Guitar Amp Channel Switching Pedal




About: I am who I am they say, though I know the others really know different.

This footswitch pedal was created to channel switch my amp as well as bypass the FX. I didn't realize the Vox Valvetronix amp I recently purchased didn't come with a footswitch. Channel switching and FX ON/OFF is accomplished using a TRS (Tip, Ring, Sleeve) input on the rear of the amp.

This is a very simple circuit to build and therefore is a very short instructable.

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Gather Tools and Materials

I found a great low-profile enclosure to use for this. You can use anything you desire of course.


(2) Heavy duty SPDT footswtches
(2) 1/4" mono audio inputs (sockets)
A soldering iron and solder
A multimeter to check continuity (optional)

Step 2: The Amp

This is the amp I designed the footpedal for.

Step 3: The Footswitch Input

On the rear of the amp is the TRS input.

Step 4: The Enclosure

I found this great low-profile enclosure at a surplus store. It's been used for various projects. I painted it black.

Step 5: The Circuit

The circuit is so simple, you shouldn't require a PCB or schematic. Just looking at how the basic components are wired should be good enough. It's really that simple.

Step 6: The TRS Connections

Here I'm showing the TRS cable I used that splits into two mono jacks.

The Instructables Book Contest

Participated in the
The Instructables Book Contest

Be the First to Share


    • Instrument Contest

      Instrument Contest
    • Make it Glow Contest

      Make it Glow Contest
    • STEM Contest

      STEM Contest

    18 Discussions


    1 year ago

    Hi guys,

    I have a VOX, valvetronix with 4 channels and a bank button. How would I need to design a footswitch so that I could control all of them. I would need 5 stomp buttons, that's obvious, but what about the circuit?

    Thanks is advance.


    2 years ago

    I don't mean to sound rude, I understand you wrote this to help people but this has to be the worst instructable I've ever seen. I build amps and just stumbled across this page which makes this very simple. However, someone that doesn't know would just get frustrated and have a hard time. You say they could look up the pin out of the switches, look for a schematic, and its easy enough. How is telling people to Google "how to build a channel switching pedal" teaching them to build it? Only useful information is using a stereo to mono splitter cable and sharing your pictures. You did do a good job of responding to some comments and trying to help others, for that i applaud you. I don't mean any disrespect i just don't understand all the effort and not including the information that would help a complete beginner(who is the person that would benefit from instructions for a simple circuit like this) actually complete this project.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks! By looking at your photos of the wiring, it occurred to me that an ordinary A/B box, connected to the amp footswitch jack using a stereo-to-dual mono cable, should do the job, and by golly, it works!


    7 years ago on Step 6

    Say I only want a channel switcher, then how would I go about doing this?

    I'm pretty new at this so please excuse my question,...If I have an amp with a clean channel and a distortion channel will this foot-switch switch between the two, my amp doesn't have on-board effects so I could just skip that part couldn't I?

    HAL 9000

    9 years ago on Introduction

     Awesome!! I have a Peavey Classic 30 Combo that I'll be using this for, though the C30 footswitch does channel switch and reverb on/off. I believe this could be done with a single TRS input on the box, since you're just shorting the L or R to ground when you switch. maybe you already had that cable, i don't know, but still, very cool!!

    Also, I was looking at your enclosure, you have a lot of space there, you could easily add some Signal Loops for your FX chain (if you use pedals) and/or FX loop (if you want more from your FX loop than just ON/OFF). It would be a great way to get as much as you can from such a cool little enclosure... Come to think of it, I just might do that when I build one for my C30!!

    Again, awesome instructable, you've helped me a lot!! Thanks!!


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I can follow what this box does, but I'm curious to know what signal the amp is looking for. Also, how did you figure this out? Is there a circuit diagram for the Vox jack, or did you just copy an existing footpedal? I ask because I have one of their Valvetronix amps and would like to give this a try.

    1 reply

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    I don't quite follow your question on "what signal the amp is looking for". It's simply an array of switches. I believe I found some 2 switch schematics that led me in the right direction and found this circuit to work perfectly.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    hi I am looking to build a footswitch for my vox amp Would you mind clarifieing the pinout for the 1/4 " stereo plug that goes into the amp?

    1 reply

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    The stereo plug uses the TRS (tip, ring, sleeve) that is split into two mono plugs at the opposite end of the cable. I'd suggest buying one already made if you don't know how to make one. I didn't make mine either.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Are you saying you don't follow the pictorial layout and require reading a schematic??? You could fore go the 1/4" instrument jacks and just hard-wire a stereo cable in place. Using my stereo to dual mono cable worked for me due to it's length for stage purposes and the fact that I don't like mangling cables unnecessarily or hardwired cables at all for that matter. Especially if I were to mount this to a pedal board. I just unplug the cables. It also allows me the option to switch cables to change which footswitch becomes the channel switch and which one becomes the FX bypass. Depending on how I orient the pedal to me on the floor makes this option understandable.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    i still dont get it....
    just the wiring part though
    can u explain it a little more plz
    or send me photos or sumthing....