Steinberg UR824 with Linux - connections

jack connections

When reading this section it will be useful to have in front of you the UR824 block diagrams from the operations manual. If you haven't got a good idea in your head of the structure inside the box, playing with the mixer program that came with it can also help.

From the qjackctl front-end, if you select the connections view, you will see the available capture inputs and playback outputs. This is the view with device_setup=1

I didn't find a way to label these in a more informative way, although you might like to experiment with the patchbay feature of qjackctl. This table describes what the plugs do do:

analogue 1 in --> capture_1 playback_1 --> Input to mix 1/2 L
analogue 2 in --> capture_2 playback_2 --> Input to mix 1/2 R
ADAT-A 1 in --> capture_9 playback_9 --> Input to FX bus L
ADAT-A 2 in --> capture_10 playback_10 --> Input to FX bus R
ADAT-A 3 in --> capture_11 playback_11 --> DAW 1/2 L
ADAT-A 4 in --> capture_12 playback_12 --> DAW 1/2 R
ADAT-B 1 in --> capture_17 playback_17 --> DAW 7/8 L
ADAT-B 2 in --> capture_18 playback_18 --> DAW 7/8 R

There's more about signals in the section on routing.

Steinberg UR824 with Linux - the qjackctl patchbay


If you have a multi-channel sound card such as the UR824, it's worth getting over the initial hurdle of understanding the qjackctl patchbay. There is an excellent description available here which explains what it is for and how to use it.

The big benefit for use with the UR824 is that it allows you to set up connections within jack that are automaticaly (re-)established when clients appear. I find it particularly useful with meterbridge. Reconnecting 26 channels each time you want to pull up a meterbridge would be a pain, but once you've invested the time to set up some rules, the connections just appear automatically.


The patchbay also allows you to name clusters of channels and name them according to their use. So for example, for the UR824, playback_9 and playback_10 can be labelled together as UR824 DAW to FX bus.

An individual jack plug can appear in more than one patchbay socket, so it is useful to define stereo pairs such as UR824 analog 1/2 in, and wider clusters of channels such as UR824 analog ins for easy connection of all 8 inputs to a single meterbridge.

The configuration you create can be saved as a patchbay file in .xml format. I am not sure how useful it is to share what I have done, as your own file will depend on the other clients you use, but you could certainly use mine as a basis to avoid having to do the work of creating sockets for the UR824. Indeed I have used this file as the basis for several different configurations according to the activity on which I am working.

My configuration will automatically connect meterbridges which you can start as follows:


You need to start jack with the --monitor option, or check the monitor box in the configuration page of qjackctl, so that there are copies of the UR824 output plugs also available as input plugs.

UR824_patchbay.xml6.28 KB