When it comes to car stereos, most people think about the wattage. How many watts is good for a car stereo? The answer: it depends on what you want your stereo to do. Research says that, in general, 50 to 200 watts RMS of power is something that you should be looking for if your stereo is the same as your car’s original factory stereo.
In this blog post, we will discuss the different wattages and what they mean for your car stereo system. We will also give you a few tips on how to choose the right wattage for your needs!
Car Stereos are one of the most important features of any car. It is important to choose the best car stereo for your vehicle. You can choose from the best stereos for sedans, convertible, and even pickup trucks.
- What Is The Right Wattage For A Car Stereo?
- 6 Types Of Car Stereo Systems
What Is The Right Wattage For A Car Stereo?
When people go to Best Buy and other electronic stores, they automatically assume that more watts are better. They see a car stereo boasting 500 watts of power, for example, and they automatically think it’s better than the one with 250 watts. The truth? Sometimes less is more! Let us explain:
What Exactly Is “Wattage” Anyway?
Put simply, wattage means how much power your car stereo uses to create sound. Wattage can affect the quality of the music you hear coming out of your speakers- if not all of your speakers are receiving an equal amount of power (in terms of wattage), some may be overdriven and distort while others may not put out as much volume as you’d like.
Wattage also determines how you can set up your speakers. You need to be very careful if you are adding more speakers to your system- the additional power needed for these speakers must come from somewhere!
If not, some of your other speakers will not have enough wattage, leading to distortion and overall poor sound quality. The good news is that it’s easy to find out how much power (in terms of wattage) each speaker in your car stereo requires before you make a purchase.
Each speaker package will list the necessary “RMS” (root mean square or continuous average) wattage you need- this means that each speaker has been tested at one point and determined their optimal wattage needs. We recommend using this information as a guide when purchasing new speakers.
Now that you understood what wattage is, let us take a look at how it affects your music! As we mentioned above, the more watts you need for each speaker, the better.
Affect On Music
If your car stereo was rated to handle 100 watts RMS per channel (two channels total) but you used four speakers with 100 watts RMS requirements each, two of those speakers would receive double their optimal power- leading to distortion and overall poor sound quality.
You want everything to be nice and balanced so all of your speakers receive equal power! Keep this in mind when setting up any additional speakers or subwoofers.
Also, remember that plenty of other factors go into determining the sound quality of a car stereo system. The wattage of your speakers is just one part of it! For example, if you have two pairs of speakers rated at 100 watts RMS each but one pair has a frequency range from 40 Hz-20 kHz.
The other pair ranges from 45 Hz-20 kHz (all other factors such as size, build quality, enclosure type, etc. being equal), the latter set will sound better because they hit more frequent notes that fall within our hearing range.
Wattages also determine how many channels you can add to your car stereo. For example: If your receiver was capable of 100 watts per channel and you connected five 2 ohm speakers with 100 watts RMS requirements each, the total number of watts would be 500- plenty to power your speakers!
If you connect one 4 ohm speaker with 100 watts RMS, the total number of watts is still a healthy 400 because you have a 4-ohm load to work with. You cannot connect a 2-ohm speaker and a 4-ohm speaker in the same channel, however.
Also, remember that powering your speakers at their optimal wattage requirements does not necessarily mean they will sound better than other speakers. For example, if you connected two sets of Pioneer TS-A1685R 5 1/4″ 3-way 165 Watt Speakers (rated at 60 watts RMS), each set may receive above (or below) its optimal amount of wattage depending on how your stereo was configured.
One could be underpowered and distorted while the other may receive far more wattage than it requires resulting in poor sound quality as well. Bottom line, whether or not your speakers sound good is based on several factors including your receiver’s ability to provide consistent power for all of them, size/build quality, enclosure type (sealed vs ported), etc. When possible, use the optimal ranges provided by manufacturers when making speaker purchases.
6 Types Of Car Stereo Systems
Do you love listening to music while you’re driving? If so, you need a car stereo system! There are many different types of car stereos on the market, and it can be tough to decide which one is right for you.
Your car stereo system is one of the most important parts of your vehicle, especially if you love music! However, it can be difficult to choose which type you should buy. There are many different types on the market, so we will focus on the five most common car stereos types. Our goal is to help you decide which kind is right for you!
1. FM Transmitter Stereo
FM transmitters are very popular due to their affordability and simplicity. If all that you want from a stereo system is something that plays music from your phone or other devices through your car speakers without using Bluetooth or wires, then an FM transmitter may be right for you.
They plug into your cigarette lighter socket and either has a line-in or USB port. You use the device to change the source from your phone to an FM frequency, and then tune your car radio to that same frequency. With a little bit of tuning, you’ll hear your music through your car speakers.
2. CD Player With Aux Inputs
If you want a stereo system that has both a cd player and aux input, then this is what you need! All you have to do is plug in your phone or tablet using a USB cord or aux cable and play away!
This option allows you to add more items aside from just CDs when it comes time for you to bring media into your vehicle. You can also add better sound quality by adding digital components such as an amplifier and subwoofer to your car stereo system.
3. CD Player With Bluetooth Connectivity
A lot of people prefer CDs to mp3s or other digital formats because of the better sound quality they provide, so if you are one of them, then this is what you need! Many new cars come with Bluetooth connectivity for hands-free calling built-in, but some don’t.
If your vehicle does not have built-in Bluetooth, then an adapter can be purchased that plugs the cigarette lighter socket and allows it to communicate with your phone or other media devices via Bluetooth.
You can also buy a new stereo that has Bluetooth integration built-in! Now not only can you listen to your favorite tunes while driving around town, but you can also make phone calls with your hands on the wheel!
4. AM/FM Radio
If all you care about is listening to music, news, and sports scores while driving around then a car stereo system with only an AM/FM radio tuner would be right for you. You’ll have to buy a special antenna that picks up these frequencies if your vehicle did not come factory installed with one.
If you already have a separate device such as a tablet or mp3 player that provides this functionality, then buying one of these types of stereos might not be the best option for you because it will need power from your lighter socket to work. This may lead to your battery dying quickly if you use other USB items while driving.
5. Single Din Stereo With A DVD Player
If you want the best of all worlds then this car stereo system is for you! With a single din head unit, it often provides enough room to add on some cool accessories such as a backup camera and Bluetooth integration so that you can utilize your device’s hands-free calling capabilities without having to worry about draining your battery life.
While they are more expensive than other types on the market, they provide more bang for the buck in terms of features and upgradability in the future! If money were no object when buying my new car stereo system, I would go with this one because it is great value for what you get compared to other single din head units!
6. Full Range Class D Mono Block Amplifier
A full range class D monoblock amplifier uses less energy than other types of amps and takes up less room. It’s capable of producing more power than many other amps, however, because it only has one channel, you will need two in order to create a powerful high-quality sound.
This type is great for people who like to modify and upgrade their car stereo system often. Full Range Class D Mono Block Amplifier w/ Electronic Subwoofer Crossover: This type of car stereo system is very similar to the one above, except that it has an electronic crossover for the subwoofer. The added benefit here is that you can adjust the cutoff frequency (which determines how low or high a speaker will play).
So, what wattage should you be looking for when it comes to your car stereo? The good news is that most people don’t need an extremely powerful system. A stereo with between 50 and 100 watts will generally provide great sound quality without blowing your budget or draining your car battery.
And remember, higher isn’t always better – focus on finding a system that fits both your needs and your budget. The wattage you need in your car stereo system depends on how much power you want your music to have and how big your vehicle is.
It depends on what you want out of your sound system and how much money you’re willing to spend. With all the options on the market today, it’s easy to find a system that fits your needs and your budget.
If you’re looking for something powerful and impressive, go with a higher wattage rating. But if you just want something to improve the sound quality of your music without spending a lot of money, there are plenty of great systems available with lower wattages. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what’s right for your vehicle and your listening preferences.
Thanks for reading!