Cube Audio Nenuphar Single Driver Speaker (10 inch) TQWT Enclosure


Cube Audio (Poland) designs single drivers and single driver speakers. 

Principals are Grzegorz Rulka and Marek Kostrzyński.

Link to the Cube Audio Nenuphar (with F10 Neo driver) speaker page: 

https://www.cubeaudio.eu/cube-audio-nenuphar

Link to 6Moons review by Srajan Ebaen (August 2018):

https://6moons.com/audioreview_articles/cubeaudio2/

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Parameters (from Cube Audio):

Power: 40 W

Efficiency: 92 dB

Frequency response: 30Hz - 18kHz ( 6db)*

Dimensions: 30 x 50 x 105 cm

Weight: 40 Kg


* Frequency response may vary and depends on room size and accompanying electronic equipment.
david_ten

Showing 50 responses by toetapaudio

All good, thanks David. Enjoying my Cube/Bakoon system. I noticed Srajan had good results also with VR pre and Bakoon as an amp only.  It will be interesting to hear what VR/SIT 1 is like from Stephen.
The Bakoon 13R sounds even better when used with the SATRI Link via BNC from the Bakoon DAC, imo. I don’t think Srajan has tried that yet? Other makes of dac can be connected through RCA of course. I’ve been told that the Denafrips Terminator works well with the Bakoon 13R but not tried myself.

Speaker seismic isolation is important as Sven Boenicke and Max Townshend and others, have discovered.
@thieliste  I can’t comment about the Brinkmann since I haven’t tried.

The following are possible contenders

Tektron which Cube themselves use at shows
First Watt which the USA distributor uses with Cubes at shows
ACG which AVS has used
VR from this thread
Bakoon 13R which Srajan of Six Moons recommended plus myself
Found as used by the OP

There may be others of course.

From my point of view the size/weight/cost of some of the alternatives is not appealing to me.
With regard to seismic isolation control credit and thanks should go out to the work done by Barry Diament.

For those not familiar with his work, here is a paper by Barry on the subject:

http://www.barrydiamentaudio.com/vibration.htm
@Yorkshireman, we have both the 10 inch and 8 inch available to demo at home so you can decide. In an average size room I think most people would be happy with the 8 inch. It would be interesting to hear from others that have auditioned both. AVS on YouTube recently reviewed the 8 inch version, worth checking out if you haven’t already. Their initial review was for the 10 inch. Personally I feel the 8 inch produces enough bass but you should try both to be satisfied.
To be clear Townshend produce Podiums for speakers and Platforms for equipment. The principal of springs and damper are similar but they differ dimensionally and with different spring rates. Unless your amps are a similar weight to the speakers they may not work optimally. Amps and equipment should always be on effective isolation devices anyhow and Townshend are certainly one of the better systems. The other arrangement I like are cups and rollers plus springs.

My findings with speaker isolation have always been positive. Boenicke with and without their spring bases are quite different, being more transparent with isolation. The same goes for Cube imo.
khragon, congratulations and keep us informed of progress.
I have size 3, which accommodates both 8 and 10 inch Nenuphar’s. Size 2 should be ok with 8 inch only.
Townshend platforms work otherwise it’s diy with platforms and springs. Imo spikes are not beneficial, see Barry Diament link above.
Steve, glad you tried isolating the speakers and heard an improvement. I think this is definitely something most speakers would benefit from. Townshend are a good commercially available product that work with a variety of speakers. My Townshend platforms can accommodate both the 8 and 10 inch Nenuphar’s. I still use the spikes and cups at the front, they just sit on the aluminium platforms. I secure the cups in place with industrial double sided tape.


Pity Munich is cancelled, I was looking forward to meeting up with Cube.
Hi David, I remain to be convinced by the benefit of spikes generally. I’m in the Max Townshend, Barry Diament, Peter Bizlewicz, Geoff Kait camp of isolation control.
Good question larryi, but unfortunately I haven’t been able to audition the versions with active subwoofers, that was one of the reasons for going to Munich but unfortunately that event has been cancelled. I have to say I don’t feel that I’m missing out on bass, with either the 8 inch or 10 inch Nenuphar’s.
Steven, the LTA and SIT 3 sound like excellent choices. I’m hoping I might be able to try both at some point to compare with the Bakoon 13R. For me the fact that the Bakoon will have a matching dac enabling JET SATRI through BNC is important to me. Apart from the sound the minimal concept of their designs very much appeals.
We can supply Nenuphar drive units World wide and are looking into cabinet designs customers can use. We can also supply Townsend Podiums to use with the Nenuphar’s. 
Just to confirm that you can add a sub at a later date to either 8 or 10 inch Nenuphar’s if you so wish.
There was a post about ACG with Cube earlier in this thread. I haven’t tried but you might consider Bakoon 13R perhaps which I can recommend. The VR also sounds like a good option, although three times the price of the Bakoon.
If budget is a concern there is the excellent Cube Magus, available fully built at £6,900.00 a pair or the Cube Magus Drivers at £2,570.00 a pair. I’ll make this a separate thread in due course since this thread should remain about the Cube Nenuphar’s.

There are a few makes of full range drivers on the market but can I suggest that we keep this thread to the Cube Nenuphar’s and that any other makes of full range speakers have there own thread unless somebody actually has direct experience of both.
Hi cal, a demo listening to your own collection of music is the best way forward if you can arrange.  
David, because Munich was cancelled I haven’t listened to the BASiS. Actually I’m more interested in the Magus for customers who can’t stretch to the Nenuphar’s.
Reference coupling to Townshend Podiums. This is a good thing I believe but difficult to achieve in practice. At the moment I have only gone as far as fixing down the cups with industrial double sided tape to the Podiums to stop sliding. It also means I can change from 10 to 8 inch Nenuphar’s using the same Podiums by detaching the cups and repositioning.

Any material change under the speakers ( or under any piece of equipment for that matter) will change the sound of course. If I were to make new block feet, out of wood for example, then I would make use of the existing threaded inserts in the speaker bottom and fix them using counterbored threaded bolts. The feet would then be fixed to the Podiums with DS tape or even better ( but more extreme) drilling a hole and fixing with screws from under the top plate. Candidates for best feet material: perhaps Maple, Ebony, brass?

Regarding amplification compatibly with the Nenuphar’s I just want to emphasis that the little (but giant in performance) Bakoon 13R should be added to the list of suitable amps imo.
David, expensive way of doing it but yes should work. Personally I’m ok with the bass as it is from either Nenuphar’s and prefer the simplicity. 
Bakoon 13R is my preference with the Cubes. I’m using it with the Bakoon DAC21 which is out of production but I’m looking forward to a new dac from Bakoon in the imminent future. Physically the new dac will match the 13R. I’m expecting it not to cost more than the amp.

I’m over joyed with the sound I’m getting with the Cube/Bakoon pairing and I have had great comments from customers. The Bakoon very small, which proves bigger is not always better. I’m finding increasingly people want a simple and uncluttered system.
There has to be other factors.

As Srajan has said ( 6 Moons Bakoon 13R review) “ Of all the speakers I would saloon around on the Bakoon, Nenuphar was the hostess with the mostest”.
Nice to hear positive comments about the Bakoon from others. Thanks for posting David.
I can’t comment on the Bakoon 41 with the Nenuphar’s, I only have experienced the Bakoon 13R with the Cubes and like Srajan have found the combination to be very compatible, so there has to be other factors at play here other than DF. I believe Srajan’s preference was the 13R over the 41 but he may not have had the Cubes at that time? The 13R has the latest JET Satri circuit which makes for a very fast response, full bodied and open sound as verified by customer feedback here in the UK.

If anyone in the USA is interested in the Bakoon products, please contact Bakoon directly through their website.
Bob, 8 inch is my recommendation as well. What’s your floor finish?
Bob, you will probably need longer spikes if the carpet is thick, in order that one maintains the gap as intended. Or arrange for them to stand on something solid.
We have the Cube Nenuphars in the U.K. on demo. Drop me a PM for details if interested. Outstanding speakers.
Thanks Deepfield. What was the source and amplification used for the comparison for interest?
Thanks deepfield for the information.

We are getting great results driving the Cubes with Mola Mola Makua/Kaluga’s and look forward to trying Bakoon amplification soon with the Cubes.

We have the Nenuphars at present and will be receiving Magus shortly. I’ll come back here with thoughts/findings when we have made comparisons
@david_ten, I can wholeheartedly recommend one of the music servers made by Fidata. IMO better than other well known brands, most of which we have compared. There are a couple of European designs which sound interesting but we haven’t had the opportunity of trying so far but both cost more than the Fidata. I don’t think you would be disappointed with Fidata. We are using in a system which includes the Cube Nenuphars.

Hi David, Fidata, as you probably are aware, is a server with CD ripping and transport functionality. Two models with 1TB and 2TB storage, priced at £6k and £8k here in the U.K.  Use on its own or combine with a streamer, connection through LAN, such as one of the Lumins with or without built-in dac. USB connection to a suitable free standing dac if required.


As regards sound quality it is a very impressive digital source, the best so far that we and others have tried. There have been some good reviews here


hifiknights.com › reviews › transportsFidata HFAS1-S10U – HiFi Knights


hifiknights.com › reviews › transportsWeb resultsFidata HFAS1-XS20U – HiFi Knights


We have the cheaper 1TB model in our demo system and understand from another Fidata dealer who has tried both models, the sound quality is very close. In fact one customer of his after auditioning both at home, decided on the cheaper model.


I do not know how the Fidata compares with the Pinkfaun 2.16x (11k Euro) or the new Sound Music Gallery’s Evo (16k Euro?) but would like to try of course. Another contender would be the 432 Evo. It’s more difficult to obtain review samples from these small specialist brands. Fidata is part of a larger Japanese company, quoting from our website


“The company behind Fidata is Japanese Company, I-O Data, originally established in 1976. The parent company is involved in the design and manufacture of all types of industrial applications associated with networking and data storage and OEM products in that field.

 

The work on the HFAS1-S10U started in 2012 but wasn’t launched until 2016. While the brand is new the people behind the design have been experienced in the field for many years. The core team is Akita Miyamoto (hardware), Shininichi Morita (chief designer), Yuiji Minagawa (software) and Yasunori Kitamura (production).”


I should also add that the Fidata employs a specific app, from their website 


fidata Music App is an OpenHome-compatible control app engineered by fidata in Japan to bring the ultimate level of ease of use to network audio.

The user interface, which has been meticulously designed for maximum convenience, goes beyond track selection to allow users to freely switch servers and playback devices. Used with fidata's HFAS1 series, it provides a pleasant, PC-less environment whose functionality extends to hardware settings and manipulation of music files on storage devices.


It’s the best app I have used.


At present I’m preoccupied with testing the Cube Nenuphars and soon the Cube Magus speakers. Soon we should have the Bakoon 13R amp and a bit later their new dac hopefully. The Fidata hasn’t let us down so far.


@david_ten, please can I ask you about your Nenuphars 

How long did they take to burn in, or are they still burning in?

Have you considered/ tried using seismic isolation devices with the Nenuphars, such as those by Ingress Engineering or Max Townsend?

Did you have the opportunity to compare the Nenuphars with the Magus? Thoughts?

Have these speakers shown up any shortcomings with your system? Any future upgrades planned apart from your digital source of course?
The Nenuphars improve everyday, we have had them for about 3 weeks so far and have noticed them opening up even further. Hopefully we will have the Cube Magus’s in a few weeks to compare. We are also expecting the Bakoon 13R amps soon to try out with the Cubes. 
@dawgbyte have no fear about “coloration and potential potential lack of dynamics.” Quite the opposite actually and our speakers haven’t even been fully burnt-in yet. @david_ten has informed me that they need a minimum of 200 hours. I love the effortlessness and open nature of them, instruments and harmonics are more natural, bass very well defined and not overblown, greater detail but no harshness, very dynamic but smooth and open.

If you were in the UK we would lend you some but maybe the USA distributor could sort you out. What’s the rest of your system may I ask?
As David is aware, I have been evaluating the Cube Nenuphar’s mounted on Townshend’s Isolation Podiums over the last week. Could a really great speaker get even better? Here are my findings:

System set-up:
Cube Nenuphar’s, Mola Mola dac and amps, Fidata server, Sablon cabling, SteinMusic Harmonizers, Bybee Signal Enhancers fitted to dedicated mains consumer unit with separate spurs to each component, Ingress Engineering footers/slate platforms/air spring isolation on dedicated solid maple furniture fitted with Ingress cup and ball footers.
Music:
Local files stored on the Fidata server.
Carmen Gomes Sings the Blues DSF live recording
Arne Domnerus Jazz at the Pawn Shop DSF live recording
Leonard Cohen You Want it Darker FLAC
Rebecca Pigeon The Raven FLAC
The Los Angeles Percussion Quartet The Year Before Yesterday FLAC
Arvo Part Tabula Rasa Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra Keith Jarrett WAV

As we both know effective isolation brings big improvements in SQ. I knew from my experience with Boenicke speakers that have a Swing Base Isolation set up as an option, that isolating the speakers really helps. So many speaker manufacturers overlook this.

When I received the Cube Nenuphar’s I was really happy with the sound of them but felt that it would be good to try isolating them to hear if they could sound even better. Max Townshend’s Podiums seemed to be the obvious solution and I had seen them working very effectively at a show. I have known Max for a long while and we had a great chat about the benefits of isolation in general. The Cubes gave me the opportunity of trying out Max’s Podiums.

The Nenuphar’s as you know are a very open and natural sounding speaker already but mounted on the Podiums these attributes just increased. The live recordings just sounded more real and the space between the players was more clearly defined.

On the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, the various bell sounds just sounded clearer, open and more natural. Bass drums on this recording sounded more real with me increased depth and timbre.

On Arvo Part, you could sense the body of the piano more.

Leonard Cohen’s voice sounded smoother, more open, less overblown but with increased texture.

Both live recordings really opened up further and sounded more live.

In summary: a worthwhile upgrade that brings the following improvements from my listening notes


Increased space around instruments


Music more absorbing and delicate


Increased transparency


Clearer top end


Improved transients


Greater harmonic structure to the music


Better cohesion


Increase in detail


Bass tighter more natural


Depth and openness increased


Notes last longer


Now I have the Cube/Bakoon/Puritan system up and running, sublime combination at a moderate cost.

Cube Nenuphar Mini on its way. I’ll keep you folks posted.
Hi Sasko 

The drivers definitely get better with more playtime and settling as David I’m sure will confirm.

We are getting great synergy with the Bakoon 13R amp, highly recommended. I also recommend the speakers being placed on a well designed isolation device, like Townshend Podiums, see my previous post.

I have just added the Puritan PSM156 mains purifier into our system, resulting in a nice uptick in overall system performance. So three Blue Moon Award components working well together. Srajan knows his stuff. 😁
Congratulations @bebruatigan and thanks for interesting information.

If you can try and borrow a Bakoon 13R.
Cube Mini Nenuphar’s now on demo. These have the 8 inch driver rather than the 10 inch driver and come in a smaller cabinet. I’m very impressed.
@saleh84, congratulations on your purchase.

Bakoon 13R is a great match.

@kalali, pricey? Not considering the performance compared with other speakers in the same price group. The Cube Mini Nenuphar’s retail for £10,250 in the U.K.
@ag3, we have both to demo if you are in the U.K.?

What is the size of your room?
Hi Charles

The soundscape is larger with the Nenuphar’s, as one might expect. The Mini Nenuphar’s would be the choice for medium to smaller spaces and I can see this being the preferred choice here in the U.K.

The sound qualities are similar, both being very open, the feeling of a directness between you and the music, a calmness that allows one to get absorbed into the music. I feel that transients are perhaps dealt with a little better with the Mini, perhaps due to a lower moving mass.

The cabinet designs are similar being TQWT, the Mini cabinet dimensions being smaller. In theory the 10 inch version should produce a lower bass end but in our medium sized listening  room I certainly have nor felt I’m missing much if any bass extension.

Due to the revealing nature of these speakers, as has been said by you and others, amp matching is very critical. Don’t assume though that these speakers are for SET’s only. There are some SS amps that clearly work extremely well with them. My own experience with the Bakoon 13R, echoes the praise that Srajan of Six Moons has mentioned about this combination. There are other SS amps that  might be compatible as well, like First Watt, Trilogy and possibly Grandinote.

Please ask if there are any other questions.
Stephendunn, thanks for letting us know and congratulations. Keep in touch.
I haven’t heard them with subs but feel no need for them.