In most cases the Long IC with short speaker cables is the way to go.
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I disagree with Sattothestars. If you're not using balanced IC, it should be as short as possible. Otherwise, it will act like antenna - any noise it will pick up will be amplified together with the music. On the other hand, if you add some noise to already amplified music it will have smaller effect on the output signal. Just make sure that you long speaker cables are heavy enough not to lose any signal along the way and have insulation of good dielectric quality to minimize the stray capacitance.
In my experience, short speaker cables (say 4 feet) make a substantial improvement, particularly in an area with high RFI. (I live in New York.) If your interconnects are 2 meters or less, regardless of whether or not they are balanced, shorter speaker cables are the better choice. Over two meters, the IC's should be balanced to make this trade-off effective.
If you're not using balanced IC, it should be as short as possible. Otherwise, it will act like antenna
Not exactly. Short is better for both balanced and unbalanced because they both have capacitance and the low-pass filtering effect is identical for both.
As for acting as an antenna, this can happen, but it is caused by the ground loops in the system (particularly large loop areas), not the interconnects themselves. Obviously, balanced IC's have common-mode rejection, so even if there are ground-loops and the associated noise, this will be cancelled out at the balanced receiver, unless it is really bad, then this won't even help.