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Can anyone tell me how to connect my studio monitor speakers with an XLR or 1/4 inch TRS input to my 1/8 inch stereo output on my computer sound card? I don't see any adapters or cords that convert TRS to regular unbalanced stereo. Is this is possible without a mixer?

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migrated from Feb 13 '14 at 5:13

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You can get adapters for this, but the sound will be much better if you get a sound card that has the TRS outputs, or if you use an external breakout box (USB or Firewire, USB on most PCs.)

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The problem with an adapter is that you lose the features balanced outputs gives you - most importantly is the low noise floor and immunity to interference balanced cables give you.

As Neil says, get a decent sound card with balanced outputs.

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ahem - thanks @ObscureRobot :-) – Rory Alsop Nov 26 '11 at 18:36
Are sound cards with balanced outputs common these days or would these typically be an after market add on? – apaul34208 Feb 10 '15 at 15:13
They seem to be more and more common as the prosumer market keeps growing – Rory Alsop Feb 10 '15 at 15:30
Still not safe to assume that a random person's laptop would be though? – apaul34208 Feb 10 '15 at 15:34
A good sound card is not an internal one these days. So don't worry about the laptop - as long as you get good ASIO drivers you're sorted. – Rory Alsop Feb 10 '15 at 18:56

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