Have I taken the scenic route?

The best plugins are mostly mono input. That’s OK for most situations, but when I want to add, say a decent eq across the whole stereo mix it becomes a little tricky.
At the moment I’m doing it like this:
-break all connections to the main output
-create two new mono busses, pan them hard left and right
-assign all track outputs 1 to the left bus and outputs 2 to the right
-put a copy of the plugin I want over the insert of each bus

This seems to be working fine, but I can’t escape the feeling that there is a better way. Any ideas? Putting inserts in the main out redirect seems to result in either silence or feedback.

You could just insert the plugin (e.g. EQ) on the master. I just tried a few that are listed as having 1 input and output only and yet they seem to work fine in stereo, inserted on the master.

Ardour replicates 1in/1out plugins when they are used in tracks with >1in. The single GUI that is created to edit the plugin parameters actually controls each instance of the plugin in that track. There are occasionally plugins that have very specific phase requirements for handling more than one signal stream, but for the most part, this approach works exactly the way you would want it to.

No worries. I was a bit thrown by the message which says

‘the plugin has one input but at the insertion point there are two active signal streams…you are throwing part of the signal away’

but on closer inspection this only applies to plugins with one input and two outputs. I’ll make a note of it in the issue tracker.

Meanwhile I’m finding that having independent eq’s on the left and right main outs gives really good results. Is there an easier way to do it than the method I outlined above?