It matters with speakers, certain ones at least.
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Use the Ayre Acoustics "Irrational But Efficacious" disc. Put on track 7 ( Cardas sweep tone ), hit repeat and play it at a volume that is reasonably high yet safe for your equipment. Be forewarned that this track is capable of not only damaging your system, but also shaking things in your room / off of the wall if your speakers are capable of it.
I don't know of any other method that is as efficient, effective and simple to use. It can be VERY annoying to listen to though, so it works best if everyone is out of the house, etc... The longer that you can use it continuously, the better the results. This will work out the entire system. Sean
PS... Thanks to Bob Bundus for turning me onto this disc.
Sean, those warble tones, bass sweeps, etc...I happen to find them relaxing, almost soothing. I am not kidding.
A while back, I broke in some equipment having left it on for about 10 days, at 24hrs. on quite minimal volumes. So minimal, even near field listening was strained. After this time period, I decided to turn the volume up to normal listening levels and left it on again for 24hrs., but for only 5 days.
I found there was definate break in throughout the initial 10 days, but in comparison, the second break in period at real levels provided dramatic improvements.
Thinking about it, this makes sense. Do the capacitors drain similarly at low levels in comparison to higher levels? There is curcuitry in equipment that provides for treble, bass, some excel at depth, others imaging, etc...and we know that you can not always hear these at low levels, so it should logicaly follow that to break in equipment, such said equipment ought to be broken in at levels in wich they can be reproduced.
(O.K., there are those who might say that the second period might in fact just be a part of the extended first, but I do not think so)
Higher volumes require greater voltage and current, which in turn causes greater thermal rise and stress.
As far as different "phases" of break-in go, there is only one that takes place. This may take a day or two of extreme use or a very extended period of time of very light duty use. That's why i said to use this disc ( or a similar method ) at a volume that is pretty high yet safe, and to do it for an extended period of time. This gets most of the initial "break in" done in rapid fashion over a short period of time. Others may agree or disagree with this, but it is what i've found to work not only quite well, but also quite consistently. Sean