How to connect digital keyboard and electric guitar to the mixer?


New member
hello I have a Yamaha PSR E-453 keyboard with a single headphone output and I have a friend who has an electric guitar. I also have a Vonyx KMM-K602 (mixer) We would like to play together and record everything on a computer, but cables are not my thing. I've seen several ways to connect my keyboard to the mixer, including with DI boxes, but I don't know which is better, and for guitar the same thing. I would like to have the sound all balanced to avoid as much noise as possible during recording. I also ask if there are DI boxes with 2 different input channels, that is, they allow you to connect 2 different instruments and have 2 different outputs also to be able to connect to the mixer, thus avoiding having to buy 2 direct boxes.
That way I could connect my keyboard and my friend's guitar in the same di box, but with different outputs to connect to different inputs on the mixer
I leave the doubt and I really wanted to set up this setup.
The snag really is how you get the audio from the mixer into your computer. Do you have an interface? I suspect not. Frankly, you need one. It's a bit of a weird mixer, but a useful one - You need for the Yamaha a 3 circuit (the headphone looking one) connector going to two ¼" jacks - these are often called insert cables. The Yamaha mixers are very annoying. If you stick in a guitar type mono jack, it shorts out one channel, and the result is often described as thin and weedy. Use the insert cable into channel 1 and two - pan 1 left, pan 2 right. Stuff the guitar into 3. Connect the control room output to whatever amp you have for monitoring, and then the main outs go to the computer. You need 2 x ¼" jacks going to a 3.5mm stereo plug to fit most computer sound card inputs. Quality will be, er, variable. On Macs and some PCs, it can be quite good once you sort the computer routing and get the levels right - but on some makes, the sound card is simply dreadful, optimised for a gaming headset - and stuffing in a mixer can be hissy, yummy or poor quality. You won't know till you try. That's why people buy interfaces - they do the job properly.

You then turn up your monitor amp and you can hear the keyboard and the guitar. That's the basic connections. The line level input will work on the guitar but it won't be ideal as the guitar isn't quite line level, and is too high for a mic level - so a cheap DI box lets you connect to channel 3 using the XLR, on the mic level setting. The keyboard will go into the line level inputs fine. If you pan the guitar centre, and the keys hard left and right, it will sound OK. In fairness, the keyboard will sound a bit lacking - that's just that Yamaha series.

So - just a few cables to find. Cables are just pathways - the only thing to remember about connecting things together are the levels - tiny microphone signals, or over a Volt from some line level devices. They also come in balanced and unbalanced flavours, but for the moment - simple cabling is better. DI is a sensible upgrade, with an XLR-XLR cable, jack to jack for the guitar into the DI. Insert lead - a 'Y' cable with ¼" connectors, ¼" to 3.5mm stereo and whatever you need to go to your monitor amp. That will get you going.
It looks like that mixer has USB onboard, which might be sufficient. My concern is that many cheaper onboard USB interfaces have issues with routing limitations, bit depth limitations and noise.
as they said in the comments above, yes, my mixer has a USB output for PC recording, and I believe it has the built-in audio interface. Following the first comment I liked the setup. Before sending this question I was thinking of connecting the keyboard with a 1/4 jack cable at each end and connecting it to input 1 of the mixer, connecting the guitar to a DI box that would then go to the mixer and from the DI box there would be another cable to an amplifier. I would use a USB Type A to A cable to connect to the pc and the 2 main outputs are already in use for a big speaker I have. I can also connect that speaker to the control output. Not what is better if it is to use USB to connect to pc or output jack to pc.
I've also been recommended to connect a Y-cable to the mixer's 5/6 inputs and another jack end on the keyboard, as the headphone output is stereo, but I was trying to avoid using the line 5/6 inputs, as that's where I control the bluetooth function.
I still liked the idea and I continue to gather opinions to be able to make the best connections I can.
I did mention the issue with the Yamahas and a guitar cable - try it and you'll find the sound thin, and some presets quite feeble - it's because of the tricks they use to make the signals wide and pseudo-stereo. Am I looking at the wrong mixer - I see one with a USB input, and the usual USB terminal for connection to a computer is missing? Have you got a special version?
The USB serves both as input and output data, I can play sound through Usb or transfer sound to computer. Line 5/6 lets you control the input of these two cables, either Bluetooth or USB input.
By the way, it would be possible to connect the guitar amp directly to the di box and then to the mixer.
Guitar - Amp - Di box - mixer
I ask this because my friend's amp lets you adjust some guitar sounds and I'd like to be able to record with those sounds, rather than just dry guitar.