What is a two way speaker system?
In automotive parlance a two way speaker system usually refers to a component package consisting of a woofer, a separate tweeter, and a set of crossovers. These components are designed to provide greater flexibility in locating each of the elements and more accurate sound reproduction.
By separating the tweeters from the woofers serious audiophiles can create what is known as imaging, which causes different elements of the music to seem to come from different locations. Typically vehicle owners want to the vocalist “front and center” with the instruments lower and in the background.
Although the more common coaxial speakers have a woofer and a tweeter, their one-piece design means it is difficult or impossible to create the “soundstage” effect that is the attraction of two way systems. The buyer of two way components is looking for the extra level of quality sound in their car speakers.
There are three components at work to produce the sound:
Woofers handle low to mid-range frequencies. These come in a variety of sizes but 6-1/2 inch is common. They are often mounted in factory locations in the doors, in the opening left when the factory coaxial speakers were removed.
The much smaller tweeters produce the high range frequencies, such as female vocalists. Buyers often want tweeters in specific locations, which may require custom installation.
The third essential part of a two way system is crossovers. The job of the crossovers is to send higher-pitched sound to the tweeters and lower tones to the woofers. This assures that neither speaker is wasting energy or creating distortion by trying to reproduce sounds for which it is not built.
Many component two way systems are built to handle much more power than factory systems. This invites the use of an amplifier to boost the signal from the source unit and take full advantage of the available volume. Using the crossovers, it is also possible to limit the low range sound going to the component woofer and add a subwoofer for fuller bass.
Come in to Audio Express / Quality Auto Sound and join our professionals to explore all the possibilities of a two way speaker system in your vehicle.