Originally Posted by Antony6555
has burn-in ever been subject to blind testing?
First, sampson_smith, great piece of writing. Some style amidst the 1's and 0's.
Second, re your question -- I think Uncle Erik, as usual, put everything into perspective very quickly, getting to the heart of the issue. If burn-in is so critical, then why isn't it best practice in the manufacture of audiophile gear? (Yes, it's a rhetorical question, but that doesn't lessen its value.) Twylight mentions a company that does it, but I believe Haloxt's reply explains that.
Third, I think Antony6555 offers a way to resolve this (and many other Head-Fi issues) -- blind testing. Headphone A and B, the same in every way except one has been burned in for 300 hours and the other just long enough to pass final inspection at the factory. The subject doesn't know which is which. Which is better?
I guess there are other ways to test the burn-in question. Perhaps before and after FR (or other) charts. Are there significant differences in the charts after, say, 500 hours.
Personally, I listen to 'phones and equipment out of the box and don't hear any significant difference after dozens or hundreds of hours.
A number of people have said that the improvements, if any, are probably all in our minds. I tend to agree.
Finally, re the discussion about Tvrboy's comment: "Nothing has any 'inherent value.' Value only exists in the mind of the person doing the valuing." It may or may not be off topic, depending on how you look at it. I don't think it's OT. I agree with Tvrboy. Things, 'phones, amps, etc., in and of themselves, have no value. Value is in the mind of the beholder. It's like the conundrum of a tree falling in a forest. Does it make a sound if no one's around to hear it?
When human judgment enters the picture, room for error increases exponentially.