Would using a mini female to quarter inch male adapter cause any noticeable signal degradation?
i used to use a couple of them and that's honestly why i moved towards making my own cables.
they don't degrade the signal too noticeably when they work. a huge problem with them though is that they tend to become loose or unreliable, where the slightest movement makes them crackle, one channel goes out (if you're doing trs=>trs), or just go dead.
it's been much more stable and reliable to have custom made cables with 1/4" on one end and 3.5mm on the other
you can definitely find cables that exist with those plugs on the end, premade. however from what i remember your options are much more limited.
since your thread title is "best" cables, i really think the best option is to use high quality cable and high quality plugs.
otherwise, if you want the "best" cable made by more expensive brands that come with this setup, you'll pay a lot more