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A non-typical question about burn in

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

Why does burning in seem to result in better sound 99% of the time? (It's 100% of the time from what I've read but I wanted to allow some room for a difference).

post #2 of 17

How is "better" better?

And does that apply to BA drivers IEM as well?

post #3 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by roadcykler View Post

Why does burning in seem to result in better sound 99% of the time? (It's 100% of the time from what I've read but I wanted to allow some room for a difference).

 

Because people expect it to improve

post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eisenhower View Post
Because people expect it to improve

 

Exactly. It's the same reason the sound (seems to) improve when you use speaker wire elevators, magic crystals, a CD "demagnetizer," ad nauseum.

 

--Ethan

post #5 of 17

adopting a Live and Let Live posture, asking "What is the demo period and what restocking fees (if any) are applied?" will serve you well in your audiophile adventures!

 

 

Currently listening to Joe Morris "Age of Everything"

post #6 of 17

Eisenhower got it.  Because people expect it to, literally the only time I've heard about people complaining about possible burn-in effects was an M50 owner once, and he was brand new to the hobby, and not a well experienced and (most likely biased) enthusiast.

post #7 of 17

I listened to my SRH840 right out of the box, it's as good as anything I know it could.
I listened to my T70 right out of the box, the peak is as intolerable in pianos and didn't improve after 4 months consistent playing.

 

However, I listened to IEMs and they do mellow out the peak and trebles. And also a thinner sounding.

 

I don't understand dynamic driver and my brain at all.

post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by autumnholy View Post

I don't understand dynamic driver and my brain at all.

Had it striked like that and this applies to me but more so with many others :)

post #9 of 17

Expectation is surely a part of the equation, but if it'd be the only part, well then we probably wouldn't have one person claim to hear burn-in on device X and not on device Y. I've heard earphones where burn-in helped; other which were beyond helping; other where there was no difference; yet other which didn't improve at all (despite the reports) and later I found I got not a new, but refurb copy. So, go figure. But if it would be just in the mind, I guess the reports wouldn't be so consistent.

 

Why does it occur? Who cares really... Since the effect can't be measured, it might very well be magical properties of some materials biggrin.gif


Edited by PMAP - 9/24/12 at 6:03am
post #10 of 17

Its like eating weird food, sometimes you get used to it. The same goes for your other senses like touch, smell etc. Our ears ain't electronics, they learn and recalibrate themselves and sometimes not for the better.

post #11 of 17

The only things that burn in are things that move (i.e. speakers and headphones). There's a really good post on here somewhere (that I can't find any more) where the response of a brand new headphone is compared to the response after some burn in. IIRC the bass response improves a bit, but the difference is rather small (as in, probably not easy to hear at all).

 

The rest is psychological.


Edited by joeyjojo - 9/24/12 at 7:43am
post #12 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeyjojo View Post

The only things that burn in are things that move (i.e. speakers and headphones). There's a really good post on here somewhere (that I can't find any more) where the response of a brand new headphone is compared to the response after some burn in. IIRC the bass response improves a bit, but the difference is rather small (as in, probably not easy to hear at all).

 

The rest is psychological.

 

You mean the test ran by Tyll?

 

Well, psychological or otherwise, it does sound good and that's all that matters.

But there's no reason why we should've wait till the headphone is "fully burn in" in order to enjoy it. I'd rather the manufacturer burn in them for me if that's the case.

post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by PMAP View Post

Expectation is surely a part of the equation, but if it'd be the only part, well then we probably wouldn't have one person claim to hear burn-in on device X and not on device Y.

 

Logically speaking this is incorrect. The problem is human hearing is not reliable. The same person might hear something one time but miss it five minutes later. It's also common for people to report a change in sound quality even when nothing changed. This is the real issue. This article was written for mixing engineers, but it surely applies here:

 

Perception - the Final Frontier

 

Originally Posted by PMAP View Post
Since the effect can't be measured, it might very well be magical properties of some materials biggrin.gif

 

I assure you that everything audible can be measured. There is no magic.

 

--Ethan

post #14 of 17
Quote:

Logically speaking this is incorrect. The problem is human hearing is not reliable. The same person might hear something one time but miss it five minutes later. It's also common for people to report a change in sound quality even when nothing changed. This is the real issue. This article was written for mixing engineers, but it surely applies here:

 

Well, sure, no arguing about that. Still, I find it odd that there's such a strong consensus that (for example) dynamic earphones require/benefit from burn-in while BA don't. Mind you that's from a group of people who will never agree on anything. Strange coincidence. And it's not just people who are aware about this phenomenom - I know people who expected burn-in from their first BA phones but didn't hear it. Go figure.

 

Either way I won't argue whether the burn-in effect physically exists or it's just in ones head. I say - if you hear it, it exists for you. If you don't, it doesn't matter. Audio equipment is made for listening music and music is about enjoyment - and enjoyment is always just in ones head.

post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 

Here's another question. Manufacturers of speakers and headphones choose the materials they do and make their items a certain way, after listening to them. Don't you figure they play music through those things for more than just a few minutes?

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