When a manufacturer makes a car, their primary concern is mostly with build and safety. But in all that, the audio component often gets ignored. They install low-quality speakers, which give an underwhelming experience. This can be especially infuriating when you’re an avid audiophile.
There are many ways to level up your car stereo system. The best and most significant change you can make is replacing the speakers with higher quality ones. A good 6.5’’ speaker can take the audio environment of your car from unsatisfactory to excellent.
But selecting a good speaker is confusing. There are many variables to keep in mind and so many brands to choose from.
Below we have compiled a list of the best 6.5 inch car speakers.
Top 9 Best 6.5 Car Speakers 2021
1. JBL CLUB6520
The JBLCLUB6520 is a 2-way coaxial 6.5’’ car speaker. It is one of the best 6.5 car speakers and manufactured by JBL, so you know it’s well-made.
It is a beautifully engineered and sleek-looking speaker that will also make your car look good—the 50W power rating on RMS works well in most typical situations.
The 55Hz to 20KHz provides a great frequency range for the best sound and music. The impedance of this product is only 3 ohms, which is lower than a lot of its competitors. This means that power will flow more efficiently through it.
With a 92db sensitivity, JBL provides a loud and fulling product with which you can’t go wrong.
2. KICKER CSC65
The Kicker CSC65 is a 6.5 coaxial 2-way speaker. It is the best 6.5 car speaker on a budget.
It has an excellent power rating of 100 W RMS to give you that excellent sound. Its EVC technology gives you even deeper bass.
It has a 6db/octave incline, which gives a sharp and well-defined crossover performance.
At an affordable price, you get a pair of speakers. 4Hz to 20KHz provides an excellent frequency range so that you don’t miss a single detail.
However, given this is a coaxial speaker, it does suffer from unsatisfactory bass.
Precision power is a high-end 3-way component speaker manufactured for the best performance. The additional midrange provided gives you that crisp and clear sound without missing a single thing.
The mid-woofer and woofer cones are designed from natural fiber. It can withstand weather conditions and provide fantastic sound.
The butyl rubber inverted surround protects the main unit from compression and damage.
It has a whopping 20Hz – 40KHz frequency, which means that you will not miss a single note. The aluminum body makes it resistant to rust and stain.
If you have a little money to spend, this is definitely the best 6.5 car speaker you can get.
4. JBL GTO629
JBL yet again makes it to the list, this time with a high-end product. The GTO629 is a 2-way coaxial speaker that provides great performance at a great price—all the while looking sleek and well-designed.
What would set this coaxial apart from others is the tilting tweeter. A woofer typically concerns a bass that isn’t directional. But, tweeters are very directional. Being able to turn a tweeter towards yourself makes a great improvement than just having it facing any other way.
It has an impressive 12db/octave crossover, which is on par with the performance of a lot of component speakers. With that sharp slope, you will get absolutely noise-free sound.
3-ohm impedance means that the power will flow effortlessly through the coil, and in turn, the coil won’t get heated as much.
However, the RMS of the speaker is quite low, i.e., 45W. This will end up severely hampering the amount of power you can send to the speaker.
This is a 2-way component speaker by the precision that gives an incredible performance. The massive 175W power rating means that you’ll have a loud and crisp sound without worrying about amplifiers.
92 dB sensitivity means that you could get loud sound at low power inputs. And the 4-ohm impedance will help the coil stay cool longer as opposed to its competitors.
The external crossover helps separate impertinent signals and give a crisp sound. The crossover provides 2 dB/octave. The woofer cones are made of polypropylene, giving an amazing bass. Silk tweeter gives a soft and mellow sound that doesn’t sound too harsh.
The Rockford Fosgate R165X3 is a 3-way coaxial speaker. This is the best 3-way coaxial 6.5-inch car speaker.
The 45 W RMS power provides a great sound. It has an incredible 52 Hz – 20 kHz range, meaning it will work well in most scenarios.
The 6db crossover gives a good division among the drivers. It also has a midrange driver so that you get a clear midrange sound.
The woofers have a polypropylene cone, and the midrange and tweeter have silk cones— meaning you will get a deep base and mellow soft and calling mid and high tones.
It fits well on most vehicles, and customers say that the installation was a breeze. If you wish up your sound game with an easy-to-work-with speaker, then this speaker is for you.
7. BOSS BE654
The Boss BE654 is a rare 4-way coaxial speaker. Its beautiful design will accentuate the interior of your car.
The woofer cone is made of polyurethane. It is a strong, durable material that provides amazing bass. They have a superior voice coil, meaning that you won’t have to worry about power input since it can tolerate high heat.
With just 4-ohm of impedance, you will have even less of a heating problem. It has a mind-blowing 125 W RMS. You won’t have to worry about loudness and performance with this product.
However, even with the 4-w3ay capability, it can only provide 100 Hz – 18 kHz of frequency. But that is not necessarily a bad thing. You see, by focusing on a smaller range and dividing their sound properly, they have created a product that can produce crystal clear sound.
They use piezoelectric tweezers, which provide longevity and better sound quality than regular ones.
Surrounded by rubber, it is protected on all sides, and you won’t have to worry about damages.
The Pioneer TS-A1680F is another 4-way coaxial speaker optimized to give you the best sound you can get. The 80W RMS power makes it a versatile product that can work in every situation.
The woofer cone is made of carbon and mica material, giving you an even better bass than its competitors.
The tweeters and midrange provide a nice and crisp sound. The tweeters are made of PET plastic, giving it a sharp, high sound.
This is one of the most well-balanced and best 6.5 car speakers. It provides a practical 75W RMS power so that you won’t run into problems— all the while keeping the cost affordable.
What sets this apart from regular coaxial is the external crossover. Typically, embedded crossovers are not good enough to cancel out noise. JL, by doing an external crossover, goes over that impediment cleverly.
The sound is crystal-clear and loud. It provides four tweeter levels and three midrange levels, which means you can optimize the performance exactly to your liking. The ability to tweak the product makes it worth the buy.
Car manufacturers often don’t care about their sound system. They have to optimize for performance and safety such that it might seem inconsequential to the manufacturer. But the sound in a car is essential to an audiophile. Upgrading your car’s speaker system is the best way to get a superior sound within your car.
There are various products to choose from, but you cannot go wrong with a well-known brand. JBL produces some of the best speakers, and 6.5 car speakers are no different.
The speakers range in cost and performance, but it is mostly proportional. However, do keep the power rating a priority. Often low-power speakers could get destroyed, and your money would go down the drain.
You have to, however, properly assess the kind of speaker you want to buy. There is a huge variety in the market right now. 2-way, 3-way— all might seem confusing. So here is a proper explanation below on how to pick the best 6.5 car speaker for yourself.
Things To Keep In Mind When Looking For The Best 6.5 Inch Car Speaker
1. 1-way, 2-way Or 3-way
When looking for the best 6.5 car speaker, you’ll often come around 1-way, 2-way, or 3-way speakers. What do these mean? Well, they define the number of drivers in the speaker.
A driver is the component of the speaker responsible for converting electric waves into sound waves. The three most common drivers are woofers, midrange, and tweeters. Each of the drivers is responsible for converting a certain frequency of sound.
1-way speakers have only one driver in them. They have the subwoofer driver responsible for playing low frequencies. In the consumer market, these typically play below 200Hz.
A 2-way speaker has two drivers, i.e., a tweeter and a woofer. A woofer is responsible for the transmission of lower frequencies. A tweeter handles higher frequencies. The installation provides a vast range of frequencies. Most of the speakers will fall under this category.
Finally, there are 3-way speakers. Typically, these are high-end speakers. They have three drivers in them, i.e., woofers, midrange, and tweeters.
Just like before, the woofers are for the lower frequency sounds while the tweeters are for the higher frequency ones. The new addition here, the midrange, makes a significant difference. Thought that difference could be underwhelming in contrast to the difference between 1-way and 2-way speakers.
Midrange, as must be evident from the name, is the driver responsible for handling the middle frequencies. Sometimes the woofers and the tweeters are unable to properly play the midrange. The midrange is where a significant chunk of the music lies. A proper driver to handle that part could be the difference between an excellent sound set-up and a mind-blowing one.
2. Component Or Coaxial
When picking a 6.5’’ speaker, you’ll get a choice between a component and coaxial. What these terms mean is how the drivers are housed. Let’s say you buy a 2-way speaker. That means you have two drivers in it.
Now, if both the drivers are mounted together, typically on top of one another, then that is a coaxial speaker. Opposed to this is the component speaker where both the drivers are attached separately.
First, let’s talk about coaxial speakers. They are a popular choice among people looking to install new speaker systems— one of the biggest reasons being that this coaxial setup is compact. Because both the drivers are mounted together, they do not need a separate position to be installed. You can easily attach your component speaker where your 1-way speaker was attached.
Another very important factor is the ease of assembly. A component speaker has various components, and these need to be assembled together. However, a coaxial speaker can be picked up out of the box and installed without much technical knowledge. They are typically installed on the front door.
Coaxial speakers are also relatively cheap. They are readily available, almost anyone can install them, and the cost of upkeep is minimal.
Coaxial speakers, as opposed to regular 1-way speakers, are a huge jump in quality. The manufacturer’s speakers are, typically, pretty unsatisfactory. The subwoofers can only manage a limited range. A coaxial speaker with its woofer, tweeter, and, possibly, mid-range gives a perceivable change.
Well then, what about component speakers?
Component speakers are meant for the audiophiles among us. Component speakers provide a much richer music experience. Subwoofers can handle a higher range but provide bad sound quality. In the same manner, there is a value-exchange in component and coaxial speakers.
One of the biggest hindrances with component speakers is the assembly. When you buy a component speaker, you get either two or three separate cones depending on 2-way or 3-way.
But here, you have another component that you need to worry about.
The crossovers— these are used to separate the signals going to the woofers and tweeters.
A component speaker, since it is installed in separate parts, needs more space. A coaxial can be easily installed in the front door where the 1-way speaker goes; a component cannot. If you want to install a component speaker on the front door, you either need a manufacturer-provided extra space or need to do some fabrication. That is the reason why most component speakers are installed in the back.
Component speakers are also costlier than coaxial speakers. And there is a sense of diminishing returns in them.
But there is one underlying factor that needs to be discussed; component speakers are an acquired taste. What sets audiophiles apart from regular users is their unending pursuit of sheer perfection.
The components are made of better materials in contrast to coaxial speakers. They have a better power-handling capacity. They provide that higher crossover cut-off that a coaxial speaker cannot.
You can attach an amplifier to a component speaker. An amplifier doesn’t only increase the volume but also the clarity and quality. Because of the amplified signal being fed into the crossover, they are able to more easily distinguish between them. This gives a sharper cut-off and a satisfying sound experience.
An amplifier cannot be used in a coaxial speaker because, firstly, there isn’t enough space. More importantly, coaxial speakers having a lower power-handling capacity and are prone to damage from the amplifier.
Coaxial is a great budget choice, while components work well if you wish to invest in high-end products. Decide accordingly and pick the best 6.5 car speaker for yourself.
Now, when you have a 1-way speaker, you don’t really need to ‘direct’ the sound. The speaker receives the signals and plays what it can and botches the ones it can’t. There is only one way the sound could go. But when we’re dealing with 2-way or 3-way speakers, things bifurcate a bit.
Let’s say you send an electrical signal to the speaker to play sound. That signal will have either two or three ways it can go. Each of those paths is designed for a separate frequency. Here, you employ a crossover. It segregates the signal according to the frequency and sends them to their relevant destination.
By that definition, a crossover should be present in both- coaxial as well as component speakers. Well then, why didn’t we mention crossovers in the coaxial section? Essentially it isn’t that pertinent. In a coaxial speaker, the crossover is preinstalled, and you do not need to interact with it. But since it’s present, let’s talk about it.
In a coaxial speaker, the crossover typically employs what is known as single-stage filtering. Essentially, these crossovers merely separate the signal for a tweeter from the incoming signal. So what ends up happening is that the woofers deal with unwanted noise. This tends to retard sound quality.
This is again value-exchange coming into play. Due to the compact nature of a coaxial speaker, you cannot really have a great crossover.
In contrast, a component speaker uses a 2-stage filtering system. The crossover is mounted with two capacitors to not only separate the signal to the tweeter but also the woofer. This step is crucial for a crisp sound. The separation of irrelevant, impertinent signals from the woofers makes the sound perfect.
4. Power-handling Capacity
While looking for speakers, you must have seen some kind of power-rating on them. These indicate the maximum power that the speaker can handle.
There are two figures of power-handling mentioned, maximum and RMS. The maximum is the highest level of power it can theoretically manage. Even though this figure is mentioned, do not take it for granted. Often if you hit the peak power, you are bound to run into some issues.
Then there’s RMS power or Root Mean Square power. This is the practical power handling of the speaker. Over a period of continuous use, this is the maximum peak you can expect. RMS is usually much lower than the peak power.
You must be thinking, “Why should I be worried about power handling?” Well, when current flows through the coils in your speaker, it generates power. This power heats up the coil. The higher the power generated, the hotter the coil will get. If you happen to hit the maximum power handling capacity of the speaker, there is a chance that it might melt the copper coils.
Furthermore, many people employ an amplifier to increase the sound quality. The amplifier also increases power input. If you intend to use an amplifier, picking a high power-rated product will be a good idea.
Many manufacturers use cooling systems to make power more manageable. A speaker with a good cooling system is a great choice for heavy-duty use.
6.5’’ speakers are often mounted on accessible places and are prone to damage. Door-mounted speakers suffer the most damage. Not only is it close to where people sit, but it also opens out into the weather.
IP ratings are allotted to electrical appliances to indicate the amount of water it can handle without damage. When you open your car door while it’s raining or snowing, the speaker will come in contact with the rain or snow. If the speakers aren’t properly protected from these threats, they might get damaged upon exposure.
Furthermore, they will also suffer from blunt forces owing to their proximity to people. What matters here are the materials used. The stronger the materials used for padding, the more it can withstand such forces.
The materials used to build the cone of the speakers matter significantly. That alone could be the difference between a good speaker and an amazing one. Car manufacturers often use paper as the material for their one-way speaker. These paper cones degrade over time and could be easily damaged by water seepage.
Woofers are typically made of soft materials like fabric. The most popular choice among manufacturers here is polypropylene. The softness of the cone accentuates the bass.
The materials used in the tweeters will have a greater effect on your choice. Tweeters come with two kinds of materials, soft and hard. The soft materials are used to produce mellow and soft sounds as opposed to hard materials, which produce sharper sounds. It depends purely on your personal preference. Often, component speakers tend to use better materials in tweeters and produce better sound than coaxial speakers.
For the surrounding area, the most common material used is rubber. Foam and cloth are also used, but manufacturers prefer rubber.
The sensitivity of a speaker can be described as the amount of sound produced by the power input. Often low-powered speakers have high sensitivity. By that, they can produce loud enough sound even in low power. But there is an exchange of value here. The sound quality is often decreased in more sensitive speakers—they tend to carry more noise.
Higher power speakers are often less sensitive because they don’t need to rely on sensitivity to create a loud noise. The power handling is often capable enough to do that.
8. Tweeter Tweak
When you mount a speaker, you often don’t get to place it exactly where you want it. Now that isn’t much of a problem with regular subwoofers or woofers in general. Bass is a non-directional frequency and doesn’t need to be facing you for you to receive the sound.
It isn’t the same with tweeters. The tweeters produce a higher frequency, which is a very directional sound. Many speakers compensate for this by providing a pivoting tweeter on a coaxial speaker. With the ability to change direction, you can get it facing you and will get the full tweeter experience.
The design is an important aspect of any product. The look of a speaker can make or break the look of your car. JBL produces the best looking sleek and beautiful speakers that will not only make your car look great but also sound great as well.
FAQs on 6.5 Inch Car Speakers
Are 6.5 And 6.75 Speakers The Same?
No, they are not. They have different size holes. A 6.75 speaker will not fit in a 6.5 speaker and vice versa.
Is It Worth Upgrading Factory Car Speakers?
Absolutely; that is if you wish to have a better sound experience. Car manufacturers do not care about the sound systems; they have safety and performance issues to worry about. Hence, the sound system often gets ignored.
By switching to professionally made 2-way speakers, you can easily and significantly have a more satisfying experience.
How Can I Make My Car Speakers Louder?
An external amplifier helps boost your system’s sound volume and quality. However, beware they also increase the power input.