"breaking in" speakers?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by James Brown, Jul 24, 2002.

  1. James Brown

    James Brown Stunt Coordinator

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    I've heard about "breaking in" speakers... does anyone have any details on this? Very new to home theater. just got a setup over the weekend.

    any input would be appreciated.
     
  2. Joe Tilley

    Joe Tilley Supporting Actor

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    James, what people are referring to is to play some pink noise or some type of music for a given period of time at lower levels. This gives the speakers the chance to (break in) loosen up instead of just throwing some crazy music in & going full tilt. There is a pretty noticeable difference in the way your speakers will sound once they have been played for awhile compared to how they will sound out of the box.

    One of the easiest ways to do it would be to leave your system on wile your gone for awhile, just set it to a radio station or play a cd on repete, as for how long to do this will very. I know on my system I gave them about 16hours or so before I really started to play anything very loud on it,& there was a noticeable difference on how they sound now compared to when I got them.
     
  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    Hi James. Welcome to HTF! [​IMG]
    Speaker break in is real. If you have ordinary cone speakers, there is a mechanical spring called the "spyder" that is initially extra stiff. Over the first few hours of use, it will loosen up a bit. This will change the sound/tone a bit.
    The other part of break in is your ears: it's like getting used to a new brand of coffee or soda - it just takes a bit of time to get used to the taste.
    You can play music/CD for several hours while you are away, but like any relationship, dont be afraid to spend time with your system. It will sound better in a few weeks.
    In case I might guess your next questions:
    - No. Cables and electronics dont need break in time. Warm up time for the electronics, but not break in time.
    - No. Your speaker wires dont all need to be the same length.
    - Yes. You should use 12 ga wire for all your speakers. You really only need it for the longer runs, but most of us buy a spool of 12 ga from Home Depot or www.partsexpress.com and use it for everything.
    - A ordinary video cable ($15) makes a great coaxial-digital cable. It tends to be cheaper/more robust than an optical cable.
    - You should use at least a SVideo or Component (3 wire) cable between your DVD player and your TV. The Acoustic Research brand or even Radio Shack work well for modest systems.
    Feel free to hit us with any other questions you have. But you might want to check out the last 10-20 days of posts. Most likely, others asked the same questions a few days ago. If not, ask away. This area (and the entire site) is a "flame-free" zone.
    We hope you enjoy your visit.
     
  4. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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    I like to break in my speakers my entire life. [​IMG]
    If you would like some numbers for most speakers I'd say 50 hours of playing music at an average listening level.
    You don't have to play test tones or music very loud. Just enjoy the speakers while they break in. After 50-200 hours they'll probably begin to sound different than they were fresh out of the box. The time it takes for this noticeable "difference" to occur is what I call "Break-in time". Of course it'll be different with the various types of brand names and musical tastes.
    Some people may claim that electronics need break in, and sound better when they are always on. This is still debated but I still somewhat agree that amps need to break in too, especially tube amps.
     
  5. James Brown

    James Brown Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you for the quick and informational responces. I did not know that an ordinary cable would support a digital signal. After reading your response Bob, I tried using a monster cable from my DVD to the receiver and now pick up the DTS signal.

    Im hearing different things about cables and wires. I use Monster in my car and do see a difference in sound.

    I ve actually watched a few dvd's already but not too high in volume. Is it too late to break the speakers in?
     
  6. Greg*go

    Greg*go Supporting Actor

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    James

    Regardless of what you do, you can't avoid breaking the speakers in. Everytime you use your speakers it will be breaking them in. It's also similar to shoes... The first time you put them on they might be a bit awkward, but everytime you put them on your feet, they get less stiff and more comfortable. In your case though, the more you play your speakers, the more they'll break in. As Bob said:

     
  7. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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