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Hi all,
I'm looking at the Markaudio 10.2, which seem a nice match for my ESP P3A.

A friend of mine (and forum member) swears about the Ciare hx160, which he tried on a gainclone, also because of their 'sensitivity value' of 95dB, quite high compared to Markaudio that shows a mere 87dB.
I have no clue what advantages 95dB would bring, can anyone help me?

Also, I heard loads of nice reviews for the Markaudio 10.2 but very comments on the Ciare. I hope to get some in this thread :)

I don't know of that particular driver, but I know Ciare most cheap 6.5''
woofer, which has the W code ( HW) istead of X ( HX) which stands for a range of broad band speakers. Ciare makes also Pro series speakers ( guess the suffix) and also for instruments, so it gained experience in many fields of application. That particul driver may be part of a long tradition of broad band drivers with very profound cone or it may be the renewed series. Ciare did not yet install phase plugs :confused::rolleyes: Only in the HW 175 and HW135 - CW for 4Ω versions.
Mark had enginereed the speakers with his touch so it's only a matter of distinguishing the good and the - mark- bad:hypno2::):D between the two different drivers -
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The 10.2 is out of production with a 10.3 on the way (in transit actually). A more sensitive driver can be played louder with less power but a lot of guys use flea power with 10.2s with success. Not sure what the sensitivity of the 10.3 but I expect to be slightly higher than the 10.2. Expect much more bass than the Ciare based on the specs but I've never heard either.
Sensitivity is great.... IF you need it. And whether or not you need it depends on your SPL requirement, available power, and power handling of the speaker. And you usually have to give up bass for SPL, or add subwoofers.

Right now I've got a speaker thats an honest 99db in my basement. Running full range and way to loud, the driver cones are barely moving. I can't even see them move. I have to feel them to be sure they're even running. And it's loud! But it's kind of a waste of SPL if I'm listening to background music.

That's the simplified explanation though. Cause there is some added advantage to the high sensitivity speakers I've built. It's that they can really handle complex music and dynamics very well. The sound is very lifelike because the speaker isn't working at all to reproduce extremely short bursts of sound and a wide range of sounds. I've had the same sensation with an 85db speaker only once before, on my desk 1m away with low SPL.

95db is very high for a full range driver, but I bet it makes a lot of sacrifices to achieve it. I've personally never come across a full range driver over 85db that can satisfy all requirements well enough - bass, dispersion pattern, flat frequency response, and moderate output. I doubt the ciare is an exception and I'm betting it's a frequency response mess with very little bass output.
I have not heard them, but I know that the Ciare HX series have a good reputation. They are used in a number of European designs.
Interesting is that the treble disperses better off axis than usual for FR drivers.
The dust cap is constructed so that it helps to render high treble without the need of a classic whizzer cone.

I find this project on the manufacturer site:
There are several advantages to higher sensitivity and the most important one is that you don't have to overdrive your amplifier to get a decent output. Remember sensitivity has nothing to do with sound quality. For every 3dB increase in spl you have to double the amp power. Also higher sensitivity means more headroom and the ability to hear the full dynamics of a performance.
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