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new tube mod. burn in time? Condenser Microphones
Old 20th November 2009
  #1
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andrewenson's Avatar
 

new tube mod. burn in time?

i just modded a tube mic of mine. i replaced the tube for a new NOS tube. the tube is straight from tube depot so i was wondering about the burn in time.

i was told to "burn in" the tube?
i modded my apex460 with a used tube so i just went to town with that mic, but since this mic is using a new tube how would i go about burning it in? how long?
Old 20th November 2009
  #2
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Haz-Mat-Strat's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewenson View Post
i just modded a tube mic of mine. i replaced the tube for a new NOS tube. the tube is straight from tube depot so i was wondering about the burn in time.

i was told to "burn in" the tube?
i modded my apex460 with a used tube so i just went to town with that mic, but since this mic is using a new tube how would i go about burning it in? how long?

Hi

Three to four days should be enough. Listen for any sputtering or a high noise floor. When I use a 5703 I burn the tube in for at least two weeks.

What tube are you using?

Some Mullard EF86 develop noise after a day or so. Clean the pins with a good contact cleaner and a tooth brush before you put the tube in.

Best

Jim Jacobsen
JJ Audio
http://jjaudiomic.com/
Old 20th November 2009
  #3
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mmm i got the NOS 6072.

am i just supposed to let the microphone idle for a few days?
how exactly am i doing this?
do i just connect it to the power supply, turn it on, and let it chill?
Old 20th November 2009
  #4
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Talking

That sounds about right.

Just plug in your mic and turn on the psu. Go make a sandwich, take your dog for a walk. Visit your friends and tell them about this mic that has a vacuum tube in it. Go on facebook and tell the world that you love it how tube mics have to be burned in. Make a youtube video of your mic just sitting there looking like a 5 year old taking a time out. By the time you do all of that stuff, 10 minutes will have gone by.

I plug in my mics all the time, just so the tube gets warmed up, sometimes I actually record with them too!

If you ever want to hear some spo*** stuff, call up Ghost Hunters and tell them your tube mic is possessed. Turn it on and if you're lucky, the spirits of dead mic engineers can be heard exiting the tube during the first 15 minutes of usage

Peace
Illumination
Old 20th November 2009
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illacov View Post
That sounds about right.

Just plug in your mic and turn on the psu. Go make a sandwich, take your dog for a walk. Visit your friends and tell them about this mic that has a vacuum tube in it. Go on facebook and tell the world that you love it how tube mics have to be burned in. Make a youtube video of your mic just sitting there looking like a 5 year old taking a time out. By the time you do all of that stuff, 10 minutes will have gone by.

I plug in my mics all the time, just so the tube gets warmed up, sometimes I actually record with them too!

If you ever want to hear some spo*** stuff, call up Ghost Hunters and tell them your tube mic is possessed. Turn it on and if you're lucky, the spirits of dead mic engineers can be heard exiting the tube during the first 15 minutes of usage

Peace
Illumination
**** man, sometimes i record with my mics too. thats not what they're made for though. they're obviously blunt weapons for mugging people

okay so how many minutes (or hours?) does it take to burn in?
is it possible to leave it on too long?
Old 20th November 2009
  #6
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I've heard opposing theories on this! A few days to a few weeks. Christian Whitmore (Pro Audio Tubes) is your man for NOS - one of the good guys.
Old 20th November 2009
  #7
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Three days minimum.

Most people dont burn the mic in when they buy it. This also applies to Fet mics too. New electrolytic caps need to be "formed." The electrolytic capacitor is made from aluminum foil and electrolytic paste. When a voltage is applied to the cap, aluminum oxide forms on the foil. The aluminum oxide is a good insulator. So leave the gear on for a couple of days so that an even layer of aluminum oxide develops on the foil.

Jim Jacobsen
JJ Audio
http://jjaudiomic.com/
Old 20th November 2009
  #8
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DAMN. leave it on for 72 hours straight?
Old 20th November 2009
  #9
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illacov's Avatar
 

Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewenson View Post
DAMN. leave it on for 72 hours straight?
Sure why not??

Peace
Illumination
Old 21st November 2009
  #10
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damn, are you being serious lol?
Old 21st November 2009
  #11
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Rick Sutton's Avatar
 

Turn it on and use it. For Christ's sake, it ain't vodoo.
Old 21st November 2009
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Sutton View Post
Turn it on and use it. For Christ's sake, it ain't vodoo.
well lets see what happens when i dress my mic like rosy o donald and stab it with pins
Old 21st November 2009
  #13
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Haz-Mat-Strat's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewenson View Post
well lets see what happens when i dress my mic like rosy o donald and stab it with pins

Please do......Just DO IT (Arnold)


Jim Jacobsen
JJ Audio
http://jjaudiomic.com/
Old 22nd November 2009
  #14
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Hi
Decent valves should be good for between 5,000 and 10,000 hours operation.
Just leave it plugged in and switched on for a week to settle down. It should of course be fine now but it will change a little when it has done 'burning in' which is of course a gradual process so it will change most over a few hours then less over the next week or so. Classic 'bathtub curve'.
After a few years it will gradually 'fade away'.
Matt s
Old 31st May 2013
  #15
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Polaris.

I was actually hoping to perform a bit of voodoo... I have a Rode K2 with variable polarity. Is there a specific pattern that I could use that would be more beneficial to my tube burning. For instance, I believe that the figure 8 pattern sends a voltage of +180, as opposed to +80 or -80 (this may be completely incorrect.) So would it heat up more in Figure 8 mode as opposed to a polarity with less voltage?
Also, is there a tonality difference after the burn in process. Or does this simply alleviate any hissing and popping?

Thanks,
-Joe.
Old 18th March 2014
  #16
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Changing the pattern does alter the voltages as you said. However, the voltages that you're changing appear only at the capsule membranes. This determines whether the sound from behind is in (omni) or out (fig-8) of phase with the front side, or not picked up at all (cardioid).
Old 18th March 2014
  #17
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gainstages's Avatar
i installed a NOS tube in one of my mics last year, let it sit turned on for 2-3 hours, ran a quick sound check to make sure all was good and then turned it off. Used it on a session the next day and it sounded amazing.

Still sounded amazing a few days later, a few weeks later, and a few months later.

I will admit, it does seem to my ears that the sound has gotten a little better with time... I'd say slightly sweeter and warmer both, with better handling of dynamic material.

but when I say slightly - I mean it. I mean that most anyone in my studio wouldn't be able to tell the difference. I'm sure the only reason I can tell the difference is because of the countless hours i've logged with this microphone - I know it like the back of my hand.

So, in my opinion when it comes to a new tube installation, don't overthink it. Let it get good and hot and stay that way for a little while, check it to make sure its working, and then put it back to work.
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