What’s the 4.4 mm cable for?
Nov 1, 2020 at 1:01 AM Post #2 of 8

Mhog55

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Hi all,
I recently got the mdr-1am2’s (quite nice, warm yet detailed) and it came with a 4.4 mm cable as well as the 3.5 mm.

What’s this usually used for?

Thanks!
It's for use with 4.4mm, balanced audio outputs.
 
Nov 1, 2020 at 9:24 AM Post #4 of 8

Shabda

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Thank you for the help!

though just generally speaking what is a balanced output? Sonically? Like what makes it balanced?

seriously considering getting a dap now! Is the 4.4 standard across different brands?
 
Nov 1, 2020 at 10:15 AM Post #5 of 8

ProtegeManiac

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Thank you for the help!

though just generally speaking what is a balanced output? Sonically? Like what makes it balanced?

Electronically it just gives you L+, L-, R-, and R+, instead of L+,GND, and R+.

Sonically...a good single ended circuit can have a lot of power and/or noise and distortion far enough within the inaudible range.

On portable devices that have to run off a low voltage power source it allows producing more power, but then again even the Fiio X7 modules has the most powerful unit still running SE, not balanced (and they have a balanced amp module). Also this doesn't get past the low voltage source problem so at high impedance loads they're still not going to produce proportionally more power than the improvement at 32ohms.
 
Nov 1, 2020 at 10:39 AM Post #6 of 8

Shabda

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Thank you very much for the detailed reply!
If I can throw you a curveball, I’m currently also trying to amplify my 32 ohm dt 880’s (and perhaps give them some warmth simultaneously). I’ve been reading on headfi that there’s good synergy between dt 880 and corda amps, but i’m concerned about my 32 ohm editions being a completely different animal electronically even if similar tonally to the 250 and 600 ohm versions. Should I just get a good dap instead and mod my dt 880 to run the 4.4 mm? (Was considering modding it anyway) and i already have the cable from my 1am2’s
 
Nov 1, 2020 at 7:43 PM Post #7 of 8

Redcarmoose

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Thank you for the help!

though just generally speaking what is a balanced output? Sonically? Like what makes it balanced?

seriously considering getting a dap now! Is the 4.4 standard across different brands?

The Sony Corporation started to use the 5 pol Pentaconn 4.4 plug around 2016 and built a marketing campaign around 4.4mm. The players farther exploit the idea of 4.4mm with a separate balanced amp in many of the players. Since 2016 4.4mm has gained popularity probably mostly due to it’s physical strength and ability to offer more contact area.

The reason 4.4mm is louder with Sony DAPs is Sony uses a separate and more powerful amp on the 4.4mm side. In the engineering world it may have never been proven that balanced is better in short distances like from an amp to a headphone. Where balanced is important is with long stage microphone cables which travel across a stage. In that situation the balanced set up offer noise reduction as a long cable is open to collecting environmental external noise which is ends in the signal.
 
Nov 1, 2020 at 9:44 PM Post #8 of 8

ProtegeManiac

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Thank you very much for the detailed reply!
If I can throw you a curveball, I’m currently also trying to amplify my 32 ohm dt 880’s (and perhaps give them some warmth simultaneously). I’ve been reading on headfi that there’s good synergy between dt 880 and corda amps, but i’m concerned about my 32 ohm editions being a completely different animal electronically even if similar tonally to the 250 and 600 ohm versions. Should I just get a good dap instead and mod my dt 880 to run the 4.4 mm? (Was considering modding it anyway) and i already have the cable from my 1am2’s

Electronically speaking (unless you understand this very differently) Meier amps will not lose "synergy" (which you may define differently) with 32ohm loads since they're designed for less compromises when it comes to what kind of headphone they drive save for anything with very low sensitivity.

Electronically speaking "synergy" just means the amplifier isn't going to have its response - or put another way, alter the transducers' response - when presented with a certain load, like a low impedance load. For one, Meier amps have very low output impedance well below the 4ohm maximum that you would shoot for to not have any such impedance-related issues driving a 32ohm load (and that's not even an absolute, hard number).
 

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