Menu

Login

New to Audio Assemble?

Register

Already have an account?

Best Budget Car Stereo and Car Speakers

Creating a high-quality stereo system in your car is no easy task. With so many options and models in the market for both car stereos and car speakers, it may be a daunting task to decide which products will meet your expectations and needs. With that in mind, you must consider a lot of factors when shopping for this kind of device.

Starting with the car stereo, you must find a head unit that has the features and connections you need for the best listening experience. For example, the vast majority of people use Carplay and Android Auto to connect their smartphones to their cars nowadays so a car stereo with that functionality is definitely a must.

On the car speaker side, you need something with enough power to give you the best sound quality possible but that won’t cost you thousands of dollars. Just as important is making sure that your car speakers match the power and impedance needed by the head unit to function properly.

With that in mind, in this article, we will review 4 budget car stereos and 7 budget car speakers to help those on the task of creating the perfect stereo system for their cars. We will also give you some tips and talk about some important factors you should keep in mind when shopping for these kinds of products.

Also Read: 9 Best 6.5 Inch Speakers for Bass in 2022

4 Best Budget Car Stereo – Review

Table of Contents

4 Best Budget Car Stereo – Review

7 Best Budget Car Speakers – Review

1. BOSS 508UAB

BOSS 508UAB

The Boss 508UAB is the cheapest option on our list. It features several functionalities such as Bluetooth, AM/FM Radio, AUX input, and a built-in microphone. For those looking for a simple head unit at a great price, it is an amazing choice. 

Product Specifications

  • Bluetooth Connectivity
  • CD Player
  • USB Input
  • AUX Input
  • AM/FM Radio
  • Wireless Remote Control Included
  • Built-In Equalizer
  • Front and Rear Pre-Amp Outputs

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Very affordable. Although this car stereo is very simple, it still provides most functionalities for those who will only listen to music.
  • Very good built quality.
  • Simple design that will match most car interiors without looking out of place.
  • Has both front and rear pre-amp outputs.

Cons

  • No touchscreen.

Conclusion

A great simple option, the BOSS 508UAB has all of the functionalities a modern car stereo should have, such as Bluetooth connectivity, for a great price. Overall, it will more than suffice for those who only plan to listen to music and won’t mind the lack of a touchscreen on the device.

– – –

2. Kenwood KDC-BT34

Kenwood KDC-BT34

Kenwood is a renowned brand in the car audio industry and the KDC-BT34 is an excellent choice. Just like the BOSS 508UAB, it is a simple car stereo but has all of the features a modern head unit must have: Bluetooth connectivity, USB input, Alexa compatibility, variable color illumination, etc.

Product Specifications

  • Bluetooth Connectivity
  • CD Player
  • USB Input
  • AUX Input
  • AM/FM Radio
  • Variable Color illumination

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Simple design that won’t look out of place in any car, just like the BOSS 508UAB.
  • Compatible with Alexa voice assistant.
  • Variable color illumination. You can change the LED color to whichever one you like.
  • Easy to install and to connect car speakers to.

Cons

  • More expensive than the BOSS 508UAB.

Conclusion

A great option for those in search of a simple car stereo, the Kenwood KDC-BT34 is priced reasonably and offers lots of great features. You have several connections such as Bluetooth connectivity, as well as Alexa compatbility. It costs a bit more than the BOSS 508UAB though, especially because it is compatible with the voice assistant.

– – –

3. Nwqgako Double Din Car Stereo

Nwqgako Double Din Car Stereo

Featuring a touchscreen and including a mic and a rear camera, this model from Nwqgako is one of the best car stereo choices on a budget. It costs $179, but it is definitely a great investment considering all of the features you get inside this head unit and both of included extras.

Product Specifications

  • Touchscreen
  • Bluetooth Connectivity
  • USB Input
  • AUX Input
  • AM/FM Radio
  • Compatible with Carplay and Android Auto

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • High-quality touchscreen built-in in the car stereo.
  • Comes with a microphone and a rear camera that you can connect to the car stereo.
  • Very affordable considering all of the features and extras.
  • Easy to install.

Cons

  • None.

Conclusion

A good solution for those looking for a touchscreen car stereo that is on a budget. This model proves that you don’t need to spend that much to get a modern head unit packed with lots of features. Plus, the Nwqgako comes with 2 extras: a microphone and a rear camera. Definitely a great purchase.

– – –

4. COREHAN Double Din Stereo Car Audio Receiver

COREHAN Double Din Stereo Car Audio Receiver

This car stereo from COREHAN features a high-quality touchscreen and is surprisingly affordable: $117. Packed with a rear camera and compatibility with smartphones via Carplay and Android Auto, you won’t find a better head unit for the price. Let’s see what are the pros and cons of this model.

Product Specifications

  • Touchscreen
  • Bluetooth Connectivity
  • USB Input
  • AUX Input
  • AM/FM Radio
  • Compatible with Carplay and Android Auto

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Very affordable considering all of the features.
  • Compatible with Carplay and Android Auto.
  • Includes a rear camera.
  • Easy to install in your vehicle.

Cons

  • None.

Conclusion

If you’re searching for an affordable car stereo with a touchscreen, then this is an excellent option. The COREHAN Double Din Stereo Car Audio Receiver will be a great purchase for most people on a budget. Just like the Nwqgako model, it comes with a rear camera connected to the head unit.

– – –

7 Best Budget Car Speakers – Review

1. Rockford Fosgate R1525X2

Rockford Fosgate R1525X2

The Rockford Fosgate R1525X2 is one of the best 5.25-inch coaxial speakers that you can buy for your car. It is a 2-way speaker with a silk dome tweeter and has 50 watts RMS and 100 watts peak power handling. The R1525X2 also features a built-in crossover network, a phase plug, and a UV-coated foam surround.

Product Specifications

  • 2-Way Car Speakers
  • Woofer size: 5-1/4″
  • Tweeter size: 1/2″
  • Peak Power: 100 watts
  • RMS Power: 50 watts
  • Impedance: 4 ohms
  • Frequency Range: 45Hz – 22kHz
  • Sensitivity: 90 dB

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Great sound quality and overall build quality.
  • It has a power handling of 50 watts RMS and 100 watts peak, which is enough to listen to loud music without any distortion.
  • It also comes with a built-in crossover network, a phase plug, and a UV coated foam surround, features that show the quality of the product.
  • Won’t need an amplifier to be properly powered.

Cons

  • Does not come with a grille mesh so you may have to buy one separately.

Conclusion

Overall, the Rockford Fosgate R1525X2 is a great 5.25-inch coaxial speaker with excellent sound quality and features. Although it has a 2-way setup, it still can deliver quite loud sounds particularly due to its 100 watts of peak power and 50 watts of RMS power. Another benefit of these speakers is that you won’t need an amplifier for them to work properly.

– – –

2. Kicker CS Series CSC5

Kicker CS Series CSC5

The Kicker, CS Series CSC5, is another great 5.25-inch coaxial speaker worth considering. It is a 2-way speaker with a silk dome tweeter and has a built-in crossover, which will eliminate the need for buying any additional devices for it to work properly. With thumping lows and clear mids and highs thanks to its extended frequency range, this speaker is excellent.

Product Specifications

  • 2-Way Car Speakers
  • Woofer size: 5-1/4″
  • Tweeter size: 1/2″
  • Peak Power: 75 Watts
  • RMS Power: 60 Watts
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Frequency Range: 45 – 22kHz
  • Sensitivity: 91 dB

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Great response in the highs, since the frequency range goes up to 22kHz.
  • Comes with a built-in crossover so you won’t need an external one for it to function properly.
  • It also won’t need an external amplifier either.
  • Higher peak power than most other speakers on the list.

Cons

  • None.

Conclusion

Having 120 Watts of peak power and a frequency range of 45 – 22kHz, the Kicker CS Series CSC5 has a surprisingly great sound, especially on the mid and high frequencies. We definitely recommend these speakers for anyone looking for an affordable quality set that can be installed with ease.

– – –

3. Pioneer TS-G1320F

Pioneer TS-G1320F

These speakers are some of the best budget ones that you can find on the market today. They offer a frequency range of 50 Hz to 20,000 Hz, making them perfect for various music genres. They also feature a 2-way setup that helps to produce clear and accurate sound reproduction.

Product Specifications

  • 2-Way Car Speakers
  • Woofer Size: 5.25 inches
  • Tweeter Size: 0.75 inches
  • Power Handling: 100 watts RMS (200 watts peak)
  • Frequency Response: 50 Hz – 20 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 89 dB
  • Impedance: 4 ohms

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Very affordable. One of the best-priced speakers on the market.
  • Despite its low price, the Pioneer TS-G1320F has impressive sound quality and a great value for the money paid.
  • Wide frequency range.
  • Low distortion when played at high volumes.

Cons

  • None.

Conclusion

The Pioneer TS-G1320F is the best choice if you’re on a budget. These speakers are very affordable but still have good quality, a very wide frequency range, and are made from a renowned brand.

– – –

4. Hifonics ZS525CX Zeus Speakers

Hifonics ZS525CX Zeus Speakers

Hifonics is a well-known brand for making quality car audio products, and the Zeus series of speakers is one of the best models offered by the manufacturer. These 5.25-inch coaxial speakers are very powerful, delivering up to 200 watts of peak power per pair. They also have a very impressive frequency range of 50 Hz to 22 kHz, giving you a very pleasurable experience when listening to music.

Product Specifications

  • 2-Way Car Speakers
  • Woofer Size: 5.25-inch
  • Peak Power: 200 Watts
  • Frequency Range: 50 Hz to 22 kHz
  • Moisture Resistant Titanium Tweeters
  • Injection-Moulded Cones

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Very affordable. Only $23 per pair.
  • 200 watts of peak power, enough for ensuring a great listening experience even at loud volumes.
  • Very good built quality.
  • Excellent bass response thanks to the extended frequency range.
  • Can be installed and used without the need for an external crossover.

Cons

  • None.

Conclusion

At only $23 per pair, this is one of the best options for those on a budget, since this speaker set may be all you need for a great listening experience in your car. We were really surprised by the overall specifications and build quality of this product so we definitely recommend them if you’re looking for an affordable pair of car speakers.

– – –

5. Skar Audio RPX525 Speakers

Skar Audio RPX525 Speakers

Skar Audio is a company that has made a name for itself in the car audio industry and with good reason. The RPX525 coaxial speakers are one of their best models. Perfect for anyone looking for an upgrade over stock speakers. The RPX525s has a silk dome tweeter that provides clear highs and a microfiber paper cone woofer with a rubber surround that delivers accurate bass response.

Product Specifications

  • 2-Way Car Speakers
  • Peak Power: 150 Watts
  • 20mm Soft Dome Silk Tweeter
  • Woofer Size: 5.25-Inch
  • Peak Power: 150 Watts per Pair (75 Watts Each)
  • Frequency Range: 45 – 20kHz

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • One of the easiest to install speaker models thanks to the universal mountings. These will fit most car models.
  • The frequency range goes very low (down to 45Hz) which is great for the bass response.
  • Excellent build quality. Good materials are used in the product.
  • Won’t need an amplifier to work properly.
  • Great price considering the quality of the product.

Cons

  • None.

Conclusion

The Skar Audio RPX525s is a great option for anyone looking to upgrade the sound quality of their car. They deliver accurate bass response and clear highs and are easy to install while being very affordable. However, they may be too powerful for some applications. Overall, the Skar Audio RPX525s is an amazing choice for those with a medium budget.

– – –

6. No products found.

No products found.

The Rockford Fosgate P152 is a great set of coaxial speakers that can provide great sound. They have a peak power handling of 80 watts max and a frequency response of 70Hz – 22kHz. This makes them perfect for a wide range of music genres. They also feature a 4-Ohm impedance to ensure that you get good listening experience even without an external amplifier.

Product Specifications

  • 2-Way Car Speakers
  • Peak Power: 80 Watts
  • Frequency Range: 70Hz – 22kHz
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 87dB

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Even though these are priced higher than other options on the list, they still have great value for the price since you won’t need an external amplifier to power them.
  • Good design with black grilles.
  • Great frequency range and excellent bass response.
  • Includes OEM adapter plates so these will definitely fit on most car models’ mountings.

Cons

  • More expensive than other options on the list.

Conclusion

An amazing pair of speakers if you can afford to spend a little more, the Rockford Fosgate P152 will fit most car mountings since they come with OEM adapter plates. Apart from that, they provide excellent sound quality, especially in the bass frequencies thanks to their extended frequency range. Definitely a great investment.

– – –

7. Recoil RCX525

Recoil RCX525

The Recoil RCX525 is another great option for those looking for a set of coaxial speakers on a budget. They have a peak power handling of 200 watts and a frequency range of 50 – 20kHz, which is impressive considering the price. They are also very convenient and easy to install on most cars 

Product Specifications

  • 2-Way Car Speakers
  • Peak Power: 150 Watts
  • Frequency Response: 50 – 20kHz
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 90dB

Advantages & Disadvantages

Pros

  • Excellent sound quality for the price. The power of 200 watts is really impressive considering these are priced at only $20.
  • Wide frequency response considering the affordable price of these speakers.
  • Can be installed very easily thanks to the universal mountings.
  • Won’t need an external amplifier to work properly.

Cons

  • May not be the best option if you like to listen music loud.
  • Doesn’t come with grilles.

Conclusion

The Recoil RCX525 is a great option for those looking for a set of new coaxial speakers on a budget. They have a wide frequency response and sound great for the price. The power of 200 watts is really impressive considering how affordable this pair is. The only drawback we found is that they may distort at loud volumes and don’t come with grilles.

– – –

Best Budget Car Stereo – Buying Guide

Best Budget Car Stereo and Car Speakers

When shopping for a new set of car speakers, you must take into account some important factors such as the configuration of the product, peak power, impedance, and frequency range.

Speakers Configuration

On the market, you will find car speakers with different configurations such as 2-way, 3-way, 4-way, 5-way, etc. This refers to the number of drivers inside each speaker, each one dedicated for a certain part of the frequency spectrum. A device called Crossover is responsible for delivering the correct sound signal to each one of them.

For example, a 2-way speaker has 2 drivers: a woofer for the low frequencies and a tweeter for mid and high frequencies. A 3-way speaker, on the other hand, has both these drivers but with the addition of a super tweeter for added clarity and sound quality.

But why one should you choose? Well, it will depend on your particular case. For most people, a 2-way car speaker will suffice since these devices are small, portable, convenient, and can deliver enough sound quality to provide you with a great listening experience. In fact, most budget car stereos are of the 2-way type.

Peak Power

The peak power of a speaker refers to how much power it can deliver. The higher the number, the louder your sound will be without distorting. The most important thing with this information, however, is to match the configuration of your head unit or amplifier with the peak power of your new car speakers.

Impedance

When we talk about impedance on a car speaker, it refers to how much power it can handle. You must take this factor into consideration so as to make sure if your head unit can properly power your car speakers and whether or not you will need an external amplifier for your new setup.

Low-impedance car speakers (2 Ohms or less), which is the case with most budget products, won’t need an external amplifier. High-impedance car speakers (4 Ohms or more) will need one. Since you’re on a budget, we recommend sticking to low-impedance car speakers so as to avoid needing to spend any extra.

Also Read: 10 Best 1 Ohm Amp

Frequency Range

The frequency range of a car speaker refers to how low and high it goes on the frequency spectrum. The ideal is to have a car speaker with the widest frequency range possible because this will ensure that you get a great bass response and a clear mid and high-range response.

Let’s take for example the Rockford Fosgate R1525X2: it has a frequency range of 45 – 22 kHz. This means that the lowest frequency it can reproduce is 45Hz while the highest is 22kHz. Especially if you like listening bass-heavy music, find a car speaker that can reproduce low frequencies with ease for the best listening experience.

Bonus: Can I Install a Car Stereo Myself?

Going this route is often considered by many people on a budget since car stereo installation costs are high and can usually range from $200 to $600. By installing it yourself, you will spend much less since you will only have to buy an installation kit, which can be found for about $20. However, doing it yourself takes a considerable amount of time and dedication. 

If you’re up for the challenge, here are some of the things that you need to consider and tips you can keep in mind:

  • As previously mentioned, if you’re going to install your own car stereo system, it’s best if you already have a general idea of how this works. This way, it will be easier for you to identify and solve any problems that may arise during the installation process. If not, then it’s best that you consult an expert or watch some YouTube videos first.
  • Cars come in different makes and models so what may work for one type of car may not work for another. For example, some models often have holes on their dashboards that are too small for some stereos. Newer cars also have their own set of problems since newer systems may require special adapters.
  • If you’re installing a new stereo system in your car, it may be best if you install a modern radio that has a “plug and play” feature. This way, you don’t have to worry about doing any wiring yourself.
  • In order for your car stereo system to work properly, it’s absolutely necessary that all the wires are connected properly. If this is done incorrectly, then there’s a good chance that the whole thing may short circuit and even catch fire. So take care when connecting all of these wires together.
  • Once everything is connected properly and securely, make sure all of the parts are working properly before proceeding with the installation by turning on each section separately. If any part isn’t working, then you’ll have to take it apart and check for loose connections.

If you’re still unsure about the process, then the best thing is to take your car to an auto shop and have your new car speakers installed for you.

Also Read: Round vs Oval Speakers

FAQ

What is an Amplifier? Do I Need One for my Car Stereo Setup?

An amplifier is an external device that is connected to your head unit so as to properly power your car speakers. Whether you need one or not will depend on your car speaker itself. As we mentioned in the article, low-impedance car speakers won’t need an amplifier but high-impedance car speakers will most likely need one.

Most of the budget car speakers are 

What is a Crossover? Do I Need One for my Car Stereo Setup?

A crossover is a device that is responsible for sending the correct audio signal to each driver of your speakers. Most coaxial budget speakers already feature a built-in one.

How Long Does a Car Stereo System Last?

This depends on the quality of the car stereo system. If you’re installing a high-end system from a reputable manufacturer, then it’s likely that it will last you quite a while. However, if you’re installing a cheap system that doesn’t use high-quality materials, then it may not last as long. If you take proper care of your 

Are Car Stereo Easy to Install?

If you have the necessary experience then it will be an easy task. On the other hand, if you’re a complete beginner, you must research extensively before installing your car stereo by yourself. Like we said in the articles, several factors come into play and if the process is done incorrectly, you may even damage your new car speakers. It is not hard but can be time-consuming.

Conclusion

After reviewing these car stereos and car speakers, we come to the conclusion that the options on the market are endless. Even if you’re within a budget, you can definitely find a great set of head unit + speakers that will cost you less than $100. Of course, that excludes the price for installation, but by devoting a little bit of time and effort to the task you can even go the DIY route.

Overall, make sure to research extensively about the products you’re interested in buying and contact a professional if needed. We hope our Best Budget Car Stereo – Car Speaker article was helpful. If you have any questions about the subject, feel free to contact us!