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speaker break-in  

post #1 of 77
Thread Starter 
I am ordering speakers, and going to connect them, and then im going out of town for 4 days. Is it a bad idea to let them run a CD or DVD for that length of time? I want to break them in during this time but i dont know if it would be damaging etc. Also take into consideration it will be on a bradn new reciever.
post #2 of 77
And what is the scientific basis for your need to break them in? Also use the search function so you can see the truth from the lies of this myth.
post #3 of 77
Assuming your receiver plays the music normally at a moderate level you should be ok. For an interesting experiment, do this for only one of the speakers. Compare the two after four days.
post #4 of 77
i do burn in, never break in

Quote:
For an interesting experiment, do this for only one of the speakers.
if only you use mono source materials
post #5 of 77
Go on and break them in at moderate, or low-levels, while your out during the day for maybe two weeks. You can play some CD material on repeat, or (like I do) you can set your digital cable for a stream-music channel (ie. "Smooth Jazz", "Classic Rock", etc.,...). However, just to be safe, I would [not] leave it playing for four days straight. Power it off at night.
post #6 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpu8088
if only you use mono source materials
Sure. It's not hard to find mono recordings. You can even create your own. You might be able to use the balance control to switch between the two speakers quickly. Alternatively, you can get a splitter from Radio Shack and send the same signal to both channels of your amp. Depending on the gear, you might even be able to send a mono downmix to the amp. Obviously, if we want to conduct an experiment, even an informal one, the conditions for the two speakers should be as close as possible. For example, they should be in the same part of the room, maybe next to each other.

If someone wants to investigate to see if their speakers are possibly affected by burn-in, they could try this mostly harmless experiment. Me, I usually just plug in new speakers and enjoy them right away.
post #7 of 77
Not happy with the new speakers we sold you?

Step 1 - buy our $25 break in disc

Still not happy?

Step 2 - your amp is crap, buy our $5000 amp

Still not happy?

Step 3 - your cables are crap, buy our $2500 cables

Still not happy?

Step 4 - your preamp is crap, buy our $3000 preamp

Still not happy?

Step 5 - your CD is crap, buy our $2000 CD player

Still not happy?

Step 6 - your interconnects are crap, buy our $500/pr interconnects

Still not happy?

Step 7 - your room sucks, buy our ugly room correction panels

Still not happy?

Step 8 - your music sucks, get this audiophile approved stuff you can't stand

Still not happy?

Step 9 - Your system is better than your speakers, buy the $10K speaker from the same company.

Repeat regularly

:)
post #8 of 77
But, no, there's no reason not to just turn them on and leave them on. Can't hurt.
post #9 of 77
Oh man, not another breakin thread. Dude, your brain will adjust with time, just enjoy the music.
post #10 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alimentall
Not happy with the new speakers we sold you?

Step 1 - buy our $25 break in disc

Still not happy?

Step 2 - your amp is crap, buy our $5000 amp

Still not happy?

Step 3 - your cables are crap, buy our $2500 cables

Still not happy?

Step 4 - your preamp is crap, buy our $3000 preamp

Still not happy?

Step 5 - your CD is crap, buy our $2000 CD player

Still not happy?

Step 6 - your interconnects are crap, buy our $500/pr interconnects

Still not happy?

Step 7 - your room sucks, buy our ugly room correction panels

Still not happy?

Step 8 - your music sucks, get this audiophile approved stuff you can't stand

Still not happy?

Step 9 - Your system is better than your speakers, buy the $10K speaker from the same company.

Repeat regularly

:)
You forgot to mention most important info here, all the above equipment are very specialized stuff, so if you buy any of these equipment from other sources, we can't guarantee the difference our stuff will make to your setup ... :D

Also add one more step (#10)

Still not happy?

Step-10 - May be its time to get your hearing checked, and guess what we also run a state of the art testing facility and any customer who bought all of the above will get a 5% discount.

And in the end if you are still not happy, we take back all the above equipment at 50% of the original price ... :D
post #11 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpu8088
i do burn in, never break in
"Burn in" might trigger smoke/fire alarm, so suggest staying with break-in ... :D

Quote:
Originally Posted by cpu8088
if only you use mono source materials
If he really wanted to do this, just disconnect some of the speakers.
post #12 of 77
I've been following alimentall's nine step program to an emptier wallet for most of my adult life, lol!

System sounds pretty nice, but it could always be better. ;)

Back on topic, I see nothing wrong with running a speaker in at moderate volume with a radio station.
post #13 of 77
Again NOT ONE scientific valid reason given for this burn in , break in whatever.
post #14 of 77
Thread Starter 
Hi specco. I dont know any scientific reason for it. Its why i was asking what i should do as i saw someone else talking about it and wanted to learn about it from others experience. If its not necessary im happy to not overheat my speakers and reciever for 4-5 days.

Cheers
post #15 of 77
I don't see any reason not to do it. I still think there's a little bit to break in. In fact, on guy was showing experiments where there's quite a bit of change over a few hours, but by far, most of it happens in the first hour. That fits with my subjective experiences.
post #16 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by speco2003
Again NOT ONE scientific valid reason given for this burn in , break in whatever.

I think he understands your opinion no need to repeat. Also why in the world do you get upset if someone believes in something you don't.

I guess you do not believe in GOD either since their is not one scientific valid reason.

I don't believe in expensive cable/wires but no need to get mad/upset.

And yes, I do believe in a God, regardless of scientific evidence.
post #17 of 77
Quote:
"Burn in" might trigger smoke/fire alarm, so suggest staying with break-in ...
oh europeans like to burn up witches while americans like to break up good things. whatever .... :-)

also using radio can only do mids. you need extreme lows and extreme highs to fully do the exercise
post #18 of 77
no offense but........once again, we've gone from a discrete question about whether someone should break-in their speakers, and/or how to, to an un-related psychotic argument over nothing?
post #19 of 77
this is not the first and not the last either

the world will still be the same irrespective break in or not
post #20 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alimentall
But, no, there's no reason not to just turn them on and leave them on. Can't hurt.
You are right, there is no reason... There are a couple of reasons not to turn them on and leave them on.

1) The monthly energy bill
2) Global Warming (Al Gore's movie, An Inconvenient Truth... Buy it on DVD).
post #21 of 77
All I know is EVERY highend speaker designer I've heard from on the subject has recommended break-in. But there sure are plenty of armchair electrical engineers around here who don't even know what a capacitor does tell you there are no "scientific" reasons for break-in. Guess it depends on who you want to believe.
I'll listen to the guy who's been designing successfull speakers for many years.

My take: you may or may not hear difference, depending on a whole lot of variables. If you think it helps do it, if you don't, don't.
post #22 of 77
Quote:
All I know is EVERY highend speaker designer I've heard from on the subject has recommended break-in.
Well, not every, but it's in their best interests, and yours too up to a point, to give them a decent evaluation.
Quote:
But there sure are plenty of armchair electrical engineers around here who don't even know what a capacitor does tell you there are no "scientific" reasons for break-in.
There are plenty of hi-end designers who don't know squat about the underpinning research and investigations that've occurred either. Don't give them more credit than they deserve.
There are plenty of scientific reasons that don't substantiate the sorts of break in you're talking about and far more scientific reasons that indicate it's a much more a matter of listener adaptation.
Quote:
Guess it depends on who you want to believe.
Why guess when you can know. I wrote the following some time back.
Quote:
Speaker break-in is not an unusual question to see on any audio forum. Generally someone's bought speakers and they're trying to figure out if those speakers are really for them. There's a lot of issues that come into play here: positioning, calibration, effects of the room. Often the person who posted the question is somewhat inexperienced and hasn't done the best job of placing the speakers. Or perhaps they've just bought the wrong speakers (but they sounded good in the store!) for the room that they're going in. The purpose of this post though, is not to deal with those issues, deserving as they may be of an in-depth discussion.

This is about the issue of speaker break-in. Scientifically, the topic of speaker break-in has been studied rather extensively using techniques such as laser interferometry, measurements of speaker parameters, and controlled listening tests.

David Clark, an AES Fellow presented "Precision Measurement of Loudspeaker Parameters", which was published in the March, 1997. Abstracting from that paper is the following quote:
"5.1 Break-In"

"A break-in process is recommended. Drive-unit storage may cause the diaphragm suspension to drift away from its normal or in-use position. Break-in, with the drive-unit axis in the in-use orientation (usually horizontal), restores the normal diaphragm position. The recommended procedure pneumatically stretches the suspension to one excursion extreme, then the other and continues to alternate, decreasing the excursion each time until x is at zero. This process can be completed in less than 1 min."

Mr. Clark also indicated that drivers which had been stored face-up or face-down sometime need 1 minute of pink noise to restore the original center position. This could also be accomplished by a few strokes of the suspension which many manufacturers do routinely when the speaker is at the end of the assembly line. This suggests that most speakers, are in fact broken in when you get them.

Further work has been performed by Tom Nousaine who has measured speaker parameters pre and post break-in as well as having conducted controlled listening tests. He has found that the Fs of the speaker falls however that is offset by a rise in Vas. Both these parameters were related to the changes in compliance that occurred. During the playing or excercising if you will of the speaker both the spider and the surround become more compliant (they move easier if you will). Additional measurements on samples of identical drivers indicated that the changes that occured pre and post breakin on a single driver were smaller than the variations within a particular lot of drivers. Since there are manufacturing tolerances for drivers this indicates that whatever changes are that occur are smaller than those of manufacturing tolerances. This further indicates that the net effect of speaker breakin is nada, nothing, zilch, forget about it, etc.

In one experiment, Nousaine used a driver that was said to need 48 hours of break-in. Placing the driver in a 1.5 cubic foot box, he found the system resonance to be 53 Hz before break in. After 48 hours the resonance was 49 Hz. After a few minutes rest, the resonance had gone back to 51 Hz. The following morning it was back to 53 Hz. This indicates that whatever small changes that occur in a driver's characteristics during playback comeback to their original state after rest.

These experiments have been performed with other drivers such as from Dynaudio with similar results. Overall this indicated that whatever changes do occur, they do not change the sound quality.

Moreover, Richard Pierce, who some may know as having designed the crossovers for the Rockets, is a well known consultant and speaker designer who has examined the parameters and behavior of thousands, if not tens of thousands of drivers. His finding also concur with Clark's and Nousaine's with regards to how drivers behave in the real world.

So if the sound quality does not change in any significant way, what then does occur? Well listening adaptation would then have to be looked upon as a very strong reason for the perception of speaker break-in. Anyone who has spent time listening to audio systems or components knows their opinions with regards to the nature of the sound changes with time. In the case of speakers, when one buys them and brings them home, you become used to the sound of that particular speaker. That sound may grow upon you or you may find there's something that you don't like about it. Nonetheless, however they sound in your particular home, it'll be different from the way they sounded either in someone elses home or the stores where you heard them.

Now I've had a few emails that I've sent to various speaker manufacturers and these are some of the replies on this subject of break-in.


We've found (as have our dealers and customers) that the most significant changes occur within the first 75-150 hours, with smaller incremental changes occurring up to a few hundred hours. After that point, you shouldn't notice much change at all, as the speakers would be broken in thoroughly. This time is the same for each model and is best accomplished by just playing music through them.



Thank you for your interest in Revel.

Todd Sutherland
Madrigal

-----Original Message-----
From:****
Sent: Tuesday, July 30, 2002 8:37 AM
To: admin@madrigal.com
Subject: speaker breakin




Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for your enquiry into Krix Loudspeakers. Most speakers will benefit from a 'run in' time and our speakers are no different. We suggest running speakers at moderate listening levels for between 20 - 50 hours. After this time you should hear some differences as the components of the speakers start to 'free up',

I hope this information has helped, should you have any further queries please feel free to reply to this email.

Kind Regards

Ben Ormsby
National Consumer Sales



With all mechanical parts they do require a running in period, this ideally should be about 36 hours, what I suggest you do is listen to your speakers at a moderate level when you can over this period. Following this procedure will help prolong the life of your speakers.
Best Regards,
Gabriel O'Donohue
Customer Specialist Support
Tannoy Ltd
Tel: +01236 420199
Fax:+01236 428230
E-mail: gale.o'donohue@tannoy.co.uk



Thanks for your recent email to Definitive Technology.

In order to break-in your BP10Bs, we recommend playing them at a moderately loud volume for about 40 hours. (After this period, the suspensions on the speaker cones loosen up a bit.) Generally, you'll hear a smoother high frequency response as well as a greater openness or transparency.)

If you need any other information, please email me at cpelkowski@definitivetech.com

Thanks Again,
Chet Pelkowski
Definitive Technology



Now if studies have indicated there is no significant change during pre and post breakin and that whatever changes in driver parameters that do occur, are restored to their original values over time, one must ask the question, if the speaker companies are aware of this, and larger companies, that have access to such data as I've presented here do, what is the purpose for specifying breakin that amounts to around 40 hours, give or take? To my mind, the reasons would have to do with ensuring that the customer keeps the speakers in their home for a couple of weeks to hopefully either get used to them or to convince themselves, rightly or wrongly, that they do like the speakers. During this process of listening, the customer, as can be seen on some of the posts on this forum, is actively seeking out other users opionion, corroborations, justifications, positive/negative opinions. So myself, I would recommend that anyone purchasing speakers listen to them in their homes and if during that time, which should be well before the RETURN PERIOD, they don't like them to take them back where they bought them and rethink the choice they made. Any salesman who says you need this CD or this procedure to break-in is doing so for either a couple of reasons...they're ignorant, or they're hoping you need a little more time for the speakers to grow on you so you don't return them and he/she doesn't blow the sale and commission.

As to why Thiel, and for that matter others like Anthony Gallo, subscribe to significant loudspeaker break-in, I just don't know. Maybe it's a marketing position that they've taken. Maybe they say different things to different people. Maybe they're not aware of the research that's been done and that might not be so surprising considering that their focus is more pragmatic based. Other than resorting to the oft stated, "That's what I hear.", I don't think they've done any work in this area. Nor do I don't think anyone's pinned them down after a couple of pitchers of beer and a few margaritas. That might be interesting.

As for my position, it seems that the work has been done to answer this question but it just hasn't been widely disseminated to the general public in a fashion that's easy to comprehend.
post #23 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by QueueCumber
You are right, there is no reason... There are a couple of reasons not to turn them on and leave them on.

1) The monthly energy bill
2) Global Warming (Al Gore's movie, An Inconvenient Truth... Buy it on DVD).
Uhhuh. And the Easter Bunny might also get angry :rolleyes:

What cars do you drive again? You burn more energy at a stoplight tnan breaking in the speakers will do while he's gone.

Buy the "ManBearPig" South Park episode with Al Gore and then watch it right before An Inconvenient Truth. Makes it so much more comical :D http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0795284/
post #24 of 77
I think there is real posted evidence of driver breakin and, again, 90% of it happens in the first hour, only very minor changes afterward. And after swapping out a crossovers on a pair of speakers, the updated pair sounded very shrill and harsh compared to the stock ones. A day later, they sounded much smoother than the stock ones (I didn't listen to them again until the next day). The drivers were broken in, but the crossovers, I guess, the capacitors, didn't have any. I could have been hallucinating, but it seemed pretty obvious.

I'm just saying, don't do what many people do, which is use the after 24-hour breakin period as an excuse for the lousy performance of the speaker.
post #25 of 77
Al, is a bit of a joke, don't you think? Talk about a movie with errors!
post #26 of 77
Thread Starter 
Any break in song that hits highs mids and lows? I actually dont listen to music (will primarily be using speakers for HT / Games. So i dont know what kind of music this would require.

Thanks
post #27 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai
Al, is a bit of a joke, don't you think? Talk about a movie with errors!
I loved the one South Park episode where everyone was running through the streets because a global warming catastrophe was coming and the sun was out and birds were chirping and people were fleeing South Park and one guy tripped and fell and just yelled something like "no, just leave me, I'll never make it!" and nothing was happening behind him. Hilarious.
post #28 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hastley
Any break in song that hits highs mids and lows? I actually dont listen to music (will primarily be using speakers for HT / Games. So i dont know what kind of music this would require.

Thanks
I wouldn't worry about it, most music has plenty of energy at all extremes to do it. Rock especially. Acoustic guitar wouldn't do a whole lot.
post #29 of 77
Someone recently did a study where they measured the temperatures where Al Gore spoke and invariably found that the temperatures were lower than normal suggesting that Al Gore should simply appear everywhere.
post #30 of 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai
Someone recently did a study where they measured the temperatures where Al Gore spoke and invariably found that the temperatures were lower than normal suggesting that Al Gore should simply appear everywhere.
Well, he does give me the chills ;)
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