I mean, this can’t be real, can it? Burning in your audio component cables to get better sound? I guess if you’re the kind of person who’s willing to drop between $500 and $750 on a freakin’ power cable, you might want to make sure that cable is burned in!


I am BSEE and a professional broadcast engineer.

I can tell you with complete certainty that people do actually spend that kind of money on things like those cables.

I can also tell you with complete certainty that it is a complete scam and that you do not ‘break in’ cables. Modern snake oil.

There have been many, many arguements about hifi cabling between engineers and ‘audiophiles’ and it all comes down to impedance and shielding, both of which you can objectively measure. Anyone that tells you otherwise is selling something.

Personally, I use cheap zip cord to wire speakers and it works great.

• Posted by: Michael on Jun 17, 2004, 12:32 AM

I’m a dumb AE and not a sparky, but I sit around the EEE parts conversations at work, and best as I know, all burning a cable in does is prove that the workmanship is good.

This only makes sense in six-sigma situations where you have to have the thing work no matter what. Just lately we’ve been working with a Teflon-encapsulated heater element for spaceflight that started to de-laminate due to contamination on the surface of the element. The burn-in on these heaters was really minimal and didn’t pick up the contamination; only our acceptance testing did. [Of course, that was several months down the line, and it meant that we got to get new heaters … but hey, without a launch vehicle, who worries about schedule? ;)]

But getting better performance out of burned-in cables? That’s preposterous.

• Posted by: Geof on Jun 21, 2004, 2:03 PM
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