The second episode in Systems Integration: XLR Patching.

The studio has four wall boxes, only two of which are in the same room.  I wanted to create an effective way of getting these wall boxes  to the sixteen mic pre’s in the console, so I opted for an XLR patchbay, because of slight danger of using a jack style patch chord with phantom power (the power briefly connects to the wrong side first).  As the studio will be used by a variety of engineers and I also have some vintage ribbon mics, I wanted to make sure the patching was as logical as possible.

A great bulk of thee effort, involved with building this, was in bolting the XLR sockets into the patch panel, each socket requiring two tiny bolts and self-locking nuts.  This process, in itself, took a good couple of hours to work through all 96 fixings.

Once that was complete, I had to de-solder all the tails that previously occupied the end of the cables before I could move onto soldering them to the new sockets.

Once this was complete I cable tested every single socket on the panel and wall boxes for continuity and polarity.  Finding just two minor errors which were very easily corrected.  It pays to be methodical with these things.

And, here it is, the finished panel, all labelled up.  The bottom panel is the 16 mic pres in the Audient, and the top is the wall boxes.  Of course, this also means I have effectively created a “wall box” in the Control Room too.

Should be incredibly easy to route signals from now on.

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