blender node setup with 2 principled BSDF nodes connected to a mix shader

Hello everyone, blender noob here.

I have 2 shaders, both of which are connected to a mix shader, which is then connected to the material output. While this works fine and gives me the results I want, I would like to re-arrange the shaders in such a way that only one of the principled BSDF nodes (that is, the node with inputs into its Normal and Base Color) is connected to the material output.I would like the same result on the material, but I have found it quite confusing to do so (and frankly I'm not sure if that way of re-arranging the shaders while keeping the original result is possible).

I've included a picture of my node setup.

I've tried connecting the principled BSDF node at the top and the color ramp (with the blue gradient, underneath the image texture) to the shader inputs of a mix shader, and then connected the image texture's alpha to the mix shader's fac. I then connected this mix shader to the base color of the bottom principled BSDF shader. After that, I removed deleted the mix shader connecting to the material output and connected the bottom principled BSDF shader to the material output. However, this didn't give me the result I wanted.

Is there a different way to achieve having only one principled BSDF shader connected to the material output, while also keeping the material looking the same? Or is it not possible?

If there are also any additional criticism concerning anything else about my setup, please do let me know. thank you in advance!

  • $\begingroup$ First, why do you want to do that? Second, you could try mixing the inputs instead ie. mix(Principled(a1,a2,...), Principled(b1,b2,...),f) becomes Principled(mix(a1,b1,f),mix(a2,b2,f),...). But I don't think this will give the same output except in very simple cases. $\endgroup$
    – scurest
    Commented May 23 at 22:14
  • $\begingroup$ I'm trying to bake this material, but for some reason some things weren't being baked properly (like the metallic of the bottom principled shader). I saw from another post that it baked properly when there is only one principled shader plugged into the material output, so that's why I was wondering if that was possible with my material. Also, my apologies, but I'm not able to follow exactly what you mean. Is there perhaps an example that you could direct me to? $\endgroup$ Commented May 24 at 1:17
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @user18074777 Basically you can use the image which you are using as mix factor for the Mix Shader node, instead use it before the Principled BSDF to mix all values in which they are varying. Only that instead of a single node for mixing you'll then need more, one for mixing colors, one for mixing roughness values etc. and plug those mix results in the appropriate inputs on the Principled BSDF. $\endgroup$ Commented May 24 at 4:29
  • $\begingroup$ @GordonBrinkmann this makes sense, thank you! I did as you said, and this worked for me. $\endgroup$ Commented May 24 at 20:56


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