Upgrading factory car speakers with aftermarket speakers is a sure way to improve your car music system. There’re many aftermarket car speakers available today. They differ in size, style, and power. With respect to size, 6.5-inch car speakers are some of the best replacement speakers. These speakers are available in a wide range of models and brands. This makes it a bit challenging and time-consuming to choose the best one. This guide makes it easier for you when shopping by shortlisting the best 6.5 speakers available today.
How We Wrote This Review
We’re always overwhelmed by the number of car owners who seek assistance on replacement speakers. If you want to buy new car speakers but you don’t know where to start, you can easily end up investing your money in the wrong speakers. Luckily, if you’re reading this guide, we’ve made the entire process easier for you by reviewing the best 6.5-inch aftermarket speakers. We gathered reviews from car owners who have already bought the speakers in our shortlist. Moreover, we took time to gather more information from manufacturers and compared these speakers from different car music system dealers. From our research, we’ve shortlisted the top ten 6.5 speakers.
Top Ten 6.5-inch Speakers Review
The speakers that made it to our review are among the best you can find today. Upon going through these reviews, you’ll easily find a speaker that has all the key features you want. Here’s how we rated the top 10 six by five speakers:
Comparison Table of Best 6.5 Speakers
1. Infinity Kappa 60.11CS
Infinity introduces the Kappa 60.11CS component speaker as a great choice for car music lovers who love customized sound. With component speakers, you have the freedom to customize sound the way you want such as focusing on more bass than highs or vice versa. Here’re the key features that made this speaker top our list:
- Glass fiber cone-A key feature about this speaker is its glass fiber woofer cone material. Glass fiber is able to handle deeper bass and demanding midrange without a lot of stress.Moreover, the cone is injected with carbon, making the cone move more air, thus you get higher quality sound. Carbon injection also results in a stiffer and lighter cone.
- Plus One technology-This Infinity speaker model also boasts of relying on the Plus One cone technology during the manufacture of its woofer driver. Plus One cone technology enhances the overall bass output of the woofer cone. It also enhances midrange performance.
- Improved woofer and tweeter design- The Infinity Kappa 60.11CS comes as a component set of a woofer driver and a tweeter. The tweeter is edge-driven in design, meaning that you’ll get bolder highs. The tweeter also integrates soft-dome technology with fabric material. The soft-dome tweeter technology allows for smoother response of highs, wider dispersion, and reduced distortion.
- High-temperature voice coil- Another notable feature of this speaker is its high-temperature voice coil. The voice coil is designed to deliver optimum performance even under heavy usage and high temperature. It’s able to tolerate high temperatures when driving it hard within the speaker power limits.
- Handles prolonged usage efficiently- Finally but not least, this speaker is designed to withstand prolonged usage without burning out. Itsmagnet and motor assembly are vented such that they allow for maximum air circulation to cool off the speaker components during heavy and prolonged usage.
- Screw type speaker wire terminals
- External crossover
- Grilles with rubber finishing
- Magnet boot cover
- Comes with adapter rings
- You’d need to add an amp to get the best of them
- The frame material is a bit fragile
The Infinity Kappa 60.11CS is best for custom sound as you can choose to get more bass or more highs using its adjustable crossover controls.
2. JEEP WRANGLER JK KICKER SPEAKER
Mopar, the brand that offers genuine accessories for Jeep and other Fiat Chrysler automobiles, in collaboration with Kicker have developed a speaker set exclusively for all Jeep Wrangler 2007 to 2010 two-door and four-door models. Learn why you should consider this replacement speaker set for your Jeep Wrangler owner:
- Ideal for both front and back dash and the Jeep soundbar-A major benefit that comes with these speakers is that you can install them in either the front or back dashboard of your Jeep Wrangler. The speakers come as a set of two speakers, one for the right side and another for the left side. You can also install them on the Jeep soundbar.
- Quick and easy to install-Another benefit of these speakers is their ease of installation. They’re exclusively made to fit into any Jeep Wrangler 2007 to 2010 model. You won’t make any new holes. You’ll simply screw them in the existing speaker holes and you’re good to go.
- Enhanced sound clarity-These speakers enhance the kind of sound clarity you get in your Jeep Wrangler. They sound better than the OEM Jeep speakers in terms of clarity.
- Great tweeter positioning- The tweeter driver that comes with this speaker is positioned in such a way that it projects sound outwards without the highs being drowned by the bass. It’s designed in such a way that the highs balance well with the lows and mid, making it easier to equalize and get balanced sound.
- Rich sound- These Jeep replacement speakers are several times more superior to the stock ones. They add rich soundand don’t distort or rattle at high volume. They’re super loud with deep bass andtheir overall sound quality is something to appreciate.
- Easy to install
- Enhanced clarity
- Clean highs and enhanced midrange
- Good bass response
- Louder than stock Jeep speakers
- Exclusive to Jeep Wrangler 2007 to 2010 models
- You may have to add poly-fil when installing them in the Jeep soundbar
The ease of installation of this JEEP WRANGLER JK KICKER SPEAKER pair of speakers in all 2007 to 2010 Jeep Wrangler models make them a plug and play solution.
3. Rockford Fosgate R165X3 Prime
The performance of Rockford Fosgate speakers is backed by thousands of users. Thus, you should expect the best performance from its R165X3 Prime series. The speaker comes packed with great features that any car owner would want to have in their car. Here’s why you ought to consider it:
- Visually appealing finishing- By simply looking at this speaker, you’ll notice that it has an appealing finishing and design. It’s the kind of speaker you’d want to show off to your passengers. You would even want it to remain uncovered, but you’d rather protect it with the provided grilles.
- Superior build quality- Thebuild quality of this pair of speakers is extremely impressive. Their frame is sturdy and strong, keeping the speaker components protected. The rubber that surrounds the speaker also keeps it protected. Thus, their tough build quality enhances their longevity.
- Compact design- Its compact design makes it ideal to fit in cars with small interior spaces. The dimensions make it possible to fit in tight spaces without compromising other car components. For instance, you’ll be able to fit them in your door without affecting the window mechanism.
- Crisp highs with clear mid- These speakers lead in delivering crisp highs and clear midrange. Each speaker in the pair features a pole-mounted tweeter and midrange. This enhances the dispersion of highs and midrange such that they become more audible in the midst of other frequencies.
- High-pass crossover- The integrated high-pass crossover in each this speaker pair ensures that high frequencies are filtered and directed to the tweeter. This way, you get the best highs.
- Budget speaker
- Great highs
- Outstanding build quality
- Sleek and attractive design
- Competitive pricin
- Not the best for bass
- Not very loud
The Rockford Fosgate R165X3 Prime is great for crisp highs and clear midrange. Thus, it’s ideal for anyone who prefers more highs and midrange without much emphasis on bass.
4. Pioneer A Series -ALPHASONIK EARBUDS
You’ll hear the brand name “Pioneer” in almost all top sound equipment, including speakers, amplifiers, stereo systems, equalizers, and mixers among others. Pioneer is a brand to reckon with when it comes to car speakers.Here’re the features that make this speaker one of the best 6.5 speakers:
- Improved sound respons- A major feature about this pair of speakers is that they come with enhanced responsiveness and sound reproduction. This is made possible by their lightweight and elastic surround that responds smoothly to cone vibrations.
- Wide sound dispersion- The Pioneer A Series speakers also boast of wider sound dispersion combined with deeper bass. It features a multilayer woofer cone, thereby allowing for more surface area and thus wider sound dispersion. Moreover, the Mica Matrix material making the cone allows for deeper bass.
- Attractive grille design- Another notable feature about these speakers is that they feature a unique and visually appealing grille design. The speaker grille is designed to protect the midrange and tweeter drivers while still exposing the beauty of the speaker.
- Multi-fit adapters- One feature you’ll love most about this Pioneer speaker is that it comes with multi-fit adapters. The adapters make it easier to install the speaker in most stock holes without the need to cut new holes. As such, you’ll find it quite easy to install this speaker.
- Clear highs
- Low distortion
- Rich bass
- Expansive soundstage
- Installation adapters
- Free earbuds
- Not ideal for turning the volume all the way up
- Average midrange
ThePioneer A Series -ALPHASONIK EARBUDS offers a more expansive soundstage than other speakers of its category, making it an excellent choice for replacing factory speakers.
5. Polk Audio MM1 Series
Polk has brought in an aftermarket speaker for cars and other motor vehicles that boasts of being an upgrade that will add sonic accuracy. The speaker is designed for nothing other than advanced performance.Read on for its great features and benefits and understand why it’s worth your consideration.
- Marine-rated- What more would you want if not a speaker that’s marine rated? The Polk Audio MM1 Series is certified for use in the marine environment. Thus, besides being a great replacement for your car, you can also use it in your boat. Each speaker cone is plated with titanium to make them UV tolerant.
- Detailed highs- The kind of highs you’ll get from this speaker pair are clear and fully detailed, thanks to the Terylene tweeter in each speaker. Thus, you’ll enjoy clear highs without unwanted resonant frequencies and with minimal distortion.
- High temperature spiders and voice coil- Its conex spiders and oversized voice coil are designed to work efficiently at high temperature. This increases the power handling of the speaker such that you can use it for a prolonged period without reduced efficiency.
- Amazing sound balance- Another key feature and benefit that comes with this speaker is its Dynamic Balance technology. This sound technology ensures that you get clear, full-range sound. The technology emphasizes on using non-resonant materials during manufacture to enhance sonic accuracy and clarity.
- Enhanced power output- Moreover, this speaker comes with the benefit of offering more power output yet it’s efficient on power consumption. Its overall power efficiency is higher than other speakers of the same category, thanks to its lightweight and compact neodymium motor structure.
- High efficiency
- Reduced resonant frequencies
- Epoxy coated crossovers
- Marine certified
- Improved sonic accuracy
- Higher price range
- A bit challenging to equalize
- Highs may be harsh for some listeners
The Polk Audio MM1 Series is ideal for marine applications. It’s also efficient in power handling, making it compatible with most stereo systems.
6. JBL Club 5000C
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JBL, a legendary sound equipment manufacturer, brings the Club 5000C speaker to vehicles. It’s specially designed to fit in most vehicles due to its compact design. Thus, if you’ve been wondering about the kind of a replacement speaker that will fit in your tight car space, here’s a compact speaker pair for you. Read on for its feature and benefits.
- Works with factory stereo- You can easily power this speaker with your factory stereo. It has a high sensitivity rating such that it’s compatible with factory stereos. You don’t have to invest in an aftermarket stereo or amp to power it.
- Deep bass- With this speaker, expect hard-hitting lows, thanks to the rugged woofer cone. Moreover, the cone is acoustically dampened for the best lows. It’s also made for longevity under heavy usage. Moreover, the cone material withstands high levels of humidity and heat in a car environment.
- High sensitivity- If your budget can only cater for a speaker and you can’t afford to buy an aftermarket stereo or amp, then this is the right speaker for you. It has high sensitivity such that it’s able to reproduce enough sound from a low-powered factory head unit.
- High-pass filter- Moreover, if you enjoy more highs than bass, you can take advantage of the separate high-pass filters that come with this speaker. In addition, the tweeters are designed to deliver smooth highs and disperse highs more efficiently. The tweeter also comes with an appealing finishing that adds to the appearance of the speaker.
- High sensitivity
- Near-universal compatibility
- Great bass
- Tight midrange and smooth highs
- You won’t need an amp
- They may distort at high volume
- Highs may sound too bright to some people
- Its price range is higher than other speakers of its category
The JBL Club 5000Cis a great choice for installing in tight car spaces. Although you’ll pay more for its quality, you’ll be assured of hard-hitting bass and longevity.
7. Pair of Kenwood KFC-1695PS
The new generation of car music enthusiasts have not been left behind in the world of aftermarket speakers. The Kenwood KFC-1695PS is designed for today’s car music enthusiasts. It’s designed to revolutionize the sound experience you’d get in your car, making it one of the best 6.5 car speakers.Here’re some of its main features:
- Water-resistant cone- Investing in this pair of Kenwood speakers assures you of a stress-free experience in humid conditions, thanks to its water-resistant woofer cone. The paper cone making the speaker resists water flow, thereby keeping the interior components protected from water damage.
- Enhanced cone strength- Moreover, the woofer cone is designed with the latest radial rib pattern for enhanced strength and bass response. The pattern allows for articulate lows. Its enhanced strength makes it resist tear and wear under prolonged usage.
- Great frequency response- The acoustic sound harmonizer in the speaker enhances its frequency response. As such, the speaker achieves a wider frequency range. Consequently, you’ll enjoy more music details and full-range sound.
- Superb highs- With thisspeaker, you’ll enjoy startling highs from a combination of a tweeter and supertweeter. Thus, if you’re a lover of highs, you won’t get disappointed by replacing your stock speakers with this Kenwood speaker.
- Durable rubber surround
- Clean vocals
- Beautifully crafted
- Multi-driver design
- Loud enough
- Bass is limited
- Not ideal for prolonged usage
- Some music notes sound a bit muffled
This pair of Kenwood KFC-1695PS speaker will give you startling highs combined with clean vocals and articulate lows, thereby making it a great replacement speaker. Thus, consider it in your shortlist.
8. 4 New Rockford Fosgate R165X3
Rockford presents a new generation 3-way speaker to fulfill your car music needs. Rockford, as a leading sound equipment manufacturer, produces some of the best car speakers. ItsR165X3 model boasts of having great features that any car music lover can appreciate. Thus, you’ll be assured of spending your hard-earned money in a high quality speaker. Here’re its key features:
- Refined sound- The speaker delivers well-refined sound, thanks to its integrated crossover. Its crossover is concealed within the speaker. It filters the incoming sound frequencies to ensure that each driver reproduces its ideal frequency range.
- Great midrange and tweeter positioning-The midrange and tweeter are mounted in such a way that they disperse mid and highs outwards without overwhelming or being overwhelmed by the lows. They also come in an attractive design such that you would want to showcase them.
- Smooth transition between music notes- Another major feature of this speaker is that it delivers quick transitions from one music note to the other. Its polypropylene cone is designed for smooth transition between music notes and delivers punchy sound.
- Shallow mounting depth- Moreover, the mounting depth of the speaker is shallow such that you can easily install it in tight door spaces.
- Sturdy speaker basket
- Competitive pricing
- Flexible surround
- Mounting hardware is provided
- Easy to fit
- Average lows
- Highs are not crisp
- May crackle at high gain levels
If you’re looking for replacement speakers that deliver high-quality and punchy sound, the 4 New Rockford Fosgate R165X3 is the best choice for you.
9. Pyle PL63BL
Although you want to upgrade your car music, your budget may limit you. Luckily, Pyle introduces budget replacement speakers, the Pyle PL63BL for anyone looking for an affordable upgrade. It’s specially designed to offer impeccable sound all at an affordable pricing. Let’s look at its marvelous features:
- Enhances interior car décor- The visually appealing combination of blue and black finishing of the speakers can enhance the interior décor of your car. Besides enhancing your car music, they’ll also enhance its décor. You would actually want to show them off to your friends when travelling for a road trip.
- Tolerates weather elements- Another feature and benefit of this speaker model is that it’s built to tolerate harsh environmental elements such as humidity, sunlight, and high temperature. Thus, you’ll enjoy their best performance even during the warmest summer days and the coldest winter nights.
- Precise highs and mid- Moreover, this speaker model delivers highs and midrange with precision. Its ¾ inch tweeter and 1 inch midrange driver are designed to deliver detailed and precise sound. Therefore, you’ll get enriched highs and midrange.
- Open sound stage- Yet another feature and benefit you’ll enjoy from this speaker is a more open sound stage. This is made possible by its ASV voice coil. The voice coil also guarantees rich sound with minimal distortion.
- Extremely affordable
- Low impedance
- High temperature voice coil
- They come with speaker wire
- Great midrange with high response
- Average build quality
- Crackles at high volume levels
- Not the best for bass enthusiasts
The Pyle PL63BL is one of the most affordable speakers we have listed here, and it’s ideal for anyone looking for budget replacement speakers that deliver better sound than factory speakers.
10. BOSS Audio CH6530
Advances in sound technology are leading to the design of speakers with more innovative features. Speaker sizes are reducing as their features increase. The Boss Audio CH6530speaker is among the speakers that feature the latest sound technologies. It’s actually the most affordable 6.5-inch car speaker in our review list. Here’s why we recognized this speaker:
- Sensational sound- One notable feature and benefit of this speaker is its sensational sound. The pair handles 150 watts RMS in total and a peak power rating of 300 watts. Thus, the speaker is powerful enough to satisfy all basic music needs.
- Efficient performance- The efficiency of this speaker model is another feature to boast about. Its cone and surround are flexible enough to allow for efficient performance and long term usage. Thus, expect efficient performance for many years to come.
- Lightweight coil- Moreover, the aluminum voice coil that comes with this speaker is lightweight and durable at the same time. Its lightweight nature makes it respond effortlessly to incoming sound frequencies, thus enhanced sound quality. Its durability makes it efficient even under prolonged usage.
- Reduced rattling- In addition, the speakers are designed in a way that enhances their shock absorption ability. As such, you won’t experience rattling when pushing them hard. The end result is enhanced sound clarity.
- Truly affordable
- Attractive grille
- Easy to mount
- Visually appealing red and black finishing
- Little bass
- Not the best for loud music enthusiasts
- Installation hardware is not provided
There’s no reason to deny yourself better sounding speakers for your car yet the Boss Audio CH6530 is one of the most affordable speakers. If you’re on the tightest budget, this is the right speaker for you.
Tips to Consider When Choosing the Best 6.5 Speakers
Now that you know some of the best 6.5-inch speakers, there’re certain features you need to consider before making your choice. When comparing different speakers, you’ll notice that they don’t sound exactly the same. What makes them sound different? There’re certain features that make some speakers reproduce better sound quality than others. Knowing what to lookout for will assist you in choosing a speaker that will make a difference in your car. Here’re some expert tips to assist you when choosing 6.5-inchcar speakers:
Tip #1- Consider the power handling
The power that a speaker can handle is usually rated in watts RMS. If you’re looking for speakers that reproduce the deepest and greatest sound signals, then choose the ones that have a higher RMS rating. You may need to use an amp to power speakers with high power ratings to enjoy their power. If you already have a car amplifier, ensure that the speakers you choose can be handled by the amp since feeding speakers with power beyond their rating may damage them. Also, most factory head units may not be able to power speakers with high power ratings. If you still want to keep your factory head unit when upgrading the speakers, then you’d want to choose speakers whose power rating is low enough for the factory head unit.
Tip #2- The build quality of the speaker
Remember to invest in a speaker whose build quality is top-notch. The speaker should look sturdy enough and should be made of durable materials. The last thing you’d want is buying a speaker today, only for it to malfunction the next day. Most importantly, ensure the cone and surround are made of flexible and durable materials.
Tip #3- Is the installation hardware provided?
Mounting aftermarket car speakers in the existing speaker holes can be easier when the replacement speaker comes with installation hardware. Most importantly, it should come with screws. If it doesn’t come with its own screws, you may find it hard to find matching screws separately. It will even help further in case the speaker comes with speaker wire and speaker adapters. Speaker adapters will help to mount the speaker more easily just in case its size doesn’t match with the factory speaker holes.
Tip #4- Is the frequency range within your preference?
Drivers in different speakers are designed to reproduce specific sound frequencies. For instance, the woofer cone reproduces lows whereas the tweeter reproduces highs. The midrange driver reproduces midrange. If your preference is getting more highs and treble than lows, then consider a speaker whose frequency range is more oriented towards highs. On the other hand, if you prefer more lows than highs, ensure the frequency range of the speaker you choose is oriented more towards lows. In case you want balanced full-range sound, ensure the frequency of the speaker is wide in enough to cover highs, midrange, and lows.
Tip #5- Your budget
Of course, your budget matters when shopping for replacement speakers. However, don’t choose a speaker just because it’s cheap. Also, it doesn’t mean that the most expensive speaker is the best. First, know the features you need in a speaker. Then shortlist the speakers with those features that are within your budget.
Choosing replacement speakers for your car doesn’t have to bedifficult. By going through this review and buying guide, you’ll stand better chances to choose the best 6.5 speakers for your car.The speakers reviewed here are simply the best you can find in the market today, but as you can see, each speaker performs better in certain aspects than the others. Thus, your ultimate choice should depend on your personal preferences. Simply take your time to go through the features and make your choice based on the speaker that has most of the features you need.
Michael Evanchuk is a San Francisco-based sound engineer with 20 years’ experience installing, troubleshooting, and repairing commercial, automotive, and household sound equipment. Evanchuk owns an auto stereo center, where he offers highly competitive car audio installation and repair services. He has written dozens of articles on different sound engineering topics, all of which have been published in leading journals, blogs, and websites.