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I have a Peavey Vypyr Tube 60W guitar amp and Yamaha mg10xu mixer.

I'd like to mix my amplifier's sound with some background track (which I'm already sending to the mixer correctly) and send everything to the headphones (for home practice). When I connect my amplifier's 3.5mm headphones-out to the 6.3mm jack input on my mixer using this cable, I get a very weak signal and plenty of noise (and need to turn my amp volume, channel volume on mixer and channel gain on mixer to max in order to hear anything).

When I connect headphones directly to the amp's headphones out, I get a nice amplified sound as expected even at low amp volume (but this way I'm bypassing the mixer and cannot include the background track).

My amplifiers outputs include:

  • 3.5mm headphones out

  • speaker out big jack output (which I don't want to use as it doesn't silence the built-in speaker)

  • USB record out

Questions:

1) How can I get rid of the noise? Should I use a different cable? Should I connect my headphones out to a different mixer input (RCA, XLR, USB)?

2) Big jack/XLR inputs to my mixer have "pad 26dB" and "HPF 80Hz" buttons - which one should I be using?

  • are you plugging into the 6.3mm Line inputs? (5-9) have you tried plugging into channel 1-4? I think the noise might be coming from the TRS cable into a TS input – Timinycricket Apr 8 '18 at 5:51
  • @Timinycricket good catch! Thanks for the insight! Headphones out should have gone to a line input. user24519 below is also right that I was only getting a difference between L and R when connecting to channels 1-4 due to TRS/TS incompatibility. When connected to channels 5-10 I got the actual signal. Channel 9 is mono so it worked best with my current cable, but I guess I could also get a cable that splits to 2 L and R 6.3mm jacks and use them in channels 5/6, 7/8 or 9/10. Or I could use an RCA cable with channels 5/6 or 7/8. Is any of these options better than mono cable to channel 9? – Marcin Apr 9 '18 at 3:10
  • Hmm when I applied the same setup to my computer as input (instead of the amp), I noticed that this set up only propagates left audio channel from the PC to the mixer (and mixer replicates it to both L and R). Not sure if it makes any difference when a guitar amp is used as input (could some amp effects be stereo or is headphones out 100% mono?) but it certainly does matter for the background song. So I'm probably going to need to split the signal to 2 jacks or RCAs. – Marcin Apr 9 '18 at 3:41
  • that's because your mixer 1/4" jacks are not stereo so only the Tip is delivering signal to the mixer. I'm not sure what effects you have on the amp but it could have stereo effects through the headphones possibly. But yes you need to split to RCA or use the insert cable as suggested. Also I'm not sure if you tried plugging the tracks into the amp's aux input if that goes through the headphones also? – Timinycricket Apr 9 '18 at 3:51
  • Yep, I've recently discovered I could use my amp's AUX IN for background tracks (and skip the mixer entirely), but I guess mixer gives me a bit more control (once I learn the basics that is). Thanks again! – Marcin Apr 9 '18 at 4:37
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Your cable is TRS-to-TRS (tip-ring-shield). On the headphone of a mono amp, the signal will be on T and R and the ground will be on S. The signal is low-impedance. In the mixer input, commonly S is ground, and the difference between T and R conveys the signal. That you are hearing anything at all either means that "common noise rejection" is not all that good on the mixer or that the modeling is actually stereo and you get the difference of both channels.

The manual states that they intend the speaker output for recording so its levels and quality should be ok. Try a 6.3mm headphone adapter (3.5mm male TRS to 6.3mm female TRS) together with an insert cable (6.3mm TRS male to twice 6.3mm TS male) and use the TS plugs in your mixer. If the speaker simulator signal is indeed stereo, you'll get the two channels on your TS plugs. Otherwise you can just disregard one of the TS plugs.

Note that a TS plug into a TRS socket of a mixer will shorten R to S and that's exactly what you need for an unbalanced signal to be interpreted correctly by the mixer.

  • You're right I was getting difference between L and R only:/ I was able to get a much better signal when I reconnected my cable to channel 9 - mono line input. Would you expect splitting the signal to 2 6.3mm TS plugs (like you suggested) to give me a better quality signal or is channel 9 fine? Is any of the alternatives (2x6.3mm, 2xRCA or USB) clearly better? – Marcin Apr 9 '18 at 3:16
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I later found an article on this very topic: https://www.soundonsound.com/sound-advice/q-how-do-i-record-my-guitar-amps-headphone-out which - like in user24519's answer - suggests getting a Y–cord which comprises a TRS plug at the amp end, and two TS plugs on the interface end.

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