Break In Failed

There is a new set of speakers on the way and after looking for tips on speaker break in, the topic hits left me smirking.

Good advice like face the speakers and wire one out of phase, use heavy blankets and leave on 24-7 for weeks.

The amusing part was exercising them at ~90dB for excursion during away hours. My current speakers have seen that level in my apartment for maybe an hour in the years since owning them. Did I fail at break in protocol?

I anticipate feedback recommendations of connect and enjoy the music after leaving them on for a couple of weeks at my normal listening levels, which has served me well in the past.


my integrated is audibly hard sounding for the first 10-15 minutes, but speakers i've owned generally inching them around the room and playing with toe in is how I break them in. I've never heard a dramatic change in sound. The reason the speakers we hear at shops sound so good compared to when we get them home is the rooms they're in. If you like the sound at the shop pay the dealer to come over and set up your system for you, that is if you're in it for high fidelity.

I not a dealer, just a frustrated customer who's never been able to get demo results at home.

My question about break in is: how does the speaker know to stop breaking in? 


When it's 'Breaking Bad' or 'Breaking Brad'  : )


how does the speaker know to stop breaking in? 

Always a fun topic :) IMO, something happens, but it’s not a mechanical “hard data” point in the life of your loudspeaker. In my most recent experience, I’m lucky owner of a pair of Wharfedale Heritage 85 Lintons. They are a very interesting set of speakers - a big baffle warm sound with better technology that their’70s ancestors. They are not as transparent as many high end audiophile speakers now available, but the color they bring to almost every style of music is pleasant and controlled. Tough to beat at $1,200 delivered. 

But, to the point of the thread, my Lintons have steadily improved in terms of our enjoyment over a month of ownership without any special break-in. Three things are involved. First, the gradual refinement of their location (their rear ported 8” woofer bass response is best at about 20 inches from the rear wall and their polite tweeters and 5” mid range need a little toe-in to help them keep up with the sub-tones. Second, we just “hear more” from them as we listen. Third, I took the time to flag a number of cuts with distinct well-recorded intros that I play about once week since we settled on a set up. The resolution is definitely better over time with these sweet mid-century modern mahogany finished throwbacks.


Enjoying music is the goal and, regardless of our collective understanding of the engineering involved, speaker performance is honestly subjective. We’re thrilled with our speaker choice simply because they are drawing us to listen more often.