using car speakers in home audio


2005-02-09 4:35 am
Absolutely YES.
But as with every speaker design, the designer has to know what they are doing. The woofers in most "car" speakers - such as coaxials - generaly are well suited for OB, since they are usally designed for infinite baffle scenarios. They usually have higher Qts - which is good for OB. The fact that they are to be used nearfield is irrelevant (sorry Cal). The reason why many feel that car drivers have poor sound quality is usually related to the fact that many are designed with a rising top end to compensate for the fact that they will be mounted down in a door, etc. The high end response is boosted, or/and a phase shield is used to give strong off-axis treble - again to compensate for the fact that they will be often mounted way below your ears at a very steep angle.
Ideally you would either redesign the passive network (XO) to smoothen the output of the tweeter (or use some form of EQ), or choose a model (there are some) by one of the better brands which tend to have smoother responses. Lets put it this way. I'm listening to a small pair of OB speakers right now (on my computer) that use JBL P422 drivers. They have nearly ruler flat on and off axis response and sound very nice. Much better than any computer speaker that I have heard (the old Monsoon Planars are possibly their equal). My main rig are Orion clones, so I have a decent reference. I'm not deaf. Good car speakers can sound good when properly implemented - especially OB. Bad car speakers, just like bad home/pro/whatever, will still sound bad.




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