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  1. #1
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    How do I break in a new amplifier?

    Hi

    I just got a Cambridge Audio A300. It says to run it for 36 hours before it will perform it's best. What is the best way to run it - quietly or loudly, or somewhere in between?

    I ask because it's got quite poor bass response - well below what I would consider to be involving in any way. Will running it in help with this, or does it need to be taken back to the shop?

    Thanks in advance for any advice!

    Entity

  2. #2
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    Hi,

    I would just leave it on all the time. Whether you play it loud or soft the amp will be energized, and the caps will form up. I wouldn't expect this amp to provide you with thunderous bass, as it's rated for 50w per channel. An amp like this is best mated to a high efficiency speaker, one with 92db or better per watt.
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  3. #3
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Entity
    I just got a Cambridge Audio A300. It says to run it for 36 hours before it will perform it's best. What is the best way to run it - quietly or loudly, or somewhere in between?
    I'm with Geoff - just leave it on. I wouldn't obsess over how you do that. I just bought a NAD integrated for my garage system and I have left it on since playing FM at low level.

    Quote Originally Posted by Entity
    I ask because it's got quite poor bass response - well below what I would consider to be involving in any way.
    If you're not using at least 12 gauge zip, I would heartily recommend doing so. It has been my experience that size does matter.

    That would be a cheap and generally accepted piece of advice. (Warning: I'm one of those loonie high performance cable guys)

    rw

  4. #4
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    A little trick

    If you feel that you want to use more volume, here is a little trick.

    Face the speakers together about 1 foot. Set to run mono, not stereo. Now wire the speakers out of phase. Place a blanket over the speakers.

    You should be able to run the volume up as the sound from the speakers will essentially cancel out.

  5. #5
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    Let me be the first to say...

    Quote Originally Posted by Entity
    Hi

    I just got a Cambridge Audio A300. It says to run it for 36 hours before it will perform it's best. What is the best way to run it - quietly or loudly, or somewhere in between?

    I ask because it's got quite poor bass response - well below what I would consider to be involving in any way. Will running it in help with this, or does it need to be taken back to the shop?

    Thanks in advance for any advice!

    Entity
    Amplifiers don't need a break in! This is just "Audio Mythology" " Audio Hyperbole" "Audio Mumbo Jumbo"". There is no scientific numbers or data that says other wise!!! Don't believe the manufacturer, what do they know. There part of the "Audio Mythology", "Audio Hyperbole", and " Audio Mumbo Jumbo".
    BLAH, BLAH, BLAH!!!

    Now, here is what I really think! Trun it on and leave it on, 24/7 365, unless you go on vacation. I leave all my equipment on that way.

    As for bass response, what were you expecting?

    Also, what do you consider good bass response, and or involving bass response?

    Lastly, did you demo the unit prior to your purchase? If so, how was its bass response?

  6. #6
    Forum Regular Mwalsdor_cscc_edu's Avatar
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    I'm not familiar with a break in process for SS amps, unlike tube amps.As mentioned... just plug it in and play. In my experience components sound different after some use than right out of the box. The degree of the change will vary from one component to another. With tube amps there are more variables that can be readily manipulated, if you choose to pursue that. And through fine-tuning you can perhaps "make" or "break" the amps performance. Least to you. With SS devices, I'm not sure if the amp bass performance will improve enough to satisfy. And if you didn't audition it in your system, there is no one to determine what aspect of the performance is related to the amp itself or interactions with parterning components/room. Listen for as long as the return policy allows. If it still isn't performing up to your standards, take it back.

    MikE

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the info, guys.

    I'm not looking for thundering, trouser-flapping bass. I'd just like to be able to hear the basslines in music, that's all! My speakers are Acoustic Solutions M100s, so 4ohm speakers. I'm not sure of the sensitivity. When connected to my other amp, they give a very nice, deep performance.

    I did have a listen to the amp and it sounded fine at Richer Sounds. They gave me a new one instead of the demo one (as I would expect), and it doesn't seem to be performing.

    I called them and I am going out on Wednesday. We'll set it up, take a listen and if I'm not happy with it then they'll change it for me.

    Thanks again!

    Entity

  8. #8
    Forum Regular stereophonicfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bturk667
    Amplifiers don't need a break in! This is just "Audio Mythology" " Audio Hyperbole" "Audio Mumbo Jumbo"". There is no scientific numbers or data that says other wise!!! Don't believe the manufacturer, what do they know. There part of the "Audio Mythology", "Audio Hyperbole", and " Audio Mumbo Jumbo".
    BLAH, BLAH, BLAH!!!

    Now, here is what I really think! Trun it on and leave it on, 24/7 365, unless you go on vacation. I leave all my equipment on that way.

    As for bass response, what were you expecting?

    Also, what do you consider good bass response, and or involving bass response?

    Lastly, did you demo the unit prior to your purchase? If so, how was its bass response?
    Amplifiers do need to be broken in. No matter what the quality is or brand. Certain parts, like in any other device, need to be charged. This is merely for practical reasons. Some amps have been stored in dusty places, to cold, to hot or other inappropriate conditions. The electric feed and circuits are sensitive to this (depending on the type of amp, tube are different than non-tubes or plain console-amps).
    My advice: go easy, a third of the amp power ('volume' as max) for quite several hours (10 to 15 hours). After that your off on a good start.

  9. #9
    Suspended markw's Avatar
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    Now we're getting somewhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by Entity
    I did have a listen to the amp and it sounded fine at Richer Sounds. They gave me a new one instead of the demo one (as I would expect), and it doesn't seem to be performing.
    What you heard at Richer was the same amp but probably with different speakers and definitely in a different listening environment.

    I would expect the speaker/listening room combination had more of an effect on what you heard at the store (and expect to hear at home) than any amp break in.


    IOW, don't expect miracles after you've had the amp for a while...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Entity
    Hi

    I just got a Cambridge Audio A300. It says to run it for 36 hours before it will perform it's best. What is the best way to run it - quietly or loudly, or somewhere in between?

    I ask because it's got quite poor bass response - well below what I would consider to be involving in any way. Will running it in help with this, or does it need to be taken back to the shop?

    Thanks in advance for any advice!

    Entity
    I wouldn't buy a solid state amp that needed significant break-in and indeed I find it hard to believe yours really does. I can understand tubes really do need to warm up and this is one reason I wouldn't bother with them. Anyway, as far as I know, the Cambridge Audio products are pretty good, so I don't really know what the cause of your dissatisfaction is.

    What is your previous amplifier, along with its power specifications into 8 and 4 ohms, at least?

    What are your speakers?

    Why did you feel the need to get another amplifier?
    "Opposition brings concord. Out of discord comes the fairest harmony."
    ------Heraclitus of Ephesis (fl. 504-500 BC), trans. Wheelwright.

  11. #11
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    OK, long story short. I live at uni now, and I want to leave my nice hifi at home and take an amp and speakers to uni with me. No way would I get a micro system - they aren't as nice as a separates system and they cost just a bit less.

    My speakers are Acoustic Solutions M100s. 4ohm, 90 watt power handling.

    My other amp is a Sherwood AX4050R. It's 90W into 4ohm and 55W into 8ohm.

    The Cambridge Audio amp has not improved in spite of about 40 hours of running at a moderate volume. I'm listening to the same music, same speakers using my Sherwood and it's so much nicer.

    Also, to save anyone asking, I am using Cambride Audio Atlantic interconnects and Cable Talk 3.1 speaker cable. No weak links.

    Anyway, I'm off out to Richer Sounds just now. They are going to have a listen and see if they think there's something wrong. I'll post back and tell you what happened, if anything!

    Thanks for the continued support/interest, guys!

    Entity

  12. #12
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    OK, just been out. Had a listen and it performed flawlessly in their test room, so there wasn't actually anything wrong with it!

    Richer Sounds being themselves, though, offered to change it. I now have a Sherwood AX-4103, which is performing perfectly with my speakers. I have even been able to use "Tone Direct" and it still goes way down deep.

    Once again, Richer Sounds have given me service that's second to none, and then some. Even if they sell some kit that's not widely recognised, it doesn't matter at all if it goes wrong. They're always going to help.

    Thanks again to everyone who tried to help me with my amp. Unfortunately, I probably need more help with my ears!

    Entity

  13. #13
    Suspended markw's Avatar
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    I assume you're either in Great Britian or Australia. Is this the chain that advertises in the back of What HI-FI? If so, I wish we had them here in the US of A. Interesting product selection they have but, then again, it seems there are many more two channel goodies available across the pond than here.

    Glad it worked out for ya.

  14. #14
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    Richer Sounds do advertise in What HiFi. Go to www.richersounds.com for a look around if you like, but unfortunately they don't retail in America yet. I'm sure if you asked them to (and gave them money to) they'd ship across to you, but that would most likely cost a small fortune and not be worth it.

    And anyway, part of the fun of going to Richer Sounds to buy something is setting up a few things in the demo room, having a cup of tea and a listen to help you make up your mind. That is, when it's not so busy you can't move in the store! They are in the Guinness book of world records for the most sales per square foot of shop space. It doesn't surprise me in the slightest!

    Entity

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by stereophonicfan
    Amplifiers do need to be broken in. No matter what the quality is or brand. Certain parts, like in any other device, need to be charged. This is merely for practical reasons. Some amps have been stored in dusty places, to cold, to hot or other inappropriate conditions. The electric feed and circuits are sensitive to this (depending on the type of amp, tube are different than non-tubes or plain console-amps).
    My advice: go easy, a third of the amp power ('volume' as max) for quite several hours (10 to 15 hours). After that your off on a good start.

    Total nonsense. You have no evidence that this is so. A maker making claims without evidence is not evidence. Neither is you claim.
    mtrycrafts

  16. #16
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtrycraft
    Total nonsense. You have no evidence that this is so. A maker making claims without evidence is not evidence. Neither is you claim.
    You don't know what your talking about. Have you ever designed an amplifier? Ever sold one? Ever graduated with a degree in electrical engineering? The designers of the Cambridge Audio amp have, and they state that their amp needs 36 hrs of breakin. If you are calling them liers, then YOU better have evidence to back it up.

    Oh, and just in case your wondering I have documented proof by my own ears, and the ears of several friends of my, some of who are professional musicians that YOU are wrong.
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  17. #17
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtrycraft
    Total nonsense. You have no evidence that this is so. A maker making claims without evidence is not evidence. Neither is you claim.

    Oh, here's a quote from a man who has designed some of the most incredible amps ever made. His name is Nelson Pass, and this quote is from the owners manual of his latest amp the X series.

    "People are interested in how long it takes for these amplifiers to break in. It takes about an hour for them to warm up, and this is where we adjust them first. Then we adjust them again and again over a couple of days, keeping the bias and offset in the sweet spot."

    Sounds like he not only breaks the amps in for 48 house for you, but adjusts them after break-in. Perhaps he's just wasting his time? I think not.
    Audio;
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    PS Audio Classic 250. 500wpc into 4 ohms.
    PS Audio 4.5 preamp,
    Marantz 6170 TT Shure M97e cart.
    Arcam Alpha 9 CD.- 24 bit dCS Ring DAC.
    Magnepan 3.6r speakers Oak/black,

  18. #18
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    A bit of advice

    If your looking for some kind of intelligent discourse, well, you picked the wrong person. There is none to found with mtrycrafts. Don't waste the few I.Q. points it takes to debate mtrycrafts. Trust me, I've tried, he is not worth them. I've never read anything intelligent that HE has written, EVER! Trust me, save the two or three I.Q. points you'll need to debate his vast intellect, for say a discussion with a sponge. Sorry, sponges are absorbent, say a rock!

  19. #19
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    The designers of the Cambridge Audio amp have, and they state that their amp needs 36 hrs of breakin. If you are calling them liers, then YOU better have evidence to back it up.

    Actually, they are the ones that better have the evidence that their design needs 36 hours to break in. Hogwash. Of course they don't have that evidence, or they would post the results of their DBt data comparing a brand new one and one with 36 hours on it.
    Oh, their claim is just marketing voodoo, mythology. I will certainly stay away from their components, thanks.

    Oh, and just in case your wondering I have documented proof by my own ears, and the ears of several friends of my, some of who are professional musicians that YOU are wrong.

    More hogwash. You have speculations, claims, unreliable at that, not proof. Where is it published?
    mtrycrafts

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by bturk667
    If your looking for some kind of intelligent discourse, well, you picked the wrong person. There is none to found with mtrycrafts. Don't waste the few I.Q. points it takes to debate mtrycrafts. Trust me, I've tried, he is not worth them. I've never read anything intelligent that HE has written, EVER! Trust me, save the two or three I.Q. points you'll need to debate his vast intellect, for say a discussion with a sponge. Sorry, sponges are absorbent, say a rock!

    You would recognize anything intelligent? LOL
    mtrycrafts

  21. #21
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
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    plug her in and let her rip!!

    i think Mark stated that it has more to do w/room treatment and speaker positon....i wit him on this issue...
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