TRS jack to turn power on for the preamp. :cry:
The previous statement is from a guy who records his own, and other projects for fun. No money is made.

The Scum
resurrected
Posts: 2405
Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2003 11:26 pm
Location: Denver, CO
Contact:

Post by The Scum » Sat Dec 17, 2016 5:55 pm

Assuming that everything is running on the same AC circuit, and located nearby, any old buffer circuit will do the trick. You want to make it so the high impedance source doesn't get loaded down by too many destinations...you're not fighting issues caused by long runs of cable, RF interference, or different AC circuits.

The ol' till.com JFET buffer takes about $2 of parts. There are a bunch of variants that use MOSFETS floating around, too.

The AMZ super buffer is an interesting take.
http://www.muzique.com/lab/superbuff.htm
It could also be adapted to a multiple-output active splitter by disconnecting the opamp outputs from each other, and adding more output coupling caps, which starts to look a lot like this:
http://smg.photobucket.com/user/gyraf/m ... r.gif.html

Finally, if you want galvanic isolation, Jensen have a fancy transformer coupled one:
www.jensen-transformers.com/wp-content/ ... /as014.pdf

Heck, just plugging into an average Boss pedal looks a bit like the Tillman preamp, with a JFET buffer on the input, and a BJT emitter follower driving the output. They're always active, even when the effect is bypassed.
"What fer?"
"Cat fur, to make kitten britches."

User avatar
ubertar
cryogenically thawing
Posts: 3684
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 7:20 pm
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Post by ubertar » Sun Dec 18, 2016 9:51 am

Another way to go if you want to go with the two pickup concept but have a one-pickup guitar is use a flat pickup that slides under the strings, to an inline jack. Depends on how much space you have between guitar and sound board on the particular guitar, but if you've got 3/4" you shouldn't have trouble finding something that'll fit. A lot of 60s Japanese-made pickups were made to be installed directly to the soundboard without a rout.

Something like this will work, if it'll fit, and it's dirt cheap:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Clip-on-Acousti ... SwmtJXY1L7
How good it'll sound, I don't know. Probably better for the effected sound than clean. At $6 total, it's hard to go too far wrong.
New Album!
https://paulrubenstein.bandcamp.com/album/one-eye-awake

"I'm also very much of a germaphobe, by the way. Believe me".

User avatar
vvv
zen recordist
Posts: 8287
Joined: Tue May 13, 2003 8:08 am
Location: Chi
Contact:

Post by vvv » Sun Dec 18, 2016 4:37 pm

Besides a buffer-splitter (US$50 or so on the E-bog), some pedals will do it for you.

I know various DOD stuff like chorus and compressor pedals will. So will some EHX pedals like the Bass Muff, so mebbe check what you might already got.
bandcamp; vlayman;
THD; blog.
I mix with olive juice.

User avatar
ubertar
cryogenically thawing
Posts: 3684
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 7:20 pm
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Post by ubertar » Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:40 pm

So I picked up one of those cheapo, thin pickups... cost me all of $4. At first I thought it might not even be electromagnetic b/c the ad said something about mechanical vibrations, but it is. It's a ceramic magnet with a coil around it. The case is ferromagnetic steel, both on top and bottom. I haven't had much chance to mess around with it, but it does fit under the strings on a LP style guitar. Not on a strat though. Didn't sound bad when I tested it out. There's hum but it's not particularly noisy. I think it would be fine for an effected channel.
New Album!
https://paulrubenstein.bandcamp.com/album/one-eye-awake

"I'm also very much of a germaphobe, by the way. Believe me".

User avatar
Nick Sevilla
speech impediment
Posts: 4645
Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2008 1:34 pm
Location: Los Angeles California USA
Contact:

Post by Nick Sevilla » Fri Jan 06, 2017 6:22 pm

The Song. Nothing else really matters.

User avatar
Waltz Mastering
steve albini likes it
Posts: 335
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 4:22 am
Location: Third Stone From The Sun
Contact:

Post by Waltz Mastering » Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:38 pm

I have 2 of the Morley A/B/Y splitter switch pedals
which work great but I don't use them anymore.

They'll do A and B or A or B
If anyone wants one, I'd do $20 each

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/ ... Ak6g8P8HAQ

User avatar
vvv
zen recordist
Posts: 8287
Joined: Tue May 13, 2003 8:08 am
Location: Chi
Contact:

Post by vvv » Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:57 pm

Damn!, WM, I offered onna Toadworks Dual Looper (A; B; straight thru) a cuppla hours ago and my offer was accepted, US$50 shipped.

Your two would done more of what I wanted.

Jes' sayin' ... :cry:
bandcamp; vlayman;
THD; blog.
I mix with olive juice.

User avatar
Waltz Mastering
steve albini likes it
Posts: 335
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 4:22 am
Location: Third Stone From The Sun
Contact:

Post by Waltz Mastering » Sun Jan 08, 2017 6:15 am

vvv wrote:Damn!, WM, I offered onna Toadworks Dual Looper (A; B; straight thru) a cuppla hours ago and my offer was accepted, US$50 shipped.

Your two would done more of what I wanted.

Jes' sayin' ... :cry:
My bad. ; ) if that doesn't go through, drop me a line. T

User avatar
vvv
zen recordist
Posts: 8287
Joined: Tue May 13, 2003 8:08 am
Location: Chi
Contact:

Post by vvv » Sun Jan 08, 2017 1:42 pm

Will do. 8)
bandcamp; vlayman;
THD; blog.
I mix with olive juice.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests