Best 5.25 Speakers (Review & Buying Guide) in 2023
Experience a loud and powerful sound with these top 5.25-inch car speakers
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Even when you pay a little extra at the dealership to equip your new car with the best sound system, the speakers aren’t always up to par. Sometimes you’re stuck with speakers that deliver less-than-flawless sound, alter volume, and don’t amp up the frequencies or bass the way you’d hoped. There’s an easy fix, and it’s one you can handle yourself. You can swap out your existing speakers for a better set of 5.25 speakers. Take your audio system into your own hands and choose out 5.25 speakers that’ll deliver the clarity, volume, and other benefits you desire. You can upgrade your car’s sound system with one of the following products, which are some of the best 5.25 speakers you’ll find.
Rockford Fosgate Prime
A full-range coaxial speaker with a classy look and high-level sound quality.
- High quality with high sound output
- Built to last
- Delivers a crisp, clean, full-range sound
- Average bass and mid-frequency response and output
- Curved corners make fitting difficult
Pyle Car Sound Speaker
An affordable coaxial speaker that’s a universal fit for most vehicles and is loud and clear.
- High sensitivity rating
- Produces a clean and loud sound
- Maintains performance level despite high-operating temperatures
- May require extra accessories for installation
- Not as long lasting as high-end models
Kicker D-Series Car Speakers
Pair of two-way coaxial speakers with an RMS rating of 50 watts each can deliver a well-balanced sound.
- Delivers crisp and clean sound
- Durable speaker material
- Decent mids and highs
- Bass could be better
- More expensive than others
- Needs an amp to bring out full potential
To choose the best 5.25 speakers for any vehicle and driver in need of upgraded sound, the search started with a comparison of many different speakers available. I considered products from many brands, specifically seeking out reputable and well-known brands in the audio space. I compared each speaker set’s features and benefits, taking a close look at details such as frequency range and response, power range and handling, and user feedback on how the speakers performed with various types of audio and at different volume levels. Fit and installation were also taken into consideration.
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Best 5.25 Speaker Reviews & Recommendations
The Rockford Fosgate Prime speakers are a set of two, two-way car speakers that sport a sleek and durable Flex-Fit basket design. Each features a vacuum polypropylene cone with a rubber surround. Grilles are included in the hardware. They have an impressive frequency response with lows of 62 hertz, highs of up to 20,000 hertz, and a power range of two to 40 watts. These coaxial speakers have a high sensitivity rating of 88 decibels, and integrated crossovers deliver distortion-free frequencies to the speaker’s components. The unit delivers balanced low to high frequencies, and it holds up with extended playtime. It also maintains the quality of sound at high volumes due to its silk-dome flush-mount tweeter. These four-ohm speakers are easy to install and are designed to last.
Their bass output is just acceptable, however. You may have to pair them with a subwoofer. They also lack a strong mid-frequency for the best vocals. The curved shape may not fit in some dashboards and doors.
- Components Included: Two speakers, grilles, and mounting hardware
- Max Power: 40 watts
- Speaker Type: 2-way
- Great frequency response overall
- Distortion-free frequencies
- Can handle long playtimes
- All installation hardware included
- Average bass output
- No strong mid-frequency
- Curved shape may not fit all vehicles
The Pyle Car Sound Speaker is actually two three-way car speakers with a high sensitivity rating of 89 decibels and 100 to 20,000-kilohertz frequency response. Each speaker is a beautiful, blue, poly-injection cone, and has a four-ohm impedance rating that delivers strong sound. The speakers feature a half-inch neodymium film dome for enhanced frequency response, and the set provides a full-range sound of high- and low-end frequencies. For enhanced performance during heavy-duty playtime, ASV voice coils increase tolerance to heat. Each speaker is fitted with a 20-ounce magnetic structure that helps the speaker provide 100 watts RMS and peak power of 200 watts. Lastly, a long-lasting, butyl-rubber surround protects the speaker from damage from vibrations.
You might have to buy extra accessories such as plug adaptors and a rivet gun for installation. Also, the speakers are not as long-lasting as high-end models; they might start to crackle or pop after a few years.
- Components Included: Two speakers, grilles, wires, and mounting hardware
- Max Power: 200 watts
- Speaker Type: 3-way
- Handles high temperatures and long playtime
- Magnetic structure enables more power
- Butyl-rubber surrounds limits vibrations
- Might require additional accessories to install
- Not long lasting
The Kicker D-Series Car Speakers give you a set of two-way coaxial speakers, featuring a robust build to deliver detailed sound across all frequencies. Each speaker has a four-ohm impedance, maximum power of 200 watts, and a continuous power of 50 watts, so it can handle extended playtime without distorting. The woofer maintains a low-profile design with grilles and zero protruding tweeters for an easy fit in a standard mounting hole. The woofer cone is made of rigid polypropylene material and reinforced with polyester foam to help deliver balanced sound. Each speaker is designed with half-inch PEI dome tweeters that deliver crystal clear highs. Additionally, they can handle a frequency range of 45 to 20,000 hertz.
These speakers fall short in the bass output compared to other coaxial speakers within the price range. You might have to include an amplifier to bring out better bass.
- Components Included: Two speakers and wires
- Max Power: 200 watts
- Speaker Type: 2-way
- Robust construction for balanced sound
- No distortions even after hours of use
- Low-profile design and fit
- Excellent sound clarity
- Subpar bass output
- Might need to add an amplifier
Enjoy playing music at high volumes with the Boss Audio Systems Car Speakers, a set of three-way, full-range speakers. They’re fitted with high-temperature voice coils to withstand extended play times at loud volume without bottoming out or overheating. Each speaker has a sensitivity of 90 decibels and a four-ohm impedance, a maximum power of 225 watts, and an RMS power of 112.5 watts. Each speaker features a poly-injected woofer cone with a rubber surround that can withstand constant abuse. They also include piezoelectric tweeters that deliver clean and high frequencies without a crossover. They’re backed with Boss Audio System’s three-year warranty.
Unfortunately, these speakers won’t deliver rich booming bass, but they produce decent sound that’s a slight upgrade from your factory speakers. Keep in mind that budget-priced speakers won’t last as long as the higher-priced alternatives.
- Components Included: Two speakers, wires, mounting hardware, and covers
- Max Power: 225 watts
- Speaker Type: 3-way
- Rubber enhances speakers’ durability
- Clean, high frequencies
- Three-year warranty
- Bass is somewhat lacking
- Not very long lasting
Turn your car into a listening room with these Pioneer Car Speakers. The pair of two-way coaxial speakers has a maximum power of 250 watts and RMS power of 35 watts with a four-ohm impedance and a smooth frequency-response range of 35 to 24,0000 hertz. The speakers have a rigid, durable design with an injection-molded polypropylene cone that produces a decent midrange sound. Installing them is simple thanks to the multibolt pattern on each woofer cone that ensures a perfect fit. With a sensitivity of 88 decibels, these speakers produce natural highs and punchy bass even when connected to a factory stereo.
As with the other options, these speakers may distort at high volumes, especially when playing music with high frequencies. Additionally, they have a lower RMS power than other speakers of the same size, although they still produce great sound quality.
- Components Included: Two speakers and mounting accessories
- Max Power: 250 watts
- Speaker Type: 2-way
- Rigid, durable polypropylene cones
- Easy multibolt installation
- Natural highs and good midrange frequencies
- Good bass at an affordable price
- Can distort at high volumes
- Lower RMS power
Our Verdict on 5.25 Speakers
Our top pick for the best car speakers are the Rockford Fosgate Prime. They offer a natural and accurate sound, have nice aesthetics, and are well-built for durability. Our pick for the best value 5.25-inch car speakers are the Pyle Car Sound Speaker. They’re affordable and offer great sound quality with no unwanted distortion.
What to Consider When Buying 5.25 Speakers
This buying guide can help you pick out a quality set of 5.25 speakers for your car. It gives you the tools to find the right speakers for your audio wants and needs.
Types of 5.25 Speakers
These types of speakers are also called separates, and they work in conjunction with a pair of subwoofers, crossovers, and tweeters. They offer a vibrant and rich sound quality, while at the same time they’re small and save on space. A three-way car speaker configuration may include tweeters, midrange speakers, and subwoofers for powerful high, mid, and low frequencies.
These are the most affordable speakers, and most stock car audio systems use them. The basic configuration of a full range, coaxial speaker system is a tweeter that’s mounted on the cone of a woofer for the best blend of high- and low-frequency sounds. These speakers also have a space-saving design.
5.25 Speakers Key Features
There are two-way speaker components that only include a woofer and tweeter mounted on a cone, which deliver low and high frequencies. Another speaker configuration is a three-way speaker system that includes a midrange speaker in the tweeter and woofer collection for a more accurate and fuller sound.
The speaker's power is gauged in RMS and peak watts. RMS is the amount of power that a speaker can handle on a continuous basis, while the peak power is the maximum amount of power that can be handled by a speaker before blowing out. Ensure that the new speakers can handle the power produced by your amplifier or factory stereo.
The build material affects the overall sound quality of the unit, especially for the woofer cone. Some common cone materials that minimize sound distortion include mica, clay, polypropylene, fiber polymer, and metal-coated synthetic fabrics. Some speakers are made of textile or glass, which aren’t as durable and generally produce a lower-quality sound.
Sensitivity is the ability to convert the amplifier power into sound. High-powered car stereos work better with low-sensitivity speakers, and the opposite goes for low-powered car stereos.
Choose a speaker with a vast frequency range to experience the best lows and highs in your car’s audio system. That way you won’t have to pair the speakers with a set of subwoofers.
5.25 Speaker Benefits
If you have a sports car or drive any other compact car with limited internal space, you may not have enough room for large speakers. You also need to save the space for your groceries and other items that can be stored in your trunk. Fortunately, 5.25 speakers don’t take up much space since they can fit in a car door or dashboard.
Improved Sound Quality
If your factory speakers are just not doing it for you, you can upgrade your car’s sound system with some of the best 5.25 speakers for the money. They typically produce a better sound than your factory speakers, while reducing distortion at high volumes.
Upgrade Your Interior
Most 5.25 speakers from high-end brands carry elegant designs that are sure to make your interior pop, whether they’re installed in the doors or the dashboard. They also create a better listening room in your car.
5.25 Speaker Brands to Know
Jim Fosgate introduced Rockford Fosgate into the car audio industry in 1973, and it’s currently an industry leader in audio innovation and engineering. The company is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona, and designs some of the best audio systems for automobiles, motorcycles, off-road vehicles, and marine equipment. One of its best 5.25 coaxial speakers is the Rockford Fosgate Prime.
Pyle Audio is a U.S. manufacturer of audio equipment and replacement stereo systems and was founded in 1960. The company also designs some of the best digital cameras, televisions, DVD players, metal detectors, projectors, and musical instruments. Pyle Audio is headquartered in Brooklyn, New York, and aims to transform every car into a “media system on wheels.” One of its best 5.25 speakers is the Pyle Car Sound Speaker.
JBL is a California-based subsidiary company of Samsung Electronics owned by Harman International Industries. James Bullough Lansing founded the company in 1946, and it currently manufactures a wealth of audio equipment, including earphones, amplifiers, loudspeakers, headphones, and car speakers. One of its best 5.25 component car speakers is the JBL Stage 502 Coaxial Speakers.
Boss Audio has more than 30 years of experience in the audio equipment industry. The company manufactures and designs some of the best amplifiers, subwoofers, speakers, tweeters, in-dash tablets, and other entertainment accessories. Boss Audio is headquartered in Oxnard, California, and one of its best-selling 5.25 three-way speakers is the Boss Audio Car Speaker.
5.25 Speaker Pricing
For $50 or less, you’ll find plenty of name-brand speakers that are budget friendly and able to meet your expectations for performance, quality, and durability. The speakers are typically loud and can be powered by a factory or aftermarket stereo. Spend more than $50, and you’ll find premium speakers that offer enhanced durability and sound quality. Most are backed with warranties, are resistant to collision damage, and offer great low-frequency response that’s ideal for bass enthusiasts.
Tips and Tricks
As with something you do for decades, you pick up a few tips and tricks along the way in terms of selecting the right product and using it. That’s the case with us and 5.25 speakers. To help you bridge the information gap, here’s a selection of what we’ve learned.
- Power low-RMS rated speakers with a factory stereo. You don’t need an external amplifier with a low-power speaker, but you need an external amplifier if your speaker has a high RMS rating. If you underpower or overpower a speaker, it may lead to sound distortion and eventually may damage the speakers.
- Don’t make a habit of tuning the tweeters on component speakers to a flat setting. You may end up with highs that are too bright and flat lows with no punch. Tune the crossover settings to ensure that the mids balance out the highs and lows.
- New speakers need time to break in before you can feel their full power. That can take a few hours or longer. However, if it’s been weeks and you aren’t getting the full potential of your speakers, you might be underfeeding them with power and need to hook them up with a high-power aftermarket stereo or external amplifier.
- You don’t have to rewire your sound system if you're powering your new 5.25 speakers with the factory stereo. The factory speaker wire will work as long as it’s not damaged or worn out. If you plan on connecting an external amplifier, you might need to rewire the entire sound system from the stereo to the amplifiers and speakers.
You’ve got questions. The Drive has answers.
Q: How long do aftermarket speakers last?
A: It depends on the construction quality and how often you use the speakers. Speakers typically last for five years but can stretch to 10 years if they’re from a top audio brand. Generally, a speaker that blasts hard rock for longer periods is more likely to tear or blow out than a speaker that only plays classical music.
Q: Will an amplifier improve the sound quality of the speakers?
A: Most speakers can be powered by your car’s stereo, but some stereos produce a low wattage and might not power some high-end speakers. In that case or if you just need more volume or would like to get rid of sound distortion, you can include an amplifier in the setup. An amplifier will give you 10 to 20 years of service, depending on the quality of the brand.
Q: Will new speakers make a difference if I still have an old stereo?
A: New speakers are an inexpensive way of improving the sound quality of your stock stereo, especially if you can only listen to the AM/FM radio while driving. New 5.25 speakers make the sound louder, more dynamic, and cleaner than what your factory speakers could offer. They will also give you enough time before you upgrade your stereo and enjoy music from other auxiliary sources.