Whether you’re an audiophile or an auto friend, getting a great set of car tweeters can make a huge difference in your driving experience. Tweeters come in many styles, shapes, and can offer plenty of variation in sound quality. There are a plethora of features incorporated to modify these products in a range of ways. Combined with all the brands now on the market, it can be a bit overwhelming if you don’t know what to look for. Picking out the best car tweeters are easy enough as long you keep just a few things in mind.
On this article, you will find a lot of information related to car tweeter. We suggest you read from the beginning to the end if you are new to this field but if you already have basic knowledge about this field, feel free to use this navigation menu below. We also prepared a comparison table to give you the detail and informative comparison between each kind of car tweeter.
What are Car Tweeters and What do they do?
Tweeters are speakers, they are electromagnetic devices designed to reproduce sound in the high hearing range. In most tweeters, manufacturers set the range between 3kHz to 20kHz. For reference, the human ear is attuned to hearing within the 20Hz to 20kHz range. Tweeters specialize in distributing high frequencies – such as guitars, vocals, and horn sounds. Because of the significant amount of stress they go under from such high volumes, these devices are typically made from tougher materials. This can be synthetic materials like mylar, Polyamide, or silk, with metal types also being common as well, such as aluminum and titanium.
There are roughly three tweeter designs – cone, semi-dome, and dome shapes. Of these, the cone is the most common but is considered inferior to the other two because of how they disperse sound waves. For increased performance, some higher end tweeters can contain crossovers, magnetic cooling, and waveguides.
Car Tweeter Types and Materials
As with all devices, one model comes in many makes and designs. Tweeters are no exception to this rule and manufacturers create different versions for different market requirements.
Tweeter types are categorized by their shape. It is the shape of the cone that defines the tweeter, and there are basically four tweeter types. These are:
- The cone tweeter
This is the common style and choice because it is the cheapest design to manufacture. The pro is price, the con is dispersion, where standard “Whizzer cones” just don’t hack it as well as the other options.
- The semi-dome tweeter
This is another simple and cheap version, where the semi-dome is placed inside a shallow cone. This design provides a smaller profile, so the tweeter can be smaller in overall size, and this is the preferred design for coaxial speakers.
- The dome tweeter
The dome design is an improved version of the first tow, and it provides a superior sound dispersion. This is the shape of most component tweeters and provides a better focal point for sound.
- Focal access with an inverted dome design
This design is the superior design for all tweeters, and it comes with an inverted dome option. The inverted dome essentially sits under the voice coil, which leads to an improved radiation pattern. Ultimately, you don’t get much better than this for directional controlled tweeters. Today, the best-designed tweeters only come in inverted dome design.
There are three material options when building a tweeter, these are:
- Synthetic Films
Synthetic films include materials such as PET, Mylar, and polyimide. These are all light materials that can sit in any part of the car and don’t require a lot of power. These are the best materials for low powered systems. They do suffer from one defect, they don’t reproduce the frequencies as well as other materials.
Within all the textiles available, Silk reigns. Silk tweeters or silk blend tweeters are considered to connoisseurs of music and produced mellow tones that are perfect for most music scores. Silk is strong enough for the most powerful tweeter and lasts a lifetime.
- Metals and Alloys
Metal tweeters deliver crisp loud and sharp sounds. The most common metal being Aluminum since it is light and inexpensive, and the most sought after the metal is Titanium, which is equally as light but harder than steel. Metal tweeters are a must-have for systems that have high powered subwoofers. The titanium also takes the edge off the sound, which other metals do not provide.
Other Design Considerations
Modern technology has introduced some interesting new elements to tweeter design, among these are the waveguides and ferrofluid cooling systems.
Waveguides are basically grills devised to improve the sound flow, focusing them to a specific direction. Ferro liquid cooling elements are small magnetic fluids used to cool the voice coil, dissipating the heat for high power and high-performance handling.
Coaxials or Component?
Tweeters can come as individual components or as built-ins. A built-in tweeter is called a coaxial speaker and contains the woofer and tweeter in one component. Coaxials are OK for standard requirements, but if you prefer an enhanced sound experience, you will want a component system where the tweeter and woofer are separated.
Factors To Consider Before Buying A Car Tweeter
Without a doubt, sound quality should be your primary focus when picking the best car tweeter. This isn’t always a straightforward thing to look at though, as everything from construction material, shape, location, angle, and many more can all affect the sound of your tweeters.
- Construction Material: While synthetic materials are pretty versatile, textiles like silk do best in mostly plastic vehicle interiors with the windows up. If your vehicle is mostly metal on the inside and is going to be open a lot, you’re going to want a metal-based tweeter.
- Sensitivity: This is a dB measurement, and the more powerful a system, the less sensitivity you want, in reverse, the less powerful a system to more sensitivity is required.
- Power: This is a measurement in watts and comes in two forms, continuous “RMS” or Peak. RMS is the indicator you want to focus on. The watts decide whether you need an amp, as well as whether the tweeter will match up with the other components.
- Waves Guides: They work by moving the sound waves away from the floorboard and directing them more toward you. They also help keep higher frequencies more evenly distributed across the vehicle.
- Heat Dispersion: The larger the voice coil, the more efficiently it typically distributes heat coming off of the tweeter. Ferro-fluid can also be part of the magnet to reduce temperatures, which helps the tweeter retain shape
- Mounting: A tweeter with versatile mounting capabilities can mean you can position it in a spot that sounds the best. Ideally, you want a tweeter higher up and mounted for maximum spread of music. Tweeters are either incorporated into the dash or door, which is called flush mounting, or on top of it, which is a surface mount.
- Crossovers: These features remove bad frequencies, letting you crank the volume up without getting any of the typical distortions. These crossovers are often passive though, and won’t work as well as dedicated crossovers.
- Cone versus Dome: Aside from the shape itself not distributing the sound as well as dome variants, cone tweeters also typically suffer from being made of cheaper materials – which can cause an additional reduction in sound quality as it becomes more distorted from heat and volume.
- Large Domes: The larger a dome-shaped tweeter is, typically the better it distributes soundwaves, but it also will require more power. A dome that is too big for your car won’t be able to be powered correctly, messing up the sound quality considerably.
- Size: While tweeters are small, size does matter as you will need to locate and place them. The smaller the module, the easier it will be to locate anywhere in your car.
- Compatibility: When you buy a set of tweeters, you need to make sure they are compatible with the system you have in place. Compatibility includes how it connects to the source as well as how it mixes its sound with the other speakers in the cabin. 3 and 4-way speakers “3-way” or “4-way” speakers are built to hold more than one tweeter. This design specification gives your audio stereo system more control over the frequencies. A 3-way speaker has a midrange driver or a super tweeter with a tweeter, while a 4 way has both.
- Budget. We put this last, but it is usually the first. This is an obvious factor and will define what you can buy. Just remember that recognized brand names will always perform better than unknowns. This might come at a cost, but it is better to buy a tweeter that works than one that ruins your day.
Image Features Further information
- Brand: Power Acoustik
- Weight: 3.2 ounces
- Niobium rare earth ferroelectric transducer magnet
- Polypropylene diaphragm
- Brand: DS18
- Weight: 2.5 poundsds
- High- quality aluminum frame and diaphragm
- 1" super bullet tweeters
- Brand: BOSS Audio Systems
- Weight: 2.08 ounces
- Made by polyimide
- Included: 3 mounting kits
- 3 year platinum online dealer ưarranty
- Brand: Power Acoustik
- Weight: 3.2 ounces
- Niobium rare earth ferroelectric transducer magnet
- Polypropylene diaphragm
- Brand: Pioneer
- Weight: 9.1 ounces
- 40 Watts nominal power
- Flush and surface mounting capabilities
- Brand: Polk Audio
- Weight: 32 pounds_x000D_
- Dimension: 80 x 9 x 5 inches
- Brand: Rockford Fosgate
- Weight: 9.9 ounces
- Mylar balanced dome tweeter multiple mounding configurations
- Flush, surface, or angle mounting options
- High sensitivity and smooth
- Brand: JBL
- Weight: 14.9 ounces
- Oversized voice coils
- Carbon-composite, nonmagnetic baskets
- Brand: Kicker
- Weight: 12 ounces
- Included external passive high-pass crossover
- Power handling: 2-50 watts RMS
Top Best Car Tweeters Picked By Experts
Cross-referencing through an ocean of reviews, here is a list of the best tweeters offered today. These tweeters are some of the best in their respective fields – whether it is audio quality, mounting, toughness, water resistance, or the best bang for your buck, these amazing tweeters will more than get the job done.
The Power Acoustik NB2 is a universal 1″ 200 Watt pair of tweeters. These are component tweeters, so they can be mounted anywhere and provide you with exceptional high tones. The NB2 is a lightweight model and has a built-in high-pass crossover that provides distortion protection.
The Material and design is a Polypropylene dome, and the magnet is a Niobium alloy for added durability and comes with a three-way mount making this a very versatile model for easy installation to complement a component system set.
The DS18 PRO is a US-designed model that is built to last. This is a metal component tweeter that integrates its own built-in crossover with an inverse dome design. This means you get superpower from these tweeters and it handles a 200 Watt RMS with a 300 Watt peak.
The overall dimensions are 2.83 inches diameter with a depth of 1.65” and an overall sensitivity of 103 dB. These are the bad boys of the tweeters and are really excellent addition to any power-hungry audio system that wants to blast with balance.
The BOSS Audio Systems TW12 is a pair of 1” dome speakers, little buttons of sound that sit nicely on any surface mount. The TW12 comes with a 94 dB sensitivity and handles a maximum output of 200 Watts.
Essentially these are a perfect pair for a standard system. Due to the sensitivity, they work well with low power systems and can be installed flush as well as the surface. This is a dome speaker, so expect basic performance, and while the depth is only 1”, it is 1.9” diameter. This is an easy component to install.
When it comes to design and size, the Power Acoustik NB4 is a little marvel of technology. This model includes it is own built-in crossover and has a Polypropylene tweeter diaphragm with a 4-way mounting option. The sensitivity is 97dB, and it has a 60 Watt RMS with a peak of 125 Watts. This is a classic middle of the road model that will fit both standard factory systems as well as starter component audio systems.
What really stands out is its price, and yes, it’s a dome speaker, but it does deliver at this price. This is an easy component to install
The Pioneer TST110 is a responsive little gadget that is also extremely light due to its design structure. This model integrates a high-pass in-line crossover with a 7/8″ fluid-cooled PPTA dome. Ultimately the combination of technologies used to create this little beastie makes it an exceptional exception to dome types.
This is a Pioneer, so you expect to get some surprises from them, and this is one of those surprises. Although it does come with a price tag to match. This model comes with a 90 dB sensitivity and a 2-40 Watt RMS, which makes it an excellent low power speaker
Each of these dome tweeters is liquid cooled and made of a silk-polymer composite. This material is marine certified, which means that it is not only great for cars but also one of the best choices for boats. The neodymium magnet inside of this product gives crystal clear highs in amazing detail. Using a swivel cup system, this allows you to attach this tweeter to wherever you need to. This device has a maximum of 180 watts of power and uses a 12db/octave passive crossover, all of which is reinforced with a protection circuit to increase longevity.
Customers have commented that this set of Polk Audio tweeters are great and offer amazing sound. Being one inch in diameter means it can fit in most vehicles with little hassle. Despite its low price, this set of great car tweeters provides high-quality sound.
This Rockford Fosgate tweeter has multiple mounting capabilities, making it one of the most versatile in terms of arrangements. Assign this tweeter either at an angle, on the surface, or flush. While it only has 80 watts of maximum power, it is capable of a wide range of frequency responses. With a response that is extremely sensitive everywhere from 2,500 Hz to 22,000 Hz, you’ll hear every little note in your music. Rockford Fosgate has over thirty years of experience and it shows with this excellent product – with built-in high-pass 6db crossover and simplicity to install you’ll be enjoying amazing sounds in no time flat.
Users have commented that the built-in crossovers are great at blocking out unwanted frequencies in their audio system, while also saving them money. Even if you’re not replacing your entire audio system, this set of car tweeters can make a remarkable difference.
This ¾” set of tweeters are made of a carbon-composite, making it a step higher in toughness compared to most others. The baskets themselves are nonmagnetic giving you crisp sound under even the most rigorous conditions. To amplify the power of the undersized wires found in most cars, this three-ohm speaker is designed to maximize every little watt at your car stereo’s disposal. To ensure that the tweeter doesn’t overheat and continues to produce great sounding music, there is an oversized voice coil to get rid of heat. On average this tweeter system pulls about 70 watts but can max out at an impressive 250.
Reviewers have mentioned that this tweeter system sounds amazing and is well worth the low price. The adjustable angle on the tweeter mount has also been praised as it helps bring sound off the floor. This tweeter gives highs that are crisp with no distortion.
Combined with angled, surface, and flush mounting hardware, this Kicker tweeter can give you amazing audio quality. The high-pass crossover works at 6db per octave, blocking out all those bad frequencies that can damper sound quality. The 50 watts of RMS power handling can go as high as 100 watts for peak power, with an additionally impressive high-frequency response. The response of this set of great titanium tweeters is from 4,500 to 21,000 Hz and has a sensitivity of 92 dB.
The titanium construction has a two-fold advantage over other materials – not only is this metal remarkably tough, but also has been shown to produce some of the best in terms of sound quality. Customers have remarked that this Kicker tweeter works great with just about anything because of all its mounting options and included wiring.
BOSS Audio is well known for having excellent home theater systems, and it shouldn’t be a surprise that we find them on a list of great tweeters either. Composed of a polyimide in a 1-inch dome size with an internal ferrite magnet, this tweeter setup can work with most cars, trucks, and jeeps.
The frequency response is from 2,500 to 21,000 Hz and has an impressive sensitivity of 93 dB. The dual crossovers work great at maximizing the 250 watts of power for awesome music. Because BOSS has put a little bit of everything in this – power and features – you can be sure that you are maximizing your listening experience. One user comments that this incredibly inexpensive tweeter compares to even more expensive varieties as it sounds great and comes with plenty of mounting options.
While tweeter installation isn’t necessarily difficult there are a few things you should consider before you jump on it. Once you figure out your preferred placement it’s just a matter of doing the mounting and wiring.
While flush mounting looks better, they do require a cut out to be put in. They also often have angle-mounts built in, allowing you to customize the direction of your tweeter if needed. Surface mounts, on the other hand, require only a screw or two to be held into place.
There are many areas along the door that the tweeter can be added. They are often found on the upper portion of the door, the pillar between the door and the windshield, or even along the sail panel. One of the best areas to put them though is along the dash, as this can push soundwaves through your vehicle the best.
After you’ve picked your spot make sure to cut off power from the battery. This is done by removing the negative (-) terminal from it. By doing this you ensure your electrical components are kept safe from possible shorts.
If you are doing a flush mount, you’re going to need to remove the panel where your speakers are located and start disconnecting all the old wiring. Speakers and tweeters are typically mounted with screws, so you’re going to need a Phillips screwdriver.
Add any extra things like crossovers, amps, and subwoofers. You’ll probably need some soldering for the wiring, along with making sure all polarities are connected correctly.
Bore out the holes in the panel that you want to mount the tweeters. More mounting brackets might be needed depending on your speaker and car set up
Products used in Conjunction with Tweeters
Car audio systems can be a complicated and multifaceted process. Tweeters are only a small part of a full audio system and can be used in conjunction with many other devices to improve your music listening experience.
- Speakers: Factory speakers aren’t meant to be the best, just good enough. Getting a new set of speakers are some of the most obvious and cost-effective upgrades you can perform.
- External Amplifiers: These give additional power to car audio equipment up and above what your car can normally handle. Many setups can’t take advantage of the upper range of wattage found in tweeters and speakers without an amplifier.
- Dedicated Crossovers: These are a step higher than those built into many tweeters, removing more unsavory frequencies and reducing distortion
- Insulation: Use a sound deadening product to neutralize vibrations that mess up your speaker and tweeter sound. These materials can also block out noise from the outside, meaning you don’t have to crank your music up as loud, which puts less stress on your system.
- Equalizers: These devices give you more fine tune control on treble, midrange, and bass frequencies. This can help you get rid of problem areas associated with your audio.
- Subwoofer: This helps maximize the lows of your music. Since tweeters help with the high, a good subwoofer can bring more balance with boosting up the bottom octave.
- Capacitors: A machine that works great with wattage heavy systems as they store power and release as needed. Roughly they are buffer between your car battery and amplifier, helping distribute power effectively throughout your audio set up and the rest of your car.
While tweeters come in a few different shapes, dome shapes have been shown to be the best in terms of sound dispersion. While metal is often preferred, textile and synthetic materials do have their use. Make sure to pick the right spot, as this can seriously impact the dispersion of the sound waves. When installing remember to put safety first and if you’re uncomfortable doing it get a professional. The best tweeters keep shape even under high volume conditions, have built-in crossovers to improve audio quality, and have waveguides to keep the music off the floor.