Do WBT spades need break in?


OK - I know I sound like a crazy audiophile.  

I bought new WBT spades to replace my old school banana connects from about 5 years ago.  I just acquired a pair of kef reference 1's and the old bananas fit poorly and were not in line with the quality of the speakers.  I removed the old connects, fit the WBT's and screwed the wire in tight.

They sounds a bit hollow and confused.  Is there such a thing as spade break in?
Using harmonic tech pro11 cables.  Hegel h360 amp.  

Thoughts?


cshadow
Never heard of spades needing a break in but I don’t doubt they did change the sound of your system and it just might be time for your ears to adjust to the difference. Give it some time, 2-300 hours, as I suspect it’s more of adjusting to the change, but maybe there is a break-in period.
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If the wires were old, did you sand them shiny, and did you attach the right crimp collars ( assuming these are the hex screw types)
Yes, the spades need break in.  A few years ago I experimented with different types of Cardas spades, and each set changed as it accumulated more hours.  I don't see any reason why WBT would be different.  Give the spades at least 100 hours of playing time before drawing any conclusions.
Everything goes through break-in. Even a cable used every day, if you unplug it and move it around, will not sound very good at first.

So what you did, in addition to adding a new part that will take some time to burn in, you also moved the cables around a lot and subjected the wire ends to bending being screwed in. The sound you describe, "hollow and confused" is exactly right. Heard it many times myself.

None of this is anything to do with the part itself, which may turn out to be part of the problem. In other words it may well turn out to be that it never sounds good no matter how many hours it gets. I’m simply saying what happens, because obviously hardly anyone else has enough experience (let alone the listening chops) to know. (Like hex screws, that’s relevant, wow.) (Notable exception, salectric.)

And now for the grande finale, the piece de resistance, the proof in the pan, take one cable- any cable- from your system. Power cord, IC, I don’t care. Listen to some good music. Unplug it, bend it, wriggle it, plug it back in. When you hear the same confused sound and notice it only lasts a few minutes, then you will know I know what I’m talking about.

By the way its great that you noticed this and thought to ask. Its just your bad luck the first few to reply don’t know this stuff. They should. I’ve been posting it for years. They’ve had all kinds of chances to learn. Oh well. Good Lord, one with nearly 10k posts thinks you hooked it back up out of phase. See how clueless? Be careful whose advice you take. DYODD. Go and listen. You will see.
Hollow and confused sounds like out of phase. Are you sure you connected the new connectors correctly? First thing I would check is continuity + to + and - to -
I agree, yes, the spades need break-in.
@lak     spot on.
The other could be the solder ( does what need solder) 
Why go commando and use bare wire? No termination issues. 
Thanks everyone for the comments and advice.

This exploration of cables and connectors has been educational. I ended up replacing the cables all together and went with silnote morpheus II's.  I have been a cable skeptic, but I do get weakest link in the chain.  It was a night and day difference with the new cables.  5 mins out of the box it was obvious there was something "off" about the harmonic tech pro 11's compared with the silnote's.  Wether it was the new spades, or the cable itself, I will not be going back to those old gardenhoses...

Thanks again



I realize I’m a bit late to the party. Thought I’d share some recent experiences. I have recently made a number of DC power cables to go between a preamp and a power supply. At the same time I have been swapping interconnects around. What I have noticed every time is that the sound is off after making new connections. Imaging is most noticeable with instruments taking up too much of the sound stage and being too in your face and with an odd sort of “phase” issue that sounds very unnatural. There is another effect where piano notes and stringed instruments have weird overtones that make them sound a bit harsh to the ears. Each key strike comes with a slight insult to your ears. After several hours of letting my system play, this all seems to go away. The most noticeable aspect is that the instruments become more pinpoint and move back in the soundstage. That harsh sound with piano keys and stringed instruments clears up. This all happens in under a day of playing. There may be a longer, more gentle break-in process still going on, but I find the first 4-6 hours to be especially noticeable and required before the music sounds right enough to happily listen and stop worrying that you made the wrong cable decisions. If things don’t sound right after a few days, then I begin to worry and consider my next steps.