Cable Break In for the Naysayers

I still cannot believe that in this stage of Audio history there are still many who claim cable break in is imagined. They even go so far as claim it is our ears that break in to the new sound. Providing many studies in the way of scientific testing. Sigh...

I noticed such a recent discussion on the What’s Best Forum. So here is my response.

______________________________________________________________________________________________ I just experienced cable break in again firsthand. 10 Days ago, I bought a new set of the AudioQuest Thunderbird XLR 2M interconnects.

First impression, they sounded good, but then after about 30 hours of usage the music started sounding very closed in and with limited high frequencies. This continued until about 130 hours of music play time.

Then at this time, the cables started to open up and began to sound better and better each passing hour. I knew at the beginning they would come around because they sounded ok at first until the break in process started. But now they have way surpassed that original sound.

Now the soundstage has become huge with fantastic frequency extensions. Very pleased with the results. Scientifically I guess we can’t prove cable break in is real, but with good equipment, good ears, it is clearly a real event.



@unreceivedogma Bingo ! You hit the nail on the head said the carpenter. Some get cranky as they age, some are just plain argumentative, Some are misguided, and many are just plain boring.



I am not saying that cables alone will transform a system beyond its capability. But cables that work well with your system, will allow that system to perform to the best as designed. Afterall, we are connecting a component to another through the cabling. Remember the phrase "it is only as good as the weakest link"?

All in all, cabling can only degrade the potential. Keep an open mind and experiment to hear what works best.


I really don’t understand why these arguments continue. Why do the two camps care about the “experience”, “perceptions” or “biases/expectations” of those in the other camp. If you don’t accept cable break in as real, why even open this thread, let alone contribute. If you do accept break in as real, why engage with comments from those who don’t. As somebody said previously, the debate has raged without resolution for decades, though it seems less visceral and nasty nowadays.

RE: this thread and at risk of being “perceived” or “experienced” as nasty, I think it churlish to continue to hijack threads about cables/cable break in with one’s well worn and predictable rejections of the validity of a poster’s observations, or must I say perceptions. We know already that you reject the very possibility of the phenomenon, so you add no value to the discussion when you repeat your incredulity in yet another thread. I wish we could have a discussion of the topic without petty comments insisting, for example, that a post should have used “perceived” rather than “experienced”. Aside from the fact that, in this context, it is a distinction without a difference, it is redundant and tedious.

RE: the suggestion that a blind test with five “believers” and five “nonbelievers” would settle the controversy: I’ve been there. Although the experiment changed one or two participants’ views on cable burn in, most went away surer than ever they were right all along, regardless of whether they arrived as “believers” or “nonbelievers”. Lines have been drawn and few have the will to cross over.

This is a big, complex hobby in which there is room for all of us. I await arrival of the day when we can live and let live without derision and ridicule.

Enjoy your music as you will. I’ll do the same.


 I await arrival of the day when we can live and let live without derision and ridicule.

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             Critical thinkers are now to be considered, "enemies of the state."