Components vs Coaxials
There are many different types of speakers available but the two main categories of speakers are coaxials and components. Some people find it challenging to pick between these two main categories. One large misconception is that coaxials are purely entry-level and components are high-end. However, each type has its time in place in car audio installs.
Simply put, coaxials are the combination of a mid-range speaker and a tweeter to form one speaker. Some people also refer to coaxials as “full-range speakers”. These are generally more common than components because they are easier to install. This is because there is no need to mount the tweeter separate from the woofer. Additionally, the crossover is already built into the speaker meaning there is a single input. Most coaxial speakers are a 2-way set, which means there are two drivers (usually a woofer and tweeter combination). Others are a 3-way set, which means there are three drivers (usually a woofer, mid-range speaker, and tweeter combination). Some are even a 4-way set, which means there are four drivers (usually a woofer, mid-range speaker, tweeter, and super tweeter combination). 3-way and 4-way sets are mostly used with 5”x7” and 6”x9” coaxials. Coaxial sizes that are the most common are 3”, 4”, 5 ¼”, 6 ½”, 5”x7”, and 6”x9”. An example of a coaxial set sold by Down4Sound are the Sundown U-6.5CS.
On the other hand, components are a mid-range speaker separate from a tweeter. Some people also refer to components as “separates”. These are generally less common than coaxials because crossovers aren’t built into speakers so they may be more difficult to tune and installation is flexible. Components come in a plethora of sizes and will depend on the application. This is where custom modifications like door panels, tweeter pillars, etc. come into play. Some people choose to put components strictly in the front of the vehicle and coaxial in the rear of the vehicle. This is because, with components in the front, the tweeters are mounted high to avoid any muffling by passengers in the vehicle. Additionally, a set of components in the rear (without custom modifications) there might not be an optimal spot to mount the tweeter. An example of components sold by Down4Sound are the Sundown Neo Pro mid-ranges and the Sundown ET-R1 super tweeters.
At the end of the day, which one you should choose will depend on your vehicle, your goals with the setup, and how much money you are willing to spend or how much work you are willing to do as far as custom modifications go.