If you are planning to upgrade your car’s speakers, you are probably caught in between trying to understand the difference that exists between coaxial and component speakers. Their differences are brought majorly by how they produce sound frequencies that human ear can capture.
Most of the best car speakers like Pioneer speakers are either coaxial or component speakers. They, however, vary by how they have incorporated components like tweeters, woofers and crossovers. For you to understand the difference between coaxial and component speakers, we are going to discuss each one of them separately.
Here is an informative video that will also help you in understanding the difference between these two types of speakers
They are also known as the full range speakers and are the most common speakers available in the market. Most of the factory car speakers are coaxial. They are majorly made up of two drivers. These are a midrange woofer and a tweeter that is conjoined with the woofer cone. For frequency separation, they normally have a simple built-in crossover.
They have a single input terminal where the sound will go through the built-in capacitors. These capacitors act as a crossover where the sound is separated into two frequency ranges which are the mid frequencies and the high frequencies.
Since the tweeter and the woofer are located along the same stereo line, sound will be produced from a single point which makes the stereo field a little muddy for a keen listener
Coaxial speakers, 2 and 3-way speakers
For coaxial speakers with zero or fewer tweeters, high-frequency details will be missing, or if present, they will be distorted. This is because these high frequencies are only passed through the low and midrange woofers.
To solve this problem most of the coaxial speakers come as 2 way and 3-way speakers or even more. A perfect example is the Pioneer 6x9 speaker
that comes as a 2-way, 3-way, 4-way and even 5-way speakers.
2-way coaxial speakers have a midrange woofer and a tweeter. This is the most common configuration of the coaxial car speakers. In this case, the frequencies are separated into two, the midrange range and the high range frequencies.
With this kind of configuration, you will be able to hear most of the sound details but not as clear as 3 way configuration.3 way coaxial speakers configuration comprises of two tweeters and a woofer. In this case, the high frequencies will be separated into two channels.
This means that they will cover a wider stereo field giving a more detailed sound.There are more complex configurations such as the 6-way and 8-way configurations. These are made of woofers and some detachable tweeters but are more or less close to just 3 way configuration coaxial speakers.
From the word component, they are made up of three separated components. These components are a tweeter, an external crossover and a woofer. Just like the coaxial speakers, the component speakers’ tweeters and woofer work almost in the same way.
Now a major difference trickles in between component speakers and the coaxial speakers when the external crossover is brought to the system. Unlike coaxial speakers, the component speakers have an external crossover which is good for channeling the sound frequencies into the different components.
The crossover will channel the midrange and low frequencies of 25Hz to 2000Hz to the woofer and 10 kHz to 20 kHz high frequencies to the tweeter(s). By doing this, the crossover will have eliminated the chances of the sound from the woofer getting distorted. This fact alone makes component speakers outperform the coaxial speakers.
Some other component speakers will introduce an extra driver for handling the midrange frequencies. This will relieve the woofer of the enormous work of handling the low frequencies and the midrange frequencies.
By introducing this midrange driver, you will hear a more clearer and punchy sound. This is another crucial factor that makes component speakers better than the coaxial speakers.
Which one should you settle for? Coaxial or component speakers?
There is no particular way to say that one is better than the other. There are however three things that bring out the difference between coaxial and component speakers
Coaxial speakers are cheaper than the component speakers. They are the most popular type of car speakers. They do not require many drivers, and that is why they are cheap to make and hence the final selling price. It is for this particular reason that most of the factory car speakers are coaxial and also most of the car speaker manufacturers prefer making these kinds of speakers.
On the other hand, component speakers are expensive since they are made of different drivers which are a little bit complex compared to the coaxial drivers. They, however, have good delivery as compared to coaxial speakers.
That is why a 200 dollar component speaker will beat by far a 50 dollar coaxial speaker. The only instance where you can have both almost competing is by having a 300 dollar component speaker and 200 dollar component speaker.
It is obvious that component speakers win on this over the full-range speakers. This is thanks to the external crossover which enables these speakers to separate specific frequencies to the different components.
These speakers also give you the listener a good customization ability to design how you want your sound system to line up in your car. Be it your woofer in the car door, kick panel or your tweeters over the sail panel or the dash, you will have the overall control over where and how to place these components.
Installing coaxial speakers is easier as compared to the component speakers. You will only need to install the woofer cone which has the tweeter on it. You will not need any wire replacement or cutting. Component speakers, on the other hand, will require customization which will involve cutting of wires and installation of the components on different parts of the car.
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Now that you know the difference between coaxial and component speakers, going for the best car speakers will not be a hard thing to do. Going for either coaxial or component will depend on your budget, your kind of music and on how you would wish your music to sound.
If you really want a booming stereo field, then component speakers will be good for you. If you are a regular listener, then coaxial speakers will be good for you. Are you currently using coaxial or component speakers in your car? Can you inform us about your experience with either coaxial or component speakers?