Guitar Patch Cables

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About Guitar Patch Cables

What is a Guitar Patch Cable?

Guitar patch cables are short instrument cables primarily used to connect guitar effects pedals on a pedalboard. The most common configuration is to have right-angle plugs on both ends to reduce space between pedals in order to accommodate more on a pedalboard.

How to Use Guitar Patch Cables

Normal use of guitar patch cables consists of inserting one end to the output of one pedal and the other to the input of the next pedal in the signal chain. Each effects pedal will have inputs and outputs, but also at times other in/out jacks depending on the features of the pedal. Make sure the guitar patch cable is inserted into the correct input or output and has the necessary length to reach the next pedal in the chain.

Things to Consider when Buying Guitar Patch Cables

The main thing to consider before buying guitar patch cables is your effects pedal chain. You may only use two pedals on the floor near your amp or you may have a complex chain of several effects pedals on a pedalboard. Where you are at between these two extremes will determine the number of cables, lengths, and types of cables you will need.

Types of Guitar Patch Cables

Patch cables come in all different types. Most will have right-angle plugs on both ends, but some also have a single straight plug, or even two straight plugs. When it comes to styles, there are many options for every component. Some patch cables feature flat plugs to reduce space between pedals. Others have more robust connectors for added reliability. One example is the Hosa Edge guitar patch cable, which uses Neutrik connectors. Other connector options include plastic molded-end connectors and serviceable metal tips. Cables come in all gauges and sizes, some being traditional and others in a flat-style to save on space. Most guitar patch cables will come pre-soldered, however there are some solderless options on the market which allow you to build out your own guitar patch cable lengths, though they tend to be less reliable over time.

Guitar Pedalboard Setup

When setting up a pedalboard, the first thing to do is figure out the amount of space needed for your board. This will be based on the pedals you have, or intend to have. Once you have your board and pedals, you can begin to lay them out in a way which will inform the types of guitar patch cables necessary. Check out our How to Set Up a Guitar Pedalboard blog for more tips, tricks, and info.