The Complete Guide to Buying Car Speakers: Everything to Know

Buying Car Speakers

Resonating beats naturally command our attention.

Neuroscientists are discovering that our brains are hard-wired to appreciate bass. We pick up on the low-lying vibrations, better than higher-pitched frequencies. The only problem is that few people have the right speakers to produce quality tones–and wind up with buzzing hum sounds instead.

If you want to bathe in the bass, then you’ll need the right pair of car speakers. What’s the secret to buying car speakers that work perfectly with your car? Read on to find out.

Do You Need Components Speakers?

As you start searching the market for the best car speakers, you’ll come across the terms component and coaxial. Component speakers are going to cost more, but it’s because they provide the best sound.

Coaxial speakers are considered to be full-range speakers. Coaxial speakers are fast to install and highly affordable. You can usually find aftermarket replacement parts for coaxial speakers, and that includes direct replacements for your OEM units!

What Speakers Do You Have Now?

Before buying car speakers, find out what you’re working with now. When you know the speakers you’re replacing, it’ll be easier to find the right fit.

We suggest removing your existing speakers and measuring them. If you’re not able to do that, talk to an audio shop that sells car speakers. Ask a shop member to look up the configuration and size of your vehicle’s factory-installed speakers.

If your automobile came from the factory already equipped with full-range speakers, and you’re replacing it with full-range speakers, you’ll want to know the specific configuration and size. You’ll be able to buy a pair of new speakers that you can simply drop into the existing receptacles, and you’ll be good to go.

You also need to check that the speakers can handle the power load of the head unit. The head unit is your car’s external amplifier. Power handling is measured in watts. Check that the speaker can deliver the necessary amount of watts without distorting the sound.

You can also refer to the speaker’s group mean square, or RMS value. Look at the RMS power rating and compare it to the peak handling rating. The peak handling rating will let you know how continuously the speaker can handle loud sounds.

The peak value specifically explains the maximum power your speaker can deliver in a tiny pulse. If you’re buying a new head unit, be sure that your power levels don’t exceed what the alternator can handle.

If you need speakers for a boat or off-roading vehicle, look for locations like Rockford Fosgate at Big Jeff, for innovative designs. You’ll need speakers that can handle the extra vibrations, without sacrificing sound quality.

Buying Car Speakers Using Cone Materials

Did you know that there’s a ton of different types of materials used to create speaker cones? The material in your speaker cone will affect your sound quality and the power handling abilities of the unit.

The best speaker cones will be lightweight so that they can have the best signal response capacity. As it’s operating, the speaker is constantly moving in and out to create sound waves.

When the cone is light, it’s easier for it to respond to the sound signals it receives quickly. You’ll also want to take a look at the rigidity of the cone. Cone rigidity can help prevent unwanted flutters.

If the cone is too loose, it’ll pick up on unwanted frequencies within your listening environment. A few of the best materials to look for include paper treated, Kevlar, and polypropylene cones.

Comparing Speaker Prices

If you want to save money, paper cones are inexpensive, and they can be a great fix when you’re in a pinch. Paper-treated cones can produce a great amount of sound. The only downside is that they don’t have the best longevity.

Over time a paper cone will deteriorate, and you’ll have to replace it. Polypropylene cones are step up above paper cones since they’re also moisture resistant.

For the best quality, you’ll want to look for Kevlar cones. Kevlar cones are strong, lightweight, and have the perfect amount of rigidity to dampen unwanted vibrations.

If you’re not able to find inexpensive paper cones or long-lasting Kevlar cones, you can also look for aluminum, flax fiber, and fiberglass cones. The best cone material is going to be up to your listening preference.

Installing Car Speakers for Highs and Lows

Earlier, we mentioned coaxial speakers and component speakers. But what about installing car speakers for the highs and lows, also known as tweeters and subwoofers?
Tweeters, the highs, are small speakers. It’s the tweeter’s job to handle the high-end frequencies.

Without a quality tweeter, your music won’t have the crisp sound it needs. You can usually purchase tweeters that allow you to customize the audio to your vehicle’s make and model.

Subwoofers, on the other hand, are the speakers that can make your car vibrate and shake! Subwoofers are the lows because they provide the deep, low, delicious sounds that standard speakers can’t. When you buy a pair of professional subwoofers, you’ll be able to feel the kick drum of each song.

Enclosures and Amplifiers

For the subwoofers to perform well, you’ll need to mount them in their enclosure, and they’ll need a dedicated amplifier. The enclosure box is a special box where you mount the speaker. For most setups, you’ll only need enclosure boxes for the subwoofers.

There are a couple of enclosure boxes; sealed and vented (also known as ported). Sealed enclosure boxes create an equal amount of output for every frequency that it picks upon. The sealed enclosure is excellent for producing punchy tight sounds.

You’ll notice that using a sealed enclosure takes more power, but it provides a balanced response. You’ll be able to reproduce the bass in a uniform manner across the entire sound spectrum. Ported or vented enclosures take a different approach.

Vented enclosures provide ground-shaking bass. You can customize the vented option by setting it to a preferred frequency. You’ll experience almost no bass output below your chosen frequency.

Talk to a Car Speaker Provider

Now that you know some of the ins and outs of buying car speakers, you can start to shop for the perfect setup.

Are you looking for speakers that can provide ground-shaking bass? Or are you simply looking for an affordable option that paper cone speakers can provide?

It never hurts to reach out to a sales professional at a speaker store. Let them know the make and model of your vehicle and get their brand and size recommendations. For more tips like these, you have to see what the rest of our blog is all about.

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