Originally Posted by bigwally
Spider and surround break-in is real but it occurs within 10ths of seconds. This is according to AES white papers published by Theile and Small and a host of others. No empirical evidence has been published to the contrary. To my knowledge Danny Ritchie is about the only speaker builder out there who continues to push the idea of extended loudspeaker break-in, however he has refused to cite his evidence claiming it to be proprietary.
OTOH anecdotal accounts of extended speaker break-in abound, however if one applies Occam's Razor then listener acclimation is the more likely culprit in the absence of empirical evidence.
Edit: It's been probably ten years since I've looked hard at the topic, so if there is new and better measurements out there to support long-term speaker break-in, I welcome any links or relevant AES paper citations so that I may adjust my outlook.
Tried doing a search for the white papers or anything other than anecdotal experience on how long it takes to break-in speakers, but was unable to find anything. If you can point me to the white papers I would appreciate it. I highly doubt break-in would occur in tenths of a second though. I will stand by my opinion that break-in duration will be dependent on several factors.
1. Surround material, construction and quantity
2. Spider material, construction and quantity.
3. Frequencies used
4. SPL played at
You simply cannot break in a 21" sub using a 3 Hz frequency at 50dB in tenths of a second as that would only barely move the cone a few mm at most twice. I don't know if there is any definitive time for break-in as I don't there possibly can be. Speakers will always be in a constant state of break-in. All materials (surround and spiders) will have a finite limit as to how many times it can be bent back and forth before is breaks. The more it moves the more its resistance to movement will decrease. This is just the laws of physics. Will these changes make an appreciable sonic difference in speakers? In my opinion, for the most part, initially yes. After this initial break-in I don't think there will be an audible (to humans) difference.
As I have admitted to previously, yes, I do believe listener acclimation plays a role, but to ignore or discount speaker break-in is incorrect. I'm not saying you are doing this, but just a general statement.
I only said to play it for 40 hours at normal listening levels as an arbitrary number that should ensure that the majority of the appreciable break-in will have occurred by then.
Originally Posted by comfynumb
I understand what your saying and I do agree to a certain point. Like BW said I believe they break in a lot quicker and there's articles in support of that also. The spider is made of cloth usually, so how long could it take to break in.
The spider material may be cloth, but it is very rigid and is impregnated with some other materials (resins or epoxies) to make them rigid. If it were not rigid, there would be no point in even having them there. The purpose of the spider is to hold the base of the cone in place so that the cone moves in a linear motion.
Just take a paper clip and bend a straight section. Now bend it back the other way. Take note of how stiff it is the first time. Now keep doing this you'll notice that it gets easier every subsequent time you bend it and eventually it will break at the point of the bending. The further you bend the piece, the quicker it will become easier and the quicker it will break. Speakers will do the same.