Stock speakers are boring. If you’re into cars like we are, chances are you have heard this line too often.
Of course there are many other ways it is expressed, but you get the point. It doesn’t take a hifi enthusiast to know that factory stereos just don’t give the kind of sound quality that pleases the ears.
Most manufacturers tweak the audio settings in a stock system to make up for the low quality and low priced speakers in order to make up for the lack of power. But your car and your ears deserve the best 6×8 component speakers available.
This is not to say that the setup does not sound good. It’s just not good enough if you are looking for a listening experience that is truly involving.
OEM sound systems in cars have speakers that are placed in different areas which further makes the music sound worse. These are just a few of the reasons factory speakers are better replaced with aftermarket, high-performance units.
Why Upgrade Your Car Speakers
The Stock Speakers are Worn Out
There is a good chance that your car is in need of a change of speakers unless you have a late model car with a premium sound system. Otherwise your speakers may be too old or worn out or they are simply not that good in producing sounds.
Perhaps the biggest reason you have kept the factory speakers this long is the fact that aftermarket products are expensive. However, you can consider the upgrade worthwhile if you go for good quality component speakers.
Build a Full Audio Setup
Another reason to replace the factory speakers is you intend to upgrade the whole audio system in the car. Whether it is for show, competition or simply better sound does not matter. The bottom line is the speakers have to be replaced with high performance and high quality components.
Your stock speakers make a great starting point if you want to make the most out of the factory stereo or head unit and your budget is limited. Original equipment audio systems use speakers, usually single drivers, to produce sounds throughout the whole audio spectrum. Obviously this is not a good idea and the result is a compromised speaker with unimpressive sound quality.
This is actually where the inadequacy of your sound system lies. Yes they are cheaper and save a lot of space from a car manufacturer’s standpoint, but you as the vehicle owner will not be happy about this.
Now if you swap the stock speakers for 2-way or 3-way component speakers, you will surely hear the difference. The sound quality will be much better.
The low cost materials used in factory speakers are more susceptible to wear and tear compared to premium aftermarket drivers. A worn out speaker will definitely get torn apart especially when you factor in the abuse it gets from constant use and extreme conditions in the cabin.
In addition, branded speakers are also engineered to another level through research and development.
Fuller and Better Bass
Cones of aftermarket speakers are made of high-density materials. This translates to a noticeable improvement in bass reproduction over a factory speaker of the same size.
Your new speakers do not even need to be the high end type to get good bass. In this aspect, aftermarket drivers are superior to your stock.
Things to Consider
If you have made up your mind to choose the best 6×8 speakers for your car, there are important things to consider. First you’ll have to decide between full range and component speakers.
Apart from that you also need to take these basic factors into consideration: build quality, power handling and sensitivity. Of course, there is always the budget that we have already mentioned but it is these factors that will help you get the best sound for your system.
Differentiating Component and Coaxial Speakers
Whenever aftermarket car speakers are discussed, the subject of component speakers and coaxial speakers just cannot avoided. It is because they are your choices when upgrading.
Component speakers, or separates, are those that have more than one component in the system. They always come as a set, in this case a 6 inch by 8 inch woofer is accompanied by a 1-inch tweeter and an external passive crossover.
On the other hand, coaxial speakers put the tweeter and woofer in one package with the former suspended on the latter.
When we compare component speakers to their coaxial counterparts, separates sound much better. Although component speakers are more expensive compared to coaxials, you will get what you pay for and that is great sound quality.
The good news is now there are convertible speakers, where you can set up the aftermarket drivers as separates or coaxials. You can get the best of both worlds.
All you have to do is find the best soundstaging for your car and then install the speakers accordingly.
The Best 6×8 Component Speakers
1. GTO8608C 6-Inch x 8-Inch 2-Way Component System by JBL
What We Like
- Outstanding sound quality
- Tweeter mounting flexibility
- Optimized soundstaging
JBL designed this system to handle 210 watts of peak power. This means that the GTO8608C can take anything you can throw at it.
You get concert quality sound with accurate highs and lows. The woofer cone of is features the company’s exclusive Plus One material which is light, stiff and has more active surface area for a boost in bass efficiency and output.
The tweeter has a large voice coil to give you the sound of a home theater. The crossover network is optimized to produce realistic sound output to give you the live music experience.
2. C3-570 Evolution C3 Series 6″ x 8″ 2-way Convertible Component/Coaxial Speakers System by JL Audio
What We Like
- High tech materials
- Silk tweeters
JL Audio’s Evolution C3 gives you the ultimate in flexibility as you can use the system as component or coaxial.
So whether you want the best imaging or space is limited in your car’s cabin, the C3 has you covered.
Strong and accurate bass is made possible by the mica-injected polypropylene woofer. The tweeters have a silk dome to put out realistic detail.
3. CS 40CSS684 speaker package – Two pairs of Kicker CS Series 6×8 Component Speakers by Kicker
What We Like
- Stays cool with EVC tech
- Low reflection, no diffration
The CS Series from Kicker is the aftermarket component speaker upgrade you have been looking for. You will get high performance at an affordable price.
Titanium tweeters, polypropylene wooders with durable surrounds, Extended Voice Coil technology, and two way crossovers that come with tweeter level control all work together to give you superb sonic quality.
4. D673a 5×7 / 6×8 Convertible Component Speaker System by Diamond Audio
What We Like
- Great value
The D673a is probably the most affordable convertible component speaker you can find. If you’re working with a tight budget but still need speakers that provide a superb audio experience, then your search is over.
The woofer’s cone is made of anodized aluminum to give you consistent, strong bass while the butyl rubber surround guarantees that the speaker will last for a long time.
On the tweeters are either silk or aluminum domes, which you will get to choose. With this convertible component/coaxial speaker system from Diamond Audio, you can have it all.
5. PVL268 6 x 8-Inch 2-Way Component/Convertible Coaxial Speaker by MBQUART
What We Like
- Premium brand
- High performance
- Warm and natural sound production
Not to be left out of the 6×8 aftermarket speaker niche is the well-known bran MB Quart. The PVL268 is a convertible speaker system that was designed with natural sound reproduction in mind.
The woofer cone is constructed with polypropylene while the tweeter dome is made of silk.
Other features include active crossover with tweeter attenuation, gold plated terminals and long-travel spider. The cherry on top is the fact that these are convertible speakers so you can set them up as component or coaxial.
When it comes to car accessories, an upgrade is never a bad thing. It is always you, the owner, who will benefit.
If you like listening to good music then you need to do something about the stock drivers in your car. You’ll be surprised what your factory head unit is capable of when it’s paired to a decent set of 6×8 component speakers.
The sound will become bigger, louder and much better to listen to. A speaker swap doesn’t have to be expensive in order to satisfy your need for high fidelity.
Just pick one for our top 5 and you can be sure of a listening experience that will make you stay in the car for long periods.