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I believe there is some break in period for speaker cones. A woofer is made of paper or plastic or metal, paper has fibers, plastic or rubber or foam have long chain polymers. These fibers flex when the speaker vibrates. I’ve never looked closely at a metal speaker but I’ll bet it has polymers at the inside and outside edges. But imagine a woofer reproducing 80 Hz. It flexes 80 times in the first second! I think the break in period can’t be too long. Now I am very experienced with metal fatigue. Metal has no break in period. You can wear it out (automobile engines dominant end of life failure mode is sliding wear, and careful break in avoids stressing the engine until the lubrication system is running with full flow. You can loosen seals via wear (turbochargers and jet engines need careful break in to get the rotating seals just right). But for back and forth vibration metal either breaks or it lasts forever, depending on how hard you bend it. Or life ends with corrosion or an over stress situation. I don’t believe metal breaks in. 

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1 hour ago, ODS123 said:

Please do us this favor....

 

Let one of your speakers play for 24 hours, then push them together and switch b/w them using your balance control while playing a mono song.  Do you hear a difference??  I've done this with 4 previous speakers (Spica TC-50s, PSB Stratus Minis, Vandersteen 3A sigs, and Paradigm S8 v2.) and was not able to hear one iota of difference b/w the speakers.  ..And i have excellent hearing and a keen sense of musical nuance honed from years of playing and listening to live/unamplified acoustic music.  I don't say this as a boast, but as response to the inevitable criticism of my hearing acuity.

 

Speaker manufacturers (plus some component) know the break-in claim is nonsense but allow it to persist b/c it helps reduce the number of people who return speakers b/c they failed to live up to expectations (often set by wildly glowing reviews, on-line group-think, etc..).  ...They know that if they specify a long-enough break-in time, people will simply grow accustomed to the sound of their new speakers and become resigned to keeping them.

 

Do you really think PWK would support the idea of 200 hr breakin period??  Of course not.  ..Nor did Bob Crites.


This is about as worthless as an ABX test. And trust me, that’s pretty worth........

wait for it.............less.

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What an entertaining read......reminds me of the solid state versus tube debates.  Here is my take. Seven hours and thirteen minutes warm up at 91db and you will have all the good stuff you need from those speakers.  I suggest a non stop loop of Ina Goda Davita.  Wear some good quality ear muffs till then. 

By the way 12 ga speaker wire is more than adequate.  Tubes?  Would love to hear some golden ear audiophiles listen to stock tubes, wait for them to cool, install different tubes, wait for them to warm up, and tell me what you prefer.  Your audio memory is surely better than mine.

Have fun guys.  I remember two psychological theories namely "Two Point Threshold" and "Just Noticeable Difference" from college days back when dinosaurs roamed the earth.  Google them if they are still around.

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1 hour ago, Edgar said:

 

I actually conducted such an experiment a couple of months ago. I had a pair of 10" woofers that had never been played. I measured their T/S parameters right out of the box. Then I connected them, unbaffled, in parallel with the bass channels in my regular system, and let them play along with my regular listening for a few days. When I re-measured the T/S parameters, the only thing that had changed was the resonance frequency, which shifted about 10% lower.

Yep, it's pretty typical when the suspension loosens up a bit.

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1 hour ago, Shakeydeal said:


This is about as worthless as an ABX test. And trust me, that’s pretty worth........

wait for it.............less.

I was 23 years old and a member of the Audio Engineering Society. I was compelled to join after reading all the Klipsch Papers, autographed by PWK and all the Dope From Hope dealer sheets.

 

I was there during the Invention of the original AB/X box and heard a demo at the Michigan AES chapter meeting with the guys from SWMWTMS locally (the inventors). It was a very impressive way to tell if things did sound different with a minimum of 16 trials with 12 being the target number of correct X picks that had statistical significance.

 

We were testing pre amps as I recall. It's not the be all end all to all audio arguments, but it's a very good tool. Most so called "audiophiles" are afraid of it, almost as much as the Weiner Null Tester for cables. Because it would shatter most people quasi religious beliefs about the audibility of components. As proven by JBL's Floyd Toole, when you don't know what's playing you can't have a pre conceived notion of what's what. The people who generally disavow the AB/X box are those who claim they can hear a picobel drop across a relay contact. Klipscheads need to avoid those people like the plague.

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ABX testing is fraught with problems one of which is the stress of trying to hear a difference with snippets of music. The best way to tell which YOU prefer is long term listening. We don’t listen to music in 30 second intervals. At least I don’t.


Some things are so obvious that it’s readily apparent, other things not so much. Are we going to relegate these other things as inconsequential? I’m not.

 

This hobby is supposed to be fun. To me it’s not about listening to test tones and reading measurements. It’s about what component connects me more to the music. I don’t need an ABX nod for that.
 

Shakey

 

 

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I have mixed feelings about ABX testing. On one hand, it serves as a very effective :pwk_bs: filter for claims that someone can hear the color of zip ties. On the other hand, I have personally experienced situations in which I did not notice something until somebody else pointed it out, after which I could identify it easily and repeatably. So there is that aspect of knowing exactly what to listen for. 

 

"Once you notice the flaw in the glass, you can never look through the window again."

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On 2/24/2021 at 4:19 AM, garyrc said:

One Klipsch engineer, whose name I forget (not Roy) said, speaking generally, "15 minutes."

 

I've heard other people say "30 hours," but never "400 - 500 hours."

I believe that engineer was Trey.  He is active over on the FB page Klipsch Owners, run by @Paducah Home Theater, Cory.  He said about 15-20 minutes is what they do in the lab.  I'm paraphrasing here and if I'm wrong, please correct me.

 

But I'm going to settle this once and for all (sarcasm!) .  According to Klipsch, Inc. break-in is about 100 hours.

 

Quote

 

How long you want to break in your speakers is one of those audiophile questions that doesn’t necessarily have a right or wrong answer.

100 hours? You’re in great shape.

If this seems unattainable, just continue the break in period with your favorite music and movies as you would normally enjoy them.

https://www.klipsch.com/blog/how-and-why-to-break-in-your-new-speakers

 

+++

I agree with @Chris A further upstream who said "it depends."  I am in this camp.  I once bought some 15" pro woofers for a DIY project.  I plugged them in free air to listen to them and they were just awful.  Being pro woofers they were also extremely stiff.  Once I got them into some boxes and played them for about a month they greatly loosened up.

 

OTOH I've had sub drivers which sounded great right out of the box.  No break-in needed.

 

My opinion would be to play your brand new speakers normally and in about a month they will sound better.  As Chris said, break-in depends on the drivers. 

 

Glad I could clear all this up!  👍  🤣

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5 hours ago, Shakeydeal said:


This is about as worthless as an ABX test. And trust me, that’s pretty worth........

wait for it.............less.

 

I'm all ears. :)  Please explain why "worthless". 

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I wonder if  "break-in" is followed in aerospace engineering?  ...Do airliners come off the assembly line and pilots are told "don't expect rolll and yaw response to be immediate and linear for maybe 200-300 hours".

 

so ridic.

 

 

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4 hours ago, wvu80 said:

I believe that engineer was Trey.  He is active over on the FB page Klipsch Owners, run by @Paducah Home Theater, Cory.  He said about 15-20 minutes is what they do in the lab.  I'm paraphrasing here and if I'm wrong, please correct me.

 

But I'm going to settle this once and for all (sarcasm!) .  According to Klipsch, Inc. break-in is about 100 hours.

 

 

The general consensus is that about 80 maybe 100 hours of normal use will do it.  

 

If you want to speed it up, there's a few things that can be done.  One Klipsch exec takes speakers, wires them out of phase, places them close and facing each other, then plays pink noise all night.  Seaton Sound basically takes a woofer, plays a sine wave where it's approximately 1/2 full exertion, a few hz below Fs, for half an hour.  In the Klipsch lab they do something similar as the latter but I forget the exact parameters, do it for 15-20 minutes.  

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33 minutes ago, ODS123 said:

I wonder if  "break-in" is followed in aerospace engineering?  ...Do airliners come off the assembly line and pilots are told "don't expect rolll and yaw response to be immediate and linear for maybe 200-300 hours".

 

so ridic.

 

 

 

piston engines do break in, most new vehicles start getting better gas mileage like at 10,000 miles.  Whether that applies to a jet engine or not, I have no idea, but I'm not sure what else could require break in on a plane.  

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6 hours ago, Pondoro said:

I believe there is some break in period for speaker cones. 

 

Cones shouldn't flex much.  It's all about the spiders.  The spider contributes to about 70% of a woofer's compliance according to the Loudspeaker Design Cookbook.  It's often coated with a layer of epoxy.  Basically as the cloth moves you create little micro-tears which loosens it up.  Just as a visual, consider buying a new pair of jeans, what those feel like vs. ones that are 10 years old, and those aren't even really stiff like new spiders are, yet you can still tell a big difference.  

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7 hours ago, ODS123 said:

Let one of your speakers play for 24 hours, then push them together and switch b/w them using your balance control while playing a mono song.  Do you hear a difference??

 

I've taken four identical 18" Ultimax woofers, used two for six months, then built a new box that used four.  I A/B'ed the old ones vs. the new ones in an identical box.  Down low there wasn't really any perceivable difference, a 35 hz thud sounded about the same on either.  Where I could tell the difference was in faint upper harmonics such as on bass guitar, just was not the same at all.  The old ones were crystal clear with lots of micro-details.  The new ones sounded like you threw a wet blanket over them comparatively.  

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43 minutes ago, ODS123 said:

 

I'm all ears. :)  Please explain why "worthless". 

don't worry, be happy. Some people will never be convinced that scientific experiments can be devised to reveal the truth. No matter what you do. I too knew the Gentelmen that ClaudeJ1 referred to that invented/developed/manufactured the ABX test system. And like edgar said it cut through :pwk_bs:

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14 hours ago, Shakeydeal said:

For all of you who hang your hat on what an engineer has to say, remember this. They all told us back in the 70s that SS amps measured better so they sounded better, tube amps were inferior and "watts are cheap". How did that turn out?

 

 

From what I hear, tube amps as a whole really weren't all that great during that time period.  William Zane Johnson founded Audio Research and reintroduced tubes into the high end world in 1970 but it was mostly him against the world at first.  The rest of the community didn't catch on until the 80's and there was somewhat of a tube revolution / renaissance at that point.  On the flip side, the early solid state amps weren't all that great either, the early transistors being made of germanium, being unreliable, and producing a bunch of odd order harmonic distortion, which is why Johnson did what he did.  Basically everything kinda sucked back then.  ;)

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13 hours ago, ODS123 said:

I wonder if  "break-in" is followed in aerospace engineering?  ...Do airliners come off the assembly line and pilots are told "don't expect rolll and yaw response to be immediate and linear for maybe 200-300 hours".

 

so ridic.

 

 

don't know about break in but in my 17 years at Hughes Aircraft I know we tested the sheet out of radars.

When the pilot of an F/A-18 turned the radar on it was not the first time power had been applied:)

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5 hours ago, ODS123 said:

 

I'm all ears. :)  Please explain why "worthless". 


Back up a few posts and you’ll see where I laid it all out for you.....

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Audiophiles consider themselves to be connoisseurs who possess elevated hearing skills that allow them to hear differences between.....

  • break-in periods that extend beyond minutes into hours (perhaps hundreds!);
  • amplifiers that measure the same (be they S/S or Tube)
  • tone controls that are bypassed
  • interconnects
  • power-cords
  • speaker cables;
  • DACs/ CD-Players;
  • Bit rates and lossy compression.... 

IMHO, the truth is that all of these combined will not add up to even 5% of how your system sounds.  How a system sounds is >95% about room setup, room treatments, and speaker selection.  ..Unfortunately, this doesn't leave enough for audiophiles to bicker about or for the audio industry to profit from, so these nonsensical,  non-scientific notions will forever be embraced.  

 

It's disappointing because this explains why so few people become audiophiles.  I know people who contemplated buying nice, floor-standing speakers from an audio dealer but elected to go with Sonos because the salesman started in with "..to get the best of these speakers you'll need this (expensive) amplifier, and speaker cables, and ....etc etc..."   

 

I find it interesting that we revere PWK as this no-BS revolutionary thinker.... yet, we embrace the very snake oil he detested.

 

 

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