Sprout100 Burn-In?


#1

Has anybody put serious hours on the new Sprout yet that can chime in on whether a good burn-in period is needed before it really starts to shine?

My Sprout100 arrived today and it sounds a bit lifeless compared to the Brio-R that it’s replacing. I got it for the smaller footprint since I’m using it at my computer and the Brio was taking up too much desk space.

The mids and highs sound compressed and mushed together. And the tight punchy bass that I was used to isn’t there at all. The lows are muddy now. To be fair, I got the Brio as a demo so it had already been broken in and it’s possible that it had already matured into it’s sound by the time I got it.

I’m using it with KEF LS50’s, REL T9i sub, and Schiit Gungnir Multibit DAC. For the A/B testing between amps I had the subwoofer turned off so it wouldn’t affect the comparison.

Overall, it’s a great little package. Fingers crossed that it’ll come to life with age.


#2

p.s. The Sprout100 is no slouch. I’ve already recommended it to one friend after a few hours of listening. It’s probably the best thing out there at the price point. This thread is just to get insight on whether the “veil is lifted” after some hours.


#3

We typically recommend around 100 hours of burn in for our Class D amps.

Something else you might want to try if you haven’t already is turning off the bass boost. It should have flipped off automatically if you used the subwoofer output, though the boost in conjunction with your T9i might cause some of the muddiness you experienced.

You can tell the bass boost is off because the led will turn sort of blue/purple.

Looking forward to hearing how things go as you put more hours on your new Sprout100!


#4

Mine sounded best past 130 hours. I’m one of those who believe that any speaker will do well with the Sprout, except the LS50. Did not find synergy there, despite hearing many people preferring that pairing. To my ears, the Sprout loves to drive more laid back profiles.


#5

Good to know. I’m trying to put a good 3+ hours on it daily. Turning off the bass boost was the first thing I did. It sounded a lot clearer after being set to off.


#6

I almost sent mine back paired to LS50s. But it makes the ELACs positively sing.


#7

No synergy with the LS50’s is not good news for me because that’s exactly what I’ve paired the Sprout with. They’re the perfect speakers for my computer with their size and because they work well in a near field setup. Fingers crossed that the mids/highs clear up and more importantly that the low end becomes present. The lack of tight punchy bass that I had with the Brio is what I’m missing the most. Time will tell.


#8

That’s what Paul uses in his house, so it’s entirely possible I didn’t give it enough time for burn in, etc. Give it time.


#9

Time will tell, but you may need to rely on the Sprout bass boost to be enabled due to the near field you describe, since in order to extract bass out of the LS50, power must be pushed. At near field volumes the bass may elude you at low volume. It’s a case of two great items that you must carefully work with the positioning to be rewarded. Not a plug and play kind of pair. Of course, is just an opinion though.


#10

I experienced the same. Those damn Elac’s just work. The Sprout also worked very well with KEF Q100 and R300 and Wharfedale Dentons. With the R300s I had to disable the bass boost. But it was helpful for the Q100. For the LS50 I had bass on as well, but the clarity and revealing nature of their character was too much for my ears. I go for neutral to a touch or warmth.


#11

Anything near field is always difficult. I never found near field nirvana until I got those little NAD D8020s. Good luck.


#12

My LS50s are BY FAR the favorite speaker that I can afford. But the ELACs remain a truly special milestone in speakers. I have both versions of the Debut 6, and they just sound good from the moment you open the box.


#13

The bass boost adds more of the muddy bass that I’m already experiencing and sucks some clarity out of the mids/highs so I’ve kept it off. My Brio-R is able to extract nice taut bass at low volumes along with clear highs and midrange so it’s not a matter of the LS50’s being near field. That being said, the Brio-R has 1,000+ hours on it and the Sprout only has 13 hours (and counting) so it’s still far from it the 100’ish hour burn-in that’s been suggested. I’m just going to keep putting hours on it and keep my fingers crossed.


#14

I’m going to chalk it up to a lack of burn-in for the time being because I just plugged in my main speakers (Neat SX1’s) and I’m getting the same results. My Neat SX1’s just lost a ton of clarity, bass is tubby lost it’s punch, and the soundstage took a pretty dramatic hit too. The Neat’s play nice with everything that’s been thrown at them (Rega, Naim, Exposure, Wyred 4 Sound) except the Sprout so far. That’s making me think it’s just lack of burn-in that I’m hearing because the SX1’s aren’t picky when it comes to pairing and placement.


#15

I appreciate the update, definitely keep us posted as you chalk up more hours on the Sprout100.

By the way, how loudly are you typically listening?


#17

I used an iPhone app called Decibel X to record levels from my seated listening position. dB’s in the low to mid 80’s seem to be my normal daytime listening volume.

62-65dB - night time
75-78dB - morning and relaxed listening
82-85dB - my average/most frequent listening level
90.5dB - this is about the loudest I’ll go except on occasion when I’m getting pumped up for a show or to go out and turn it up to 11


#18

I appreciate the detail, this is great. Do you notice any changes in performance depending on loudness?


#19

I’d like to contribute being a pretty new Sprout100 owner.
My unit came on December 24th (Merry Christmas!) and I pretty promptly hooked it up to my Paradigm Studio 20s (V 2) and noticed a bit of a difference, but not quite as spectacular as I expected (replacing an Onkyo TX-DS939 receiver) but also read of the burn in period.
I also decided to go digital from my CD player in to the Sprout so I could use that onboard DAC.
That changed things for the better. I could feel more dynamics coming from what I played.
Fast forward to last week. Yes, sometime last week, I have noticed a dramatic difference. I am actually starting to hear details I have not heard in my recordings previously. And the sound is warm and even reaching mouth open surprise at some of things I am hearing now…
So, I hope for you too that after considerable burn-in, you are happier too.


#20

It’s fairly consistent through different volumes which is nice. I’m going to give it more time before I do another critical listening session and A/B tests with my reference tracks. I’m just splitting hairs by trying to reassess it every day. It sounds like the mids and highs are gaining some clarity after just 22 hours of burn-in but it could also just be my ears getting accustomed to them. Like when my Beyerdynamic DT770’s start sounding great and then I put on my HD800’s and realize I’d just grown accustomed haha.

The low end still has much to be desired but I feel like it could be making some progress. One song in particular, I feel like I’m hearing some punch in the low end that wasn’t there before. I’m going to try to step up listening to 5+ hours/day for the next week and see if things improve.

Only other caveat is a loud bass boom on from subwoofer whenever I plug in or unplug my headphones from the Sprout. Kind of annoying because if it’s night time (for neighbors) I have to crawl under my desk to turn the subwoofer off and back on when I plug in or unplug headphones. Not a deal breaker but causes me to get on my hands and knees a few times a day where I’d otherwise not.


#21

Yes I just got one more. So it is being played for 24/7 200 hours. Here it is my Rogers Ls 3/5 15 ohm speaker.

Here you see the astonished SPROUT / S400 listening at the HIFI fair in Copenhagen.
Over 4,000 people in two days were amazed and sound and price.You have something to look forward to.

More love Denmark