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What is a Car Amplifier?

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Have you ever imagined driving your car and playing your favorite tunes, in a crispy, loud, and clear devoid of noise or distortion?

Well, that is one sensation you relish in, from a car amplifier.

A car amplifier takes signals from the stereo and uses an independent power source to change it into a more powerful signal for the speakers.

They are one of the modern devices used for powering speaker systems, as well as replacing factory amplifiers, and adding subwoofers.

What is a car amplifier
Photo Credit: LQD-Denver, Pixabay.com

The amplifier performs the key role of boosting and increasing the signal power or strength of an appliance. It goes further by boosting a very small electrical audio signal to a higher voltage capable of running loudspeakers.

Interestingly, a car amplifier uses a unique kind of internal power supply which helps to supply the internal amplifier circuitry with a higher power. The amp takes a conditioned audio-signal, boosts it, and proceeds to deliver it to the speaker terminals.

Undoubtedly, the car amplifier is a must-have for every car owner. In addition, the car amplifier takes a weak signal and amplifies it, providing power and volume to your car tunes.

The car amplifier is usually ‘buried’ in the car, hence, you rarely see it. They typically improve the low-level audio signal generated by the head unit, hence, the amplifier is powerful enough to move the cones of the speakers in the system to create sounds.

The more powerful a car amplifier is, the clearer the sound emanating from the speakers. It is crucial to match up your stereo and speakers with the right amplifiers.

There are two major power ratings that exist in a car amplifier namely; the Root Mean Square(RMS) power and the Peak power.

The RMS number on your amplifier should match with the ratings on your speaker if not, it can result to an under-powering or an invariable over-powering of the speakers.

When over-powered, they have the potential of overheating or becoming totally damaged, and you do not want such happening.

It is also imperative to get a professional to help install your car amplifier since they know the intricacies of such.

Car amplifiers can draw a lot of electrical current of up to 50 amperes, particularly when close to maximum power. However, during low-volume usage, they draw a few amperes.

Car amplifiers are usually linked by a fuse to the vehicle’s battery for positive wire, while the ground or negative cable is linked to a metal connection on the body.

This is due to the fact that the car’s original wire cannot take the level of current an amplifier needs, under intense use.

Features of a Car Amplifier.

There are certain features the car amplifier possesses, particularly in their designs and these include:

1. A DC-DC (Direct Current) high switching power supply.

2. Noise prevention (“ground loop”) circuitry.

3. Speaker crossover circuitry.

4. Bridging circuitry.

5. Speaker-level input.

The speaker-level input feature is optional as it is a product-specific option.

1)         Direct High Power: There are two major sections in a vehicle amplifier- the amplifier & output section, and the input stages comprising many minute circuits that provide crossover functions, gain control and block ground loop noise.

The input stages(usually grouped together) allow the amplifier to connect to stereos with no RCA jacks, prevents terrible “ground loop” interference from getting amplified, provides low-pass and high-pass crossover functions.

They consist of a kind of electronic component called an operational amplifier (op-amp) which are little amp circuits built in a small chip used for different designs.

2)         Noise Prevention: Ground loop noise, also known as “alternator whine” can be annoying and troubling while listening to music in your car. Hence, the feature of noise prevention of the car amplifier is a pertinent one.

The ground loop noise is an electrical noise that comes off as a terrible whine that increases or decreases with the engine speed of a vehicle.

This noise can be due to currents that flow in a car’s body and the connections of the audio component. The car amplifier contains circuitry to eliminate any form of ground loop noise in its installation.

3)         Crossovers: Crossovers are nice features of today’s car amplifier. An example is the electronic crossover which offers a cheap, space-saving way of sending only bass or upper-range sounds to a speaker.

When subwoofers are driven for example, the low-pass crossover in an amplifier blocks everything save bass. In addition, you can as well block low-end bass from small speakers with the help of a high-pass feature.

4)         Speaker Level Inputs: The speaker level input is usually connected to the wiring which is plugged to a connector on the amplifier, and then the high-level signals are converted to low-level signals.

Speaker level, also known as high-level inputs take the higher voltage speaker level signal directly from speaker wiring and reduces it to a smaller level that the amplifier can use.

How A Car Amplifier Works.

A car amplifier usually comes with a “remote” wire, that connects to a dedicated wire on your stereo, which turns off the amplifier when not in use.

The remote wire can also be connected to an ignition wire that turns off when the accessory position of the ignition switch is turned off.

Car amplifiers use a special kind of internal power supply which supplies the internal amplifier circuitry with a higher power.

It is then taken to a conditioned audio signal, usually provided by the stereo, and delivers it to the speaker terminals.

In installing the car amp, large capacity power cables are linked to the power terminals and are fastened with the aid of screws.

Upon installation, the car sound system is test run and the amplifier’s crossovers and gain control are adjusted accordingly. It is pertinent to note that for the car amplifier to function properly, they must be fixed with sufficient sizes and types of wire.

Importance of a Car Amplifier.

There are numerous benefits accrued to using a car amplifier, and they include;

1. The car amplifier amplifies sounds from the speaker.

2. It can power a car’s stereo-system with excellent power and sound.

3. The power provided by a car amplifier supercedes that of an average car stereo.

4. Sounds emitted from a car amplifier are clearer, smoother and crispier. The car amplifier offers better sounds, especially when playing bass-heavy tracks.

5. Car amplifiers with built-in crossovers help prevent distortions and allows you to play speakers at higher volumes with enhanced clarity.

6. Car amplifiers boost a small signal to a larger signal than can drive speakers.

7. The 4-channel amplifiers are bridgeable, flexible, hence, can be used for up to four speakers, which is a development on the 2-channel amplifier which uses only two speakers.

8. Car amplifiers are used to fix several car audio issues and increase sound.

9. Car amplifiers provide higher power, which the stereo cannot provide.

Video: What is the best car amplifier.

Car amps have many advantages and are needed in most cases. Car radios, in general, can produce about fifteen to eighteen watts per channel.

When trying to move speakers that require more power, the stereo sound becomes contorted and terrifying. Driving speakers and with a higher power is generally not possible with car radios alone.

This is where the car amp comes in. Your car amplifiers offer better sound, most especially for heavy bass music. Some special cases may arise where they are the only way to increase the sound inside a car:

– Factory stereo without low-frequency sound

– Amplifiers mounted by a dead or weak factory

– Strong desire, clear voice while enjoying high-quality music

– Car owners who need high volumes

– Ships and other external vehicle owners (external vehicles require extra power to produce better audio)

Additional Benefits

Just as stated earlier, many features, such as the built-in crossover, prevent distortion while allowing you to reproduce loudspeakers with higher volumes more clearly. Factory systems usually can’t, and the audio will collapse earlier as it grows.

Installing an optional amplifier fixes this issue and gives you good control over the audio system. In addition, the system can be easily increased to add missing bass subwoofers by adding a second amp or using two channels with a four-channel amplifier to turn it on.

The 4-channel amplifier is almost identical to the two-channel model. However, they have some differences and are more useful in most cases. 4-channel amps differ primarily in design. they come with 2 additional channels to add more speakers.

Using a four-channel amplifier instead of one channel amplifier offers several advantages:

  • You can control the front and back speakers
  • Drive the full-range front speakers and use channels three and four for the subwoofer
  • Usually more compressed than two separate stereo amplifiers.

Most four-channel amplifiers are also mobile now, so they could be used very flexibly. This means you can not only use it for two or more car speakers: It is also possible to use 2, 3, or even 4 channels, depending on the connection function used.

We hope you have learned what you need to have knowledge of automatic amps. Here are important things to consider:

  • Car amplifiers amplify the small signal into a signal that is larger than what the loudspeaker can control.
  •  Used to fix many audio problems automatically and improve audio
  • Car radio cannot produce a high performance as an amplifier

Now having known what a car amp is, here are some of the best car amplifiers you may need to get for your car. We carefully checked amplifiers available for modern cars and we picked 10 out of a plethora of brands that manufacture car amplifiers.

Some of those brands include Pioneer amplifiers, Sony amplifiers, Kenwood amplifiers, Rockford Fosgate amplifiers, JL Audio amplifiers, Pioneer amplifiers Alpine amplifiers, Pyle amplifiers, BOSS amplifiers, Kicker amplifiers, and MTX amplifiers.

A portion of these brands are great amplifiers for subwoofers, and they are typically called monoblock or 1-channel amplifiers. Some are 2-channel or more which work incredibly as intensifiers for your part speakers (even though you’d need an enhancer with the most channels).

In case you’re searching for the best vehicle sound system to control your whole sound framework, focus on the most accessible channels on the amplifier.

Below Are Different Brands of Car Amplifiers That Will Best Fit Your Car

Pioneer GMA3602 2-Channel Bridgeable Car Speaker Amplifier

Pioneer’s new GM-Series amplifiers are spine chillers in quality sounds and rhythm, pushing the breaking points of adaptability and usefulness.

The 2-channel GM-A3602 conveys 400 watts max in a reduced plan – a lot of juice to control your speakers. Additionally, it has a good hybrid and speaker level contributions for simple connection with an OEM head unit, and large force terminals.

The persistent force comes in 90 watts for each channel and 60 watts for each channel with a nonstop power yield of 180 watts from a channel. Recurrence reaction fluctuates from 10 Hz down to 70 kHz.

Signal-to-Noise proportion is usually 95 dB or more, giving you entirely great sound level and less foundation clamor.

Buy this Pioneer GM-A3702 2-Channel Amp on Amazon

Kenwood KAC-M3004 4-Channel Car Speaker Amplifier

Kenwood makes extreme, tough speakers that bring you unrivaled sound quality with dependable performance.

Include the Kenwood Performance Series KAC-M3004 enhancer to your sound system, and you’ll hear all the tonal shading, effect, and detail you’ve obviously missed. From the punch of the rhythm to the shudder instigated by your preferred artist’s voice.

The KAC-M3004 4-channel amp conveys 70 watts RMS per channel to your full-range speakers. This amp will carry new life to your stereo speakers; however, you’ll truly see the distinction when you pair it up with new speakers or units.

Switch the amp over to 2-channel mode, and you can get incredible performance from a lot of high-power units or a few subs with up to 200 watts RMS per channel.

This adaptable amp highlights separate recurrence channels for the front and back channels, alongside speaker-level data sources and sign detecting turn-on, so you can give this amp something to do in pretty much any sort of framework.

Aluminum spread plates ensure the amp’s associations and controls, giving your connection a perfect, proficient look.

Buy this Kenwood KAC-M3004 Amp on Amazon

Pioneer GM-D8601 Class D Mono Subwoofer and Component Speaker Amp

If you’re hoping to control your subwoofer with a generally minimal effort, Pioneer GM-D8601 Class D Mono Amp is the best approach. Evaluated at almost 1,600 watts, it is easy to get steady 800 watts of power going straight to the subwoofer.

With Pioneer amp, it is easy to modify the subwoofer appropriately from 40 Hz to 240 Hz. The current amps have a bass control component, permitting you to increase the bass or reduce it without having to go down to the amplifier.

The speaker sources permit you to interface your OEM head-unit without purchasing add-on connectors.

The extra specs usually include 100 dB signal-to-commotion proportion which implies that higher volume and lower foundation clamor and ceaseless power yields come in 3 settings (800 watts, 500 watts, and finally 300 watts).

Buy this Pioneer GM-D8601 Amplifier on Amazon

Rockford Fosgate R750-10 Class D 4-Channel Subwoofer Amplifier

Rockford Fosgate packs more force per square inch into their Prime Class D amps than practically some other amplifiers, so you can put more music power in your vehicle’s restricted space.

Your bass will hit maximum clarity with one of these dependable and cool-running amps. The flexible R750-1D puts out 250 watts RMS to a 4-ohm sub and will wrench out 750 watts RMS when it’s running a 1-ohm subwoofer arrangement. 

This amp highlights 12dB/octave Butterworth hybrid infrasonic channel and a locally available Punch EQ with +18dB help at 45Hz. Various modifications should be possible, for example, Punch EQ, Freq Hz, Infrasonic Filter Hz, and Gain. This amplifier specifically works impeccably with the set.

Buy this Rockford Fosgate Prime 750 Watt Amp on Amazon

Rockford Fosgate R250X1 Prime 1-Channel Subwoofer Amplifier

The Prime R250X1 speaker is an incredible mono intensifier in a minimal body and good force yield in any solid framework. The R250X1 mono yield configuration additionally makes it incredible for running a couple of 8″ or 10″ 4-ohm SVC subwoofers wired in equal.

The included Remote Punch Level Control remedies for any acoustic abnormalities in the vehicle condition, verifying that bass notes sound profound and rich.

The similarity between most Rockford Fosgate amplifiers and OEM/post-retail head units is sublime. There’s remote punch level, RCA inputs, remote punch level info, elevated level information, and a couple of other customizable (Punch EQ, Freq Hz, Phase, and Gain).

Buy this Rockford Fosgate R250X1 Amp on Amazon

Alpine PDX-V75 5-Channel Extreme Power Digital Car Speaker Amplifier

The Alpine PDX-V75 5-channel amp conveys an incredible 100 watts RMS each to four speakers simultaneously as it impacts 500 watts RMS to your sub arrangement. This incredibly reduced amp utilizes bulky inner parts and astute buildings to keep the force yield solid and the clamor low for good control.

The customizable hybrids include an all-encompassing scope of hybrid focuses, permitting you to utilize this amp with segment tweeters, midrange speakers, or mid-bass drivers.

This small and powerful amp runs so coolly that you can stack it together with other PDX amps into a solitary unit – the different heatsinks really join together to cool the whole stack. Each PDX Series amp offers a similar 8″ by 10″ impression, so they’ll fit in hatchbacks, trunks, truck taxis, and any vehicles with restricted space.

Buy this Alpine PDR-V75 5 Channel Digital Amp on Amazon

JL Audio XD700/5 5-Channel Class D Car Speaker Amplifier

Each JL Audio XD amp is a long way past what you’d anticipate from something so little. This super-reduced amp plays your music with genuine constancy and noteworthy effect, without stressing your vehicle’s electrical framework.

A cast heatsink and a propelled cooling framework keep these amps at the ideal temperature, wiping out warm shutdowns so your music props up securely without interference.

The XD700/5-channel amp can control your vehicle’s whole framework, conveying 75 watts RMS to every one of your front and back speakers, while fueling a sub with up to 300 watts.

You can change to 3-channel mode and force your front speakers with 200 watts each while driving the sub with 300 watts. High-and low-pass channels give you cozy power over the character of your sound.

“Differential-adjusted” inputs keep the signs away from the outside interference and permit you to associate this amp to any in-run stereo, even a radio with no preamp yields. A discretionary wired remote lets you change the level from your front seat.

Buy this JL Audio XD700/5v2 car Amp on Amazon

Alpine MRV-V500 5 Channel V Power Subwoofer Amplifier 

The MRV-V500 puts out up to 1,100 watts RMS to your subwoofer framework, so you can occupy your listening space with a lot of basses. What’s more, it’ll even work securely with a 1-ohm load, making it valuable in an assortment of sub-framework establishments.

Locally available low-pass and subsonic channels let you get the best stable out of your arrangement, while a bass lift assists with filling out the sound if you need it.

A power management framework enhances the amp’s presentation and keeps the music playing, in any event, when you’re pushing it hot and hard for quite a while. Speaker-level contributions with a programmed turn-on include disentangling framework connection.

You can control the volume of your MRV-M500 from the front seat with the discretionary RUX-KNOB remote bass controller.

Buy this Alpine MRV-V500 Digital Amplifier on Amazon

JL Audio JX1000/1D Class D Car Speaker Amplifier

The best vehicle speaker to get is the JL Audio JX1000/1D Monoblock Class D amp. As applicable to the JL Audio speaker being explored, you realize they don’t joke around with cost and quality. This one specifically is the sort of speaker that self-controls huge subwoofers effortlessly.

This amp includes the variable Bass Boost control running from 0 up to +12 dB focused on 45 Hz. Delicate turn-on forestalls clicking and snapping (usually found in car speakers), and in general. this amplifier is tight (11″ long, 7.75″ wide and 2″ high).

Buy this JL Audio JX1000/1D Car Amp on Amazon

How to Maintain Your Car Amplifier?

Try not to overdrive it. Nothing spoils a speaker or fries an amp quicker than twisting. The installer has set the amp gains to coordinate your head unit’s yield level. You ought to have no compelling reason to contact the handles after the framework is finished.

If your sound begins to snap or misshape at high volume, turn it down! If you need it stronger, you’re going to require more force and turning your amp’s handle won’t get that going.

Check the connections. There’s a great deal of current moving through those force links, and likely a ton of vibration in your vehicle if you have a major framework. Grounds ought to be checked occasionally to ensure they are still tight and not beginning to erode.

The equivalent goes for your battery terminals and any force dissemination blocks in the framework. You must keep that present streaming on the off chance that you need to prop the music up.

Secure your speakers. Don’t let anything hit your subs. You will notice they take a greater portion of your trunk and letting your goods and clothing skip off moving subwoofers is awful for them.

That bowling ball moving around back there can do some genuine harm. Put a few grilles on those speakers or keep the storage compartment clean. It’s just as simple as that. Most vehicle sound gear today is worked to withstand the earth inside a vehicle and the temperature limits that go with it.

We hope this article was useful to you. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.

You can also check out how to adjust car amp for the best sound here.


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