I'm a guitarist and I'm looking for a better home studio setup. When I'm playing my guitar I go either directly in my amplifier or into my audio interface.

When I go directly in my audio interface I just record a dry signal and use a VST for monitoring a sound of choice. This is monitored through my studio speakers.

When I go directly in my amp I either do it just for jamming or I set up a mic and connect that to my audio interface. This is monitored through my amplifier cabinet itself.

I don't like that I have to unplug my guitar out my interface into my amp or vica versa every single time. I want one input.

What's the best way I can improve this? I hoped I could connect my guitar to only one input and then I could have a button whether to go directly in my amp or just to record.

  • 2
    What audio interface do you have? Jul 13, 2018 at 0:03
  • I'm using a Presonus Studio 68. I'm not planning to get more inputs.
    – Bas
    Jul 13, 2018 at 13:32
  • You don't really specify what the problem is or what you like or dislike about either method that you describe. Also, I wonder what you mean by the dry signal and VST being monitored through your amp cab? You're connecting an output from your interface and running it through your amp as well as a VST amp sim? That seems odd. Other than that the best way I'd suggest to "improve" your setup is to record both the dry signal and the amp on separate tracks just to give you the option of both (you'd need a decent DI with a thru output).
    – user37496
    Jul 13, 2018 at 21:55
  • I updated my answer. Writing mistake there.
    – Bas
    Jul 16, 2018 at 13:36

2 Answers 2


I don't like that I have to switch out my guitar every single time I want to play over my amp or audio interface

You might look into getting either an ABY unit or a direct box that has a "thru" output. Try to get a decent one to minimize the tone suck that could occur (Radial does these type of products well). So you'd plug your guitar directly into the ABY/DI first. Then one output would go to the interface and the other (thru in the case of a DI) to your amp or guitar chain as normal. And you could then mic the cab or whatever and record it on another channel of your interface if you want.

The ABY would give exactly the button you asked for but—and this is just speculation—I might trust a good DI more as far as sound quality and noise. But I suppose if you compare products by the same company (say Radial as I linked) their buffer circuitry might be similar in both products.

  • Note that passive DIs (like the Radial JDI) do not have a buffer. Active DIs (like the Radial J48) are almost entirely buffer. There are also passive ABY boxes that don’t have buffers. Jul 16, 2018 at 15:34
  • Correct, but you probably want a buffer in the case of splitting the signal which is why I linked to the active ones, fyi.
    – user37496
    Jul 16, 2018 at 15:51

The simplest A/B switch, with no need for buffering and no possibility of ground loops is of course to simply plug your guitar into one input or the other. Yes, I heard you when you said you didn't want to do this. But is that because it's inconvenient to reach round the back of the interface, or down to the amp? You could bring each input out to a conveniently located patch bay.

But you've set your heart on a switch box? The Radial JX-42 will do the job, but is probably over-kill. How about the Boss AB-2 footswitch? You only need A - B switching, not splitting, so no need for a buffer amp.

Pointless to withhold specific gear mentions in this case and just speak of generic 'A - B switching' I think. You KNEW you needed an A - B switch. Rules are made to be broken.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.