Car Audio System – Basic Points Everyone Must Know

Car audio system consists of LFD(low frequency driver),a compensating MFD(mid frequency driver), and HFD(high frequency driver). The subwoofer handles the low frequencies, mid range drivers handle mid frequencies and tweeters deal with high frequencies.


Car Audio
24 inch Superwoofer in Superwagon

Essential features for an impressive Car Audio system.

Size of the Subwoofer
Bigger the size, more is the impact. Subwoofers range from a size of 8″ to 15″. never underestimate a subwoofer from its size as the 8″ little beast is far more lethal than a normal 12″ loudspeaker. Due to their efficient power handling, low frequency response and higher excursion they simply add juice to your car audio.

The right AMP
Power matching of amplifier and the sub is important for producing high end output and ground shaking bass. Make sure the amp and sub are evenly matched. If the amp is underrated it may get heat up and damage the entire electrical setup. An amp which just exceeds the power rating of sub is recommended.

Sensitivity of subwoofer
High sensitivity means more bass. First of all we need to know what sensitivity is. I will make  it clear with an example. Sensitivity of 90dB/V means that the subwoofer can produce 90dB of sound at a distance of 1 metre with 1 Volt power rating. So if the speaker has high sensitivity it means that it can produce more bass with less volts which means the sub is highly efficient. So do properly chech out the sensitivity of the subwoofer and pick the right one.
(dB denotes decibel, the unit used to measure the loudness)

The peak to peak displacement of the cone of the subwoofer is its excursion. Higher excursion means more displaced air, displaced air is the carrier of vibrations which means more bass, so indirectly high excursion means rich and deeper bass.
NOTE:- This feature is  not specified by all manufacturers.

Power rating
Power rating means the amount of power consumed by the circuit and the amount of output(bass) produced by the equipment(subwoofer). People often get fooled by the term PMPO(peak music power output) or simply the peak output. The PMPO deludes the buyer from the real concept that is RMS power rating. While PMPO is calculated for short bursts of peak power output, the RMS is calculated over a longer period of time. So carefully note the RMS power rating instead of PMPO rating before buying a subwoofer.

Music Player(head unit)
The car stereo also called as head unit performs multiple tasks in the car audio system. While the home audio systems have separate components such as preamp, amplifier, CD player connected by various cables, the car audio systems have all these components embedded in one single “HEAD UNIT” due to limited availability of space. The head unit controls the overall system volumes and various audio sources in a vehicle. The car stereo slightly amplifies the electrical signal to match the power rating of amplifier which in turn amplifies the electrical signal for the matching power rating of the subwoofer.

Power Rating Of The Car Battery
Sometimes using highly powerful audio systems can actually damage the entire electrical set up of the car, dimming of the head lights, dashboard especially when the loud bass note hits is actually an indication of upgrading the battery. Therefore before upgrading to a powerful aftermarket car audio system, do add up more volts to the electrical system of the car.

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