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Good afternoon everyone:

One of my neighbors is in the market for an old school vinyl record player, an amplifier and two decent speakers (I didn't know that people even listened to vinyl anymore, by the way, but fortunately they still do apparently).

His budget is about $5 k max for everything. He went to a local store, listened to a Teac turntable connected to a Marantz amplifier and Martin Logan speakers. He liked them, but he thought that the speakers sounded a bit "tinny". The sales guy told him that the woofers need to be broken in before they give the full bass response.

What do you guys think, nonsense, or may there be some truth in it? I read stories about headphones that need to be "broken in" by having them play pink noise or just all kinds of genres for a day or so but as far as I am concerned speakers should sound great straight out of the box. If they sound "tinny", that means their bass response is probably not enough. There ain't no substitute for cubic inches. Or he might get a subwoofer just to handle the low end.

If I were in his position I'd probably go on eBay and look for a pair of excellent speakers from any generation, and ditto for the record player and amplifier. The critical component in the chain are probably the speakers, then the turntable (and decent cartridge with new needle), and then the amplifier.

We both live in an artist loft, by the way, with 15 foot high ceilings and a beautiful but very noisy wooden floor, so a smart thing to do in any scenario is to set aside a small budget for some acoustic room treatment and at the least decoupling pads to keep the neighbors below happy. He's a good carpenter so he can probably make beautiful panels himself which would beat any commercially available panels, at least in the looks department.

Any thoughts / suggestions?

Thanks!
 

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Have heard of woofer 'break in' but do not think (with no testing) it is real.
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The tinnieness may be due to your neighbor's past experience in listening to music with
'boomy' speakers , or possibly car audio.
Also, the frequency response of CD / digital music is greater than Lp records.
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Withou looking up the speakers , I may recommend that the use of a seperate sub woofer
would be to your building-mates linking.
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I think your 'weakest link' analysis is right from the viewpoint of which pieces give the
most 'color to the music.
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Depending on playback volume levels, the turntable stand could use stiffening & massing.
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Ah -- I remember D-Stat mats & neadle cleaner fluids & brushes fondly --
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I have read some articles about audio distortion and it is a legand that vinyl and
analog has 'more pleasing' even harmonics vs. digital having odd hamonics'
but I have never seen the data -- and without data it may just be an opinion.
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I also think you are right about the critical components as being the transducers.

The break-in effect occurs as the driver suspension compliance increases with time. This affects mainly the driver behavior around the tuning frequency but I doubt it will affect the tonal balance dramatically since the effects are limited in bandwidth (typically between 40-100Hz). If the speaker sound tinny due to lack of 150-300Hz energy, then the break-in won't do much for it except skewing the tonal balance a bit. Your friend could use an AV receiver's EQ to get a feel for it. Break-in does not requires hours of playing, only large cone movements... some reports changes in as little as 5 minutes... I'm not suggesting he asks the salesmen to perform it.
 

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I only have two tips buddy. Firstly, it is very important that in a room with a player and hi-fi installation there is no high level of humidity, and secondly it is better to place them on some table, that they were safe from pets or animals))
The fact is that I had a player, and it cost about 1,500 bucks. Once, when my daughter was playing with a cat, she ran up a lot and fell right on the player. As a result, she received a broken leg, and the player became unusable. After that I bought a new higher-quality player and in order not to encounter the same situation, I decided to purchase a stand for it, and reviews on pickmyturntable.com stopped me in this. So be careful and think carefully before buying and installing.
 
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