breaking in speakers?

VonBonfire

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Breaking in speakers is like breaking in a new motor for your car, there are 2 camps on the best method.

1. Drive it carefully for awhile before pushing it hard
2. Drive it like you stole it from the start

When it comes to speakers, I just ignore the whole thing and play as normal.
I take what's behind door #2. If they are gonna blow I'd prefer it happen at home and not a gig.
 

doghouseman

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in your head man....
This is a brand new speaker and it is very harsh. I have speakers that I have been playing through since the 80s that sound much better. I know Celestion makes a good speaker, especially in a Fender cab, so I thought a break in period would help. I have used the speaker in two gigs.
 

schmee

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For a higher power speaker, 50 watts or more, drive it hard for as long as you can.
For a lower power speaker, it maybe fine from the get go. Or just play it.

A generalism, but that's my take. I found:
Greenback (20-25watts): Sounded better new than old and vintage
Emi GA SC64 (35 watts): Sounds great right out of the box.
Reconed vintage Oxfords, Jensens: Sounded great right away.
50-75 Watt Weber;Long Break in.
 

schmee

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I have tapes of me playing through the same speakers over the years. They sound different.

Presumably you have tapes of you playing through your speakers and they sound the same.
A same rig recorded years apart means nothing. Room, EQ, Guitar, Pedals, recording device and much more makes a big difference.
 

arlum

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If you are impatient there is nothing wrong with using recorded music to break in a speaker. I wouldn't play it super loud, though. On the other hand, if you have the time it is actually interesting to hear for yourself how the sound of a speaker changes as it's broken in.

I agree with this except I believe the recorded music being used should be limited to electric guitar. I would never use music with drums or a heavy bass line or brass instruments to break in a guitar speaker. Any music that pounds or is overly punchy, bright, biting, cutting, etc. should be avoided. Guitar speakers are designed specifically for the electric guitar and that's the only instrument that should be used to break them in. If you want to speed up the break in period just record yourself playing whatever you normally play and loop it to play over and over through the speakers. Then go walk the dog. I can hear him whining from here.
 
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digitalMagnetics

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Put the amp in a spare room or closet somewhere. Use a looper pedal to record yourself playing Smells Like Teen Spirit or Voodoo Chile or whatever. Play that on loop through the amp. Close the door and go about your day while it plays over and over. You could even go back after X number of hours and crank it so that it plays the same loop at a louder volume, depending on your speaker break-in philosophy.
 

VintageSG

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In my experience, the Celestion Seventy-80, TEN-30, Eight-15 and the older TUBE-10, ie, the cheap end of their range, benefit greatly from a long and noisy bed-in period. They're a speaker range that gets a rough ride on the Internet, and once they've had the harsh edges rounded out, and the 'stage widened, they're OK. Run 'em as normal, or play music from your DAP or 'phone through them for a few hours at high-ish volume and they're a heck of a lot better than many credit them as being. They're quite neutral as a range, which makes them very good with modellers and 'characterful' amps.
Modern Jensens don't change much. 'Better' Celestions have a much shorter bed-in period too.

Practice/rehearsals are the time and place to knock the sharp edges and sibilance from a driver, not a gig.

/aside

Every pair of in-ears and headphones I currently own has shown marked changes after I bed them in. The Beethoven symphonies are very good bed-in source material. Every frequency represented, and a dynamic delivery to boot. I run them as a play list at moderate volume levels from a DAP, then put a box over them to keep room noise down.
I believe in bed-in for speakers/drivers, whether they're dynamic, electrostatic or ( especially! ) balanced armature. Big speakers like guitar speakers, medium speakers like hi-fi, small monitors or tiddly in-ears alike, they, in my experience, bed in over time.
 

telemnemonics

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I run a harsh unpleasant new speaker with a warmer older one for 20 hours of near feedback volume playing to break the nasty one in.
If you can stand it though juts play it.
I struggle with Golds and Red Fangs, harsh harsh harsh.
 

Antoon

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I use whatever sound rocks the cone. Usually a variac continuously for a week or so.

I have heard of audiophiles who broke in speakers in a sound proof box for more that a YEAR!
 

Boreas

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This is a brand new speaker and it is very harsh. I have speakers that I have been playing through since the 80s that sound much better. I know Celestion makes a good speaker, especially in a Fender cab, so I thought a break in period would help. I have used the speaker in two gigs.
Will the seller allow an exchange for a different model or brand?
Dumb question, but is the speaker the same ohm rating as the amp?
Was there an issue with the previous speaker? Could it be the amp?

If it is indeed too harsh, it may not be worth messing with it for months trying to get it to sound better. It may improve with age, it may get worse. I suspect it may not be THE speaker for you. Life is too short to try to tame a speaker that can't be tamed.
 

gridlock

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There are YouTube videos that run for hours designed to break-in a speaker. I’ve broken-in a few speakers using this method with the speaker plugged directly into my laptop.
 

vanr

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Personally I think playing a speaker and then a cool down period affects the break in too. Play it a while. Let it cool down. Play it some more......
 

NoTeleBob

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I run a harsh unpleasant new speaker with a warmer older one for 20 hours of near feedback volume playing to break the nasty one in.
If you can stand it though juts play it.
I struggle with Golds and Red Fangs, harsh harsh harsh.

You mean the red Fang stays harsh even after break in? Or it's only harsh when new.

I'm curious since they have some serious dB age in the upper frequency range. Past the strings and into harmonics. Perhaps that's it?
 

guitar_paul1

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I got a cheap set (nady?) For a frontman 212 100w and tried using a square wave audio generator feeding the amp. The speakers were rated for the amp wattage on paper.

Don't ever do this!
Use a music source instead. I got them so hot they almost melted the voice coil glue. Oops. 🥴
I don't think it made much tone difference before and after. But man, they were sure broke in when I got done.
 




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