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ZOB 'BREAKDOWN' (Read 835 times)
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ZOB 'BREAKDOWN'
05/03/18 at 03:03:01
 
Now that I have your attention, this should read ZOB  BREAK IN. My story is not like others on this site. I listen to music in a serious manner RARELY. That means if I buy new drivers, they get broken in over months or more. But when I do listen, it had better be great.
When I got the FRX2 drivers a couple of years ago, there were no words that could describe the perfect, beautiful sound that I was hearing. Never in all my years had I heard such music. THEN, as though me and the FRX2 drivers got into an argument, they started become bitchy, shrill and honky. I knew that this all had to do with break in, but I was unwilling to run them out the amount of time that it might take for better performance.
Finally, today, They went to the woodshed for a spanking. A D class amp, a CD player on repeat, and Dire Straits 'Love over gold' to start with. In 24 hours, if I don't hear at least a little bit of an apology from them, then it's on to AC/DC. I'm not fooling around here. I will give them up to maybe 100 hours, and then the moment of truth will arrive. Play nice or get out.

More later, less sooner.
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Decware 34I.3 integrated amp/Forte' 3 bass amp/Velodyne SMS-1 bass mngmnt system/Decware ZOB speakers/Audio Nirvana 8" bass drivers/Xiang Seng DAC/ LR Audio Computer/Rega Apollo R CDP/Emotiva ERC3 CDP/BPT 3.0 power cond.
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Re: ZOB 'BREAKDOWN'
Reply #1 - 05/03/18 at 20:53:08
 
 After 24 hours, I stepped in to listen as Dire Straits continues to play. In short order, I knew that the peakiness is still very much there with one change to note. It have spread to a wider peak rather than a sort of one note peak. This may or may not be good news, as i have not much experience with breaking in drivers. Having said that, I did break in a set of Audio Nirvana drivers a couple of years ago that were absolutely unlistenable out of the box. In a few hours they had a dramatic change that saved them from being sent back to the dealer. In time they sounded quite good for a 12" single driver affair. I sold them to a church where their sound was met with enthusiasm compared to the horrible sound that preceded them.
I hope to have the same experience here, even if I only come close to the original sound of these drivers when brand new.

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Decware 34I.3 integrated amp/Forte' 3 bass amp/Velodyne SMS-1 bass mngmnt system/Decware ZOB speakers/Audio Nirvana 8" bass drivers/Xiang Seng DAC/ LR Audio Computer/Rega Apollo R CDP/Emotiva ERC3 CDP/BPT 3.0 power cond.
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Re: ZOB 'BREAKDOWN'
Reply #2 - 05/04/18 at 15:03:32
 
At 40 hours this morning, I stepped into the garage to hear where all was at. Yesterday, I changed CD's from Dire Straits to the Eagles 'Hotel California'. It has a lot more of the range that is offensive when listening to these drivers. Since I am using a class D amp, I expect to hear distortion at higher levels. This amp is rated at 20 watts per channel @10% distortion! I might running 15 watt peaks, and the distortion is there. On the quieter songs however, there are no noticeable flaws. The compression that I had originally heard when I first started to play this album is greatly diminished. The real peakedness that was so offensive to me is also diminished. It is still present on some peaks, and so I will play these through another 24 hour cycle, and give a good listen this afternoon. I should also mention that the bass has filled out to some extent, and that is a welcome addition.
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Decware 34I.3 integrated amp/Forte' 3 bass amp/Velodyne SMS-1 bass mngmnt system/Decware ZOB speakers/Audio Nirvana 8" bass drivers/Xiang Seng DAC/ LR Audio Computer/Rega Apollo R CDP/Emotiva ERC3 CDP/BPT 3.0 power cond.
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Re: ZOB 'BREAKDOWN'
Reply #3 - 05/05/18 at 18:21:08
 
At a bit under 72 hours, there are some significant changes. That being said, I am not to the goal of getting rid of the harshness that predominated the recent sound from these speakers. The bass is more than I expected, so that is good. The treble has come back close to what I liked hearing from these drivers in the first place. The mids are not as compressed, and yet have a bit of hardness to them. I do take the D class amp into consideration when making these notes. I am opting for at least one more day of running these in. Past that, I don't expect to hear much better than they are already.
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Decware 34I.3 integrated amp/Forte' 3 bass amp/Velodyne SMS-1 bass mngmnt system/Decware ZOB speakers/Audio Nirvana 8" bass drivers/Xiang Seng DAC/ LR Audio Computer/Rega Apollo R CDP/Emotiva ERC3 CDP/BPT 3.0 power cond.
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Re: ZOB 'BREAKDOWN'
Reply #4 - 05/06/18 at 16:31:51
 
 Finally, after about 88 hours of continuous play, I too the drivers back into the house, and hooked them back into the system. I am glad that I finally took the time to get these drivers broken in, since there hasn't been a single note that is harsh or shrill when playing Super Tramp's Brother where you bound album. That wasn't the most sonically offensive album before break in, but it definitely had it's challenges. Now, I am hearing a much more organic (God I hate this word, and how it is used) sound of the music. There really isn't a better description than that to explain the rightness of the new sound. And folks, I really don't want to come on as some sort of cheerleader for Decware here. If I had found another outcome than this, I would not be shy to say so. I will continue to listen and report any notable differences good or bad, but for now, this sound is what I had hoped for in some fashion.
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Decware 34I.3 integrated amp/Forte' 3 bass amp/Velodyne SMS-1 bass mngmnt system/Decware ZOB speakers/Audio Nirvana 8" bass drivers/Xiang Seng DAC/ LR Audio Computer/Rega Apollo R CDP/Emotiva ERC3 CDP/BPT 3.0 power cond.
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Re: ZOB 'BREAKDOWN'
Reply #5 - 05/22/18 at 13:13:56
 
It has been some time since i have listened to the speakers. Last night, i listened to Allison Krauss/Robert Plants album, "Raising Sand". I wouldn't use such an album to evaluate sound as a foundation anyway. In this case however, there were some changes most notable in the bass. It came out in the bass drum kicks that had depth. Better yet, the depth was defined. I have no doubt that lower part of 40-50hz was being reproduced with a definition that i have never heard from these drivers. Secondly, and quite welcome, was the lower midrange. Fuller would be the term that comes to mind, with more definition needed. The actual middle of the midrange that bothered me in the past only came light when Plant was pushing his roots up from the Zep days. In other words, it is almost intended that the music has an edge to it. Having said that, Krauss had her influence in the writing of tracks as well, and there was a slight edginess to her voice. I had to admit to myself that my hearing is particularly picky about such a thing, and that I doubt that I have all but rarely ever heard a midrange that I am totally comfortable with. The exception seems to be with some headphones, but again, it is a pretty fine line. Lastly, it is the treble that I miss most about my hearing. I know that it is there, but I am just not able to hear past 12kz or so. this really gives music the expression that I enjoy so much. I have to say once again, I do better with headphones in this case, but not enough to satisfy what I miss.
All told, I am much happier with the drivers, and am enjoying the music more than the evaluation at this point. That is a big step when you can put down the tablet, and stop taking notes.
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Decware 34I.3 integrated amp/Forte' 3 bass amp/Velodyne SMS-1 bass mngmnt system/Decware ZOB speakers/Audio Nirvana 8" bass drivers/Xiang Seng DAC/ LR Audio Computer/Rega Apollo R CDP/Emotiva ERC3 CDP/BPT 3.0 power cond.
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