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Running in of new speakers

Mulldog

Active Member
Hello,

I have recently got 2 Phantom Reactors which have Aluminium drivers.

Run time for them so far has been about 9 hours at about 35 to 40% volume.

Do these need running in before cranking them up? Is this good practice for paper cone speakers only?

Many thanks in advance!
 

dannnielll

Well-known Member
Hello,

I have recently got 2 Phantom Reactors which have Aluminium drivers.

Run time for them so far has been about 9 hours at about 35 to 40% volume.

Do these need running in before cranking them up? Is this good practice for paper cone speakers only?

Many thanks in advance!
What do you realistically expect to happen during this running in?. In what mechanical way will these devices benefit?.
 

Mulldog

Active Member
I don't know hence the question :)
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
Difference speakers take difference amounts of Break In time. I saw some speakers today that take 200 to 300 hours. But generally, for most common speakers, 20 hours is a good start.

Then we come to what do you mean by - ...cranking them up...?

You are already playing at 40% volume, which should be pretty loud. How loud do you want to go?

Also, while the Phantom Reactors might have Aluminum Cones, they have rubber or foam surround rings just like any other speakers, and this is what is getting broke in.

Steve/bluewizard
 

Hixs

Distinguished Member
The guys from Audioholics suggested one song was enough to 'break in' a speaker (ie get all mech parts of the drive settled). Anything past that is just manufacture/audiophile nonsense.
 

dazed&confused

Well-known Member
Also, while the Phantom Reactors might have Aluminum Cones, they have rubber or foam surround rings just like any other speakers, and this is what is getting broke in.

Steve/bluewizard

The following information, which comes from the user-manual for my speakers (PMC), appears to offer some valid insight. It supports what Steve says above; i.e. it is the surround, not the driver itself, that gets 'run in'.

If this information is 'nonsense' then I can't imagine why PMC would not have realised it (after all, they use some of the most advanced audio physics laboratories in the country to measure the response of their speakers during their development), or why they might be motivated to make it up, given the potential damage to their reputation from them being 'caught out' if that were the case.

"When loudspeakers are new they will take time to reach their full potential. It is often debated whether any solid-state equipment, such as CD players or transistor-based power amplifiers change with use, but the characteristics of mechanical devices such as loudspeakers do alter and improve their performance significantly after a short ‘running in’ period. The science is simple; as the soft material surrounding the dome or woofer cone is flexed it will eventually reach a point where it has optimum compliancy, allowing the drive unit to move more freely. This translates to greater accuracy and speed of attack in the bass region and the mid and high frequency produces a far more vivid audio picture. This short ‘running in’ period takes approximately 50 hours of normal use".

Note, however, that the information refers to the speakers "reaching their full potential" - there is no mention whatsoever of any risk of causing any damage from playing the speakers too loud before they have been fully 'run in'.
 
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larkone

Distinguished Member
The science is simple; as the soft material surrounding the dome or woofer cone is flexed it will eventually reach a point where it has optimum compliancy, allowing the drive unit to move more freely.

It's all downhill after that so best not to use them once they are perfectly run in.
 

Tricky-Ricky

Well-known Member
I fail to see just how a rubber or foam support ring can get run in, it is made to support the cone and keep it centralized if it was to give and become more compliant with use from its original manufactured spec it would then change the perimeters of its ability to damp the cone movement...so if that is the case all speakers would be a on a downward spiral from the first time they are used.
 

Hixs

Distinguished Member
People will believe what they're told to believe..

The guys over on Audioholics covered this

- starts @1:07
 

GW43

Well-known Member
If car engines don't need to be run-in these days, I can't see why you would have to run-in a speaker cone.
Difference speakers take difference amounts of Break In time. I saw some speakers today that take 200 to 300 hours.

Steve/bluewizard

300 hours???

If that was a car, at an average of 30mph, that would be 9,000 miles before it was run in.

My dad's old Allegro was knackered by the time it had done 9,000 miles!
 

dazed&confused

Well-known Member
People will believe what they're told to believe.. The guys over on Audioholics covered this

Are you referring to yourself; i.e. do you mean you believe whatever the guys at Audio-holics tell you to believe?

I'm trying NOT to believe what they told me in the last video of theirs that I watched, which is that my modestly priced speaker cable is "crap" because it has quite a thick dielectric between each pair of wires.

http://www.van-damme.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Van_Damme_UPOFC_Hi-Fi_Speaker.pdf

I can't see that their claims (e.g. about speaker running-in periods) are any more substantiated than the opposing claims made by other, highly qualified engineers which they dispute. We don't have any real information about the empirical evidence they allude to.
 

dazed&confused

Well-known Member
If car engines don't need to be run-in these days, I can't see why you would have to run-in a speaker cone.

I don't think anyone's suggesting that speakers HAVE to be run-in are they, in the sense of low volumes to protect them, like old cars had to be run-in at slow speeds? All that's been suggested is that they may take some time to reach optimum performance. I do agree through, that 300 hours seems ridiculously long.
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
If car engines don't need to be run-in these days, I can't see why you would have to run-in a speaker cone.

300 hours???...!

SOME SPEAKERS TAKE LONGER THAN OTHERS. I saw some SPECIFIC speakers that required 200 to 300 hours. Though as I said, for most 20 hours is a good start -

Tribe Tower - Specifications - Totem Acoustic

"Break-in Time: 200 - 300 hours"

If you have a problem with that, give Totem Acoustics a call and give them a piece of your mind.

Steve/bluewizard
 

Tricky-Ricky

Well-known Member
If car engines don't need to be run-in these days, I can't see why you would have to run-in a speaker cone.


300 hours???

If that was a car, at an average of 30mph, that would be 9,000 miles before it was run in.

My dad's old Allegro was knackered by the time it had done 9,000 miles!


LOL! likening a car engine running in (or not) to speakers is about as far away from a real scenario as you could get......there should be no friction in a speaker.
 

dogfonos

Well-known Member
I hadn't realized there was still doubt that the compliance of suspension systems (in general) tend to change with use - even when used within their elastic range.

There are many everyday examples of suspension systems that change (usually soften) over time. It's not a surprise that loudspeaker drivers often demonstrate this effect too, though whether the initial compliance change is audible depends on the severity.

Many active monitor speakers, such as mine, come direct from China and probably haven't been played much before - if at all - so the sound can change a little when first played. Other speakers may have been tested/played by the manufacturer and therefore may already be run-in so the customer won't notice any audible changes. Only one pair of the many speakers that have passed through my hands clearly changed (and benefited) when run-in. And the 'before' and 'after' comparison was obvious.

Thiele/Small parameters - Wikipedia (see "Lifetime changes in driver behavior")

https://www.almainternational.org/y...loudspeaker_suspensions-klippel.106164342.pdf

I can't find an article/blog I read recently about a DIY'ers experience with a Peerless subwoofer driver but they found compliance increased after a period of run-in. I'll post if I find it.
 

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