April 13th, 2018 by asjstaff

CMMG just announced its BANSHEE line of SBRs and pistols (300 BLK SBR review here) as well as its DefCan suppressors, and, thanks to Silencer Shop, we got our hands on much of the new equipment. With a DefCan 9, DefCan 3Ti, Q Half Nelson, Dead Air Sandman Ti, and two BANSHEEs, I hit the range . . .

CMMG’s DefCans are fairly straightforward suppressors with no frills or gimmicks. The DefCan 3Ti is an all-titanium can available in both direct thread and QD flavors, while the DefCan 9 is all-aluminum.

Worth noting: the 9 is not designed for typical, semi-auto handguns; there’s no booster (Nielson device) available. This is a “sub-gun” suppressor, designed for 9mm rifles of any barrel length or “large format pistols” like CMMG’s MkGs BANSHEE 9mm Pistol or a pistol-format SIG MPX, CZ Scorpion EVO, HK MP5, etc.

With no worries about cycling a tilt-barrel pistol and reduced concerns about balance, CMMG went pretty long on the DefCan 9. Specifically, it’s 10.25 inches in length. This makes it a uniquely long 9mm suppressor. In fact, other than some sub-gun cans from Bowers, it may just be the longest on the market.

Thankfully, its all-7075-aluminum build keeps it lightweight at 10 ounces.

And, in part because aluminum has very high thermal conductivity and in a larger part because of all of that internal volume (as in, cubic inches of air space), the DefCan 9 is a very quiet suppressor, indeed.

On the range with the BANSHEE 9mm SBR, I found it entirely comfortable to shoot sans hearing protection whether firing subsonic or supersonic ammunition. Certainly the DefCan is an extremely quiet suppressor, knocking down the muzzle-end sound to an absolute minimum.

CMMG’s radial delayed blowback operation in the BANSHEE also helped by reducing noise out of the port. This “AR-9” is noticeably quieter than others — all of them straight blowback — I have shot. That little bit of unlocking delay allows more of the gas and pressure to leave the muzzle and less to pop out of the ejection port. Good stuff.

Additionally, the Bi-Lock QD system is lightning fast and dead nuts simple. Just line up the flash hider’s two lugs with the two slots in the suppressor, press the suppressor towards the handguard to compress its locking collar, and twist approximately a quarter turn. Done, locked, ready to shoot. Removal is the reverse of install, with no release lever or button involved. This means the DefCan can be installed down underneath a handguard while retaining QD functionality.

Overall I really like the features and functionality of the CMMG DefCan 9, and its performance is excellent. But, dang, it’s really long. For use on a little PDW-style sub-gun like the BANSHEE SBR above, my personal preference would be a significantly shorter suppressor, with internal volume bought back via a larger tube diameter.

Specifications: CMMG DefCan 9 (Bi-Lock QD)

Caliber: 9mm
Sound Reduction: 32 dB
Materials: 7075 aluminum
Finish: Hard Coat Anodized
Rate of Fire Rating: Full-Auto
Length: 10.25 inches
Diameter: 1 3/8 inches
Weight: 10 ounces
MSRP: $699.95

Rating (out of five stars):

Overall * * *
The DefCan 9 is extremely good at suppressing sound and its QD system is great. But it’s really long and there are at least a dozen less-expensive options from other, major manufacturers. Most of which can be used on semi-auto pistols, too. Frankly, unless CMMG was doing some sort of DefCan plus BANSHEE package deal, I cannot envision this winning my dollars over the competition.

Over to the .30 caliber world and the BANSHEE 300 BLK SBR reviewed here, we hit the range with the DefCan 3Ti. Also in tow for comparison purposes: my Dead Air Sandman Ti and Q’s Half Nelson.

Frankly, my thoughts on the DefCan 3Ti don’t deviate a whole lot from those on the DefCan 9. At 9.2 inches it’s well above average .30 cal silencer length, but nowhere near the outlier that the DefCan 9 is. As you can see above, though, it somewhat dwarfs my full-size Sandman Ti and is 33.4 percent longer than the Half Nelson.

DefCan 3Ti.

Dead Air Sandman Ti.

Q Half Nelson (or halfNELSON™).

Now, don’t necessarily be scared off by the 3Ti’s length. Due to its all-titanium construction it’s fairly lightweight at 17.5 ounces. That’s lighter than the .30 cal silencer average, but in this particular titanium-focused roundup it ends up the heaviest. The Sandman Ti is 16.8 ounces and the Half Nelson just 12.2 ounces (one of the lightest available).

As with the DefCan 9, I have no negative feedback about my range time with the 3Ti. The Bi-Lock QD system is great on the 3Ti just as it is on the 9, and, as you’d expect, it’s a very quiet suppressor.

With it on the muzzle, this shorty little SBR felt more like a standard carbine. But I’d take that all day every day over the increased noise, blast, concussion, and recoil of shooting unsuppressed.

If there’s interest, I’ll revisit the DefCan 3Ti for a more thorough review. You see, 300 Blackout simply doesn’t require a lot of suppressor to knock it down to not only hearing safe, but legitimately comfortable volume levels. All three of these suppressors did that. Extremely well. In fact, I think I preferred the deeper tone of the Half Nelson (which likely comes from its larger, 1.75″ diameter).

From the shooter’s perspective, the Q can was either just as quiet or seemed just as quiet as the other two. While it’s somewhat foolish to rely on a video for this, it sounds in my video like it may actually be quieter due to the ability to hear the brass hitting the ground and the steel-on-steel of the bolt closing more than when I’m shooting with the other toucans. Errr, two cans. Why am I not bored with this stupid dad joke?

As the DefCan 3Ti is rated for use with 7.62 NATO (and hopefully .308 Win) on 16-inch or longer barrels, to properly test its sound suppression capability I’d have to run this larger, more powerful caliber through it. CMMG’s claim of a 32 dB reduction is two or three decibels more than as-tested results with the Dead Air Sandman Ti, which is quite quiet as .30 cal cans go.

On 300 Blackout, though, and especially paired up with a short-barreled gun like the BANSHEE, the DefCan 3Ti wouldn’t be my choice. For this particular use I still must give the nod to my current bae, the Q Trash Panda reviewed here.

Specifications: CMMG DefCan 3Ti (Bi-Lock QD)

Caliber: 7.62mm NATO
Sound Reduction: 32 dB
Materials: all titanium
Rate of Fire Rating: full-auto
Length: 9.2 inches
Diameter: 1.5 inches
Weight: 17.5 ounces
Finish: High Temperature Cerakote
MSRP: $899.95

Rating (out of five stars):

Overall * * *
Like with the DefCan 9, I don’t see that the 3Ti stands out from its competition in any significant way. It’s nearer the expensive end of the price spectrum, it’s at the longest end of the length spectrum, it’s a skosh lighter than average (but not enough to be noteworthy) on the weight spectrum, and it’s caliber-limited to 7.62 NATO while most of the competition is good for .300 WinMag or even .300 RUM. Again, unless there were some killer package deal with a CMMG rifle, I can’t see choosing this particular suppressor over its competition.

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