Headphone Break-in Guidelines

"Break in" is a process of accelerated aging for mechanical, electronic, and acoustic components. By exercising the components for a period of time, early component failures can be weeded out and parts can settle down to their final working mode. With advances in manufacturing processes and quality control, break in is no longer universally prescribed. Many manufacturers, including OPPO Digital, recommend that customers use the products normally and maintain that the products will achieve optimal performance either out of the box or after a very short period of use.


For customers who want to take their headphones through a break in process, please be mindful of the overall volume level when breaking in the headphones; similar to the way in which a speaker can be overdriven, damage can also occur to headphone drivers when subjected to excessive volume levels. One of the features of the OPPO Planar Magnetic Headphones is its high sensitivity, measured at 102 dB / 1 mW. This means that it requires relatively little power to drive the PM-1 to comfortable listening levels. This also means that if you connect the headphones to a powerful headphone amplifier, such as the OPPO HA-1, you can damage the headphones by setting the headphone amplifier to its highest volume level (in particular, when using the balanced XLR connection in conjunction with the High Gain mode at full volume). The volume level produced by this combination would be painful to listen to, and it would also very likely damage the headphones. In short, you do not want the break in process to actually break the headphones.


Ultimately, we recommend just listening to your music - don't worry about break in; after about 24 hours of listening time, you will have a very clear idea as to how the headphones will sound. But if you insist on a prolonged break in period, please make sure you are using volume levels that you would normally listen to music at. We do not recommend breaking in the headphones using pink noise, white noise, or sine waves, since these methods exercise the diaphragm in a way that is very different from normal music, and it is very easy to choose a potentially damaging volume level when using these signals.

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