If you’re looking to boost the audio in your car, you’ll quickly find that there are many ways to do so.
Some audiophiles opt for extensive set-ups with things such as center channel speakers and subwoofers. However, what if you don’t have much experience with audio in vehicles? Or, what if you’re working on a budget and can’t dedicate hundreds of dollars to an audio overhaul?
In these situations, you may want to look into replacing the speakers in your car. Replacing your factory-issued speakers is an excellent way to boost your audio without breaking the bank. There’s no doubt that speakers are a critical part of any audio system and improvements here can make a huge difference in sound quality.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of the six best 4 inch car speakers available on the market today. If 4 inch speakers fit your car, you’ll want to carefully consider these choices.
- Design: 2-Way
- Power Handling: 60W RMS, 120W Peak
- Sensitivity: 88 dB
- Design: 2-Way
- Power Handling: 50W RMS, 105W Peak
- Sensitivity: 92 dB
- Design: 2-Way
- Power Handling: 60W RMS, 120W Peak
- Sensitivity: 86.5 dB
- Design: 2-Way
- Power Handling: 45W RMS, 135W Peak
- Sensitivity: 91 dB
- Design: 2-Way
- Power Handling: 20W RMS, 150W Peak
- Sensitivity: 86 dB
Best 4 Inch Car Speakers Reviews For 2021
1. Kicker 41DSC44 4” 2-Way Speaker Pair
With a low profile, they could potentially fit in many different vehicles.
The Kicker DS series 41DSC44 2-Way Speaker Pair is one affordable option for those looking to upgrade non-functioning speakers in their vehicle.
Kicker designed these speakers with minimal tweeter protrusion for easier vehicle installation. They also provide grilles. The speakers feature a 4” polypropylene woofer with ribbed polyester foam. The foam surrounds a ½” PEIN domed tweeter power range. The peak power recommended going into the speakers is120 watts, so the power handling is good. The average RMS power you want to feed these 4 inch speakers is going to be 30 watts. Sensitivity is decent at 88 dB.
These speakers do a nice job overall and especially for the price. The bass is good as you expect from Kicker with the woofer delivering tight bass lows. The cone is a usual polypropylene type but the surround is a Kicker foam variety instead of the more common butyl rubber surround material. The dome tweeters deliver crisp highs.
The speakers are a bit bulkier than other options, measuring 6.8” x 6” x 5.5” and weighing just under three pounds.
The Kicker 41DSC44 also has a thin mounting profile, ideal for tight window mechanism clearances. We found that installation of these 4 inch speakers was simple and mounting hardware also comes included in the box.
- The tweeter protrusion is minimal
- Grills and mounting hardware come standard with these speakers
- The speakers feature a thin mounting profile
- Designed for increased output when used with stock receivers
- The speakers may not work well when used with a weak amplifier
2. JBL GTO429 Premium 4-Inch Co-Axial Speaker Set
They come at a very affordable price and would be a reasonable investment for first-time audio upgrades. However, you will need to purchase lithium-ion batteries for this set of speakers.
Those dissatisfied with the factory-issued speakers in their car will want to consider the JBL GTO429 Premium 4-inch Co-Axial Speakers.
They have the following specs:
- Measure 6.5” x 4.1” x 11.8”
- Weigh about three pounds
- Have a dedicated 12dB/octave
They feature Plus One cones that are carbon-injected. These cones are more significant than those in other 4 inch speakers, providing booming bass while also having nice highs from the tweeter. Furthermore, the GTO429 are low-impedance, which should increase the number of vehicles in which these speakers will work. The speaker magnets have a vented design that keeps things cool and reliable with better overall power handling.
Speaking of power, they can handle anywhere from 25 watts to a peak power of 105 watts with average desired power coming in at 35 watts RMS. Sensitivity is also high at 92 dB. We were impressed with the sound quality even though the speakers were a little on the heavy side.
Installation should be fairly straightforward. However, you will need to purchase two lithium-ion batteries for these speakers to work. Additionally, JBL offers various equipment that should pair well with the GTO429 such as ¾” tweeters and component speakers.
You should check with your installer to make sure they fit your vehicle.
- Carbon-injected Plus One cones move more air, creating deeper bass tones
- Oversized voice coils allow for higher heat dissipation
- Non-magnetic carbon-composite baskets maintain integrity
- Features dedicated 12dB/octave crossover components
- Requires lithium ion batteries
- May require you to drill holes when used with an adapter
3. Rockford Fosgate Punch Series P142 2-Way Car Speakers
While an OEM adapter came with speakers, some customers indicated that they still had trouble fitting the units into their car. Some said that they could not find an adapter that matches, which caused the speakers to sit at an angle.
The first choice for a 4 inch speaker on our list is the Rockford Fosgate Punch P142. Rockford is a well-known brand in the audio world. They are one of the global leaders in cutting-edge car audio technology.
These 4 inch speakers have excellent construction with an innovative woofer cone design and a durable butyl rubber surround. The dome tweeters
The Punch series has full range speakers that offer the Flex Fit basket so that the speakers can fit even in odd-shaped locations in your car. These speakers also come with Integrated Concealed Crossover (ICC), so there’s no need to mount black boxes, and they come with a grill.
The Punch P142 has a maximum power handling of 60 watts or 30 watts RMS. Now, these peak power and RMS numbers are probably lower than you’re used to seeing and that’s because these 4 inch speakers have high sensitivity. The sensitivity is 91 dB, and the frequency is 60 Hz-22 kHz. That means these speakers run longer and play louder. With a phenomenal sound quality, music heard on these speakers has a much cleaner sound.
Some users reported they had a little difficulty with installation, but if you can get past that, within a few hours, you should be out listening to your favorite music on these dynamic speakers.
- Butyl rubber surround increases the effectiveness of the polypropylene cone
- An OEM adapter comes included with the speaker
- Rockford offers a one-year warranty
- You might struggle to find adapters that fit the speakers in your vehicle
- Maximum power is only 150 watts
4. Polk Audio DB401 4” Pair Coaxial Speakers
Customers may find that these speakers are bit pricier than other options. Additionally, they may need to replace the 12V battery frequently.
The Polk Audio DB401 4” Pair Coaxial Speakers are some of the best available on the market today.
These 4 inch speakers have a 4.3-star rating on Amazon with nearly 170 customer reviews. Of those who reviewed the product, more than 70 percent gave it a five-star rating. Customers can purchase the product for just about $50, which is a bit pricier than some other speakers on the market. Then again, Polk Audio is known for good sound quality and nice presentation of the music.
These speakers are durable butyl rubber, which helps them withstand the elements. They also have a liquid-cooled silk polymer that measures .75”. There is also a composite dome tweeter and a neodymium magnet. The speakers have a maximum power output of 135 watts and 45 watts RMS, which is about average for a set of 4 inch speakers.
Unfortunately, customers will find that the product is not returnable when ordering on Amazon. They should make sure to measure the slots in their car to ensure that the speakers will fit. The speakers contain a multi-hole mounting platform, which should make installation easy for most.
Additionally, the low-profile should increase the likelihood of the speakers matching in a car.
- Waterproof speakers are incredibly durable
- Dynamic balance polymer cone provides deep bass and loud sounds
- Butyl rubber is durable and can withstand the elements
- A bit pricier than some of the other options
- Requires 12V batteries for operation
5. Pioneer TS-F1034R 4” 150W 2-Way Speakers
Installation should be simple, although customers will want to make sure that they have less than 2” of depth. Otherwise, the sound will likely become distorted.
The Pioneer (TS-F series) TS-F1034R 4 inch 2-way Speakers are worth considering if you need to upgrade your car speakers. Let’s be clear that they’re not necessarily stellar 4 inch speakers, but they sound good and the price is very reasonable.
These speakers have a maximum wattage of 150W in addition to a 20-watt RMS. The two-way speaker delivers great music ranges. Some customers indicated that the sounds suffered distortion at higher volumes. But for most people, the speaker’s sound quality should prove satisfactory at a strong price point.
The woofer is the popular polypropylene material. The woofer surrounds features a cloth material instead of butyl rubber surround that we see in other speaker sets. The woofer does a nice job with the lows and the film based dome tweeters producing pretty good highs. Sensitivity is at 88 dB, so about an average sensitivity rating.
The unit measures 6” x 6” x 2” and weighs about two pounds. Installing these speakers is relatively straightforward. However, you’ll want to make sure that you provide a least 2” of speaker depth. If you fail to do so, you’ll likely find that the sound is distorted.
We recommend measuring the space for your existing speaker before ordering these to ensure that they fit correctly.
- Weighs less than two pounds
- Two-way design provides low and medium tones
- Very Affordable
- You may need to combine this unit with a subwoofer
If you feel as though your car audio needs a boost, your first line of action should be replacing your factory-issued speakers. Many cars carry 4” speakers, especially smaller cars that don’t have the room for larger 6 inch speakers. Replacing them should be relatively affordable and would go a long way toward upgrading your in-car music experience.
With the six 4 inch car speakers we’ve provided, you should be able to find a pair that meets both your budget range and car specs.
A Note about Power Handling
Pay attention as you shop to important factors such as the power handling of the speakers, including both maximum watts they can handle (60 watts) and also the RMS number (30 watts). These are both highly relevant to your overall car audio system and to make sure you are matching everything well. The max number means the peak power that the speakers can handle and the watts RMS is the average power that the speakers will use.
As you play your music in your vehicle, you know there are moments between the highs and lows in a song where things can get very dynamic and loud. These are the times where the power is really flowing to your speakers such as heavy bass. Those are the times that the peak power can hit some high numbers. More of the rest of the time in your music, however, is where you have sound levels that are more average and the power handling of your 4 inch speakers will reflect the RMS capability of your speakers. So, if the speaker specs say that RMS wattage should be around 35-45 watts, you should match that with the output of your head unit or amplifier to line up closely with that range.
What You Should Know About Speaker Design
Different manufacturers often use different designs and materials for their 4 inch car speakers. Sometimes this is done for cost purposes, especially if they are trying to produce an affordable speaker for the budget conscious. You should pay attention to some of these choices because some choices are designed to provide specific advantages for such things like bass response. For example, special woofer cone designs and materials (like a polypropylene woofer) will help with bass response. As well, certain materials that are especially light and rigid will help dome tweeters produce excellent highs in 4-inch car speakers. As mentioned in the above section, design and materials can also play a significant role in proper power handling and can make the difference of whether 35 watts or 45 watts can be efficiently handled by the speaker.