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      07-22-2012, 06:44 PM   #1
NYCX3
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Question Does a BMW Stereo System need a Break-In?

Hello everyone,

I just purchased a new X3 and am very happy with it thus far, only my second day of ownership though, and just joined this forum.

My X3 has the Premium Sound system, and I'd like to ask if anyone knows if it's a good idea to break-in the stereo system in BMWs? I would think it makes sense to go easy on the system (although hard to know what's easy or hard when you haven't felt it's full potential yet) for a few weeks or 10 hours to allow for the speaker cones to adjust in their movements, but not sure if this is truly necessary, since BMW is silent on this.

Thanks, and nice to join all you fellow Bimmer drivers, been reading a lot of useful info here.
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      07-22-2012, 07:17 PM   #2
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Yup, premium sound sounds better after about 100 hrs. Initial sound is forward. If you have not done a search for equalizer settings I would recommend doing so and reset the equalizer.
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      07-22-2012, 07:37 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radioactive View Post
Yup, premium sound sounds better after about 100 hrs. Initial sound is forward. If you have not done a search for equalizer settings I would recommend doing so and reset the equalizer.
Hey, thank you... Yes, I actually did come across your previous posts on the equalizer settings and have set it that way, cannot yet tell much of a difference, not sure if it's because I'm still on like hour 2 of using the system.

Do you know if I should keep the volume low-medium until the 100 hours to not damage the system until it breaks in? Or is letting it have some juice, exactly what it needs to break in better?
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      07-22-2012, 10:13 PM   #4
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Do you know if I should keep the volume low-medium until the 100 hours to not damage the system until it breaks in? Or is letting it have some juice, exactly what it needs to break in better?
Just to be on the safe side I'd stick with a low to medium volume for the first 10-20 hrs. Speaker suspensions and cones are mainly what are breaking in. Some people feel that the electronic components have a break in period. Personally I experienced this only once in a highly regarded cd player I purchased mail order years ago. Sounded so badly I called the dealer. They told me to let in play a couple of days. Sure enough, beautiful sound.
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      07-22-2012, 10:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radioactive View Post
Just to be on the safe side I'd stick with a low to medium volume for the first 10-20 hrs. Speaker suspensions and cones are mainly what are breaking in. Some people feel that the electronic components have a break in period. Personally I experienced this only once in a highly regarded cd player I purchased mail order years ago. Sounded so badly I called the dealer. They told me to let in play a couple of days. Sure enough, beautiful sound.
Interesting, thanks for the input. Yea, the only thing is, it's hard to gauge medium sound when you don't know full potential of it, but I can guesstimate. Either way, the sound system should be covered by warranty if anything, so now worried about it breaking over the next 4 years, just want to ensure proper sound as I enjoy it.
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      07-23-2012, 08:18 AM   #6
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Everytime I see a post about 'breaking in' the speakers I'm amazed that people actually believe this.

I'm not an expert so I'm quite happy to be proven wrong but the whole thing sounds absurd. A quick search also shows I'm not the only sceptic:

http://forums.audioreview.com/speake...kers-1851.html
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      07-23-2012, 09:04 AM   #7
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I agree there is nothing in real like a break in for speakers. It's upto One to get used to them and play with the settings.

Last edited by April1; 07-23-2012 at 10:37 AM.
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      07-23-2012, 09:27 AM   #8
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Yes the speakers do require some break-in time. My premium system sound was far too shrill and took several weeks to settle down.
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      07-23-2012, 10:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crash Test View Post
Yes the speakers do require some break-in time. My premium system sound was far too shrill and took several weeks to settle down.
Are you saying that high frequency response got cut or bass got improved?
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      07-23-2012, 10:47 AM   #10
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Speakers (and most decent electronic audio gear) needs some breaking in.
I have the standard audio which was pretty poor initially, now 3 months on its starting to sound good. I have had to break in all audio speakers, even the cheapest c**p will sound better once it has had a good soak-in period.
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      07-23-2012, 02:26 PM   #11
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I have a standard audio sistem on my X3. The first audition was an disaster After 10 hours, the sound was better. Now, after 20 hours the sound is almost good enough for my ears. The brake-in period is for speakers and for the capacitors inside of the unit, especialy electrolitic capacitors. The brake-in period is real.
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      07-23-2012, 03:16 PM   #12
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I have the Hi-Fi option (the one with 12 speakers and 205W, an upgrade here) in mine. I'm not sure if it is the speakers or my ears that are now broken in but in the beginning I found the sound to be very dissatisfying but now it sounds rather OK. I just had to figure out that it needs to be played rather loud. The sound is not as good as in my Golf (!) which has an upgraded 300W Dynaudio system.
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      07-23-2012, 04:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by April1 View Post
Are you saying that high frequency response got cut or bass got improved?
I don't know which one, but there is more low and less high, so overall the sound is more balanced.
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      07-23-2012, 09:35 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crash Test View Post
Yes the speakers do require some break-in time. My premium system sound was far too shrill and took several weeks to settle down.
As did mine. The highs were definitely "shrill" for a few weeks. The premium sound is starting to settle in over time (~ T+6 weeks). I have read that the same goes for premium home hi-fi systems.

JDR
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      07-23-2012, 10:23 PM   #15
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Thanks for your input everyone, I agree, the system feels "Shrill" with it's highs "piercing" the ears in some songs, with medium range set factory settings. Glad to hear this balances out after a few weeks. Did you all start playing the system "hard" from the very beginning, or slowly eased into it?
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      07-24-2012, 12:03 AM   #16
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Can you run the stereo off the batteries .....

with the car in the garage for 4 hours at a time between driving to speed up the break in process. Perhaps run it at night for 12 hours a shot on the weekends?

Perhaps this sounds bizarre. Just wondering.
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      07-24-2012, 12:05 AM   #17
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All speakers regardless of quality 'break-in'.
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      07-25-2012, 10:06 AM   #18
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The audio sistem must be brake-in on the loud music. There are special CD-s for this task, but I dont recomand it because there are single frecquency, tones test, which can induce the mechanical resonance in the speaker and damage it. The music has a large spectrum and the resonance in one point of the band of the speakers cones are substantialy reduced. So, the music is the best for a complete brake-in. You can play loud all the music you love: classic, rock, dance... etc.
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      07-25-2012, 06:52 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greierasul View Post
The audio sistem must be brake-in on the loud music. There are special CD-s for this task, but I dont recomand it because there are single frecquency, tones test, which can induce the mechanical resonance in the speaker and damage it. The music has a large spectrum and the resonance in one point of the band of the speakers cones are substantialy reduced. So, the music is the best for a complete brake-in. You can play loud all the music you love: classic, rock, dance... etc.
Thank you.
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      07-25-2012, 10:27 PM   #20
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We weaned our '11 X3 35i audio on Gustav Mahler and gradually worked up to John Adams and Phillip Glass.
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      07-26-2012, 09:16 PM   #21
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I have a strong feeling people who say they noticed the sound got enter after their speakers broke in, are just getting used to the sound
Listen to any sound system for a few days and your ears start to get used to it
What was shrill initially, sounds "normal" now
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      07-27-2012, 01:17 AM   #22
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Quote:
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I have a strong feeling people who say they noticed the sound got enter after their speakers broke in, are just getting used to the sound
Listen to any sound system for a few days and your ears start to get used to it
What was shrill initially, sounds "normal" now
High end audio speakers are often soak tested for 48 hours - I visited such a factory doing this when I used to sell such gear. Speakers especially do settle down after being powered up for an initial period. Ears do get used to shrill sound and will accept it, but the brain does not "remember" such experience and so each time you get in the car you will have to get used to it again if it is shrill (and yes the time period will reduce over time but it will still sound shrill if it is...)!

However it does improve over time as posters are here are repeatedly trying to explain.
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