Newly purchased cars rarely contain quality speakers, so most people like to upgrade their original auto-audio systems. This type of upgrade has become so popular that shopping for car speakers is incredibly easy--or at least it should be. The fact that it is so incredibly easy is precisely the reason people screw it up--as is the case with most ridiculously simple tasks. Speaker seekers always overlook the minute--yet important--details and some of the major ones too. Try to get the best quality products by knowing a bit about them before you make your purchase.
There are two basic car replacement speakers: the coaxial and the component speakers.
A coaxial speaker has the tweeter (which produces high range frequencies) suspended over the woofer (which produces low bass frequencies).
Things to Consider
- Speaker Size: The speakers that most manufacturers install in their cars are too small, and speaker size determines the volume and ranges of frequencies it will be able to produce. However, a speaker that is too large might distort the sound, so before you go on to buy the biggest one you can fit in your back-seat, check the measurements of your car and buy accordingly. If--after you buy the speakers--they sound wrong, they probably are wrong, and you should exchange them for something more compatible with your car.
- Type of Music You Will Be Playing: Yes, this is important! The type of music you listen to will have a big influence on the type of car audio system that you buy. If you like to listen to bass-heavy music, you should get powerful amplifiers and subwoofers. If you like to listen to classical or pop music, you want a speaker system which can reproduce the entire audio spectrum evenly.
- Sensitivity Rating: The sensitivity rating indicates how efficiently the speaker handles the power that is supplied by your amplifier or head unit. Also called an efficiency rating, the higher the number, the louder your speakers can play given the same amount of amplification.
- Budget: Plan your budget. If you are replacing your entire audio system, you need to gather the appropriate amount of money to adequately refurbish each part. If you are just changing the speakers, decide how much money you want to spend on them before seeing what is available. This will allow you to keep costs within a reasonable range.
- For what do you use your car? If you constantly find yourself in the car, you should treat yourself to the best quality speakers you can afford. When you spend a lot of time in the car it can get pretty bad, and you may as well do your best to keep things comfortable. If you are comfortable, you will be more productive, your mood will improve, and your performance will be enhanced. On the other hand, if your car doesn't get too much road time, it is not worth it to get high-end car speakers.
- How long do you plan on keeping your car? If you plan on using the same car for two years or more, it makes sense to buy good-quality speakers. If you're going to sell the car soon, keep your car speaker budget to a minimum.