Of the technical queries received at Sound On Sound, many fall into the 'hardy perenial' category. One common source of these patchbays and their role in the project studio. Hugh Robjohns provides some answers... Walk into any professional studio and you will find a patchbay (or jackfield, to use the original British term) lurking in a rack somewhere. This kind of facility might seem totally superfluous in a simple home studio, but once the number of outboard units and sound sources increases, a patchbay quickly becomes an essential facility rather than an expensive luxury. The different types available, their setup, and their exact function in a studio can be the source of considerable confusion. In an effort to set things straight, I have tried to answer many of the most common patchbay questions we receive at Sound On Sound.