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Guide to Car Speakers

Learn everything you need to know about car speakers and their effect on car audio in this Howcast car stereo video with expert Movin' On.


Hi my name is Movin On, and I've been working in the field of car audio and mobile electronics for 8 over years. I've installed everything from navigation systems to full car stereo systems, remote starters, alarms, and beyond. To learn more, visit our web site at

When choosing a set of speakers for your car, the first thing that you're gonna wanna check is the size of the speakers. Depending on the opening of the old speaker that you're removing, you're gonna wanna get a speaker that's exactly the same size. If you have a factory car stereo with low wattage, you're not gonna want to get a big high end speaker because it's gonna take a lot of power to push that speaker, typically an external amplifier. If you're using the amplifier that came with your car, you're gonna want a high efficiency speaker, and typically these are cheaper than low efficiency speakers. Low efficiency speakers are high end, they take a lot of power to push, they sound great, but you need a big amplifier for them. Another thing you're gonna wanna check on your speakers is the RMS power rating. This is how much power the speakers can handle, day-in day-out. If you have a 30 watt RMS speaker, it means you can pump 30 watts into the speaker all day and it's gonna be fine. You don't wanna over-power it and you don't wanna under-power it.

Depending on where you're mounting the speakers, you may want a coaxial speaker or a component speaker. A coax speaker, as we call it, has a woofer and it has a tweeter built into the same speaker. Typically, the woofer makes up the main part of the speaker and the tweeter will poke through the middle. These are great because they play all the frequencies that your stereo can output very efficiently all in one small package. Ideally, you're gonna want to install component speakers, specifically in the front of your car. Component speakers have separate drivers, a woofer in the door and a tweeter up on your dashboard. What this is gonna do is it's gonna bring the sound stage up. With component speakers it's gonna sound like all the sound is coming from up high because the treble, which is the really directional part, is gonna be mounted on your dashboard going right to your ears. Component speakers typically come with a better crossover than a coaxial speaker. Usually the crossover on a component speaker is about this big. It's very high quality and has a lot of circuitry to make sure that the sound is separated properly between the tweeter and the woofer. In a coaxial speaker, usually the crossover is nothing more than a small compositor about this big that's mounted to the speaker. They sound pretty good, but nowhere near as good as component speakers. Component speakers are gonna give you much better imaging and much better sound.

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