What is a passive crossover?

What is a passive crossover?

on January 26, 2024

If you are asking yourself what a passive crossover is, you may not have understood very well what its function is. But don't worry, we are here to explain what it is, what its functions are and if your Car Audio system needs one. Surely you are here because you want the sound to improve and reach high fidelity. 

First of all, a crossover consists of a number of electronic filters that have the function of separating signals that are distributed to the bass, midrange and treble (subwoofer, speakers and tweeters), organizing the signal input to separate it into three different signals, so that each component receives its corresponding signal.



What do we call passive crossover? 

It is a device that can divide an input signal into two or more outputs with different frequency ranges, so that the speakers, tweeters and subwoofers will each have their own frequency range, so that these outside of each designated range will be blocked or dimmed.

Every speaker system needs a crossover of some kind. The components already come with separate external crossovers, many of them using selectors that allow the output and input signals to be divided in some way by the frequencies. 

Therefore, a passive crossover is a device that is located between the sound drivers, (such as subwoofers, speakers and tweeters), and the amplifier, made up of resistors, capacitors and robust coils, with the capacity to manage the high output power of the amplifiers. There are passive crossovers that have a switch for the tweeter level, which allows you to control their volume, in relation to the subwoofer.

The reason why they are called passive is that these devices do not need additional electrical power, since they are fed by the same power of the system to which they are integrated.

The reasons for using a crossover are basically two: 

  • It allows you to pre-filter the bass, so that it does not damage the speakers and tweeters. 
  • In addition, it divides the signals to the different speakers, so that the subwoofer will only receive the bass signal, the speakers receive the medium signals, and the tweeters receive the high signals. Thus, each component will receive the signal at the necessary frequency, so that its performance is more efficient and the sound is improved. 

Difference from active crossovers 

The first difference is its location, because an active crossover is between the audio players and the amplifier, so it manages the signal as a low level preamplifier, with a circuit that cleanly divides the signal, by sending each frequency band in the corresponding address. 

An active crossover is typically adjustable, via crossover point selection, and typically contains circuit boosters for the bass in the subwoofer. In addition, it allows you to independently control the volume related to the different audio drivers. 

There is another important difference: active crossovers require their own power supply, which is additional to the group of connections in the Car Audio system. Finally, your pocket will also notice that difference, because an active crossover costs up to four times more than a passive one. 


How do you know when you need it?

 Como saber cuándo necesitas un crossover pasivo

If your Car Audio system still displays distortions in certain types of music playback, or you notice that components like the subwoofer, speakers or tweeters are getting too hot, that's the first sign that you need a crossover.

The reason for this is that the crossover is responsible for sending to each sound output component only the audio signal for which it has been designed, so the high signals will go to the tweeters, the mid frequencies will go to the speakers and the low frequencies to the subwoofers, preventing damage caused by overheating. 

Installing a crossover is necessary if you want your Car Audio system to reproduce sound with greater fidelity. In addition, a crossover guarantees that both at low and high power, your Car Audio system reproduces the clearest sounds and with the least possible distortion. 


As for what a passive crossover is, the answer is simple, it is a component of your car audio system that manages to efficiently distribute the signals coming out of an amplifier, sending the frequencies that correspond to the operation of the tweeters, speakers and speakers. subwoofers separately. 

As they are placed between the amplifiers and the components through which the sound is emitted, it does not need its own source of electricity, instead, it is powered by the connection circuit of your Car Audio system, which not only makes the sound better by eliminating distortions, but also eliminates the risk of damage due to overheating of the signal output devices. 

When you are not able to control or adjust the output levels of Car Audio, to improve the performance of tweeters, speakers and subwoofers, you will need a crossover, so that these devices receive the audio signal for which they have been designed, reducing distortion. and increasing fidelity.

That's why you can't miss out on the best equipment that we have to offer at Genius Audio along with the advantages of being a Genius Audio Dealer.


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