The New York Audio Show 2014: Reality Check - Page 16 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
Forum Jump: 
 665Likes
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #451 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 07:18 PM
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 680
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 311 Post(s)
Liked: 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by fotto View Post
Amir, I am curious as to what "type" you consider yourself?
Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post
Whatever Chu is +1.
I'm of the type A+ variant, you know, the one that IS always right!

Which, I guess proves Amir right, again!
Garidy is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #452 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:01 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 5,087
Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1358 Post(s)
Liked: 798
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Also, I got this from a JBL manual.

"As with most speakers, after you start playing the 4312EBK it will take the drivers’ suspensions several weeks to “break in” and achieve optimum performance. During this period, the balance between the woofer, mid- range and tweeter may change, so we recommend that you adjust the midrange and tweeter controls accordingly."
Manuals are written by marketers, regardless of brand, so one should expect a touch of nonsense in all of them.

The fact that you found this kind of idiocy in a JBL manual dovetails nicely with what Dr. Floyd Toole wrote about this topic in his lit review of the serious home audio literature, Sound Reproduction, about an interaction with marketers at Harman on break-in.

"***the author is not aware of any controlled test in which any consequential audible differences were found, even in loudspeakers, where there would seem to be some oppor- tunities for material changes. A few years ago, to satisfy a determined marketing person, the research group performed a test using samples of a loudspeaker that was claimed to benefit from “breaking in.” Measurements before and after the recommended break-in showed no differences in frequency response, except a very tiny change around 30–40 Hz in the one area where break-in effects could be expected: woofer compliance. Careful listening tests revealed no audible differences. None of this was surprising to the engineering staff. It is not clear whether the marketing person was satisfied by the finding. ***" (p. 353)

Some people may wish to take idiot marketing dogma as their reality. Whatever. I'll stick with what's actually empirically proven.
RobertR, imagic and |Tch0rT| like this.

--
"In many cases there aren’t two sides unless one side is 'reality' and the other is 'nonsense.'" - Phil Plait
Serious Audio Blog 
DS-21 is offline  
post #453 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:21 PM
AVS Forum Addicted Member
 
Chu Gai's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NYC area
Posts: 15,247
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 584 Post(s)
Liked: 823
Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post
You mean they are worse than this setup that Mark praised at the show?

I'll have to ask the dogs what they think.

Quote:
Nobody answered if that is the way to "treat" a room. What say you Chu? Those foams do something for you?

How about center speaker sitting on top of the sub?
Might be nothing more than a quick bandaid, meatball surgery if you will. I'm sure if you asked him to remove them you could get a sense if it was an improvement.

As to the center channel speaker, where would you put it?

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
Chu Gai is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #454 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:27 PM - Thread Starter
Mark Henninger
 
imagic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 16,415
Mentioned: 465 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9384 Post(s)
Liked: 16633
Quote:
Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post
Manuals are written by marketers, regardless of brand, so one should expect a touch of nonsense in all of them.

The fact that you found this kind of idiocy in a JBL manual dovetails nicely with what Dr. Floyd Toole wrote about this topic in his lit review of the serious home audio literature, Sound Reproduction, about an interaction with marketers at Harman on break-in.

"***the author is not aware of any controlled test in which any consequential audible differences were found, even in loudspeakers, where there would seem to be some oppor- tunities for material changes. A few years ago, to satisfy a determined marketing person, the research group performed a test using samples of a loudspeaker that was claimed to benefit from “breaking in.” Measurements before and after the recommended break-in showed no differences in frequency response, except a very tiny change around 30–40 Hz in the one area where break-in effects could be expected: woofer compliance. Careful listening tests revealed no audible differences. None of this was surprising to the engineering staff. It is not clear whether the marketing person was satisfied by the finding. ***" (p. 353)

Some people may wish to take idiot marketing dogma as their reality. Whatever. I'll stick with what's actually empirically proven.
I can accept that its not audible in speakers. I've only ever experienced a noticeable difference with subs, measured in hours not days.

Mark Henninger
Editor, AVS Forum
imagic is online now  
post #455 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:29 PM
AVS Forum Addicted Member
 
Chu Gai's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NYC area
Posts: 15,247
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 584 Post(s)
Liked: 823
Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post
It depends on whether they took advantage of once in a lifetime acoustic/speaker training at Harman or not which is offered to all dealers once a quarter. I am talking about hearing Dr. Toole himself present, and Dr. Sean Olive taking you to their double blind tests of speakers, etc. It is a two-day course that will teach one more about this field than a lifetime of reading forum posts, papers, etc. It forever changes your idea of sound reproduction. It certainly did for me.

Anyway, one of the presentations there is about all the voodoo on speaker design. They walk through all the stuff that is highlighted by the speaker manufacturers yet has no value. One of those is speaker break-in. They will not only tell you it is nonsense, but also show you actual measurements of before/after that indicate frequency response differences that are negligible and in the noise.

So back to your question, if the salesperson is not sleep during that part of the presentation, then they will tell you the same. The course is optional though and while I have sent a bunch of people from my team there, I suspect not all dealers bother.

I see Mark giving you a thumbs up. I wonder why. Mark?
Horse*****. No matter what they know, what training they've had, their goal is to sell. They'll look to read you like John Edward and assuage your every insecurity and compliment you on your discerning ability.

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
Chu Gai is offline  
post #456 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:31 PM
AVS Forum Addicted Member
 
m. zillch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 14,132
Mentioned: 65 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6197 Post(s)
Liked: 4434
If that's not the active sub while the center is playing, I have no problem with using it as an impromptu speaker stand. It's a fairly heavy, internally reinforced, dense cube, better than many things which are sold for the same purpose.


Seems a tad low considering the L/R tweets though., but considering how many place their center over the TV yet their sides several feet below, I guess the good old "image proximity effect" will kick in.

In A/V reproduction accuracy, there IS no concept of "accounting for personal taste/preference". As art consumers we don't "pick" the level of bass, nor the tint/brightness of a scene's sky, any more than we pick the ending of a novel or Mona Lisa's type of smile. "High fidelity" means "high truthfulness", faithful to the original artist's intent: an unmodified, neutral, accurate copy of the original master, ideally being exact and with no discernable alterations, aka "transparency".

Last edited by m. zillch; 10-12-2014 at 08:39 PM.
m. zillch is offline  
post #457 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:36 PM - Thread Starter
Mark Henninger
 
imagic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 16,415
Mentioned: 465 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9384 Post(s)
Liked: 16633
Quote:
Originally Posted by m. zillch View Post
If that's not the active sub while the center is playing, I have no problem with using it as an impromptu speaker stand. It's a fairly heavy, internally reinforced, dense cube, better than many things which are sold for the same purpose.
It was not the active sub that had the center on it. The active sub was the one on the left.

Mark Henninger
Editor, AVS Forum
imagic is online now  
post #458 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:41 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Sean Spamilton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, ON
Posts: 1,352
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 448 Post(s)
Liked: 555
Quote:
Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post
Manuals are written by marketers, regardless of brand, so one should expect a touch of nonsense in all of them.

The fact that you found this kind of idiocy in a JBL manual dovetails nicely with what Dr. Floyd Toole wrote about this topic in his lit review of the serious home audio literature, Sound Reproduction, about an interaction with marketers at Harman on break-in.

"***the author is not aware of any controlled test in which any consequential audible differences were found, even in loudspeakers, where there would seem to be some oppor- tunities for material changes. A few years ago, to satisfy a determined marketing person, the research group performed a test using samples of a loudspeaker that was claimed to benefit from “breaking in.” Measurements before and after the recommended break-in showed no differences in frequency response, except a very tiny change around 30–40 Hz in the one area where break-in effects could be expected: woofer compliance. Careful listening tests revealed no audible differences. None of this was surprising to the engineering staff. It is not clear whether the marketing person was satisfied by the finding. ***" (p. 353)

Some people may wish to take idiot marketing dogma as their reality. Whatever. I'll stick with what's actually empirically proven.
Perhaps of relevance is this test run by a competitor website, who determined there was no audible difference.
http://www.audioholics.com/loudspeak...act-or-fiction
"As in the preceding case, the differences seen between the amplitude response plots of the pre- and post- broken in systems is negligible, the maximum magnitude difference occurring within the passband being .02 dB."

Denon X-4300 | Onkyo M-282 | Audio Technica AT-LP3 | HTPC |
Polk RTiA3 x 6 - RTiA6 x 1 - Polk Atrium 5 x 4 | PSA 15s | PSA XS30
Epson HC 2100 | 100" Elite Screen |
Sean Spamilton is offline  
post #459 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:43 PM
AVS Forum Addicted Member
 
Chu Gai's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NYC area
Posts: 15,247
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 584 Post(s)
Liked: 823
Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post
Whatever Chu is +1.
Amir is the Kwisatz Haderach.

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
Chu Gai is offline  
post #460 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:50 PM
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 680
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 311 Post(s)
Liked: 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post
Amir is the Kwisatz Haderach.

Kwisatz Haderach

In Fremen, it means "the shortening of the way" and is the Bene Gesserit term for the unknown being who's powers can surpass time and space.

Paul Muad'Dib became the Kwisatz Haderach after drinking the Water of Life.

I heard that Amir translated after ingesting one of Arny's arm hairs that mysteriously founds its way into his soup!

Last edited by Garidy; 10-12-2014 at 08:55 PM.
Garidy is offline  
post #461 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 08:57 PM
 
amirm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Washington State
Posts: 18,829
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1334 Post(s)
Liked: 752
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post
Horse*****. No matter what they know, what training they've had, their goal is to sell. They'll look to read you like John Edward and assuage your every insecurity and compliment you on your discerning ability.
Seems like you have been victimized that way. Probably in more than one occasion to have such strong feelings. It happens. And happens all the time in different fields. Don't feel bad about it. You can vent this way and feel better Chu.

Now, if you spent a bit of time really studying this area, and that starts by reading the real literature as DS-21 has been posting and I did earlier, then you have a chance to come on top. Right now, you are fish in the barrel.
Garidy likes this.
amirm is offline  
post #462 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 09:03 PM
AVS Forum Addicted Member
 
Chu Gai's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NYC area
Posts: 15,247
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 584 Post(s)
Liked: 823
You should conduct your own survey of Revel dealers.

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
Chu Gai is offline  
post #463 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 09:12 PM - Thread Starter
Mark Henninger
 
imagic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 16,415
Mentioned: 465 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9384 Post(s)
Liked: 16633
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Spamilton View Post
Perhaps of relevance is this test run by a competitor website, who determined there was no audible difference.
http://www.audioholics.com/loudspeak...act-or-fiction
"As in the preceding case, the differences seen between the amplitude response plots of the pre- and post- broken in systems is negligible, the maximum magnitude difference occurring within the passband being .02 dB."
I'm fully convinced break-in effects are probably inaudible in speakers. Just like jitter is in HDMI cables.

Tonight, I kinda don't care one way or the other... I'm an Eagles fan.
Ratman likes this.

Mark Henninger
Editor, AVS Forum

Last edited by imagic; 10-12-2014 at 09:30 PM.
imagic is online now  
post #464 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 09:15 PM
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 680
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 311 Post(s)
Liked: 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
I'm fully convinced break-in is inaudible in speakers. Just like jitter is in HDMI cables.
Do you have any math to support your opinions or disprove others?
imagic likes this.
Garidy is offline  
post #465 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 09:19 PM
 
amirm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Washington State
Posts: 18,829
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1334 Post(s)
Liked: 752
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post
I'll have to ask the dogs what they think.
Why don't you have them sign up on the forum so that we don't have to keep going through the middlemen.

Quote:
Might be nothing more than a quick bandaid, meatball surgery if you will. I'm sure if you asked him to remove them you could get a sense if it was an improvement.
I can tell you what it does by looking at it. It is there to make you think it does something when in reality does nothing. And if it did something, it would be bad (absorbing high frequencies only).

Quote:
As to the center channel speaker, where would you put it?
I would put it on my head before putting it on top of a rambling sub causing it to buzz, rattle and heaven knows what else. Remember, the center channel in movies has the highest levels/amount of content in it. It needs to handle the most power and is the most critical speaker in the set up, not an afterthought as it is in the Hsu room:



And oh, the worst design for a center speaker is that MTM configuration pictured above. Why? Because you have two mid-range/woofers trying to produce the same signal so you get interference which gets worse as you move horizontally. See this graph on the left:



The solid line shows as you swing horizontally -- exactly what happens to center channel sending its signal to left and right side -- the response radically changes due to that interference. This is not good. Not good at all. Here is Dr. Toole on that set of measurements:

Two common configurations for horizontal center-channel loudspeakers. (a) The MTM design has
two “midranges,” which actually are woofer/midranges, that acoustically interfere with each other at increasing
horizontal angles. This is because they are physically separated, and both radiate sound up to high frequencies to
cross over to the tweeter....Recall that in Figures 16.6 and 16.10, it was shown that a horizontal dispersion of
±30 degrees was required for the center loudspeaker to deliver intact direct sound to all listeners in a typical home theater.
This figure shows that by 30 degrees this loudspeaker is experiencing heavy acoustical interference, and the output has
dropped seriously over a wide frequency range.
This is not good.


I said it was no good, didn't I? Any wonder then that the Joe installer who blogged about the video performance said the sound was no good? This may have been the reason.

What is the solution? The one on the right. Add a mid-range driver and you fix the problematic area. You get that nice horizontal response on the right.

Why are speakers designed this way when it is clearly a broken design? Because the marketing department says so. People think that is what the center channel is supposed to look like. If you are going to follow Mark's advice and look at these speakers, get one of the Left/Right speakers and put it vertically. Better yet, buy speakers that are not designed by marketing departments.

Sincerely,
Your "random AV dealer"
Garidy likes this.

Last edited by amirm; 10-12-2014 at 09:23 PM.
amirm is offline  
post #466 of 767 Old 10-12-2014, 10:12 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
CharlesJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,899
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 852 Post(s)
Liked: 621
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
IMO the change in Fs alone is of a great enough magnitude, in some of those subs, to be audible. Stiff spiders and surrounds typically affect out-of-the-box performance of subs more than speakers, and it varies by driver.

If you build enough DIY subs, the break-in starts to become a very familiar thing, and it's both audible and measurable. Some sube loosen up quite a bit, and in the process dig deeper than when new, at the same power level. Woofer break-in results in more excursion per watt, simple as that. It's nothing like speaker cable, where you hear no difference as long as you have sufficient gauge for the given length and power handling needs.
OK, you mention Fs change. But what happens specifically between the old and the new Fs. Volume change but by how much? A 1.7 Hz shift in the linked example will cause how much of a volume change especially when that Q is very very high and the JND is equally high from Amirs links and Tools findings, especially at 32.7 Hz. How high is high?

Tom Nousaine measured a sub driver and tested the audibility many moons back, measured the differences but couldn't detect it. Not sure how many subjects he had unless it was just himself.

ps: Richard Pierce almost at the end:
https://groups.google.com/forum/?hl=...w/Sdj_V8z1Jn0J

https://groups.google.com/forum/?hl=...c/ML0RaAhZLOUJ

Last edited by CharlesJ; 10-12-2014 at 10:34 PM.
CharlesJ is online now  
post #467 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 12:41 AM
Member
 
DarqueKnight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: SDA Sweetspot
Posts: 77
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
What are the chances that stereoeditor will stop by this thread, he was there at the show and he heard things differently than I did. He wrote the Grande Utopias "sounded delicious"

Saying something sounded "good", "bad", or "delicious" really does not provide any insight into performance since there is not a standard of what "good", "bad" and "delicious" sounds like. I don't mind the flowery descriptions, as long as they are qualified with more descriptive performance assessments. It's easy enough to just state things like the perceived sound stage dimensions and describe the quality of sound with regard to clarity and detail.


A bad speaker for me is one that has poor imaging performance with a very narrow sweet spot, no matter how well it does every thing else. If a speaker's spatial properties are not to my liking, but it excels in other areas like clarity and detail, I'm really not interested in listening further. Reviewers approach the same piece of audio gear from different perspectives and prioritize stereophonic performance attributes differently. That's expected and that's fine. I just think it would be better for reviewers to state what those priorities are and why they rated a speaker a particular way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
I can accept that its not audible in speakers. I've only ever experienced a noticeable difference with subs, measured in hours not days.
In nearly 30 years in this hobby, I have never heard a difference between a new driver and the same model driver that had several years of use on it. I have even swapped old drivers for new ones in one speaker and compared it to the other speaker with all old drivers. I have heard a difference between brand new tweeters and the same model tweeter that had years of use on it. I don't doubt that there may be some speakers that audibly improve after some hours of use.
DarqueKnight is offline  
post #468 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 02:48 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
prepress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 3,505
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 136 Post(s)
Liked: 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
That's very sensible, and of course in a proper demo you get to listen to your music instead of show music. However, you usually don't have the benefit of choosing the system you compare it to, instead you have to work with what the dealer offers. Of course the most appropriate environment is the room where the speakers will wind up. But there's no doubt that a showroom demo is potentially more instructive that an audio show demo, depending on the circumstances. Nothing like trying gear out at home!
I remember the good old days, when I discovered high-end audio. I went to Innovative Audio and could audition components in a more proper way, doing direct comparisons within the same system. I heard the differences between a B&K amp and an Adcom amp. I heard the difference between a California Audio Labs Icon CD player and a CAL Tercet Mk. IV CD player. Hard to do that these days, though I wouldn't be surprised if Innovative still does it when appropriate.

And with any audition, I bring my own music.

VPI, Grado, SME, Pioneer Elite, Magnum Dynalab, Day-Sequerra, Oppo, DVDO, McIntosh, Telefunken Black Diamond, Mirage, Kimber, Transparent, MIT, Pangea, Shunyata, PS Audio, Furman, Sanus
prepress is offline  
post #469 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 02:56 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
prepress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 3,505
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 136 Post(s)
Liked: 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by m. zillch View Post
That's not surprising. I've met Ian Paisley (since I was a Mirage dealer for many years) who was the chief designer of your speaker. Although I can't find a direct reference to his position on speaker break-in in general, in regards to his own company's speaker, my recollection of his view is correctly outline by this forum poster:

Link:
http://www.torontomazda3.ca/forum/ar...p/t-68291.html

Again, Paisley is speaking about his speakers, not all.
That post quote says essentially that speaker break-in should be done, just that it should be done by the dealer before the consumer gets his/her hands on them. Or have I not understood it properly?
imagic likes this.

VPI, Grado, SME, Pioneer Elite, Magnum Dynalab, Day-Sequerra, Oppo, DVDO, McIntosh, Telefunken Black Diamond, Mirage, Kimber, Transparent, MIT, Pangea, Shunyata, PS Audio, Furman, Sanus
prepress is offline  
post #470 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 05:08 AM - Thread Starter
Mark Henninger
 
imagic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 16,415
Mentioned: 465 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9384 Post(s)
Liked: 16633
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Spamilton View Post
Perhaps of relevance is this test run by a competitor website, who determined there was no audible difference.
http://www.audioholics.com/loudspeak...act-or-fiction
"As in the preceding case, the differences seen between the amplitude response plots of the pre- and post- broken in systems is negligible, the maximum magnitude difference occurring within the passband being .02 dB."
And the .02 dB difference is so small because...

"Taken together, it's clear the volume of air confined within the sealed cabinet of the enclosed box loudspeaker system moderates any measurable and/or audible changes that might arise as a consequence of driver compliance changes."-Audioholics

So what about woofers in horns, or ported, or open/infinite baffle designs? The midrange in the Audioholics article actually "broke in" more that the woofer (.09dB), is it possible that a woofer would exhibit different behavior if it was not in an acoustic suspension enclosure? After all the author notes that "a net post-burn in compliance increase on the order of 5% - 10% would not be unusual"

I wish I had a mic with proven accuracy down to .02 dB. Anyone know how Audioholics come up with those measurements?
Bill Fitzmaurice likes this.

Mark Henninger
Editor, AVS Forum

Last edited by imagic; 10-13-2014 at 06:44 AM.
imagic is online now  
post #471 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 05:58 AM
 
Bill Fitzmaurice's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 15,491
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 5783
Quote:
Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post
Careful listening tests revealed no audible differences.
That comes as no surprise. I've personally measured hundreds of woofers before and after break-in, with the difference in the T/S specs before and after varying from nearly identical to huge. For instance, a drop in Fs of 15%, which certainly qualifies as a major change, is not uncommon. On average the change in specs runs from 5 to 10%. The resulting change in response is easily measured, but not so easily heard, especially if more than a few minutes elapse between the before and after listening tests. OTOH you'll see claims by some that they can hear a night and day difference after a few months of break in...with their cables.

Here, as in politics and religion, there seem to be two camps, both adhering to strict dogmatic belief that the answer to this question is either totally black or blindingly white, with neither willing to accept the premise that the actual truth of the matter is a shade of grey. Beam me up, Scotty...
Ratman, imagic and andyc56 like this.
Bill Fitzmaurice is offline  
post #472 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 06:34 AM - Thread Starter
Mark Henninger
 
imagic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 16,415
Mentioned: 465 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9384 Post(s)
Liked: 16633
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post
That comes as no surprise. I've personally measured hundreds of woofers before and after break-in, with the difference in the T/S specs before and after varying from nearly identical to huge. For instance, a drop in Fs of 15%, which certainly qualifies as a major change, is not uncommon. On average the change in specs runs from 5 to 10%. The resulting change in response is easily measured, but not so easily heard, especially if more than a few minutes elapse between the before and after listening tests. OTOH you'll see claims by some that they can hear a night and day difference after a few months of break in...with their cables.

Here, as in politics and religion, there seem to be two camps, both adhering to strict dogmatic belief that the answer to this question is either totally black or blindingly white, with neither willing to accept the premise that the actual truth of the matter is a shade of grey. Beam me up, Scotty...


Thank you Bill, you are the voice of reason.

Mark Henninger
Editor, AVS Forum
imagic is online now  
post #473 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 07:04 AM
 
amirm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Washington State
Posts: 18,829
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1334 Post(s)
Liked: 752
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post
[/I]Here, as in politics and religion, there seem to be two camps, both adhering to strict dogmatic belief that the answer to this question is either totally black or blindingly white, with neither willing to accept the premise that the actual truth of the matter is a shade of grey. Beam me up, Scotty...
Let me repeat the "black and white" that started this so the the plot is not lost: any speaker that needs to be broken in to sound good in your home is not a good speaker.

Such a change would require a dramatic change in the response of the speaker and no data is remotely on record to back that. Yet that is the subjective result that is reported on break in.

Whether a speaker break in changes the response or not is not at issue. At issue is that you want to buy speakers that are designed based on the best knowledge we have on what makes a good speaker, backed by bias controlled testing before release so that we have high assurance that across multiple listeners, speaker is producing what we conceive to be better sound. Only a small fraction of speakers on the market from low-end to high-end have gone through such a process.

The above is the truth. Not defending some side branch of this topic which has little to do with what we ultimately care about: good sound in our room no matter who we are and what we play on said speakers.
amirm is offline  
post #474 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 07:20 AM - Thread Starter
Mark Henninger
 
imagic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 16,415
Mentioned: 465 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9384 Post(s)
Liked: 16633
What I've gleaned from the past few pages...

Focal says the Grande Utopia requires break-in. However, Floyd Toole says that's not true, you can't hear speaker break-in. So does Audioholics. There's a ton of disagreement, but Floyd's authority overrides comments made by speaker designers and builders because he is "arguably the world's leading authority on loudspeakers."

A truly impressive array of speaker builders say that break-in is a real phenomenon that can have an audible effect on a speaker's tonal balance. But that's easily dismissed by skeptics as "marketing." And, the motivation is to get people to keep their speakers past the return window.

Amir says "Let me repeat the 'black and white'... any speaker that needs to be broken in to sound good in your home is not a good speaker." Given the absolute nature of that comment, logically there are only two conclusions you can draw:

1. Focal Grande Utopia is not a good speaker because it requires break in, as per the company's instructions.

or

2. Focal is incorrect about the need for break-in, it's a myth that many speaker manufacturers perpetuate.

-------

I'm still with Bill on this one. It's shades of gray.

Mark Henninger
Editor, AVS Forum

Last edited by imagic; 10-13-2014 at 07:27 AM.
imagic is online now  
post #475 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 07:39 AM
 
amirm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Washington State
Posts: 18,829
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1334 Post(s)
Liked: 752
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Eminence has this to say about speaker break-in. Eminence is as far as you can get from either cheap Chinese speakers, or "van blanc" high-end speakers. Definitely a major, no-nonsense pro audio brand, I'd take its word at face value on the topic, versus some random AV dealer.

"The components making up the speaker’s suspension are primarily what changes during break-in. These components are the spider (lower suspension) and the cone surround (upper suspension). As the speaker is used, the spider and cone surround begin losing some of their initial stiffness. The sonic results you will hear are an increase in overall warmth, slightly deeper/fatter lows, and warmer/smoother highs. Subtle changes will continue throughout the life cycle of the speaker, but the most noticeable amount occurs in the early stages of use."

Here's the whole thing...
Ah yes, that proves it. And who is quoted above? This: "Speaker Break-in TECH TALK WITH BIG TONY." And who is Big Tony? The tech in tech support! Increase in overall warmth? Warmer/smoother highs? Must be if tech support told us is the case.

Do their own actual specs for the speakers state the response was before or after break in? No.

Respectfully,
Your random AV dealer
amirm is offline  
post #476 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 07:43 AM
Advanced Member
 
SyntheticShrimp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 534
Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 241 Post(s)
Liked: 212
The passion generated in arguments about speaker break-in is strange to me. It exists, but seems most likely inaudible to the end user. If it is audible at all it should be very low on a list of things for consumers to concern themselves with in a land of room modes and boundary interference. I can see why loudspeaker engineers might be more cognizant of it, though.
SyntheticShrimp is offline  
post #477 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 07:54 AM
 
amirm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Washington State
Posts: 18,829
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1334 Post(s)
Liked: 752
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Amir says "Let me repeat the 'black and white'... any speaker that needs to be broken in to sound good in your home is not a good speaker." Given the absolute nature of that comment, logically there are only two conclusions you can draw:

1. Focal Grande Utopia is not a good speaker because it requires break in, as per the company's instructions.

or

2. Focal is incorrect about the need for break-in, it's a myth that many speaker manufacturers perpetuate.
You still are not reading what I wrote and instead following the sidetrack. I said if *you* take a speaker home and it doesn't sound good, it is not a good speaker. It matters not what the instruction manual says. It matters not whether it is or it is not a myth that speaker response changes. If you take a speaker home and on first use it does not sound good to you, you bought the wrong speaker.

Quote:
I'm still with Bill on this one. It's shades of gray.
Bill has not presented any data to back the subjective claims that speakers that on first listen didn't sound good improved dramatically later. You know, what BIG TONY said: "Warmer/smoother highs," etc.

I used to think the same. After all, it makes sense in your belly that something would loosen up in a speaker. Then I was given the data and I changed my views. To not do so is the definition of religion. You are welcome to do the same or remain dogmatic.

Respectfully,
Your random AV dealer
amirm is offline  
post #478 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 08:10 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
8mile13's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 7,765
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2512 Post(s)
Liked: 1452
There definitely is a ''i must get used to my new speakers'' break in.
8mile13 is online now  
post #479 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 08:18 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Sean Spamilton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, ON
Posts: 1,352
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 448 Post(s)
Liked: 555
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
And the .02 dB difference is so small because...

"Taken together, it's clear the volume of air confined within the sealed cabinet of the enclosed box loudspeaker system moderates any measurable and/or audible changes that might arise as a consequence of driver compliance changes."-Audioholics

So what about woofers in horns, or ported, or open/infinite baffle designs? The midrange in the Audioholics article actually "broke in" more that the woofer (.09dB), is it possible that a woofer would exhibit different behavior if it was not in an acoustic suspension enclosure? After all the author notes that "a net post-burn in compliance increase on the order of 5% - 10% would not be unusual"

I wish I had a mic with proven accuracy down to .02 dB. Anyone know how Audioholics come up with those measurements?
No idea - but they go on to say that with subwoofers break-in should occur within minutes, or after a couple of heavy bass notes:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggfYe2QxJ4g#t=18
(watch @ 1:30 mark)

This is in stark contrast to Rythmik who state 1 - 2 weeks!
http://www.rythmikaudio.com/faq.html#breakin_time

Denon X-4300 | Onkyo M-282 | Audio Technica AT-LP3 | HTPC |
Polk RTiA3 x 6 - RTiA6 x 1 - Polk Atrium 5 x 4 | PSA 15s | PSA XS30
Epson HC 2100 | 100" Elite Screen |

Last edited by Sean Spamilton; 10-13-2014 at 08:25 AM.
Sean Spamilton is offline  
post #480 of 767 Old 10-13-2014, 08:21 AM
AVS Forum Addicted Member
 
Ratman's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Collingswood, N.J.
Posts: 19,878
Mentioned: 30 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2588 Post(s)
Liked: 2413
What is speaker break-in?

This:
You audition said speakers in a showroom. They sound wonderful! You purchase them, take them home, set them up and you are now unhappy with the sound.

You return to the store and ask for a refund. The "tech" says, "Oh! You need to use these speaker wires. The 12AWG Monoprice speaker wire is horrible. Buy these and you hear improvment".

You install the new speaker wire and there is no change!

You go back to the store to complain. The "tech" says, "Oh! How long have you been using the speakers? No wonder they sound bad. You need to break them in for XX hours.

So now the customer has new speakers and speaker wire and is still unhappy. But... follows the "tech's" recommendation(s). After the XX number of hours breaking in the speakers (and the speaker wire?), he/she is still unhappy.

Back to the store. This time for a refund. The "tech" looks at the sales receipt, frowns and shakes his head and states, "I'm sorry, but it's not store policy to accept returns after XX days. There's nothing I can do. If you like, you can make an exchange for another set of speakers though!"

That's acceptable to the customer.

Then the "tech" says, "But! There is a 15% "restocking fee".
Ratman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply Audio Theory, Setup, and Chat

Tags
frontpage

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off