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Noob question on higher RMS speakers/subs

Discussion in 'Audio & Video' started by Bridge4, Feb 1, 2019.

  1. Feb 1, 2019 at 3:36 AM
    #1
    Bridge4

    Bridge4 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Hey There,
    So I googled and can't find a good answer really, was hoping you guys could answer.

    This confuses me a little and hopefully I'm not knocking anyone unintentionally.

    So you can get some really nice speakers, like spend 2k on one set of door speakers, and they will run around 1-150 rms. Everyone loves them, they are great blah blah blah.

    But every once and awhile I see people online with like 400rms door speakers and 2000 rms on their subs.


    I don't understand why there is a big difference, and what a 400rms speaker sounds like vs a 100 or even 80 rms speaker. Is it a SQ and SPL thing? And is SPL just basically tons of pressure and boom in the car, and you don't care as much about hearing every little detail of the recording?

    Just trying to wrap my head around some basic stuff here.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Feb 1, 2019 at 7:16 AM
    #2
    5nahalf

    5nahalf Well-Known Member

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    Generally speaking its a marketing thing. Much of the time that high number is listed as peak power handling.

    Take these JVC speakers
    https://www.amazon.com/JVC-CS-J620-...8&qid=1549033688&sr=8-13&keywords=car+speaker

    They list 300watts, but in the spec sheet is says 30 watts RMS. That means you dont really want to go above 30 watts, but if for some strange reason they get 300 watts for a second, they wont burn up. Most speakers wont burn up with a second of 300 watts.

    Cheap car audio lists absurd wattage numbers, and those numbers are peak power before breaking. Nice quality speakers will list in 100-200 watt range for speakers (subs handle lots more) but nice car audio speakers list that as its the RMS value.
    Same thing goes for amps, cheap amps list wattage at peak, running 14.4 volts, at 1-2 ohm loads. These are all marketing tactics to make you see bigger numbers must mean better.
     
    Bridge4 [OP] likes this.
  3. Feb 1, 2019 at 12:53 PM
    #3
    Bridge4

    Bridge4 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Makes sense, the guys running high RMS numbers say it, the ones who don't shout out their Max. Thanks!
     
  4. Feb 1, 2019 at 6:02 PM
    #4
    rob feature

    rob feature Tacos!

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    Power handling is an important consideration, but is horribly overblown regarding its importance. Yeah, it's good to know where you stand in regards to what a driver can handle, but it's far from being something that makes one better than another on that item alone. I'll go a step further and say that in most cases, if a speaker has a power rating prominently displayed on it (like splattered all over the cone, basket or gasket), it's certainly one to avoid. I can think of one exceptional exception - the JBL W12GTI - but that's a good rule otherwise. You'll find a power rating on most drivers, but it's typically simply stamped or stuck on the back of the motor - out of sight and referenced only by being able to see the motor.

    Frequency response is much more important as is driver construction and the rest of the small parameter set. Take much more confidence in buying cone drivers which include things like aluminum shorting rings and copper pole caps. Yes, they increase power handling, but the big story is lower distortion and when it comes to accurate audio reproduction that means so much more than a power rating.

    All that said, I overpower my midwoofers too. They're rated for 60W each and I feed them a potential 200W RMS. Why? Headroom. I never actually give them that much but my amp is hardly working, so that keeps distortion very low and the amp very cool.

    Hope that helped a little
     
    Bridge4 [OP] likes this.
  5. Feb 1, 2019 at 6:10 PM
    #5
    rob feature

    rob feature Tacos!

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    Oh, and yeah, SPL is all about getting as loud as possible. Generally at one frequency as any vehicle will excel at boosting (via cabin gain) a specific frequency. You find it, tune to it, and get the number as high as possible. SQ be damned.
     
    Bridge4 [OP] likes this.
  6. Feb 1, 2019 at 6:20 PM
    #6
    Bridge4

    Bridge4 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Yes it was, thanks for taking the time to respond!
     

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