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Old 01-28-2010, 11:58 AM - Thread Starter
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I have read a few reviews talking about how good a CD or SACD player sounds after the break in period. Not trying to sound stupid but what is there to actually break in and how long should it take.
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Old 01-28-2010, 12:18 PM
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Nothing. And zero seconds.

The equipment doesn't change over time. The listener does.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 01-28-2010, 12:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Thats pretty much what I thought. I get it with speakers and sub's needing time to loosen up, but a cd player?
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Old 01-28-2010, 12:47 PM
 
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No evidence of this happening with audio electronics.

TVs yes definitely.

Speakers, debatable.
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Old 01-28-2010, 02:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Corybud View Post

I have read a few reviews talking about how good a CD or SACD player sounds after the break in period.

Where are you finding these reviews? I'd like to check it out.
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Old 01-28-2010, 02:53 PM
 
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Speakers, debatable.

Debatable for the length of time it takes for speakers. They have moving parts and they do change over time.
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Old 01-28-2010, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by ChrisWiggles View Post

No evidence of this happening with audio electronics.

Can you point me to some measurement proof of this? Have experiments been done that show a player's output measures identically when it's new vs. when it has aged a moderate amount? Don't new capacitors take a number of charges and discharges to reach their 'stable' output levels? I know differences would be small but don't they exist? Or are you saying measurement differences don't even exist?
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Old 01-28-2010, 09:57 PM
 
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Originally Posted by RWetmore View Post

Can you point me to some measurement proof of this? Have experiments been done that show a player's output measures identically when it's new vs. when it has aged a moderate amount? Don't new capacitors take a number of charges and discharges to reach their 'stable' output levels? I know differences would be small but don't they exist? Or are you saying measurement differences don't even exist?

I said basically what I meant as briefly as possible. I am not aware of any evidence of this happening to any audible degree with audio electronics.

I think the more significant concerns some with old electronics when things can really drift, and I've seen this on old amplifiers with only certain channels that were used for instance, etc. But in terms of break-in, I've never seen any hard evidence of it being a concern of any significance for audio, or for 'warm-up.'

It certainly could be though, because it is a concern for video circuitry as anyone familiar with CRT projectors can attest. But until I see any measurements made on audio electronics that illustrate differences significant enough to become audible I remain skeptical and will worry myself with other things.

So my position is that in the absence of any positive evidence for warm up or break in on audio gear is to assume that such differences are either of very minimal significance or non-existent, and I will make decisions based on that premise until there is some evidence to the contrary.
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Old 01-29-2010, 05:10 AM
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Originally Posted by geekhd View Post

Where are you finding these reviews? I'd like to check it out.


Are you kidding? Almost every "high-end" publication's writer propagating this codswallop.

sent via Morse code...........

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Old 02-02-2010, 11:50 AM
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Depends on the design. Electrolytic caps do change characteristics a little. The only modern electronic unit I personally know required break in was the B&K st140. Out of box, new, A/B to one on the shelf was a clear difference. After a week of use, compared again with no difference. Personal experience, subjective. So don't bother with any of the "all amps sound the same dribble." It did have two largish electro caps in the signal path. ( I replaced them with film). Always wondered if that would have eliminated the out of box harshness. I don't know how long the burn in change was. More than half an hour, less than a week. Don't know if cycling was related. This would also depend on the manufacturing process. Higher quality units are likely to have spent more than a few seconds powered up, Full shake and bake for a good process. The goal is to find infant mortality so the customer will not, but it may resolve any electrolytic forming at the same time. I don't know if this is the reason Parasound is adamant on this subject, or that they know their designs do not have this "feature".

But basically, no, not like speakers or cartridges.

Remember records? One play to "dehorn" second play was as good as it gets, every time after that it went down hill. How's that for "burn in"
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Old 02-02-2010, 01:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Ya, I still have a lot of albums. They also said to never play an album more than once in a 24 hour period or it would not allow the grooves to recover to their original shape.

Thanks
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Old 02-02-2010, 02:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Corybud View Post

Ya, I still have a lot of albums. They also said to never play an album more than once in a 24 hour period or it would not allow the grooves to recover to their original shape.

Thanks

24 hours sounds like a grotesque exaggeration. The concern is the heat of play slightly melting the groove, and if you play again immediately the wear could be greater. Obviously a few minutes and it should reach room temp again pretty quickly. It might be a concern if you wanted to play the same song over and over, but it's more of a concern for people who scratch, but then that kind of use is terrible for vinyl no matter what...

That being said, I've never really seen any good tests or measurements that quantify whether these concerns are well-founded or not. They make sense rationally, but whether things heat up that much and take that long to cool off again, I have no way of knowing.
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Corybud View Post

They also said...

There you go believing them again.
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Old 02-02-2010, 06:27 PM - Thread Starter
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You know what you are probably right. I picked up that information so many years ago I can't even tell you where. Also the way I understood it heat was not the issue but rather weight in the goove and the time it took for the groove to recover. I am no expert on album care but my album collection is in very good condition. As stated I am no expert and did not intend to provide any mis information.
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Old 02-02-2010, 06:33 PM
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As stated I am no expert and did not intend to provide any mis information.

I have expertly believed a suggestion only to find out it was false.
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Old 02-03-2010, 07:44 AM
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One more excuse for the good-old Lenco wet system

You don't know how refreshing it is to see members of this forum gracefully reconsider their position. Thank you.
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Old 02-05-2010, 08:21 AM
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Many manufacturers encourage this myth by recommending break-in periods in their manuals. From what I know, most high-end does this. For example if you search Classe SSP-800 thread, you will come accross with vehement discussions on this subject since the manufacturer itself recommended it.

In my opinion manufacturers recommend break in because if you listen to the item long enough, your ears get broken in and your mental burn-in combined with your existing bias towards the high-end purchase makes you very proud of your significant financial investment. It seems to be a recommendation motivated by marketing needs rather than engineering.

I am doubtful even about the burn in speakers even though they have mechanical parts. If there was such a need, wouldn't all speakers need break-in? Why do only high-end speakers require break in? Then again, this is just my personal opinion about speakers, I am not sure either way.
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Old 02-05-2010, 10:01 AM
 
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Originally Posted by hd_newbie View Post

It seems to be a recommendation motivated by marketing needs rather than engineering.

Thank you hd_newbie. Did not know that.

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I am doubtful even about the burn in speakers even though they have mechanical parts. If there was such a need, wouldn't all speakers need break-in? Why do only high-end speakers require break in? Then again, this is just my personal opinion about speakers, I am not sure either way.

Speaker's TS parameters do change after a bit of use and they are measurable. What gets abused is the length of time it takes for the change to take place. Note, I wrote a bit of use.
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Old 02-05-2010, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Take it for what it is worth but I do believe my Klipsch speakers did need a break in period. After a couple of weeks use I re calabrated my system for the better. Was it my ears or the speakers breaking in.......

As for electrical equipment I highly doubt that there is enough difference over time to hear a decernable difference with one exception. I had a Marantz 1060 integrated amp many many years ago and after much use and gallant service to the cause one channel started getting noticably weaker and had to be retired.
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Old 02-05-2010, 02:12 PM
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I had a Marantz 1060 integrated amp many many years ago and after much use and gallant service to the cause one channel started getting noticably weaker and had to be retired.

That's not break-in. That's break-ing.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 02-05-2010, 02:30 PM - Thread Starter
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As for electrical equipment I highly doubt that there is enough difference over time to hear a decernable difference with one exception. I had a Marantz 1060 integrated amp many many years ago and after much use and gallant service to the cause one channel started getting noticably weaker and had to be retired.

---------------------------------------------------

Not to be picky but what I was talking about was difference over time not "break in".
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Old 02-05-2010, 02:53 PM
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Not to be picky but what I was talking about was difference over time not "break in".

I know. I should have used a smiley or something.

And you're right—most change is, in effect, slow decay. And the stuff that isn't also isn't generally of a magnitude that it would make an audible difference.

OTOH, as long as there are money-back guarantees, there will be break-in periods. And one will be longer than the other.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 02-05-2010, 02:56 PM - Thread Starter
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so true.......I miss that old 1060, it was simple, clean sounding and bullet proof over it's life.
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Old 02-05-2010, 05:18 PM
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Let's assume that the sonic characteristics of a modern solid state CDP stabilize at some point due to the break in phenomena such as forming of capacitors. If that is the case, then given that the components in a CDP are all of varying tolerances (+/- 20, 10, 2% or whatever), would that not mean that each unit made of a particular model will also have its own sonic signature that is different from all the others made?

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Old 02-05-2010, 07:06 PM
 
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Let's assume that the sonic characteristics of a modern solid state CDP stabilize at some point due to the break in phenomena such as forming of capacitors. If that is the case, then given that the components in a CDP are all of varying tolerances (+/- 20, 10, 2% or whatever), would that not mean that each unit made of a particular model will also have its own sonic signature that is different from all the others made?

Only if those differences were large enough to become audible.

I'm not aware of any evidence of that being the case.
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Old 02-05-2010, 07:55 PM
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Neither am I Chris. I'm saying if you believe that break-in is an audible phenomenon due to changes that occur in electrical components, to be consistent, you'd have to also believe that if Esoteric makes 500 units of a particular model, due to inherent variations in the spec's of components, you also have to believe that each model will have a unique sonic signature.

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Old 02-05-2010, 08:46 PM
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I'm saying if you believe that break-in is an audible phenomenon due to changes that occur in electrical components, to be consistent, you'd have to also believe that if Esoteric makes 500 units of a particular model, due to inherent variations in the spec's of components, you also have to believe that each model will have a unique sonic signature.

Which would, of course, render a subjective review of any individual unit meaningless.

This idea is growing on me.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 02-05-2010, 10:12 PM
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Which would, of course, render a subjective review of any individual unit meaningless.

This idea is growing on me.

I think it makes sense. If you grant the subjectivist position in its entirety that break-in is audible. Then further grant that the reasons can be tied to various electrical components (notably capacitors) achieving their steady state, i.e. constant, values only after a period of time. Hence, we concede the position without a fight that subjectivists are fully capable of audibly determining small changes in the electrical values after say 96 hours.

If a subjectivist accepts the above, then since they know that the values of resistors, capacitors, inductors, and god knows what else is in a player, or an amp for that matter has various manufacturing tolerances, logically they must accept that they have the ability to discern differences in sonic qualities among several samples of the same model number.

Now, given that the objectivists have fully conceded the above, the subjectivist must then realize that if they say a particular wire or cable has a particular sonic quality, then they must be able to discern differences with different lengths. After all, while a given wire may have a particular resistance, capacitance, and inductance per foot, going from 3 to 4 meters means the total capacitance for example has increased by 33%. After all, the subjectist has already emphatically stated their ability to discern small electrical changes as equipment breaks-in. In fact, it would be foolish for the subjectivist to make any claim about something as pedestrian as zip cord. They've never heard it in your system where the length is 79" and it's been broken in for 2 years.

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Old 02-05-2010, 10:51 PM
 
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Which would, of course, render a subjective review of any individual unit meaningless.

Beyond meaningless. It's a devastation.
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Old 02-05-2010, 11:59 PM
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The "measurements mean everything" adherents say no.

Those who are objectivists say yes.

It's up to you; nothing anyone says here will change anyone's mind.
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