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RE: I don't use mix-downs (except 7.1 to 5.1 in the player)...

If you are not mixing down to stereo, there is no problem created by improperly authored video discs.

>> I thought it was generally accepted that most common-mode noise comes from the power supply. <<

There is at least one other source of common-mode noise found in all digital products - switching noise from the DAC chip itself. With each new sample the output switches to a new state. Real world devices are imperfect and have parasitic capacitances, such that some of the electrical energy used to turn the individual DAC switches on and off is coupled into the audio output signal. Using either two single-ended DACs or one balanced output DAC per audio channel means that the switching noise will be the same in both phases. If the first analog stage is a true differential balanced design, it will reject the common-mode switching noise from the DAC chip. (This is akin to what happens in the recording studio where a low-level microphone signal picks up line frequency hum from the AC wiring in the studio walls equally in both conductors of the balanced mic cable.)

As always, only my personal opinion and not necessarily that of my employer or dog-catcher.

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