No differences. I like Hosa.
By the way, balanced connections help cancel out noise picked up along the way
from one component to the next, not all of it but the specific kind which is called common mode, but they also do a fantastic job of perfectly passing along the existing noise in the signal itself.
People often hear hiss in their audio and errantly think "If I upgrade to XLRs instead of RCAs this problem will go away" and guess what, it usually doesn't. AC hum and AM radio noise are the main things that get reduced and these aren't usually problems for home audio consumers using short lengths in say an audio rack. [Although they can stem from numerous sources besides just "my interconnects are acting like antennas!"] Run wires from the front of a studio to the back, or wire a stage, and we are talking about exactly where these issues come into play. That's why the pros insist on them.
Everything I've written so far goes completely against what most people are taught so they will attack this post. They'll point to articles which show how and why balanced connections reduce common mode noise and anecdotal stories, under sighted conditions with no scientific controls, where the owner will say, "But I switched to XLRs and boy did it help reduce my noise!" and in some instances this might actually be true, but usually it is all in their head.
Ask them for evidence based science which shows an example where under measurement, not sighted, anecdotal testimony, where using XLRs instead of RCAs reduced noise by 1 dB or more, using short, 2 meter or less runs in a real world audio system [you could easily rig the test by including an artificial noise generating device next to the RCA, but that's cheating]. None of them will be able to provide you with any such evidence.
So why does this all matter to you? Because generally XLR wires cost more (although not always) and because with some audio devices their XLR in/outs actually have more
inherent noise, distortion, and inferior channel separation than their RCA in/outs and unfortunately I happen to know at least one Marantz multi-channel amp [although I'm not sure about yours] that's on that list: MM7055.
Unlike my detractors, I bring third party, objective, evidence based science to back my claims:
"THD+N from the amplifier was less than 0.007 percent at 1 kilohertz when driving 2.83 volts into an 8-ohm load using the RCA input. When using the XLR input under the same conditions, THD+N was less than 0.014 percent. Crosstalk at 1 kHz driving 2.83 volts into an 8-ohm load was –85.57 dB left to right and –84.22 dB right to left using the RCA inputs and –81.05 dB left to right and –81.09 dB right to left using the XLR inputs. The signal-to-noise ratio with an 8-ohm load from 10 hertz to 24 kHz with “A” weighting was –111.44 dBrA using the RCA input and –98.63 using the XLR input.—MJP
Read more at http://www.soundandvision.com/conten...sQxxxdj0Aa8.99
BTW, I personally own and use a Marantz prepro with both RCA and XLR connections and have used XLR for certain scenarios (long runs across the room to a headphone amp) but I usually just use RCAs. Also, the increase in noise, THD, etc. on that amp I linked to is not necessarily audible, but it is worth noting.