best 6x9 speakers

The Top 10 Best 6×9 Speakers of 2019

A good 6x9 speaker is key to having good audio in your car. Sub woofers and tweeters might provide the cherry on the top, but - without the 6x9 - there is no sundae for the cherry to go on. However, it can be difficult to find the best 6x9 speakers for your car. That is, if you bother to look at all. Many people, even those who are obsessed with their car audio, will neglect the 6x9 speaker entirely. The stock speakers are probably good enough, right?

Deciding which are the Best 6x9 Speakers

The best 6x9 speakers need to have a few important qualities. The first is solid build quality, and good material (these two will almost always go hand-in-hand). A broken speaker is sometimes worse than no speaker. Of course, a good speaker will also fit in your price range - though most stay in the just below $100 range. Finally, the sound of the 6x9 should fit your overall setup well. If the 6x9 will pair with dedicated tweeters and subs, then you’ll want something different than you would with a speaker that needs to do most of the work on it’s own. With that in mind, here are a few of the best 6x9 speakers for you to consider.


Comparison Table


Hertz Audio HCX690

We kick things off with one of our favourite best competition 6x9 speakers - the Hertz Audio HCX 690.

Quality construction is Hertz Audio’s motto and it can definitely be seen in these speakers. An oversized neodymium magnet provides excellent control while a pure copper voice coil gives superior mechanical ability.

Furthermore, all elements of the speaker had been designed with maximum heat dissipation in mind, providing durability and continuous sound quality even after lengthy plays. This is all supported by a die-cast aluminum basket.

As a result of this quality construction, the speaker is able to support a frequency range as low as 32 Hz.  Of course, it's hard to discuss frequency response without acknowledging impedance which, in the case of the HCX 690, is a satisfactory 4 ohms.

A defining feature of these speakers is their output power capability;  Here, these speakers really have no equal - being capable of an impressive 130W RMS.  This higher rating means you can consistenly feed more power into the unit, relative to the competition, without risking any permanent damage.  This, along with a sensitivity rating of 94dB, consequently results in an output that should satisfy the audiophiles amongst us.

We played a variety of sweeps and music to test real world performance. Being the audiophiles that we are, we can almost say that for leisure listening - these speakers would be the only installation you need.

While, on our sweeps, we did miss the ultra low spectrum - listening to normal music it is barely noticeable with bass punches coming through excellent. Guitars and vocals also rang beautifully.

Ultimately, although expensive, you are getting what you pay for here - the HCX 690 is an outstanding competition 6x9 speaker, producing a rich, layered output that's sure to please.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 130W RMS / 250 Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 32Hz - 23,000Hz
  • Sensitivity: 94 dB
  • Impedance: 4 Ohm
  • Top-Mount Depth: 3.4"

Pros

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    Built with premium materials
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    Produces extremely high quality audio
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    Work well with any genre of music
  • Loud!

Cons

  • Carry a premium price tag

Bottom Line

The Hertz HCX 690 is an excellent speaker overall - with quality construction, a high power output and producing a rich layered sound, sure to satisfy the audiophiles amongst us.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


JBL GTO939

JBL GTO939

It’s no surprise to learn that JBL is producing great speakers - they’ve been doing it since before many of us were alive. If you’re looking for great audio quality, you can never go wrong with a JBL product. They always have and always will produce some of the best speakers on the market, and the GTO939 speakers are another piece in a long line of them.

JBL has gone all out to make the best 6x9 speakers they can, revolutionizing the way speaker cones are designed. The GTO939 speakers have a larger cone, made with premium carbon fiber, than any other speaker on the market. JBL has also installed soft dome tweeters that allow for crisper highs. In addition to this, JBL has even compensated for audio problems that might be caused by your car. Modern cars are often fitted with undersized wiring, but the low-impedance speakers used here shouldn’t be affected by this.

While JBL does a lot of work with their features and future forward technology, this does leave some things out. Older factory head units don’t pair well with the JBL GTO939, and can have poor sound quality. JBL return policies are also fairly strict, which leaves a bad taste in the mouths of some customers. This can be especially damning as the JBL GTO939 tweeters frequently get blown out over time, though this is more likely to occur if your music is overly loud.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 100W RMS / 300W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 46Hz - 21,000Hz
  • Sensitivity: 94 dB
  • Impedance: 3 Ohm
  • Top-Mount Depth: 2.8"

Pros

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    Produce a crisp, clear sound
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    Pivotable tweeters with adjustable volume
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    Impressive bass output

Cons

  • Can be a little difficult to fit in some spaces

Bottom Line

The bottom line is this: the JBL GTO939s might be the best 6x9 speakers currently available. JBL is great at what they do, and these speakers are a testament to that. However, they aren’t too cheap, sitting around $100 in price range. This is well worth it if you spend a lot of time in your car, though.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


JBL GX963

JBL GX963

JBL is JBL. JBL speakers - regardless of the type - are always in the running for best. So it’s no accident that JBL speakers appear twice in our list of best 6x9 speakers.

The GX963 speakers are slightly cheaper than their brethren, but they do just as much work. With a slightly lower impedance, these speakers are able to produce much louder audio than their GTO939 counterparts.

These JBL speakers do require a bit more work than the others, though, and you’ll need to pair these with other audio equipment - specifically a powered amp head - to get the best from them. Without it, they’ll still sound good, just not JBL good.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 100W RMS / 300W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 45Hz - 21kHz
  • Sensitivity: 94 dB
  • Impedance: 2.3 Ohm
  • Top-mount Depth: 2 15/16”

Pros

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    Great audio
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    Good build

Cons

  • Requires other equipment for best performance

Bottom Line

If you’ve got a setup already, these can be a great final piece in it. If you don’t, you still might want to consider picking these up. You might take these speakers over others even if you’re on your way - they’re great at what they do.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


Infinity KAPPA-93iX

Infinity KAPPA-93iX

Sitting at a price tag just above $100, the Infinity KAPPA-93ix speakers have to put some work in to make a worthy purchase. Fortunately, Infinity has put the work in. With a 2.5 ohm impedance, the Infinity KAPPA-93ix speakers put a lot of work in while drawing relatively little power. They are very loud for 6x9 speakers, which is a huge plus for many.

Unfortunately, volume doesn’t always equate to quality. To the untrained or uncaring ear, the sound on these speakers is perfectly fine. However, if you consider yourself an audiophile, you’re going to want to look elsewhere. The sound is noticeably muddy. These speakers can also be difficult to install.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 110W RMS / 330W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 35Hz - 30kHz
  • Sensitivity: 96 dB
  • Impedance: 2.5 Ohm
  • Top-mount Depth: 3-3/16"

Pros

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    Loud
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    Good audio quality

Cons

  • Difficult to install
  • Pricey

Bottom Line

The Infinity KAPPA-93ix speakers are some of the best 6x9 speakers, but they certainly aren’t the best. If you want loud, these are for you. If you want crisp, look elsewhere.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


Polk Audio DB691

Polk Audio DB691

Built to last, the Polk Audio DB691 6x9 speakers are fantastic for people who spend their entire lives in the car. The cone on these speakers is made with a polymer/mica composite that outputs crisp audio at high volumes, and the butyl rubber casing can withstand extreme temperatures. Some people have even noted that these speakers can withstand being on the exterior of a motorcycle.

As with most 6x9 speakers, the Polk Audio speakers don’t fare well when asked to produce sounds in the extreme high or low. And, in general, the sound quality doesn’t compare well to other speakers in a similar price range.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 125W RMS / 300W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 35Hz - 22kHz
  • Sensitivity: 93 dB
  • Impedance: 4 Ohm
  • Top-mount Depth: 3-3/16"

Pros

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    Strong build quality
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    Durable

Cons

  • Only good for midrange
  • Middling audio quality

Bottom Line

While the audio is not quite as good as other speakers on the market, the Polk Audio speakers can take a beating. If you’re in your car often, going off-roading, or live in an area with extreme temperatures - high or low - consider picking these up.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


Sony XS FB6930

Sony XS FB6930

Reinforced with Foamed-Mica Cellular Woofers, the Sony XSFB6930 stand up well to Polk Audio’s offering - as well as JBL’s. Sony has produced great sound and great durability with these speakers, making them easily some of the best 6x9 speakers on the market. Sony has even been aware of some of the sound issues that other 6x9 speakers have, and worked to prevent them. Equipped with 7/16” super tweeters, these speakers produce incredible highs.

Unfortunately, these speakers don’t produce incredible lows. In fact, the bass is almost non-existent on these speakers. This shouldn’t be an issue when paired with a good subwoofer, but that’s true of all 6x9s. If this is an early step in getting better car audio, you might want to look elsewhere.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 60W RMS / 450W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 40Hz - 22kHz
  • Sensitivity: 92 dB
  • Top-mount Depth: 2-7/8"

Pros

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    Durable
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    High build quality
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    Great midrange and high end audio quality

Cons

  • Terrible bass

Bottom Line

Not for the bassheads, the Sony XSFB6930 is still a great speaker. It’s not quite as durable as the Polk Audio speaker, and it doesn’t sound quite as good as JBL speakers. But it is a good mixture of both.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


Kicker 43DSC69304

Kicker 43DSC69304

These Kicker speakers are the best 6x9 speakers for bass. They’re not offering high-end audio, or extreme durability. They’re not necessarily cheap. They are - however - punchy. If you want loud, in your face bass, these are the speakers you need. You’ll still need a sub to get truly next level bass, but these get you very far in the process.

If you’re not desperate for bass from your speaker, or perhaps plan to supplement your speakers with a subwoofer, then you may find better value amongst the other speakers around this price range.


While the overall sound produced by the 43DSC69304’s is decent, it’s not particularly remarkable, and certainly not better than speakers in a similar price range. The same is true for the build quality: nothing is notably poor, but nothing is notably good, either.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 90W RMS / 360W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 30Hz - 20kHz
  • Sensitivity: 92 dB
  • Impedance: 4 Ohm
  • Mount Depth: 3 1/4”

Pros

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    Great bass
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    Decent sound
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    Decent build

Cons

  • Not the best value of the lot

Bottom Line

The Kicker speaker line does one thing really well: punchy bass. If that’s what you want, you want these speakers.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


BOSS Audio NX694

BOSS Audio NX694

Let’s get down to brass tax: these speaker’s aren’t amazing. They’re not going to blow you away with great features and sound quality. However, they aren’t going to disappoint, either. They’re good, not great. But for a price tag of a little over $30, what more could you ask for? If you’re on a budget, or just looking for something decent, the BOSS Audio NX694 speakers are for you. They are the best 6x9 speakers for value, without a doubt.

The speaker isn’t particularly notable in build. It’s nothing special - close to stock, but with much better quality. The same goes for the sound. There’s nothing obviously great, but also nothing obviously flawed. Of course, these can also work well when paired with other speakers. They do one thing well - midrange frequencies - so you might consider them if you already have subs and/or tweeters.

The most notable issue with the BOSS Audio NX694 is the lack of bass. It picks up pretty well into the 80 hz range, but this misses the all-important sub bass frequencies. If you’re listening to a lot of bass-light music, or talk radio/podcasts, you won’t notice. If you’re blasting hip-hop or metal, though, get a sub bass to go along with these speakers.

In some cases, these will also be worse than your stock speakers. If you’re in a mid to high end car, you’re probably better off sticking to stock. These can be a good replacement if something breaks, but you should save up instead of going for the cheap option here. If you’re not sure, it’s best to do some digging into your cars stock speakers.

Technical Details

  • Design: 4-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 400W RMS / 800W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 45Hz - 20kHz
  • Sensitivity: 92 dB
  • Impedance: 4 Ohm
  • Top-Mount Depth: 3.27"

Pros

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    Affordable
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    Solid build quality
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    Good audio quality

Cons

  • No sub bass
  • Flat highs

Bottom Line

The BOSS Audio NX694 speakers aren’t the best speakers - but they are the best speakers for $30. If you’re on a tight budget or looking for a quick pick up, buy these speakers. They’re only a bit more expensive than cheap speakers, but these aren’t cheap speakers. Nothing has been compromised for the price.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


Rockford Fosgate R169X3

Rockford Fosgate R169X3

The Rockford Fosgate R169X3 speakers are very good for their value. Not quite as cheap as other speakers on this list, $50 is still a notable expense for a decent set of speakers. These aren’t incredibly remarkable for anything else - with the possible exception of their tweeter crossovers, which do a good job of fixing the dull highs that come with most cheap speakers.

Of course, as with everything affordable, there are some issues with the Rockford Fosgate R169X3. Here, the issue is mostly in the installation. Getting these speakers into your car will take some work, and it’s best to get a friend to help you. Sound and quality also deteriorate with use, but not so much that it ruins the worth of these speakers.

Technical Details

  • Design: 3-way Coaxial
  • Power Range: 65W RMS / 130W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 47Hz - 20kHz
  • Sensitivity: 90 dB
  • Impedance: 4 Ohm
  • Top-mount Depth: 2.85"

Pros

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    Good sound
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    Crisp highs
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    Affordable

Cons

  • Difficult installation
  • Deteriorates quickly

Bottom Line

These speakers aren’t great, but you get what you pay for. If you’re not picky, these are probably what you’re looking for. But do be prepared to spend some time with them after your purchase.

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


Pioneer TS-A6996R

Pioneer TS-A6996R

The Pioneer TS-A6996S speakers are very good, and you might want to look into them depending on your needs.

You might especially be interested if you listen to a lot of vocal audio - podcasts and such. Armed with several tweeters, these speakers have very clear highs. This alone isn’t necessarily great for music, but it does allow voices to cut through clearly.

The speakers feature a multilayer mica surface cone, helping maintain the cone’s superior rigidity, complemented by a secondary layer of light, water-resistant material.  A large magnet also helps ensure these speakers produce a powerful sound. This sturdy build means that, as a result, even when pushing the volume - the bass remains nice and clean.

Truth be told, there’s nothing else particularly remarkable about these speakers. They’re simply a decent, reasonably priced upgrade from your stock speakers. They are of a decent build quality as you’d expect from a brand like Pioneer, producing a satisfactory quality of audio relative to their price.  

If you’re particularly keen on Pioneer, you may be willing to look past the slightly higher price relative to other budget speakers in the range.  Otherwise, depending your budget, you may wish to consider the other brands offerings in this end of the market, or even consider spending a little more to go for something a little more specialized.

Technical Details

  • Design: 5-way coaxial
  • Power Range: 100W RMS / 650W Peak Power
  • Frequency Response: 28Hz to 38,000Hz
  • Sensitivity: 93 dB
  • Impedance: 4 Ohm
  • Top-mount depth: 3.38”

Pros

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    Decent audio
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    Decent build quality
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    Good highs

Cons

  • Likely not a huge improvement on stock

Bottom Line

If you listen to a lot of podcasts, or you’re just replacing an old speaker, these are what you want. Simply put, these are what you might consider safe budget OEM replacement speakers. They might be the right 6x9 speakers for you if you are after a cheap Pioneer speaker, or otherwise just want to “set it and forget it.”

Features

Performance

Value

Our Rating


Key Factors To Consider

Simply put, we’ve taken three important factors into consideration here: Features, Quality of Audio Performance, and Value for Money.

Whilst the quality of the sound produced is paramount, this specific guide is generally geared towards those of us who would rather not pay an arm and a leg for the experience.

The bottom line is, you can avoid paying a premium price for a set of speakers that will still be capable of giving you a greatly satisfyingly audio experience – as our selection proves.

Final Thoughts

All in all, if you are looking for the best 6x9 speakers for your car, among the best car speaker brands, you have a range of valid options to pick from depending on your budget and requirements.

Whatever your final choice might be, you can bet that replacing your factory speakers with any one of these aftermarket sets, you will be blown away with the difference in sound quality, and scratching your head as to why you hadn’t done so sooner.



Key Terminology

RMS

Audio companies generally advertise their products using terms like "MAX" or "Peak power".

Forget about all that. When we're discussing power, RMS is the only value that lets you make any sort of meaningful comparison between two products. Why is that?

Well, RMS stands for Root Mean Square. No math lessons here; this just means that RMS measures how much continuous power a component can handle safely.

Peak power is how high the system can go at maximum output, but it can't stay at that wattage for long without causing problems.

That's why devices that advertise "peak power" are being a little misleading. What's really important is sustained sonic output for an indefinite length of time.

RMS lets you quickly and easily compare power outputs between components.

This means a speaker with 200-watt MAX but only 60-watt RMS is less powerful than a speaker with 100-watt MAX and 80-watt RMS.

Range / Response

When we start talking about speaker range or frequency response, you might have a general idea of what we mean.

On the surface, it's pretty simple. Range is a measure of how much of the audible sound range the speakers can produce. It's measured in Hertz (Hz), with low numbers being long, deep tones (like the boom of a drum) and high numbers being shorter, sharp tones (like the singing of a bird).

Obviously, we're only concerned with the portion of the Soundwave we can hear. Human ears are capable of responding anywhere from 20Hz to 20,000Hz (or 20 kHz).

Range is a simple concept to understand, yet difficult to master. If you want to fully appreciate the implications of range and how it applies to audio equipment, you have to dive into some complex mathematics. That's beyond the scope of this article.

For now, just remember: Range is a useful way to measure how much of the audible spectrum a device can produce.

Please note - it doesn't tell you anything about the quality of that sound! Don't make a purchase based entirely on response.

Impedance

This fancy term just means how much AC resistance exists in the wiring of the speakers. Please note: Different frequencies can have different impedance values.

Generally, most loudspeakers will have resistance that ranges between 4- and 8-ohms. As long as your speakers have similar impedance to your amp, you'll be fine.

A higher impedance means that an amplifier will have to push more voltage to create the same sound quality. On the other hand, it also means a component can handle more juice without taking damage.

As long as you make sure these values are in alignment, you shouldn't worry too much about impedance.

Sensitivity

This isn't how fragile or delicate your speakers are; nor does it have anything to do feelings. This is a universal metric that simply tells you how much sound pressure (loudness) an audio device will create at a stated distance on a single watt.

What does this mean to you? The more sensitive your speakers are, the less power they require to produce the same amount of volume. Basically, it's translating more of that raw power into crisp audio goodness!

Depth

Depending on your ride, you'll have more or less room to work with as you build a stereo system. Make sure you don't make the mistake of assuming depth is universal - you could save yourself some serious money and a lot of heartache. 

Work components around your car; don't work your car around components.

How much room will you need to mount the speaker in your vehicle? What's the difference between "top mount" depth and "bottom mount" depth?

Top-mount depth is how much room the top of the speaker needs from the point of installation. This is how far it 'juts' out into your car interior.

That means bottom-mount depth is how much room the bottom of your speakers need to clear the interior of your dash or panel.

For simplicity's sake, in our reviews, we typically focus on the more commonly available measurement: top-mount depth.

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