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Balanced interconnects (1 Viewer)

Robert D

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May 12, 2000
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Hello,
Can anyone tell me the advantage of using balanced interconnects when using them to connect between an amp and a processor? I been told that im losing about 30% of my amps power when using regular interconnects. Is this true? Thanks for any additional info.

Rob
 

Phil A

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I don't think you'll lose any power. Interconnects carry a very low voltage signal to transfer the source playing in the processor to the amps. The std. voltage output of many single ended cables (RCA) is often 2 volts and balanced 8 volts. Some (multi-channel) amps with connections for both have toggle switches for the connection and take into acct. the differences in output voltage so that if one was using balanced for the left and right channel and single ended for the center, the processor's level adjustments would be on the same footing. Balanced interconnects have 3 pins (and 3 wires) and do a better job of noise and interference cancellation with the separate ground and a positive and negative connection vs. a single ended RCA connection that often uses the coax shielding as the negative. It can make a difference in longs runs or if you have problems with EMI or RFI. The XLR connector used for balanced snaps into place really well and is a good electrical connector too. When cable discussions get started, they tend to get a little silly. There are all kinds of different quality interconnects in both balanced and single ended ones with different constuction materials, different dialectrics, capacitance, inductance, etc. What will work best is a matter of experimenting with what is in your system and your tastes. I do use balanced when it is available but it is not a big dollar issue for me since I make my own stuff.
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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Absolutely not. Balanced signal paths utilize a hotter signal, but that’s only to the amp’s input. A 250 watt amp will only put out 250 watts, period. That won’t change with the level of the input signal.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

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