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Thread: Pedalboard Connectors

  1. #1
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    Pedalboard Connectors

    Hi folks,

    I am preparing to build my first proper pedalboard (I've just had pedals arrayed on the floor to this point), and wanted to ask what you like for making the connections between pedals on your boards? I'm looking to balance compactness and reliability (and affordability gets high marks as well, of course) while making a tidy board.

    What products would you recommend get a look?

    Thanks!
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  2. #2
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    I have a mix of Bill Lawrence solderless cable (it's awesome but they don't seem to be selling it anymore) and soldered cables I make with pancake jacks.

    My two cents is, if you can solder, making cables is easy. If not, there are some good solderless cables on the market which make it easy to experiment with your setup (it's never truly done after all). You can always replace them with soldered cables, but once on a board you're not likely to get too much stress on individual connections.

  3. #3
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    I use Evidence Audio Monorail Cable with the SIS jacks.

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  4. #4
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    I use right-angled pancake-style jacks because I like to get the pedals very close together, though with some stereo pedals there may not be enough space to use pancake jacks side-by-side as they are a little wider than other style jacks.

    I don't care much about the true bypass thing and I have a buffered pedal early in the chain and a buffered pedal at the end, and a mix in between, so I really don't care too much about what cables I use for pedal interconnects. What's on my pedalboad right now are old cheap patch cables I cut and soldered the pancake jacks on, keeping the lengths as short as practical to keep things neat.
    Last edited by DrKev; 08-08-2017 at 06:05 PM.
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  5. #5
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    Boy am I glad you asked! There happens to be a little company that just started making patch cables! Check them out here: Instrument Cables | Ernie Ball

    Haha yeah you can go with whatever cables you like, sometimes you need some 1 foot cables to get around the board. If you had any questions about proper pedal board set up I have a handy blog article you can check out:

    How To Wire A Pedal Board – Ernie Ball Blog
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  6. #6
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    I own and operate a small pedalboard company that does custom boards as well as setups of boards for our clients. That being said I'm not here to promote or make any sales but to offer my assistance in helping you get dialed in. We can take this off line if needed as to not take up a lot of the site...

    Here's what you'll be up against...
    1) Solderless cables and connectors
    2) Soldered cables and connectors

    both have their advantages and disadvantages... you'll need to decide what works best for you and what your skill level is with or without soldering every connection.

    if you decide to build your own message me and I can pass along some resources to pricing that may or may not save you in the long run.

    but at the core of anything is quality cable... not all cable is equal. Some cable companies pitch gimmicks that in my experience don't hold water. Some of my favorites are Canare and Belkin (depending on the application).
    sometimes the method you decide to go will dictate what cable you're limited to (soldered vs solderless)

    for connectors if you're going soldered I like to use either Neuitrik or Amphenol (once again depending on the application) then you'll need to decide what your available space is... some of the pancake connectors are VERY thin and low profile (while depending on the brand you can have some up to 1/2in thick).
    if you go solder less you're kind of limited to a few companies (Lava, Clearsonic, George Ls) now... depending on what brand you use with solder less you can get away with a higher end cable (not a fan of the Lava Cable, or George Ls stuff)...

    If you have any questions feel free to DM me and I'll give you my contact info so you can ask questions as you go along... both building your board and wiring it up.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by peterd79 View Post
    but at the core of anything is quality cable... not all cable is equal. Some cable companies pitch gimmicks that in my experience don't hold water.
    Absolutely. Some of the marketing blurb is a bad science that doesn't apply at audio frequencies and some is even total nonsense made-up pseudoscience.

    Peter, my bugbear is the 9V power adpator daisy chain cables which usually have waaaaaaay to much length between the connectors, 12" inches when I only want 4" or 6". Do you know of a brand that has shorter lengths between the (right-angled) plugs?
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