>> 6. Will Using Balanced Cables In My System Make It Sound Better?
How to know if you should go balanced or not.
Balanced cables are the de facto standard in recording studios, where the congested electrical environment and extremely long cable runs make their common mode noise rejection invaluable. This has led to a widespread assumption that they will always be superior in audio systems, but that is far from true.
Balanced connections float their signal ground, whereas single-ended interconnects offer the signal a far firmer footing. The result is that whilst balanced interconnects can sound more controlled, with quieter backgrounds, single-ended cables, fitted with RCAs, will often provide a livelier, crisper, more dynamic and more exciting presentation.
So which should you use?
Well, that depends on several factors, including the overall nature and balance of the system, and the listener’s own tastes and preferences. In most cases, any equipment that does not employ a fully balanced, complementary circuit topology (and the manufacturer will be sure to tell you if it does!) is going to sound better and more enjoyable via its single-ended connections.
Either way, don’t just assume that balanced is better; listen and make up your own mind – and if in doubt, stick to single-ended RCAs.