1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  

building an A B C switch

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Hendricks97, May 7, 2019.

  1. Hendricks97


    Jan 3, 2017
    How hard would it be to build a switcher with 3 inputs and 1 out? Or is there a commercial one for a decent price?
  2. It is more complicated than you think and not as cheap either getting the parts for a one time build. Save yourself the hassle and consult an experienced builder with your wants/needs and budget. I have had switches built by Saturnworks and Tight Squeeze Cables on Reverb both did what I needed at fair prices.
  3. dlb1001


    Jan 30, 2007
    Hendricks97 likes this.
  4. cosmicevan

    cosmicevan ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Feb 1, 2003
    New York
    Red Panda makes a killer little mixer that does exactly what u ask. No switches though...just a mixer.


    Rilence likes this.
  5. Hendricks97


    Jan 3, 2017
    I definitely want switches. It will be added to my pedal board
  6. TheLowDown33

    TheLowDown33 Supporting Member

    Jul 4, 2009
    Building a box to toggle between 3 inputs would fairly difficult, and would likely result in the need for some sort of DSP. What you could do is build a pedal with 3 switches to toggle the input on and off for each.

    What do you plan on using this for? That could help some of us direct you towards a solution.
    cosmicevan likes this.
  7. Hendricks97


    Jan 3, 2017
    3 basses in, 1 signal chain out
  8. MadScience

    MadScience Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2019
    Bass Land
    IMG_20190508_212247477.jpg So with all my madness I've definitely tried this. Assuming you are running them all in parallel and if the output from your pickups on the different basses is all about the same resistance you shouldn't have any problems so you can just slap some good old-fashioned switches or potentiometers in a control box. If the output between the different basses is significantly different you will need a way to nominalize the output for each.

    If you run an on-off switch and a volume pot for each input you may find you have enough control for what you need.

    The lipstick pickup on my guitar suffers from this since it has less output than the humbuckers but in my case this was part of the design and it is primarily used to add a touch of constructive or destructive interference.
  9. cosmicevan

    cosmicevan ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Feb 1, 2003
    New York
    My solution would work like a charm if your 3 basses have a volume knob or a kill switch...plus the added bonus of being able to play more than one bass at a time.

    If you are looking to be able to switch basses during a gig, a mute switch would be better than a 3 button footswitch as you'll only have one main cable into your instrument, just mute, switch plugs, and unmute...otherwise I can see you easily getting all tangled up when switching instruments that are all plugged in and a 3 way switch offers no extra functionality like customized settings per instrument. Seems like a solution but not the right one for your use case but have at it if that's ultimately what you want.
  10. SteveCS


    Nov 19, 2014
    Hampshire, UK
    I need the same thing, and have found this.
    It's a switch from a 70's TEAC Tape Source Selector box. Pressing any one of the buttons disengages the others. It's not man enough to be foot operated directly, but I think I can mount it in a box with mechanical foot actuators. The other plus is it's stereo, so I will use one channel to carry signal and the other to drive LED indicators.
  11. Hendricks97


    Jan 3, 2017
    I'm not sure why I didn't think about cords. Since one of my basses is an electric upright with a pre amp, keeping that plugged in doesn't effect the cord situation. If I just use an AB box with one for the EUB and one for the strapped basses, that would be much better. Feeling really stupid now
  12. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    It’s called an ABC switch. Several companies make them:

    They’re easy and inexpensive enough to build. Google “diy abc switch” and pick the projecy you like best.

    If you want one foot switch that cycles through three different output channels it gets a lot more complicated electronically. So unless that’s an absolute requirement, three separate switches are a lot easier to implement.

    If it’s something that doesn’t need to sit on the floor (you’ll have to use your hands to switch basses anyway) regular toggles or a rotary selector switch is an easy way to do it too.

    The bigger issue is if the electrical loading with a passive box will adversely affect your tone. If it does, some sort of buffering will be needed. And the easiest way to get around that is by using a small basic 3x1 or 4x1 mixer as suggested earlier. You can find good ones for $50 or less at all the usual places.

    Last edited: May 10, 2019
  13. cosmicevan

    cosmicevan ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Feb 1, 2003
    New York
    Being stupid would be not asking and just doing. You did the smart thing and collected feedback which helped shine a light on your blind spot. Good on you!q

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.