Originally Posted by Anaxilus
Asked and answered 100 times already.
Regardless of anyone's opinion about the 'phenomenon' it makes zero sense from a business or economics stand point. Total loser of an idea.
1-Extra actual cost
-Allocating extra personnel and space
-using extra power and resources
-cost must be passed on to the consumer in the product price leading to
-reduced competition due to increased costs. Economics will favor the manufacturer that doesn't waste their time and effort and keeps costs low
3-Extra opportunity costs
-loss of income due to product sitting around doing burn-in cycles
-every second your product isn't on the sales floor means someone isn't buying it or is buying a competitor.
4-Market too small
-Beats, ibud users never heard of burn-in and couldn't give a rats a**.
-why devote resources to a natural phenomenon? Going to happen anyway from people using it on their own
-controversial topic that could cost as many customers as it gains
6-Attorneys and frivolous lawsuits
-legal liabilities of selling a used product as new
-marketing a claim or effect w/o sufficient data/proof.
-increased wear could increase warranty claims
-unlike SS gear that doesn't move, a driver does. It acts as a spring and piston, motion causes wear.
People have or do market the gear/service in the aftermarket already. Nobody in their right mind claims burn-in turns a Beats Solo into a HD800. Just like a BMW never becomes a Ferrari with burn-in/break-in/rodage. So why people continue to debate fallacious straw men on both sides is beyond me. Nvm, it isn't.
About point 1 and 2: I don't buy that extra cost and competitiveness, when you are talking about premium items. Just like cars with engine break-in are reserved for high-end models, this could also apply to high-end headphones. I've seen cans that cost over 2000USD so these cans are ideal for masking the extra actual cost and competitive pricing was never a factor to begin with.
About point 3: again, using the car as an analogy, a Ferrari or Porsche sitting in the factory isn't a problem because again, we're not targeting the average Joe Blow headphones.
About point 4: The market is small, but then again, I'm sure the market is very small for cans that cost 2000USD, yet the market is there.
About point 5: This is probably the point where I've seen the most back-and-forth on the entire Head-Fi forum: is there such a thing as burn-in anyway? But that point is moot as people who would pay this sort of premium for headphones would still have the option to buy headphones that came pre-burned or without pre-burn.
About point 6: Wouldn't this apply to car engines just as much, yet this is common practice for - and expected of - high-end sports cars? And there would be no issue with proving because you have done the burn-in at the manufacturing level, regardless of whether this burn-in effect actually exists or is just a placebo effect. Computers go through stress tests all the time to weed out defective products at the manufacturing level yet there is no perceived benefit at all to the end user, apart from the fact that you take for granted that the device works.
About point 7: Again, if the cans cost an arm and a leg figuratively, the extra warranty cost could easily be built into the total cost of the headphones. And an engine has many moving parts as well, much more than headphones, yet they routinely break engines in by running them for the equivalent of 5,000kms prior to handing the keys over to the buyer.
Finally, you are right about Beats never becoming HD800s. Then again, nobody was implying that in the first place. What was implied though, was that the HD800s can now be bought burned in. If someone who really cares / believes in burn-in and is in the market for HD800s (or AH-D7100, or whatever in that price range), they can now get them and enjoy them out of the box right away, without having to go through the process of looping white and pink and radio and all sorts of other noises for up to 10 days before they can get to listening to their music.
I personally don't believe in burn-in, but if I did, and if I were in the market for headphones over 1000USD, then I would say sure, buying pre-burned-in headphones would be an attractive proposition to me.