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Burn-in/Break-in...are you a believer? - Page 2

post #16 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden Monkey View Post
I usually leave my rig powered on for about 30 mins or so before listening, usually, even though it's all solid state. The DAC especially improves by doing this. I notice no difference in the amp or source however, but it can't hurt.
How do you know it's the DAC that benefits from this and not the other elements in the chain?

See ya
Steve
post #17 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden Monkey View Post
Redneck, that's why multiple choices were an option...I didn't want to limit it too much, as you may believe that components require break-in, power cables don't, but you can't explain why, etc.
Shoot, I missed that part about multiple choice.

<Note to self: reread twice, submit once>
post #18 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post
How do you know it's the DAC that benefits from this and not the other elements in the chain?

See ya
Steve
If I power on and start listening, and switch inputs on my amp (I have the DAC output on input 1, and the CDP line out on input 2, since SACD won't output to the digital domain), they both sound very similar, but if the DAC's powered on for some time, the difference is VERY apparent. There's a much more natural and smooth sound with the DAC at that point. I've tried letting everything BUT the DAC warm up first, and there's very little difference at all. The amp's soundstage improves a tad, but that's it.
post #19 of 32
I have experienced headphone break-in, so yes, I beleive it exists. Burn-in of components in amps and such, I would not be surprised if some components change their specs, affecting sound over time. Cables, do not know, but highly unlikely IMO, at least to the point of being audible to my ears. I have not come to the point, where I leave my CD's in the freezer for a day before I listen to them
post #20 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden Monkey View Post
If I power on and start listening, and switch inputs on my amp (I have the DAC output on input 1, and the CDP line out on input 2, since SACD won't output to the digital domain), they both sound very similar, but if the DAC's powered on for some time, the difference is VERY apparent.
I would check it against other CD players and DACs. You may like what is happening to the sound, but I would bet that it's starting in spec and shifting off spec as it warms up, not the other way around.

See ya
Steve
post #21 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post
I would check it against other CD players and DACs. You may like what is happening to the sound, but I would bet that it's starting in spec and shifting off spec as it warms up, not the other way around.

See ya
Steve
Other way around, bud. Thermal oscillation can cause parts to operate out of spec.
post #22 of 32
Why would it sound exactly the same as his CD player *before* it returned to spec and dramatically different after? If he checks it against a few other CD players and they all sound the same when the DAC is cold, but different from his DAC when it warms up, odds are something is funky with the DAC. A DAC shouldn't change sound dramatically like that when it gets warm. That's a red flag.

See ya
Steve
post #23 of 32
Thread Starter 
It's a fairly subtle difference, but there nonetheless. To put it in words, the bass notes are more detailed, the highs smooth out, it becomes less edgy, and it gets a more "liquidy" sound...Ori's recommendation is about 45 mins, and that does seem to be correct. The difference is there, for sure, but it could be MORESO just due to listening time as well. I can say that CDP only is much more "digital" and edgy, and the OMZ when "warm" is a much more natural and detailed sound.
post #24 of 32
I'm afraid that I have no idea what you're describing. Poetic descriptions like "liquidy sound" might be the perfect way to describe it to yourself, but my idea of "liquidy sound" is probably quite different than other peoples'.

There are specific terms for types of sounds... distortion, frequency, dynamics, harmonics, etc... these terms can describe sound MUCH more accurately than poetic terms. It's worth learning to be precise in your descriptions, particularly on a board like this where you're trying to explain sound in words. (Not an easy task even with a more precise vocabulary.)

That said, you should compare your warmed up DAC to other DACs or CD players. It may be that you have some sort of imbalance in your system that an error in the DAC is compensating for. If that's the case, by correcting it further down stream *all* of your sources will sound good to you, not just your one DAC.

See ya
Steve
post #25 of 32
Thread Starter 
:rolls eyes:
Whatever...thanks, Mr. Audio Guru. I'll be sure to be more clinical in my language next time. I know my audio terminology, I just prefer to NOT come off like an ass in every post, or be a condescending A-hole like some people...

I HAVE compared it to other DACs and players...there's no imbalance in my system, and the player itself sounds fine, it's just a much drier (if I can use that term...if so, I hope I used it correctly and to your satisfaction) and more fatiguing than the OMZ's sound. Perhaps if you have a chance to hear this DAC, instead of looking for ways to shoot holes in every post by people you don't agree with, you'd know what I'm talking about.

I don't see why you have to take a negative and contradictory stance to nearly every post, and always have this "actually...*sneer*..." tone to everything you say. I see no equipment in your profile at all...how is a person to know that you are not just an argumentative, opinionated kook who just likes to be a know-it-all, er, "bigshot"...oh, wait...I get it now. This is actually some sort of performance art, is it? You're a method actor, maybe, rehearshing a role? Perhaps you're a social philosopher, here to show us all the errors of our ways, to point out how trivial all of our minds, tastes, and spending habits really are? I can often agree with things you say, when you are not just looking to one-up everyone. That said, I can't wait for the "I, Objectivist" forum to be open so you and other smug experts can enlighten each other with your profound views and superior understanding of everything under the sun, and piss all over each other's threads by dragging them all down into useless arguements and elitest self-love...

See ya...
post #26 of 32
You're totally misreading my post. If you follow my reasoning, you'll see that I'm just trying to define the problem, not acting condescending.

Here is the logic... If two components sound exactly the same, the odds are that's the way they are *supposed* to sound. It's not common at all for things like DACs and CD players to fail in *exactly* the same way and to the same degree. There shouldn't be big differences in sound between them. That's why I suggested comparing your DAC to other CD players. Do other CD players sound more like your CD player and your DAC cold than your DAC warmed up? If so, your DAC is the problem.

It's also very uncommon for modern solid state electronic components to sound very different when they is cold compared to when they're warmed up. Tubes? Yes. Solid state. No. If it is changing significantly as it warms up, that is probably because something is failing or overheating, not because it is warming up and getting better.

If those two unlikely scenarios happened in my system, it would throw up a red flag for me. I'd try to determine exactly what is going on, because my inclination would be to think that there is something wrong with the DAC. I wouldn't wait until it fails completely before I dealt with it.

If you like what the failing component is doing... ie: high end rolloff... you can apply that across the board to all your sources and they will all sound as good. Then your CD player won't sound harsh and digital any more.

Is that clearer?

See ya
Steve
post #27 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post
Tubes? Yes. Solid state. No. If it is changing significantly as it warms up, that is probably because something is failing or overheating, not because it is warming up and getting better.
Steve, master of the sweeping generalization.

Perhaps the designer of the output stage has a better understanding of thermal dynamics and actually considered the fact that groups of components soldered to a circuit board could operate *optimally* at a consistent temperature, somewhere above 72F?
post #28 of 32
Thread Starter 
Being that Ori is an electrical engineer by trade, with over 40 years of experience, I'm inclined to agree.

Also, Steve...I want to apologise for my previous post...I was tired and cranky when I wrote that, after a 15 hour day at work. I'm not taking back what I said, but feel like I could have said it a bit more tactfully. You DO argue minutiae ad nauseum, and seem to enjoy finding problems with people's opinions, but you're entitled to speak your mind...

Anyway, I know it's not a problem with the DAC itself...other people far more knowledgeable about this stuff than I have listened to it (including Ori, who tests thoroughly each DAC he builds) and feel that it sounds great. The difference between cold and warmed up is not one of those "night and day" differences we all love, it's much more subtle, yet apparent. It's not a progressive change in sound either...it reaches a certain point, and it's just it's sonic signature. You can't tell me that all DACs should sound the same, or not have any sonic flavor of their own...the DAC in my source is fine, it is just on the bright and edgy side, and imparts more of the "problems of digital as source" character, which is exactly what Ori had in mind to remedy when he designed his DAC.
post #29 of 32
Any notion that speakers and headphones don't experience break in time is just silly. But I think high end amplifiers go through it as well.
post #30 of 32
Sorry for the misunderstanding. I was going on your description of the difference as being "VERY apparent". If it's a subtle difference, that's different. It appears that your DAC has been designed to produce a particular sound, different from the standard.

My purpose isn't to discuss "minituae ad nauseum". I'm talking about home audio with folks who have an interest in the subject, and sometimes that requires asking questions to try to pin down imprecise language. Getting great sound isn't magic. It's a applying a logical process of analysis to define and attack problems. You can't solve a problem effectively until you define it.

And, yes. To me, all DACs should in theory sound the pretty much the same, and most of them do. I work from the principle that all sources should have a flat response, so if you need to adjust the quality of the sound for your own particular situation or tastes, you do that on the back end, where the same adjustment is applied to everything equally. If I had a piece of equipment that was designed to produce a particular kind of sound- and didn't sound the same as the rest of my equipment- I wouldn't want it, because every time I switched back and forth, I would have to readjust.

The only way to precisely control sound is to start from a consistent baseline. It's perfectly possible to strike a balance that makes just about all properly aligned equipment and all consistently engineered music sound great. That's what I'm aiming at.

Carefully balancing the response of frequencies between 6kHz and 12kHz usually solves the edginess that some people describe as "digital sounding" or "fatiguing".

See ya
Steve
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