Speaker Showdown: Component Speakers Vs Coaxial Speakers

Choosing the right type of speakers for your car is important if you want to be able to enjoy the best sound when you are listening to music. Upgrading your speakers isn’t always easy but it’s a great way to make sure that you are enjoying driving so much more.

An important step in choosing new car speakers is deciding if you want to get component speakers or go for regular coaxial speakers. But what is the difference between these two technologies, and which one should you go for? In this article, we are taking a look at component speakers vs coaxial speakers and you are going to learn why component speakers are better, but why you might want to go for coaxials instead.

The Difference Between Component Speakers Vs Coaxial Speakers

Coaxial speakers are often referred to as “full-range speakers” as well, that is basically the same thing. This is the most common type of speaker and most of the speakers on the market is coaxial speakers. You may be even have looked at some of them already.

These speakers follow a size standard which means that they are very easy to purchase and install. Simply check the size of your current speakers and buy the same size. A coaxial speaker has a woofer with the tweeter in the middle, taking care of all the frequencies that you throw at it.

Kicker 43CSS694 CSS69 6x9-Inch Component System with .75-Inch tweeters, 4-Ohm Component speakers are not as common and there are a few reasons for that. A component speaker is not just a speaker, it’s a system. Check out the Kicker 43CSS694 on Amazon, or in the image next to here, and you can see that there are two big speakers, two smaller speakers, and two boxes.

The two big speakers are the woofers while the two smaller speakers are the tweeters. The boxes are something called crossovers. The thing with component speakers is that they separate the frequencies into their own speakers, making the sound cleaner. The tweeter is taking care of the higher frequencies while the woofer is taking care of the lower ones. The crossover is deciding which frequencies go to which speaker.

Why Component Speakers are Better

Component speakers are considered to be the better option between these two types of speakers. While there are some great coaxial speakers on the market, most of them are not going to sound anything like component speakers do

As mentioned earlier, coaxial speakers are designed to produce a wide range of sound from one set of speakers, the tweeter is built into the speaker itself. As the case for component speakers are different, where specific speakers are designed to handle specific sound, the quality becomes so much better.

When the woofer does not have to worry about the higher frequencies in sound, they can be designed in another way that makes the mid and lower frequencies sound better. The same thing is with the tweeter, that no longer has to be shared with lower sound. You will hear details in music much better as well as vocals.

component speakers vs coaxial speakers
You might have seen a little speaker like this before. This is a tweeter, while the woofer is further down in the door.

Another benefit with having a separate tweeter is that you can place it higher up in your car. While the woofer is installed in the doors, at your knees, the tweeter can be installed on the dash or at the A-pillar. What this does is that it makes the sound come from in from of you instead of coming up from the floor. This gives a much better sound experience for you.

Component speakers will give you a much clearer sound, a more flexible sound system and is often louder than coaxial speakers as well. But if they are so great, why isn’t everyone buying them? Why isn’t this installed in all the cars? Well, I’m sure that you can come up with some problems with component speakers yourself but here are some.

The Downsides with Component Speakers

The first problem with component speakers that you will come across is the price. The pricing is often higher (sometimes much higher) than regular coaxial speakers. For someone that just want to get some better sound without spending a fortune, component speakers are not for them.

As there are more components in a system like this, they are usually harder to install. Most cars don’t have a mount for the tweeter, so you have to fix one yourself. Next, you need to find a place where you can mount the crossover, which needs to have cables going to both the woofer and the tweeter. Sometimes, you have to remove a lot of car interior to get a cable running, something that you will have to be comfortable doing.

On top of all this, component systems can be a bit fiddly. For optimal sound, tweeters should be installed on the correct place and the tuning can be hard since there are so many more variables to take into account.

So, even if they are better, these are the most common factors on why people usually just go for coaxial speakers instead. But that doesn’t have to be bad, coaxial speakers have their advantages as well.

The Advantages of Coaxial Speakers

The most obvious advantage is the installation process. As described above, you simply check the size that you have today and then purchase the same size and make a quick switch. Most speakers are coming with brackets as well if that is needed.

It should also be said that some coaxial speakers sound really great, they are not automatically bad. If you have checked out our Best Car Speakers Buying Guide (if not, do that, tons of great information), you’ll see that most of the speakers there are coaxial speakers, and I would not say that none of them are bad.

Then there is the rest of the advantages. They are the most common, thus giving you more choices They are cheaper to purchase and you can find some good speakers for really good prices.

So, Should You Get Component Speakers?

With coaxial speakers, you don’t have to worry about how to run cables in your car or how you should mount the tweeters. It’s 4 screws per speaker and then you are done, and this is usually what people prefer. Sure, some audiophiles go for component speakers over anything, and I would get component speakers if I had to start over, but if you are going to get them?

That is entirely up to you. I would say that if you have the money for component speakers, and you are ready to spend a few hours installing them, go for it. What’s the worst that could happen? You fail, so you send them back and order coaxials instead. But if you don’t, you will always know that you could have made it better, if you just were willing to spend a little more time.

Also, don’t forget to check out the best car speakers of 2019 to find your next speakers, there’s even a quiz if you have no idea what speaker you should get 🙂

Last Updated on October 19, 2021

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