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HDT Break In (Read 3279 times)
Auguie
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Posts: 53
HDT Break In
08/06/12 at 22:42:08
 
Hi All,

Well, I took the plunge and ordered a pair of HDT's, which I received last week.  I hooked them up to my SE84CS m Monoblocks, and even without any real tweaking of placement in my room, I am very impressed.  The soundstage is HUGH, both in width AND heigth.  I never got this kind of soundstage with my Von Schweikert VR-3's and Krell amp.  WOW!!!

Now to my topic.  Does anyone have experience with break in time for these speakers?  I have read that the bass takes so time to come through, and I understand that comment as the bass is a little shy right now.  However, when I auditioned them at Steve's place, the bass was all I wanted and I am thinking they just need some break in on the drivers.  SOOOO...How Long?  Anyone with experience with these new models?  I'm a very patient man and don't mind waiting, but some input from current owners would be helpful.

I will be posting my impressions and some pics in the coming weeks. Looking forward to any and all comments and questions.

Dan
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« Last Edit: 08/06/12 at 22:44:48 by Auguie »  

Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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SteveC
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Re: HDT Break In
Reply #1 - 08/07/12 at 00:19:36
 
I got my HDT's a year or more ago.  When I first used them them with a SE84C+ in a large living room, I appreciated the clarity, but I found them lacking bass and too bright at first.  I was pushing the SE84C+ into distortion to get the loud volume I wanted also.

When new, I remember them being so bright, that I had to toe them out to cut some of the highs.  This mellowed out over time.  

The bass seemed lacking too, but I was accustomed to my Hammer Dynamics (12" driver from ~35 up to 10k supposedly + a tweeter for the highest octave).  These speakers had lots of bass, and a clean midrange... and most importantly, I was used to them.   I tried some poor mans measuring.  Using SPL meter and tone generator, I set 80db levels at 1khz.  Then I measured each octave... 20hz, 40hz, 80hz, 160hz, and so on.  Plopped them in a spreadsheet and graphed them.  Both speakers had the same large hills and valleys in thier response curves which I attribute to room modes (no room treatment).  In general, the response curve of the Hammer Dynamics tilted down and tilted up for the HDT's (from left to right).  This was all when they were new.

I got a Torii MkIII later and was happy to put power into the HDT's.  I used the treble cut to tame the highs, and I generally kept the bass controls in the middle.  I change these periodically for the hell of it and notice that I don't actually need the treble cut.  That bright harshness has mellowed out and is gone.

I do notice that when I switch back to other speakers, like the Hammers, I hear tons of muddy "boxy" bass, and the midrange is just missing or muffled.  Every single time I entertain another speaker, I miss the clarity of the HDT mids,.... immediately.

I listen to all kinds of music including electronic music.  So I put a sub on the torii and leveled it with the spl meter and tone generator. so, it's really just extending the bottom octave, not adding a 20~50hz bump.  The sub has a remote so I can disable it on the fly.  When listening to rock, acoustic, 'normal' music, I can't really hear the sub on or off.  I barely hear the 'body' of the bass thin a bit.  When listing to electronic music that purposefully plays in the 20s, then it's a night and day difference.

I don't remember when or how they broke in, I just know that they did, and they have plenty of bass for 'normal' music.  and they have a clarity that it appears I can't live without.

Some day I'll have a dedicated room and play with treatments (I took my speakers to a relatives house once and they sounded a lot more bassy n their room)

SteveC
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Auguie
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Posts: 53
Re: HDT Break In
Reply #2 - 08/08/12 at 12:02:46
 
Hi Steve,

Thanks for the reply and info.  I can't say that I hear a "brightness" to my speakers, but I am using them in a dedicated smaller room with treatments.  That could explain it.  And your comment on clarity is dead on.  That's probably why I bought these in the first place.

When I auditioned them at Steve's place, on the same amps I am using (I was picking them up from an upgrade), they had all the bass I could want.  His room it about the same size as mine with much taller ceilings and more treatments.  I suspect, as you noted, with time the bass will get better.  It is clean and articulate now, just not as deep as I know these speakers can be.  I'm just hoping it gets here soon.

Thanks again for your comments.

Anyone else want to add their two cents worth?

Dan

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Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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ZYGI
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Re: HDT Break In
Reply #3 - 08/09/12 at 02:51:03
 
Dan,

In your room treatments, does it include any  bass trapping? You can never have enough bass traps.

Room placement of sometimes just a few inches can make a big difference. Recently I flipped my room around to see what would happen if  the DNA horns were in what I would call a normal room. I.E. no bass trap directly behind the speakers, in this case directly behind a BLH. I think the DNA shinned in this situation, but I also found, All the other speakers sound good there too! I should have flipped my room around 3-4 years ago.

Also, you have to remember your drivers are brand new, Steve's pair well seasoned, and I do mean well seasoned. You got thousands of hours to go to get them where his are. If you are playing them at fairly low levels, you can expect the low bass to take quite a bit longer to break in. You have passives surrounds as well as the new surrounds Decware adds to the Fostex driver, there is a lot to break in.
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Auguie
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Posts: 53
Re: HDT Break In
Reply #4 - 08/10/12 at 01:33:32
 
Hi Bob,

Yes, I do have base traps in the corners directly behind the speakers.  My old Von Schweikert's were very boomy without them.  Maybe I'll try them without the base traps.  BTW...what's a BLH?

I am still tweaking the placement, and will send you those pics soon.  I haven't installed the outriggers yet...not till I settle on a final placement.

What do you think of playing them with pink noise for a week or so?  I did that with my VS speakers and it helped.  I'm just trying to get a handle on how long it will take.

Anyway, thanks for the input, and I'll get you those pics soon.

Dan

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Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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ZYGI
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Re: HDT Break In
Reply #5 - 08/10/12 at 04:02:19
 
Dan,

Probably not necessary to remove the traps, however you could try different locations.

Pink noise would work, a track with bass heavy information played a louder than normal levels, if you can get away with it, would work as well.

If you play them at a whisper level it could take years to break in.

Once you take the photos, you could post them here if you wish.

Bob
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Auguie
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Posts: 53
Re: HDT Break In
Reply #6 - 08/10/12 at 23:28:49
 
Bob,

OK...I'll give it a try.  BTW...have you ever heard of connecting the speaker out of phase and facing the drivers against each other?  I remember reading this some time ago as a way to break in speakers and that is cancells the sound.  What do you think?

As for the pics, I'll post them here as well as sending them directly to you.  You did such a GREAT job fitting my outriggers for the base/plinth, you deserve your own personel set.

Thanks for the input, and I'll post pics/impressions soon.

Dan
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Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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ZYGI
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Re: HDT Break In
Reply #7 - 08/11/12 at 06:03:43
 
Dan,

I've heard of connecting the speakers out of phase for break in, funny thing about the HDT's you can almost wire them out of phase and not have it effect the bass too much....Not many speakers can do that, try it. A quieter approach may be to record a low bass tone on a CD hit repeat and let 'er rip.

Its probably best to just play the speakers as loud as you can, when you can.

By the way....BLH Back Loaded Horn.

Bob
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Auguie
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Posts: 53
Re: HDT Break In
Reply #8 - 08/11/12 at 19:28:32
 
Bob,

Thanks for the info.  Hadn't thought about using a low bass tone.  I'll give that a try.  Interesting that wiring them out of phase doesn't effect the bass.  And I'll definanetly play them loud when I can.

I'll let you know how these ideas work out.

Dan
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Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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Auguie
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Posts: 53
Re: HDT Break In
Reply #9 - 09/18/12 at 20:08:21
 
Hi All,

Well, it's been several weeks and a few hours on the HDT's, and the sound keeps getting better.  I guess I have around 60-75 hours on them now, and the bass is coming along nicely...deeper, more articulate, etc.  The soundstage keeps astonding me every time I sit down to listen.  Wide, deep, tall, on every source I have.  In my approx 14.5 x 15.5 x 7.5 room, I no longer have any side walls.  It's as though they have disappeared.  NICE!!!  Oh, and during all this, I forgot that my mono's were just in to Steve for CCE upgrades and just now are getting broken in.  It's all falling into place now.

Anyway, I'll get some pics posted soon, and look forward to seeing everyone at Decfest.

Dan
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Decware SE84CS M Monoblocks & HDT Speakers; First Sound Presence Deluxe MK I Pre Amp; Wyred 4 Sound DAC-1/Oppo 971H (as transport for now); VPI Scout/Dynavector 10X5 Cart; Phonomena II Phono Pre; Magnum Dynalab FT101A Etude Tuner; XLO/Wireworld/Signal Cables.
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ZYGI
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Posts: 644
Re: HDT Break In
Reply #10 - 09/19/12 at 05:55:53
 
Dan,
 Good news on the break in. I knew they would come around, but you still have some time to go, another 100 might just do it.

Bob
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