Cardersound Nina's underwhelming...

I read a handful of reviews, and took note of the specs, before purchasing a pair of Cardersound Nina's.

The specs are as follows:

- EnABLE'd Fostex 126en drivers
- 93dB sensitivity
- 40Hz-25kHz (from Cardersound; 45Hz from the seller)

My rig is as follows:

- MacBook Pro / Amarra / ALAC
- Oyaide neo d+ Firewire
- Weiss DAC2
- Blue Jeans Cable LC-1
- Red Wine Audio Signature 15 (JJ 6922)
- Canare StarQuad

I don't know if the "EnABLE" process has fouled the drivers (it's obviously *supposed* to make them better) or if, as in the case of some Moth Audio Cicada's I had, there was a resister (or something) in the path to keep them calm as they broke in, meant to be removed after X number of hours, but these are some seriously underwhelming speakers. There are no dynamics to speak of, next to no bass response, and the highs seem muted. I'm baffled at the positive reviews they've received.

I will say that solo guitar, lute, piano and vocals sounds pretty damn good; the midrange sounds quite nice...but that's where it ends.

Now, trust me, I understand that a single 4.5" driver is not going to be able to compete - all things considered - with the Tekton Lores (real 30Hz-30kHz @ 98dB) I had before them, but again, given the specs, I would expect far more than what I'm hearing.

Can anyone out there possibly shed some light on what might be going on here?

Thanks a ton for your time, in advance.
- Mark
40-25khz from a single full range driver in a moderate sized rear horn loaded enclosure?

Pretty meaningless without more detail.

I find it hard to believe there would be no drop off even in the upper ranges below 20khz that some might be able to hear.

TEktons were 2-way, right? THat's an advantage there.

Is there a measured frequency response curve available?

There could be many reasons why bass is not what it might be but I would expect much is not possible with a single 4.5" driver, even if rear horn loaded. That's just basic physics I fear. Same true in regards to dynamics.

The things that sound good do not surprise me. I don't think this kind of speaker is for those who listen to pop/rock or more electronic forms of music, but could sound lovely with many types of acoustic music.

ALso wondering who was the seller? Apparently they saw it fit to reduce the low end spec for some reason. Maybe a side effect of the Enable'd process? Dunno. Can't find much out there about that in general much less anything about potential negative effects.

All speaker designs have tradeoffs. I've looked at the Cardersounds, Cain and Cain's, and other similar designs being a fan of full range drivers and the visual aesthetics in general and having an interest in horn designs and would expect certain strengths and tradeoffs along the lines you describe, but think they could well still fit the bill quite well for some listener's applications and with some kinds of music.

Speaker swaps usually involve other system tweaks to get things right again. If you think they have promise but are just underachieving initially, give it some time and careful thought as to what might be done to help max the new speaks out.

ALso wondering what your expectations were going in jumping from Tekton to these? That would tell a lot. I'm guessing more coherency from a single driver with good extension in line with the advertised specs and at least decent dynamics?
You'll have to pardon my initial rant, and a hasty one it was... My expectations were (are), indeed, exactly as you describe. After listening extensively throughout the day today and into the evening, though, I'm appreciating them more and more. And after listening to them side by side with my not-yet-shipped-off-after-sale Lores, said expectations have been met. Why I felt the need to type up my initial experience without giving them a *truly* thorough listen, I don't know. Again, pardon me. I'll leave it at that.
It is only a fe126e a very small driver. Plus the enable process is a very questionable tweak. I feel you would be better off buying a larger driver than enabling a smaller one.
Well, sure. I suppose I thought the loading of the driver would render more bass than what I'm hearing (which is, again, very little). The EnABLe-ing process had been applied to the drivers already. Part of me wonders if replacing the drivers with stock 126en's might alter the sound for the better, but then again it might not do a darn thing. Again, though, these speakers sound pretty darn "just right" with acoustic music. Rock and roll, large orchestra and electronic music, though, just doesn't work well with them at all... And maybe they're just not supposed to.
"And maybe *it's* just not supposed to," that is.
This should (and will) be my last post to this thread, that I now wish I could remove in it's entirety...

I titled it "Turn it up, man!" for a reason. You see, I've been listening to these things at low to medium volumes (more, than less, of my listening is not at very high volumes). Well, it seems that these little horns do just fine (all things considered) with more volume [than I had been listening to them at]. I'm playing some of The Detroit Escalator Co.'s "Black Buildings" album while on lunch break, at about 11:00 on my Sig15's volume knob, and what do you know? Bass: it's actually there. I've dubbed this album (and others by them) driver killers because of the low frequencies and electronic drum attacks scattered throughout their tracks. On true full frequency speakers it's some pretty neat stuff to hear. And on these, it's really just isn't bad at all. Again, the bass that I thought was *almost completely* absent is absolutely there.

My apologies to Mr. Carder and anyone else I may have offended with such a hasty thread.
And let me add that the highs are there as well. I initially stated that the highs seemed muted. Well, it must've been whatever tracks I was auditioning them with, right out of the box (for me), and again and fairly low volumes: There's plenty of treble to go around, and with the perfect mids and the now-realized bass, I'm flip-flopping entirely. I obviously need to think twice (or more) before starting threads about products I've given next to no time auditioning. Again, anyone who was offended or puzzled at my initial post, my apologies.
Wonder if you can speak about these in comparison to say Zu Omen speakers???Am considering the two for a 300b integrated I use ...and would like to know if there is similar quality in bass and mid-range? thanks