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What are your favorite headphones in the mastering room. Studio Headphones
Old 13th January 2019
  #301
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thermos's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
Can anyone cite or link any scientific proof of the benefits of “burning in” audio transducers such as speakers and headphones? It’s one of the accepted practices discussed in rare air audio forums, but I haven’t seen any proof of the alleged positive changes in the gear.
Sound!
Old 13th January 2019
  #302
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Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
Thanks for the link. But the test’s designer admitted within the article that the test method was flawed:

“Have we absolutely proven that break-in is an audible phenomenon? No. All I've proven is that I could tell one headphone from another.”

They allowed the listeners to listen to the two clearly identified headphones before the scored listening test. That allowed them to learn whatever audible differences there were between the broken in and not broken in phones, which learning they could take into the blind test. As many of the comments pointed out, they could be hearing manufacturer’s tolerance variations between two phones that have nothing to do with the breaking in of one of the two “identical” phones.

It is actually a very hard thing to prove or disprove with firm scientific rigor. And has anyone ever commented that breaking in a set of phones made them sound worse? It seems like that should be the case at least some of the time, but it never seems to be reported in regard to headphones.
I’ve got a 2003 Toyota that is fully broken in and runs as smooth as silk. But I can’t convince anyone to trade me straight up for a new, stiff 2019 model that will need a mind boggling amount of run-in. Go figure!
Indeed, I mentioned it wasn't empirical/objective. Only the other day I:

1) Played a reference track a handful of times on my Kii's.

2) Put Clears on with same track. Recoiled at the honk/bite and stopped listening.

3) Left them playing for over a day.

4) Repeated 1)

5) Put Clears on. Smiled, sat back and enjoyed the track (followed by a late night of listening).

The headphones were cold when they arrived, I let them warm up but perhaps not enough. That could have something to do with it. Or not. I read once that the moving elements of transducers can be stiff to start with, and take a little while to 'relax'. Truth? No idea. I don't actually care I do know however that for whatever reason they sounded different on the second sitting.
Old 14th January 2019
  #303
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whippoorwill's Avatar
my idea for one possible test is you could maybe create a track of alternating white noise and dirac pulses and play it continuously for a few days while recording with a set microphone at different intervals.

But I believe that things change over time so I don't really need the proof. Enough engineers have noticed it that I think the science will eventually catch up if someone bothers.

When audiophiles can't spot the difference easily (even if they have verbose language and have spent lavish amounts funding the change), I also don't necessarily take that as proof that there isn't a difference. When you sit at the same desk and work on music through the same speakers over and over again for hours a day for weeks on end, I think you get more finely attuned to differences than someone who plays some music on the other end of their untreated room and listens on the couch twice a week with a drink in their hand. I am more likely to trust opinions on the mastering forum than other places for this reason...
Old 14th January 2019
  #304
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Originally Posted by whippoorwill View Post
But I believe
so I don't really need the proof.
I don’t want to question anyone’s beliefs, now that it’s revealed that the break-in practice might be mostly faith-based... and I didn’t mean to hijack the thread.
Old 14th January 2019
  #305
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henrik Hjortnaes View Post
Define "proof".
Define “define”.
Old 14th January 2019
  #306
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whippoorwill's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
I don’t want to question anyone’s beliefs, now that it’s revealed that the break-in practice might be mostly faith-based... and I didn’t mean to hijack the thread.
I dunno what to tell you except that everything is fundamentally meaningless and we live in a constant mesh of endless faith. Everything is belief systems. Money is faith, recording is a process of having faith in the future, art is the open-ness that points towards a future, science is an attempt to thoroughly own things through the classification and examination of things that isn't really born from objective truth but from a post-renaissance inquisition-era form of thorough colonisation.

Unfortunately it's not possible to completely dissect and classify anything because you have to understand every aspect of how something exists, and many parameters are influenced by others; I'm not against tests, but no test is all encompassing. It's simple enough- the how is the what - how something exists is what it is, but things start leaking out of categorisation the closer you look.

The sooner you get on board you can stop worrying about whether someone else validates whether you can play the kids' game of "spot the difference" and trust your intuition on most things after a suitable period of acclimatisation to your audio surroundings. Otherwise how could you trust that anything is more useful than anything in a given circumstance?
Old 14th January 2019
  #307
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Originally Posted by whippoorwill View Post
I dunno what to tell you
Then don’t go on at length. I’ll be fine, thanks.
Old 14th January 2019
  #308
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Well, I've had my SENN 650s for some 10 years. Nice for listening. Would not consider Headphones for Mastering, yet as another monitoring source to evaluate.

HOWEVER

Recent addition of SonarWorks AND the addition of CanOpener has made the 650s much closer to my Main monitoring [as in translation].

I do have an EQ mod in CanOpener: -1.5dB [low], +1.5dB [high], with a 104% 45degree Crossfeed.

This combo works well for what I need from Phones.
Old 14th January 2019
  #309
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
Then don’t go on at length. I’ll be fine, thanks.
Are you trolling? The guy is trying to explain his viewpoint (very well I may add) in response to your impossible question of qualifying a personal experience.

All of our senses are subjective, even those we consider objective. As Einstein said, it's just an illusion, albeit a very persistent one. Asking someone to objectively prove what they hear is akin to asking them to prove that a particular shade of blue exists.

With regards to external measurement, all one would need to do is capture the headphone (or monitor) output with a sensitive microphone in an anechoic chamber. Once as new, the other X hours after continuous playback. Then a simple null test.

Tangent alert.

Last edited by b0se; 14th January 2019 at 08:20 AM..
Old 14th January 2019
  #310
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
Define “define”.
I had a feeling that you were going to waste everybody's time, by having them sincerely answer your question, only for you to walk all over it with your own agenda.

You asked for "proof" to audio impression, which is a ridiculous question.
Old 14th January 2019
  #311
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thermos's Avatar
Dude be trolling, just ignore. Back to headphones, really enjoying can opener after sonarworks. Transients, etc feel more like speakers.
Old 14th January 2019
  #312
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blaugruen7's Avatar
You guys use sonarworks and can opener? At the same time?
Old 14th January 2019
  #313
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thermos's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by blaugruen7 View Post
You guys use sonarworks and can opener? At the same time?
Yes you need both! Can Opener for cross feed, and sonar works for eq correction.
Old 14th January 2019
  #314
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thermos View Post
Dude be trolling, just ignore. Back to headphones, really enjoying can opener after sonarworks. Transients, etc feel more like speakers.
If you don't mind me asking, what setting are you using for the Clears in CanOpener?
Old 14th January 2019
  #315
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thermos's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
If you don't mind me asking, what setting are you using for the Clears in CanOpener?
I use the old version of Sonarworks with Optimum phase. I got used to it. And just flat.
Old 14th January 2019
  #316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thermos View Post
I use the old version of Sonarworks with Optimum phase. I got used to it. And just flat.
Asking about CanOpener dear fellow! :¬)
Old 14th January 2019
  #317
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thermos's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
Asking about CanOpener dear fellow! :¬)
Ha, right! For now 125% and 45 degrees, but also 150% and 60 sounds good. Flat eq.
Old 14th January 2019
  #318
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blaugruen7's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by thermos View Post
Yes you need both! Can Opener for cross feed, and sonar works for eq correction.
And when you need to simulate a headphone mix with your headphone you turn can opener off?

I was just thinking about that most people I know hear music now on headphones...
Almost no one has a stereo.
Many have a Bluetooth boom box
Old 14th January 2019
  #319
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thermos View Post
Ha, right! For now 125% and 45 degrees, but also 150% and 60 sounds good. Flat eq.
Cool, I had chosen 125% and 50º (post SW4 which is at 80% wet). Sounds great.
Old 14th January 2019
  #320
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaugruen7 View Post
And when you need to simulate a headphone mix with your headphone you turn can opener off?

I was just thinking about that most people I know hear music now on headphones...
Almost no one has a stereo.
Many have a Bluetooth boom box
CanOpener has handy mono toggle in it. I use standard earbuds to check for the average listener of course; CO+SW is for mixing accuracy.
Old 15th January 2019
  #321
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Originally Posted by Henrik Hjortnaes View Post
I had a feeling that you were going to waste everybody's time, by having them sincerely answer your question, only for you to walk all over it with your own agenda.

You asked for "proof" to audio impression, which is a ridiculous question.
No, my question had nothing to do with audio impressions. I’m asking for proof (reliable evidence, not testimony) of a commonly alleged positive change in the response of phones due to an extended burn in.
bOse responded with a test setup that would possibly provide evidence. That responds to my question.
Writing a paragraph, however sincere, about impressions, feelings, and beliefs is off-question creative writing.
I’m not trolling. It was a straightforward question as to any reliable objective evidence toward proving the belief.
At one time, most Europeans sincerely believed that the Earth is flat and does not move, and that Jerusalem is the center of the universe. They happily burned people who questioned their beliefs. It is annoying to find people in a somewhat technical forum who still don’t seem to understand the difference between unsupported beliefs and statements based on evidence.
Old 15th January 2019
  #322
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SW linear phase, limit mode follow by CanOpener 100 % , 60 °, -0.5 dB Bass with HD 650. It feels good

Recently discovered Audirvana too. I dont know If its a placebo effect but i feel it sounds better than Vox and others audio player
Old 15th January 2019
  #323
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
No, my question had nothing to do with audio impressions. I’m asking for proof (reliable evidence, not testimony) of a commonly alleged positive change in the response of phones due to an extended burn in.
bOse responded with a test setup that would possibly provide evidence. That responds to my question.
Writing a paragraph, however sincere, about impressions, feelings, and beliefs is off-question creative writing.
I’m not trolling. It was a straightforward question as to any reliable objective evidence toward proving the belief.
At one time, most Europeans sincerely believed that the Earth is flat and does not move, and that Jerusalem is the center of the universe. They happily burned people who questioned their beliefs. It is annoying to find people in a somewhat technical forum who still don’t seem to understand the difference between unsupported beliefs and statements based on evidence.
Not proof, but subjective personal opinion across many speakers and headphones across many years...that's all I can offer, I'm not a measurement lab. Speakers and headphones (the drivers I mean) are electromechanical devices, converting electrical into acoustic energy.

The speaker/headphone diaphragm material is typically polymer plastic or paper fibre. Under the motion which produces what we interpret as music, the material undergoes vibration at various frequencies, especially at the surround area (the area which is fixed to the outer ring support of the speaker driver ) At this point it is acting like the hinge on a door, or the bellows of an accordion. The 'music' creates a constantly varying vibration across the cone, and especially at this tethered pivot point.

I'm suggesting that over time this continual flexion due to cone movement produces changes in the stiffness/rigidity of the cone material, a bit like ' work hardening' in metals. During burn in....or in fact simple usage....I detect a freeing up of fundamental resonances or spikes in the sound, which I'm proposing to result from the freeing up or relaxing of the cone materials, there is possibly some subtle change in the chemical composition of this material, as it responds to long term movement across the diaphragm (and especially at that edge surround pivot point)

If you left the speaker or headphones in the sun for many days, the UV light would impose initially a softening effect on the driver material...and then later as the cone dried out it would become stiffer and less resilient and compliant/bendable/movable...and I'd espect those same peaky resonances to return that I mentioned earlier.

So, simply put, burn -in I'll describe as a similar materials change process or 'softening up' under vibration, perhaps not unlike you could expect by leaving the device in the sun for a few hours...when the material softens up...but before the later drying out and brittleness sets in.

Just a proposed intuited model of the process, I have no proof, just a proposal and a hypothesis, ok ? If you want objective proof, pass on by, I have none...except that it corresponds with the changes I typically hear over time from a new speaker or headphones.

I'm sure it would be possible to replicate and objectively measure these changes in drivers in a lab...I'd expect to see some change in modulus of stiffness or compliance, and perhaps extension of frequency response, or reduction in resonance nodes also, to correspond with those changes I hear ?

I'm just advancing a theory, which happens to coincide with my subjective observations, but I don't have measured proof...it's just a possible explanation. But in fact, I'd like to see a lab do this experiment, I don't think it would be hard to replicate...especially with today's sensitive measuring tools (eg laser interferometry) ?

I'd really want this objective analysis, since what I'm describing as the subjective result is a long term, subtle change...which is notoriously subject to self-delusion, suggestion and all sorts of perceptual distortions....so the lab is really the only way to go to verify/validate the hypothesis....I'm surprised none have done it thus far....maybe they have ? If you know of any tested verifiable studies along these lines, please post reference links here, I'd like to read them !
Old 15th January 2019
  #324
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Originally Posted by studer58 View Post
Not proof, but subjective personal opinion across many speakers and headphones across many years...that's all I can offer, I'm not a measurement lab. Speakers and headphones (the drivers I mean) are electromechanical devices, converting electrical into acoustic energy.

The speaker/headphone diaphragm material is typically polymer plastic or paper fibre. Under the motion which produces what we interpret as music, the material undergoes vibration at various frequencies, especially at the surround area (the area which is fixed to the outer ring support of the speaker driver ) At this point it is acting like the hinge on a door, or the bellows of an accordion. The 'music' creates a constantly varying vibration across the cone, and especially at this tethered pivot point.

I'm suggesting that over time this continual flexion due to cone movement produces changes in the stiffness/rigidity of the cone material, a bit like ' work hardening' in metals. During burn in....or in fact simple usage....I detect a freeing up of fundamental resonances or spikes in the sound, which I'm proposing to result from the freeing up or relaxing of the cone materials, there is possibly some subtle change in the chemical composition of this material, as it responds to long term movement across the diaphragm (and especially at that edge surround pivot point)

If you left the speaker or headphones in the sun for many days, the UV light would impose initially a softening effect on the driver material...and then later as the cone dried out it would become stiffer and less resilient and compliant/bendable/movable...and I'd espect those same peaky resonances to return that I mentioned earlier.

So, simply put, burn -in I'll describe as a similar materials change process or 'softening up' under vibration, perhaps not unlike you could expect by leaving the device in the sun for a few hours...when the material softens up...but before the later drying out and brittleness sets in.

Just a proposed intuited model of the process, I have no proof, just a proposal and a hypothesis, ok ? If you want objective proof, pass on by, I have none...except that it corresponds with the changes I typically hear over time from a new speaker or headphones.

I'm sure it would be possible to replicate and objectively measure these changes in drivers in a lab...I'd expect to see some change in modulus of stiffness or compliance, and perhaps extension of frequency response, or reduction in resonance nodes also, to correspond with those changes I hear ?

I'm just advancing a theory, which happens to coincide with my subjective observations, but I don't have measred proof...it's just a possible explanation. I'd like to see a lab do this experiement, I don't think it would be hard to replicate...especially with todays sensitive measuring tools eg laser interferometry ?
That’s all sensible stuff, and could explain the often-reported improvement in sound.
And so could expectation bias, or “learning” the headphones over time, or the proven (you know, with studies) human inability to accurately remember audio over time.
I am not taking the opposite viewpoint. I’m not doubting that mechanical objects that move as part of their function are likely to change their parameters as parts are flexed and move billions of times. But here are things that make me somewhat skeptical of the reports.
1. Short of catastrophic malfunction, where are the reports of transducers getting worse as they are broken in?
2. Related to #1 , where are the reports of “no change” after burn in. That seems especially odd when there are reports that some high end phones are already burned in and are delivered to the buyer in as perfect a condition as they will ever be. If you can’t make it better, isn’t the perception that you are making it better possibly expectation bias?
Old 15th January 2019
  #325
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I'm not sure what PROOF to offer regarding Burn-ins of either Headphones or Speakers.

The window for burning in is, roughly, 24 hours. Secondly ... it is NOT an instantaneous HEY, I'm 'burned-in'.
What I found from my 40+ years experience ... WHEN/IF something needed a burn-in time, the sonic changes 'evolved' or transformed into
a more coherent or opened up to full state.

Did some speakers NOT require a burn-in. Sure. But over the years, others did.


Some people want to make a big deal about it. I could care less to convince.
Old 15th January 2019
  #326
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Originally Posted by RJHollins View Post
I'm not sure what PROOF to offer regarding Burn-ins of either Headphones or Speakers.
Some people want to make a big deal about it. I could care less to convince.
My post (#296) simply asked if anyone could cite or link any studies regarding the benefit of burning in speakers and headphones. If someone is making a big deal of the issue, that someone is not me.
If you think burning a feather in the room before each session makes the session better, I don’t expect that you can or need to offer proof that it works. Burn your feathers and enjoy your sessions.
Old 15th January 2019
  #327
Gear Guru
Guys any transducer will change over time. That's simple fact, as materials wear. Whether you like that or not, is totally subjective. Maybe people like the crisper response, others find it harsh. You can ague this endlessly, however I'd recommend you listening to something "broken in" if you really care, since sooner or later your speaker, headphones or mic will be "broken in"......

I like well worn cables myself......and blown out shocks on my car for that NYC taxicab vibe........
Old 15th January 2019
  #328
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
My post (#296) simply asked if anyone could cite or link any studies regarding the benefit of burning in speakers and headphones. If someone is making a big deal of the issue, that someone is not me.
If you think burning a feather in the room before each session makes the session better, I don’t expect that you can or need to offer proof that it works. Burn your feathers and enjoy your sessions.
I have never burnt a feather in any room. I've also not found a need to search for any 'Scientific Proof'.

You seem confused as to the 'benefit of burning in speakers and headphones.'

Some people have used various sound sources [such as PINK Noise] to initially treat a new speaker. Others use a variety of music sources.

The result ... after playing a sound source, anywhere from 15 min to 24+hours, the speaker performs to factory spec.

note: some products have been factory pre-tested [burned-in], and some people by used or Demo products.

Bottom line ... play stuff through your monitor. Possibly the sound could change initially ... maybe not.
Old 15th January 2019
  #329
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Don't take the bait. The feather comment is proof enough that Bushman, for whatever reason, is either looking to offend or prove his authority on the matter. It's obvious, as anyone else would simply say 'whatever works for you' and move on.

For that reason you (we) should ignore him, and carry on with the topic of this thread.
Old 15th January 2019
  #330
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
For that reason you (we) should ignore him, and carry on with the topic of this thread.
I just ordered the DT 1990 Pro to see if they can become my favorite headphones in my mixing room
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