Balanced audio switching

My Oppo BDP-95 connects to the single balanced analog input of my Cary 11a processor for stereo. I want to connect my Sony XA5400ES to that same Cary balanced input. Only one player at a time would have an active signal. Can I use a $25 Y cable from Blue Jeans or do I need something like a $190 Kramer box? Can both players be powered up even though only one has output?

Don't use a y-cable. Two outputs should never be connected together, apart perhaps from unusual and very specific circumstances.

If both components are on at the same time, the load impedance seen by the one being used will be approximately equal to the output impedance of the other one, which will be very low, resulting in degraded sonics and excessive current draw which might even be damaging over the long term. If only one component is on at a time, the output impedance of the powered down component MIGHT be high enough to not be an issue, but applying voltage to an unpowered output could conceivably cause damage or degraded long-term reliability.

I have no specific familiarity with it, but based on its description the Kramer box appears to be a good choice, apart perhaps from the price.

-- Al
MAD makes a very nice manual switch:

I have the RCA one in my stash and it is quite good.

Like Amarg, I wouldn't recommend the Y Cable. The only time I have used one was to split output from the line out of my integrated to a cassette deck and a headphone ampifier.
Thanks for the advice, Al. Wayne at Blue Jeans also advised that I go with the passive switch box, so that's what I'll do. I'll also check out MAD.

You can make a balanced switcher with 4PDT switch - the wipers go to the output. Tocos makes a good switch - look on eBay.

Can you provide a link or more info on the MAD switch. I've been unable to find anything about it.
The MAD switch is called a "Line Router". Just scroll down on the page I linked.

My RCA one is direct wired; no circuit board. RCA's and wire appear to be god quality. The case is nice. Maybe not as nice as brushed aluminum, but still good.
I have a Goldpoint switchbox that works very well with a great build quality.

Sorry, Riffer, I overlooked the link you provided in your earlier post.

I've now seen online balanced switches ranging in price from $180 to $372. The $180 MAD unit seems to offer 4 to 2 pairs of connections, the $192 Kramer 4 to 1, the $373 Goldpoint 2 to 1. The Goldpoint unit appears to be the most handsome, followed by the MAD unit, then the industrial looking Kramer. I wonder if there is any functional difference. Do you hear any decrement in audio quality when using the switch?