C2 Audio Threatcon 2 12”
When looking at drivers that are below the $150 price point you have to consider a few things. Enclosure size and power handling are always some of the first things that come into everyone’s mind. With the Threatcon 2 enclosure parameters vary greatly, but from our tests we have found that in a sealed enclosure you can get them to perform very well in 0.75 - 1 ft3 of net volume. The driver performs extremely well producing a nice response well down into the 30’s and even into the higher 20’s. Which for mobile applications is exactly what you would be looking for. However, they performed rather well down into the .7ft3 sealed enclosures and on the higher side they did fairly well in 1.5ft3 but of course they became rather “boomy” and not as exact sounding.
In a standard ported enclosure we found them to perform extremely well in 1.8 to 2.0 ft3 for a great mix of SQ and amazing output. Port area seems to be more ideal around 14in2 per 1ft3 of volume. Tuning can be adjusted to a more personal desired level, but for SQ testing we found that in most trunk cars a tuning of around 34-36 was idea, while hatch backs and SUV style applications liked 32-33 a little more. We did some testing with ported enclosures as small as 1ft3 and as large as 2.25 with good results both ways. With larger enclosures power capabilities are cut drastically, but low end extension is increased.
As for power capabilities it is rated a very modest 600rms. We did most of our tests with a max clamp power of 821.2 watts with no issues with the exception of a 2.5 ported enclosure were we could surpass the mechanical limits at anything over 500rms, which is still very acceptable. During some more torture style tests we did get 1512 watts before we ran into issues with thermal capabilities for any tests longer than a few minutes. We also did several tests with very low power. In a sealed application 150 watts provided a very nice and smooth sound that was rather impressive and blended very easily. In ported 100 watts provided the same response style. However, power handling is subject to the owners’ ability to set up their system correctly to ensure that they do not clip the signal. The enclosure design will also reflect the overall response curve greatly. A sub is only as good as the enclosure it is installed in.
As for sound, this driver does an amazing job at simply doing just that. While it can get a little bottom heavy in some styles of enclosures, that is more based on how you setup the enclosure and amplifier/eq settings. If you take the time to design an enclosure and set everything correctly, this sub will perform very well and you will quickly forget that this is a sub $150 driver. It can easily perform with subs of double its cost.
We did some testing with random people (anyone we could get to sit in the car at the show we were at), and asked them to describe the sound, output, and then suggest what they think the driver is (brand, model, size). Most described the driver in the sealed enclosure to be “very precise” and “extremely clean sounding”. While the ported enclosure we heard similar reports, but with the added “the output is impressive”. Most thought it was a pair of drivers that would cost double or triple the cost. All though, we will not go into the names of those companies. Most were beyond shocked when we told them, not only is this a single driver setup, but it is under $150 retail pricing.
So in conclusion this driver out performs its price range. The design of the driver and philosophy behinds its’ conception will keep this product around for a long time. The overall usability will allow this driver to be used in a very wide range of applications and for a wide range of goals. Bottom line is for the $129 price tag there is little on the market today that will be placed in the same category as the Threatcon 2, for performance versus cost.