Introduction 

If you are planning to upgrade or purchase new speakers for your car, there are a number of factors that you should consider. Below is a discussion on car speakers buyers guide that you should look at before buying one. 

 

 

Questions to guide you;

  • Whether to upgrade your current system or to buy a new one
  • Whether to go for component or full range speakers
  • What features do you need? ( i.e. in terms of sensitivity, build quality, power handling and size)
  • What is your budget
  • Who is to install the system

 

 

  • 1) Should you upgrade or replace your current system?

 There are components that have already been installed in the car system. The first decision to be made as a buyer is whether to utilize/upgrade these components or to go for new ones. Whether you decide to upgrade or get new ones, always make sure that the RMS rating on all the components match up.

This will ensure that the system is neither overpowered nor underpowered thus it works properly. Also, make sure that the new components fit well within the space parameters of your car audio component setup.

 

 

  • 2) Decide on the type

 There are two main types of car speakers available ie the coaxial (full range) speakers and the component speakers.

Component speakers

  1. i) Component speakers

Made of better materials compared to the other type. The only issue with them is the fact that they are more expensive. 

 

Full range speakers

  1. ii) Full range speakers

Unlike the component speakers, these types contain the entire speaker component in a single package. They have been designed in the simplest way possible with the tweeter (for high audios) being mounted to the woofer (for low audios).

There are some models with additional drivers (e.g. the midrange or super -tweeter) and you simply choose the one that suits you better. Full range speakers come in various sizes and may be the best option when replacing the factory installed speakers.

Making a decision on which type of speaker to go for may not be easy because on one hand the component type gives you quality sound but are expensive. On the other hand, full range type may be easier to install and you can easily find aftermarket replacement however their sound quality may not be as good as that of the component speakers.

If sound quality is very important to you, then you should go for the component type otherwise the full range type may be the best option especially if you are planning to install it yourself and do not have much experience.

 

 

  • 3) What features do you need?

When purchasing car speakers, one of the most important decisions to be made is the exact type of features to go for. Some of the specifications include; Bluetooth capability (e.g. in the case of wireless portable speakers), navigation systems, USB port etc. Below is a discussion on some of the features;

 

 

  1. i) Power handling

Once you have decided on the specifications to work with, the next thing is look at is power handling. Power handling enables you to know how much power/ the level of power (in watts) a speaker can handle.

A system whose external amps are so powerful requires a speaker with a power-handling that is close to the output of the amps. On the other hand, if your system is low-powered, you should go for a speaker which can only handle lower power.

In other words, go for a speaker which can handle the power that is put out by your head unit or your external amplifier.

 

 

  1. ii) Sensitivity

This refers to the amount of power that the speakers require in order to put out the volume at a given level (it measures the amount of sound yielded by the speaker from the power applied to it). Speakers with high sensitivity ratings go well with low-powered car stereo while those with lower sensitivity ratings match well with high power system (external amplifier). 

 

 

  1. iii) External crossovers

This feature is often found in some high-priced full ranged speakers and it aids in separating the frequencies sent to the woofer from those sent to the tweeter. This helps to ensure that no frequencies/sounds are reproduced by either the tweeter or the woofer therefore enabling you to enjoy a more efficient, clean sound production.

 

 

  1. iv) Size and configuration of the speaker

This is also very important factor to look at when buying new speakers. To know the size and configuration of the speakers to buy, you can simply remove and measure them (i.e. if you really want to replace them). However, if you provide the seller with the make, model and the year of manufacture for your vehicle, he/she will be able to know the exact size and configuration of your car speakers. 

 

 

  1. v) Quality

This is one of the reasons why you would want to replace or upgrade your speakers. Therefore, make sure that you go for the speakers that are made with high quality. Some of the materials that you can consider include; those with rubber surrounds (durable and produce quality sounds), silk tweeters, foam & cloth surrounds, stiff lightweight woofer materials (e.g. mica mixed with polypropylene) etc.

 

 

  • 4) Deciding on the budget

 As a buyer, you should always have a budget. This will be of great help to you when deciding on which speaker to buy for your car. After looking at the specifications/features, the types and all the other factors, go for the one that fits your budget well and at the same time matches your system.

You also need to make a decision on who is going to install the speakers. Doing it yourself is much cheaper than getting someone to do it for you. If you are going to do it yourself, full range speakers may be a better option as they are easy to install.

 

Conclusion

Once you have decided to either upgrade or replace your car speakers, simply follow above car speakers buyers guide and you will get the best speakers for your car. Whether you are upgrading or replacing, always go for the best quality and that which suits your needs well.