Break In Time Periods

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jtcf

Break In Time Periods
« on: 6 Feb 2020, 04:36 pm »
I'm wondering if a few Zen Wave owners would like to share how long it took for their new cables to settle in and what changes were heard along the way.I've got about 50 hours on my DSR ics and they definitely change for the better and also the worse from day to day.Other cables I've owned in the past have taken as little as 25+/- and as long as 200 hours to stabilize.Speaker cables seem to take the longest.It's a tedious process for me with my tubed components.Sometimes I think maybe I'll pick up some cheap ss pieces that can run 24/7 in a spare room just for running in cables and components.OCD? :roll:But I'm at a point where I'm pretty much done with upgrading and am ready to just kick back and enjoy,so no.
Anyway,these DSRs have been Bright! for the last two days and unpleasant to listen to.The first 10hours no bass,10-20 hours bass + mids and no highs,20-30 all highs and bass and recessed vocals,30-50 vocals are back again and sound is more balanced but Bright!No matter which 'frequency of the day' is highlighted the wonderful dimensionality is present.I'm hoping by the 100 hour mark they'll be mostly settled in.The demo pair (thank you Dave!) were really something special so so I know they will get there.

Tubeburner

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #1 on: 6 Feb 2020, 04:55 pm »
I use a Hagerman Frybaby 3 for a few days for burn in. Makes all the difference. The Zenwave cables are very revealing, so if you have any gear issues, you will hear it. IMO.

DaveC113

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #2 on: 6 Feb 2020, 05:20 pm »
Unfortunately, there's no answer that fits every situation... I burn-in my cables before shipping using an AudioDharma High Power Cable Cooker, but it's the shipping that can undo burn-in, and this can vary from being very minor to having to start all over again like burn-in was never done in the first place. Also, some cables are more sensitive than others, with the silver ribbon cables seeming to be the most sensitive I've experienced so far. On the other end of the scale, the UPOCC copper litz wire seems relatively unaffected by shipping and handling.

I think the reason why is simply due to handling, vibration and temperature changes causing movement of the conductor relative to the insulation. Temperature changes can be responsible as the expansion/contraction of the conductor vs the insulation will be different, then rough handling or vibration on delivery vehicles are more obvious causes. I think the litz wire cables are less effected because the insulation is enamel, so it's basically painted and can't move wrt to the conductor.

I don't think there is a great solution to this, I have not been able to figure it out without going to unrealistic lengths as far as packaging, and even then it may require a special shipping service that doesn't use automated equipment to sort the packages... I've used this to ship expensive components, it's cost is very high and it's hard to say exactly how effective it would be. If you take any cable and bend it around it will sound worse when you put it back in the system and it'll take anywhere from an hour to a couple days to return to normal depending on how much it was handled and what cable it is.

So jtcf, hang in there! I promise it is the exact same cable as the demo, we just got unfortunate with shipping. It may take up to 200 hours to recover, and to be honest there are often more subtle burn-in artifacts stretching all the way to 500 hours.


MttBsh

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #3 on: 6 Feb 2020, 05:43 pm »
After 6 decades on this planet I'm finally beginning to realize the power of patience - and of the rewards that follow.

Tubeburner

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #4 on: 6 Feb 2020, 06:42 pm »
The Frybaby or the AudioDharma speeds up the process. Cheap to own.

jtcf

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #5 on: 6 Feb 2020, 08:41 pm »
Hurry up and wait then:)Thanks for your replies!

Tyson

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #6 on: 6 Feb 2020, 09:09 pm »
When I burn in cables with my tube gear, I will generally keep some generic chinese or russian tubes on hand to use during the burn in process.  That way I don't log a bunch of hours on to my premium tubes.

ketcham

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #7 on: 7 Feb 2020, 07:13 pm »
"After 6 decades on this planet I'm finally beginning to realize the power of patience - and of the rewards that follow."

Best statement I read all week!  Thank you!!!

twitch54

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #8 on: 7 Feb 2020, 09:06 pm »
for all you folks that believe in 'burn in' why don't you buy a cable cooker ? ......  :scratch:

jtcf

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #9 on: 12 Feb 2020, 09:01 pm »
I've heard that cable cookers are good for getting the cables started but they need an entire frequency range put through them to fully break in.I have no way of knowing if that's accurate,just sounds sensible to me.My new tactic is to let these babies cook for 10 hour increments between the dac and pre,leaving the amp off.I'll post again when I get to 100 hours.It will be useful to someone down the road.

rollo

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #10 on: 12 Feb 2020, 10:49 pm »
  As a former Beta tester now dealer/audiophile let me offer my finding with hands on experience. ALL cables require a minimum of 50 hours to burn in a least path of resistance. After that the bulky connectors then the dielectric requires settling. Teflon takes forever about 500 hours. Most cables take 250 -300 hours. Then about three days UNTOUCHED in the system, done.
  The cable cookers do a fair job for burning in path however nothing for dielectric settling in. The Hagerman device does however we found that not so.
  The most affective way is six hours on six hours off. That is a tough act. Now we do 12 hours on 12 hours off. If you listen to the cables everyday you may hear them changing. An experience once had is never forgotten. Towards the end of break-in the sound will get just horrible then like a switch turned on done. Hearing that is rare but when you do you will never say break in does not matter. Patience is a virtue, good luck.


charles

jtcf

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #11 on: 13 Feb 2020, 01:26 am »
Thank you Charles.I listen a little bit every evening and something is always different.I start with the last selection from the night before,then something new which I'll revisit tomorrow.It's an interesting journey.

jtcf

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #12 on: 16 Feb 2020, 09:38 pm »
100 hour mark and they've settled down somewhat.The upper mids have been shouting at me when there's a dynamic transient in that frequency range,the 'presence region.'Startling sometimes!The vocals in that same range became grainy.The overall BRIGHT factor is fading away day by day.Male vocals a little lower down are outstanding and even female vocalists(Koko Taylor,etc).Acoustic guitar is the best I've ever heard,really comes alive.Looking forward to the next 100 hours and what happens next.

jtcf

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #13 on: 20 Feb 2020, 05:01 pm »
A quick update at 150 hours.The DSRs seemed to really transform for the better after another day.The 'presence region' is no longer overblown.Last evening I felt that the SQ is actually surpassing what I heard with the demo cables.The nuance,clarity,tone,timbre have me mesmerized at times.The subtle vocal and instrumental inflections are what it's all about.

rollo

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #14 on: 20 Feb 2020, 05:03 pm »
  Patience is a virtue enjoy the ride.

charles

jtcf

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #15 on: 20 Feb 2020, 11:12 pm »
 :banana piano:

DaveC113

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #16 on: 20 Feb 2020, 11:25 pm »
 :thumb:

Just FYI, the AudioDharma burners use a sine wave sweep for the signal, and can also be used to "reset"cables periodically as well, the idea being to put them on the burner every year or so for a tuneup. TBH, I have not had time to investigate this thoroughly as the cables in my system change too often to make this experiment feasible, but I have heard it works. Also, the cable does take some time to settle down after the burner is used, but much less time vs not using the burner at all.

It is unfortunate shipping is an issue with burn in, I know of one large cable company that no longer attempts to burn in cables because of the effect of shipping, but I've found most of the time the cable gets through shipping without burn-in becoming completely undone. It does depend on the cable though, as I mentioned earlier.

ketcham

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #17 on: 21 Feb 2020, 04:54 pm »
I would like to pose this question to everyone and it is genuine.

Has any of us received a cable that is initially just misery and un-listenable that after time became a sleeping beauty?

My experience, cooker or not, I have a good impression at the beginning and overtime the cables mature but nothing profound.  Even used cable or my current cable once moved take a few days to resettle. 

To reword this.  Has the 200-500 hours been necessary to discern substantial differences in sonic presentation, or are most of these qualities present at the beginning?

Thanks,

John.


rollo

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Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #18 on: 21 Feb 2020, 04:57 pm »
Most are present with few exceptions. Then that nasty dielectric begins to settle for all those hours. That is why when you move the cable it has to settle in again.

charles

genjamon

Re: Break In Time Periods
« Reply #19 on: 21 Feb 2020, 05:18 pm »
I have about 120 hours now on a new DIY set of ICs using Dave's silver/gold, pure silver, and copper wire.  Using some low mass Pure Sonic copper connectors and Wonder solder.  I've been listening each evening for a couple hours at low volumes.  Not enough to fully take their measure each evening, but enough to get a sense of magnitude of changes over time.

Fresh into the system, there was potential.
After about 20 hours, the sound was tizzy in the highs, but sounded pretty decent everywhere else.
After about 40 hours, the tizzy went away and hasn't come back.  Sound has remained relatively stable since then - no major swings, and I'm not listening loud enough or in dedicated sessions to track subtle changes.  I'm sure it's evolving with time, but all within the same general character. 

So, I would agree with the assessment that I wouldn't put much stock into the sound until it has around 50 hours or so - to burn pathways through the new solder connections and maybe the wire itself.  After that, it's all just part of the hobbyist journey, especially if the damn things "reset" after moving them!  Kind of negates the whole point of a cable cooker if moving them from the cooker into the system means you have to start over with break-in of the dielectric!!  :duh: