What is the best brand of car speakers and of those which are the best for sound quality?
Getting the best car speakers with great sound quality can be the difference between a great start to your day and a stressful commute. Great speakers can take your time in the car from mundane to magical. But deciding which are the best car speakers to buy can be confusing. Luckily, we’ve done the research for you and have compiled a list of the best aftermarket speakers available in 2021!
Table of Contents
- 1 Our list of Best Car Audio Speakers in 2021 and 2020
- 2 JBL GTO609C
- 3 Kicker DS65
- 4 Pioneer TS6900PRO
- 5 JL C5-653 Evolution
- 6 Alpine SPS610
- 7 What are the Best Brands of Car Speakers?
- 8 GTO 609c Car Audio Speaker (Rated Best Mids and Highs Speakers)
- 9 Top of the Line Speaker for Cars
- 10 Impressive Sound Quality
- 11 Audio Performance
- 12 Easy Installation
- 13 Long Life
- 14 Kicker DS65 Component Speakers (Best Car Speakers for the price)
- 15 Pioneer TS6900PRO (Best Sounding Aftermarket Speakers)
- 16 JL C5-653 Evolution Component Speakers
- 17 Alpine SPS610 Component Speakers
- 18 Rockford Fosgate R165X3 Car Speaker
- 19 BOSS NX654
- 20 Polk Audio DB615
- 21 Kenwood KFC-6965S
- 22 Infinity Kappa 60.11 CS
- 23 Overall
For those of you that want to skip the reading, below is a list of our top rated speakers.
Our list of Best Car Audio Speakers in 2021 and 2020
What are the Best Brands of Car Speakers?
GTO 609c Car Audio Speaker (Rated Best Mids and Highs Speakers)
Rated by: Aaron
Top of the Line Speaker for Cars
You want your new car speakers to perform better than your factory installed ones. This isn’t a problem with the GTO 609c.
These speakers are the cream of the crop for aftermarket car stereos and rated our best car speakers in 2021. JBL is a renowned speaker manufacturer putting out everything from pristine studio monitors to Bluetooth headphones. These speakers are LOUD and crystal clear.
More detailed reviews:
The 6.5-inch speakers are known for their lack of distortion, even when the volume is cranked up. Installation is also a breeze and the GTO 609c speakers come at a price almost anyone can afford.
Here are a few other reasons why you might want to take a look at these car speakers.
Carbon-injected Woofer cones
JBL’s patented Plus One woofer cones are carbon-injcected. Not only does this design improve durability, it also improves lower frequency sounds. Bass is deeper and crisper, thanks to the wider surface. The durable construction also provides stability that lessens distortion.
Higher frequencies are just as important as the lower ranges. The GTO 609c car speakers address this with their soft-dome tweeters. They have larger coils to dissipate heat and for a greater power capacity. These combined will produce crisp, clean highs.
The tweeters also come with two-level volume adjustment. This allows you to adjust the tweeters to your musical tastes and compensates for where they are placed.
You do want to take into account the car speakers’ impedance, especially if you are connecting them to your factory installed stereo. Factory car stereos are notorious for having thin wires. This can affect sound quality if the speakers have a high impedance.
The three-ohms coils compensate for the thinner wires, and ensure that the speakers are compatible with all sound systems.
Installation is a breeze with the GTO 609c speakers. They come with JBL’s patented I-mount system. This allows you to mount the speakers in the vehicle’s doors or anywhere else.
You have plenty of flexibility when it comes to mounting the speakers. This way, you can get the best audio experience.
JBL uses a carbon infused material that's lighter and stronger than the stuff used in other speakers resulting in an incredible bass response and authentic high end that is hard to find in an aftermarket car speaker. The exterior and grill is made from carbon fiber, so you can be sure these speakers will stand the test of time. If you want bass but can’t afford a subwoofer, these are your best car speakers option. Oh, and all this comes in at under $100 for a pair
If you want quality speakers without a high price tag, keep reading to see why JBL GTO 609c speakers might be what you are looking for.
Impressive Sound Quality
Chances are the main reason you are replacing your factory speakers is to improve sound quality.
These speakers come with large cones that are carbon-injected, and JBL’s trademark Plus One technology. This gives the speakers a larger surface area, which is ideal if the music you love has plenty of bass.
Lower frequencies are crisp and have a heart-thumping sound that is never distorted. Higher frequencies also are not a problem, thanks to the patented UniPivot tweeters. Not only are the speakers capable of reproducing the higher frequencies, but you can also direct the sound to where you want it.
The soft-dome tweeters and carbon cones injected with Plus One technology aren’t enough to produce exceptional sound if the speakers aren’t compatible with your car stereo.
This won’t be a problem with the JBL GTO 609c speakers.
The speaker system is designed to compensate for the thin wires that are common in many factory installed car stereo systems. They use 3 Ohm coils that are compatible with 4 Ohm car stereo systems. This enables you to listen to your music without fear of “blowing” any other components.
You can still listen to great audio without having to replace the entire car stereo.
You don’t want to spend hours installing your new car speakers. Tearing apart the interior of a car is never anyone’s idea of a good time. Instead, you want to be able to easily attach your upgraded speakers and start listening to your favorite music.
The JBL GTO 609c speakers are easy to install. In most vehicles, simply connect them where the factory speakers where. They come with JBL’s patented I-mount system. This allows for easy installation and the flexibility to adjust the speakers according to your preferences.
These might be budget friendly speakers, but you are not sacrificing quality. The cones are cover with a UV resistant material that can withstand sun and humidity. The other materials are also high-quality and durable so you can enjoy thumping bass and crystal clear high frequencies for years.
There is a lot to recommend these speakers, other than their price. They are easy to install and durable. If you are looking for speakers that can handle deep bass and high frequencies, these might be what you need when it’s time to replace the ones that came with your vehicle.
Kicker DS65 Component Speakers (Best Car Speakers for the price)
These component speakers from Kicker can produce the bass you want, along with handling the higher frequencies. The component speakers you need for exceptional audio quality is included with the pair of car speakers. Not only do you get woofers and tweeters for low and high-range frequencies, but also crossovers so the right frequency goes to the correct component.
Here are a few other reasons to take another look at Kicker’s DS65 component speakers for your car.
Crisp, clean bass, component speakers
One of the reasons for the popularity of the DS65 car speakers is their amazing bass. The speakers come with voice coils that have Kicker’s innovative technology. This means that the bass you love hearing is crisp and clean, without any distortion, no matter how high you crank the volume up.
Exceptional Performance and Sensitivity
The DS65 car speakers are designed to last for years and have the same performance capabilities you first bought them for. Stress levels and performance issues are minimalized, thanks to the speakers’ design and sensitivity.
They can handle high volume and even bumpy roads without affecting audio quality.
Surrounds not only help protect the speakers, they also improve audio quality. The polyester foam ones on the DS65 speakers are designed to withstand high temperatures so bass quality never wavers.You will always get crisp and thumping bass, no matter the temperature outside.
If your all about the bass, these are the speakers for you. Kicker, as its name implies, has a reputation for producing speakers that deliver exceptional low end response, and the DS65 lives up to that reputation. These speakers are very loud, and have more power than you will ever need. Best of all, they have a very pleasing sound when pushed, the highs don’t get to screechy and the lows stay nice and round. They are very easy to install, and very reasonably priced.
Pioneer TS6900PRO (Best Sounding Aftermarket Speakers)
The Pro car speaker series by Pioneer hasn’t been on the market long, but it is already getting excellent reviews from consumers. It has an edgy design that appeals to many consumers, and the ability to put out high quality sound.
These speakers are designed more for higher frequencies. The bullet tweeters measure 2 7/8-inches and are secured from damaged by a stamped steel frame. You can go off roading and crank the volume up, and still listen to great audio.
The woofers are lightweight cones made from blended pulp. They do come with urethane surrounds for protection and enhanced audio quality. The surrounds also help with power handling and sensitivity.
Knowing the frequency response is important. It lets you know if the car speakers can handle heavy bass and high upper ranges. The TS6900PRO speakers have a frequency response of 29 to 40 HZ. This does cover most ranges, though some higher frequencies might be a little “cloudy” sounding.
The TS6900PRO is the loudest speaker on this list. These car speakers have ridiculous power handle and carry the clearest bass at high volumes compared to other speakers on this list. They are heavy and hard to install, but you have a huge amp and all you want is to shake the neighbors then these are your speakers
JL C5-653 Evolution Component Speakers
This is a three-way car speaker system. Get ready for a smooth, balanced audio experience. There is a bit of rearranging in your vehicle to install this three-way system, but it will be well worth it in the end.
If you want audio without the harsh high notes, these speakers will deliver. The silk material ensures that every note is crystal clear, and the mid-range is also covered.
The woofer cones have a larger surface area for improved airflow. This means that you get more “oomph” from your bass.
The speakers are also constructed to withstand hot temperatures. They can withstand almost anything weather condition inside your vehicle and still put out exceptional low, mid and high-range frequencies.
There is a reason crossovers are important. These small components ensure that the right frequency goes to the correct component. The Evolution Three-way Series comes with crossovers that give you twelve possible combinations for sound adjustment.
You can tune the speakers exactly, so your audio is just as you want.
If you're looking for the highest quality sound in your vehicle regardless of price, these are the speakers for you. The price will give you sticker shock, but for true audiophiles they are worth it. Perfect mids and highs combined with full bodied and clear bass response at any volume. They are made with only the highest quality components. These speakers will turn your car into Abbey Road.
Alpine SPS610 Component Speakers
These affordable car speakers from Alpine have everything the brand is known for. The two-way coaxial speakers are easy to install and designed to fit in most vehicles.
You want a wide frequency response. This is important if you want high and low frequencies to sound crystal clear. The SP610 car speakers have a frequency response of 70 to 22,000HZ. This covers mid and high frequencies.
If your music comes with a lot of bass, these speakers are not equipped to handle it. However, if you listen to the higher frequencies these speakers will deliver amazing audio.
Installing the speakers in your vehicle is easy, thanks to the long 18 gauge wires. While the connecting wires aren’t thick, they are long enough to connect the speakers to the stereo. The speakers also have a low impedance of 4ohms, this ensures that they are compatible with your factory car stereo.
The SPS610 is built with very high quality materials (they blend a mineral called mica into the polypropylene) and delivers great bass response. These car speakers were meant to be pushed, and can stand up to long, high volume jam sessions without tearing the woofer. However, the highs are brittle compared to the JBL and Kicker models on this list and the speakers have no front grill, leaving doubts about their durability.
These 6.5-inch car speakers are affordable and capable of producing excellent audio. Bass will be lacking, but these speakers can definitely handle the mid and high frequency ranges.
These car speakers are lightweight and easy to install. It will only take you a couple minutes to wire them to your car’s stereo.
The speakers have a sleek design, and look great installed in your vehicle. Protective grilles are available, but many consumers opt to forego this option. They feel that the grilles take away from the speakers appearance.
They do come with protective steel basket frames. This does add protection without taking away from the speakers’ appearance.
These three-way speakers will give you a crisp, clear sound, even when you have the volume cranked up.
The woofers are constructed from polypropylene and the tweeters from silk. This ensures durability, while also maximizing sound quality. There are also crossovers, so the right frequency goes to the correct component.
These babies make the list because they are the best car speakers for a budget aftermarket speaker. They lack the bass response that most of the other speakers on this list will give you, and they are weirdly sized and might require some modification to install. But at around $40 a pair, these speakers are the cheapest option to significantly upgrade your stock speakers.
These are four-way car speakers, so be prepared for an amazing audio experience. Everything you need to install the two speakers is included, and wiring them into your car stereo is a breeze.
Power isn’t a problem with NX654 car speakers. They have a maximum power of 400 watts per speaker. This is more than enough power to handle almost any music, without causing distortion if you decide to turn the volume up.
The woofer cone is poly injected. Not only is this material studier than paper cones, it also improves sound quality. Vibrations from bass won’t shake the cone so music is crisp and clear. There are also two mylar cone tweeters for the highs.
A one-inch voice coil further improves your sound experience.
Even though these four-way speakers are budget friendly, you still want them to last. This won’t be a problem, thanks to their durable construction. The mylar tweeters and poly injected woofer cone are designed with volume in mind. They can handle any bumps from heavy vibrations.
A stamped steel basket surrounds the speakers. There are also metal grill covers. The grills give the speakers a professional and sleek appearance, while also preventing debris from getting inside.
Better known for their guitar equipment, BOSS provides an interesting speaker option in the NX654. These speakers come in packs of 4 instead of pairs. They are a little quieter than the other options on this list and not as durable, but they more than make up for it in sound quality and affordability. 4 speakers can be had for less than $50.
There is very little not to like about Polk Audio’s DB615 car speakers. They are waterproof, fit easily into most vehicles, and are capable of producing exceptional audio.
Not only is the woofer cone waterproof, along with the surrounds, it is also resistant to damaging UV light. It has a low impedance to ensure high quality sound, and to make sure that the speakers are capable with your car stereo’s thin connecting wires.
The tweeters handle high frequencies with amazing sound precision. They also have a shallow design that give the speakers a flush look when they are installed. You can even reuse your old speaker grilles.
Even though these are advertised as car speakers, they are certified for marine use. They have an IP55 rating, so you know that they are resistant to dirt and water. Polk Audio has also tested these speakers for UV, salt, fog and humidity. No matter what conditions you drive in these speakers can handle the weather.
The frequency response is smaller than some other brands, 35Hz – 23HZ, but it’s 92db sensitivity level makes up for this. Power handling also isn’t a problem with 100 watts of continuous power and 300 watts of peak power.
These car speakers lag behind the competition in bass response and power handling, but their slim profile and smart design make them the best option for those wary of a DIY car installation. They are extremely easy to install and will fit almost any vehicle. Best of all, they come at a much lower price point than many speakers of comparable quality.
These three-way car speakers will open up your audio experience so every note is crisp and clear. They are priced to fit most budgets, and designed to work with almost any car stereo.
Responsive and Durable
The KFC-6965S speakers are designed to keep pumping out the music, even in rough driving conditions. You won’t notice any distortion in sound due to bumpy roads. The woofer is constructed from polypropylene and has a cloth surround. The cloth has been treated for added durability.
Not only do the speakers come with a two-inch PEI cone tweeter, but also a ½-inch super tweeter. Higher frequencies will sound exactly the way they should, and transitions between the lows and highs are smooth.
Power and Frequency Response
RMS is 400 watts of power. The speakers also have a frequency response of 30 – 22,000HZ. With this frequency range, bass will be sharp and higher ranges crystal clear. KFC-6965S speakers also have a sensitivity rating of 92dB. Combined with a low impedance, you will be able to connect the speakers to your stereo and even add an external amp.
Kenwood car woofer has been in business longer than any other company on this list, and they have created another decent option with the KFC-6965S. This speaker replicates highs extremely well, due to its oversized and adjustable tweeter.
Infinity Kappa 60.11 CS
Kappa 60.11 CS car speakers are designed with everything Infinity is known for. This includes exceptional sound quality and durability. Once these speakers are in your vehicle, you’ll finally know what’s been missing from your old ones.
Infinity’s tweeters are soft dome and edge-driven. You get a larger tweeter that is more responsive in mid-ranges. This design also enables it to handle more power. Higher frequencies are smooth sounding, without any harshness.
Mounting the tweeters is a breeze, thanks to the included attachments. You also have the option of flush or surface mounting. Not all speakers give you options when it comes to installing them.
The glass fiber woofer is just as impressive as the tweeters. Glass fiber woofers hold their shape better than most other materials. This gives you bass that is defined and “punchy”. It also means that you do not need a ton of power. The woofer is also designed with Plus One technology that gives you a larger surface cone area.
Bass is louder and clearer, without any distracting distortion. It also ensures smooth responses from the higher frequencies.
The Kappa is very similar to the JBL GTO609C, but with less clear bass response and higher quality components. It has great quality sound and all the power handling you need, but the lack of bass response drags it down at this price point. Still an excellent speaker and a huge upgrade over your stock speakers. See our guide on the best infinity car speakers.
Upgrading to aftermarket speakers is sure to improve your driving experience no matter which product you choose from our list, but conventional wisdom says you should go with the JBLGT609C if you can shell out $100, or the Rockford Fosgate R165X3 if you’re on a tighter budget.
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