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You’ve got a lot of factors to take into consideration when assembling your car audio system, being speaker size one of the most important.
For many car audio lovers, the 10-inch speaker fits the bill. Considered a “mid-range” size, it’s a significant step up from its 8-inch counterpart and has a full sound similar to a 12-inch. However, there are some definite advantages and disadvantages to this popular-size component.
Sound is all about how much air a speaker can move. Good sound is about how much room there is for that air to move around. That’s why smaller-cab vehicles—just like any other tight space—may make a smaller or mid-range speaker the best choice. A good quality 10-inch speaker has a good “punch” that music connoisseurs appreciate without it being overbearing or sounding distorting at certain frequencies. In short, 10-inchers have earned their “mid-range” designation: They make a good medium-range sound balance that you’d want in a car or small truck.
Another “plus” is that the 10-inch takes up less room in limited spaces and is generally easier to set up. They’re slightly slimmer, and shorter, than larger speakers, and the balance they produce is more likely to give the sound a good bounce without rocking or rattling the vehicle. They’re especially good for music that isn’t overly-reliant on bass, or for softer sounds that take advantage of a wider blend of frequencies across the spectrum.
While a good 10-inch speaker ought to provide a great sound for any type of music, it may not be the size of choice for bass-oriented music like jazz, jazz fusion, blues, metal, or hip-hop; these styles get their kick from lower-range frequencies that are best expressed through a larger delivery point. While larger speakers do take up a little more room, they’re also more apt to fill a larger vehicle cab with a full sound while avoiding distortions at extreme lower frequencies. So if you want a better bass response, a 10-inch might not be your first choice.
Along those lines, a 10-inch speaker may not be poised to handle the power level of your overall car audio system. The power range of speakers varies a great deal—as low as 200 watts to 2,000 watts—and more power is not necessarily better if you have a small system. In audio terms, it’s what called sensitivity, which is how electrical energy is converted into sound energy. More power will produce more sound—but it’s got to fit your system, it’s just noise. Also, a 10-inch speaker doesn’t produce as much volume as larger ones, so when you really crank it up, you get a lot of racket that’ll spoil your music.
Obviously, you want a high-quality product, from the speaker magnets down to the voice coil, cones, aluminum basket, and wiring. Any part that doesn’t offer reliability and endurance can affect the sound of your speaker components, and even their lifespan. That should be your first consideration, although any size after-market speaker is bound to be an improvement over your factory installs.
Price-wise, there’s not a whole lot of difference between a 10-inch and the sizes immediately above and below it. So think broader and look at the whole system: You want a full sound which complements your preferred music style, and one that fits your lifestyle and the kind of driving you do. Quality is especially important if you take your vehicle onto rough terrains, or if you do a lot of high speed driving. Additionally, you might ask yourself:
Sound like a complicated equation? It doesn’t have to be. Genius Audio can help you sort out your needs. We’ve got every size speaker for any size vehicle and can help you determine what mid-range speaker will work best for you. And not just mid-range speakers, but solutions for all your car audio systems: subwoofer for car and sub boxes, car audio tweeters, head units, car audio amplifiers, cables, and accessories that can put together the audio system of your dreams! With over 40 years’ experience, Genius Audio’s highly professional staff brings a reputation of quality, technology, and durability our customers have come to expect. Get in touch with us today and take another step in your audio journey!