Listening to your favorite audiobooks, podcasts or music on the radio is one of the calming yet entertaining activities to do when driving. On long road trips with friends or family, you want to have a speaker that will not let you down with the sound quality.
Often than not, when you find yourself with a brand new speaker but a low sound quality, the solution might be to look at its amplifier. Replacing your car speaker's small and underpowered amp for the best 1500-watt amp will improve the quality and power output.
Considering that there are various amps on the market today, finding the best one for your car may be challenging. In addition, you will find that these car amplifiers vary in terms of performance and power output. Fortunately, this 1500W amp article will cover all the information you need before getting a car amplifier, as well as point you to the best 1500-watt amps on the market.
Which is best amplifier for car?
Why Is A Car Amplifier Important?
A car amplifier aims to receive and increase the volume(amplify) of audio signals coming from the head unit. The signals are then sent to the speakers, where you get to hear a song or a podcast.
Today, car manufacturers have included a built-in amplifier behind the car stereo. While this small amp may suffice for some people, it may be the reason why your speakers are dull and quiet.
If you are looking to upgrade your car's audio system or add a subwoofer, getting a new amplifier should be your first step.
Before we go further, let us look at the best 1500-watt amps.
1. Planet Audio AC1500.1M
- power: max power output of 1500 watts at 2 ohms into one channel. maximum power output of...
- high level inputs: speaker level inputs are commonly referred to as high-level inputs....
- low level inputs: line level inputs, also known as rca inputs or low-level inputs, use rca...
- low-pass crossover: a low-pass filter is an electronic circuit that removes all the notes...
- variable bass boost: variable bass boost allows you to adjust the low bass within the...
Planet Audio is reputable for its amplifiers. However, this specific AC1500.1M class-AB monoblock is an excellent choice if you wish to add a subwoofer. With an advertised max power output of 1500W at 2Ω, this amplifier will give your subwoofer the power output it needs.
This amp accepts high-level inputs, ensuring that your factory or aftermarket radio transfers high-quality sound. An RCA input also allows you to connect to other amplifiers. In addition to these features, Planet Audio has included a variable low-pass crossover that removes notes below the frequency-filter setting, ultimately ensuring that high notes do not reach your subwoofer.
This amplifier also has a variable bass boost to adjust the bass within a specific range. In addition, this amp comes with a user manual, 1-year warranty, mounting screws and a wired bass remote. It also features overheat protection and a short circuit.
2. Boss Audio Systems AR1500M
- POWER: Maximum Power Output of 1500 Watts at 2 Ohms into one channel. MAX Power Output of...
- HIGH LEVEL INPUTS: Speaker level inputs are commonly referred to as high-level inputs....
- LOW LEVEL INPUTS: Line level inputs, also known as RCA inputs or low-level inputs, use RCA...
- LOW-PASS CROSSOVER: A low-pass filter is an electronic circuit that removes all the notes...
- SWITCHABLE BASS BOOST: Switchable Bass Boost allows you to boost the low bass +18db.
In second place is this Boss Audio AR1500M car amplifier. This amplifier is stable at 2Ω with a max power output of 1500W. This guarantees that your subwoofer gets all the power it needs to give the perfect quality sound. In addition, if your radio does not have an RCA input, a high-level or speaker input is present.
The RCA input allows you to connect the amp to the receiver, while the variable low pass crossover keeps high notes away. You will also like that this amp belongs to class-AB; hence, it boasts a clear, high-quality sound.
3. BOSS Audio Systems MODEL R1600M
- POWER: 1600 Watts Max x 1 @2-Ohms, 800 Watts Max x 1 @4-Ohms
- CLASS A/B TOPOLOGY: Class ‘A’ amplifiers have enormous amount of current flowing...
- MOSFET POWER SUPPLY: A MOSFET is basically an electrical switch that allows the flow of...
- VARIABLE LOW-PASS CROSSOVER: Subwoofers reproduce sound based on a number of different...
- VARIABLE BASS BOOST: Bass Boost allows you to adjust the low bass within the boost range...
Although it has an advertised max power output of 1600W, slightly above our 1500W limit, this Boss Audio R1600M is well within our range. Furthermore, you are assured that this class-AB amp will not let you down with its performance with a MOSFET power supply.
The variable low pass crossover lets you set the exact sound specification you like, while the variable bass boost lets you adjust the bass to your liking. In addition, this amp features two input types, low-level inputs and high-level or speaker inputs.
You will also like that this amp has variable gain control, not for the volume but for adjusting signal input in the receiver and output signal to the amplifier. In addition, the package includes a user manual, mounting screws and a wired bass remote.
4. Hifonics BRX1516.1D
- Ultra-fine mosfets circuit maximizing power efficiency while improving sound quality
- LED power (Green) and protect (Red) indicators
- Manufactured in China
- Frequency Response: 10Hz-250Hz
This class-D Hifonics BRX1516.1D amp has a power output rating of 1500W which should ultimately be enough to power any subwoofer. Although the company does not share more specs, you will love this amp.
This amp uses an ultra-fine MOSFETS power circuit, which helps provide efficient power while enhancing the quality of sound. Additionally, this amp only features low-level RCA inputs and has two preamp RCA outputs if you wish to daisy chain it to another amp.
This Hifonics amp also features a low pass crossover filter and a variable subsonic filter. There is also a bass knob should you wish to adjust the bass to your preferred level. In addition, the design features two built-in LED lights, a green one for power and a red one that shows the protection mode. You are also guaranteed safety in that the amp has protection against overload, short circuit and overheating.
5. Skar Audio SKv2-1500.1D
- Competition Grade SPL Class D Monoblock MOSFET Car Power Amplifier
- Peak Power at 1 Ohm: 2,200 Watts | RMS Power at 1 Ohm: 1,500 Watts
- Stable at 1 Ohm, Frequency Response: 15Hz - 270Hz
- Featuring 4-Way Protection Circuitry and 1/0 Gauge Power & Ground Input Terminals for...
- User Adjustable Low Pass Filter (Variable): 35Hz - 250Hz, Remote Subwoofer Level Control...
From our review, you can tell the relationship between price and power output, with cheap amps having overrated power outputs. For example, this Skar Audio SKv2-1500.1D monoblock amp has an RMS power of 1500W and a peak power of 2200W. This is more than we've seen with the amps above.
Although it has no high-level inputs, this amp makes up for that by including RCA inputs and outputs if you want to strap it. Additionally, this Skar Audio amp has a variable low pass filter with a frequency range of 35-250Hz and a subsonic crossover filter with a range of 10-50Hz.
The amp design features a bass knob, so you can either adjust the bass directly on the amp or use a bass remote. Included is a 4-way protection circuitry that helps to keep your amp safe from issues like overheating and short circuits. In addition, although the overall design is not compact, this Skar Audio amp will fit quite easily in your trunk.
How Do You Choose the Best 1500W Amp?
When shopping for a 1500W amplifier, you should consider a few things. Doing this prevents you from buying an amp that will not deliver what you want. Some of these factors include:
1. What are Your Needs?
As obvious as this may sound, the first step before getting a car amp is to ask yourself what you want to accomplish. The answer to this question could be upgrading your entire car system or adding a subwoofer. Knowing this will help you save so much time and money. In addition, the type of amp that you will get will depend on the power, type and size of your speaker.
A mono amp or a monoblock is recommended if you only want to install a subwoofer without significant upgrades. This is because monoblocks use digital amplification(class-D amps), which are efficient and pump power continuously into your speaker. In addition, class D amps have low operating temperatures, which helps maintain a stable performance while pushing out a lot of power.
However, if you are considering to install full-range speakers, a 2 or 4-channel amp will be an excellent choice. This is because multi-channel amps belong to class-AB amplifiers. Although class-D amps are smaller, more efficient, and have lower operating temperatures than class-AB amps, their audio quality is not as good. This is especially true for treble and midrange reproduction.
Finally, if you wish to add a subwoofer and upgrade the speakers, there are several ways to go about it. First, you could get a class-D mono amp for the subwoofer and a 2 or 4-channel class-AB amp, each with RCA output for the speakers. The second option is a hybrid amp, either a 5-channel with 4 class-AB amps and 1 class-D amp or a 6-channel amp with 2 for the subwoofer and 4 for the speakers.
2. Power Output
Power output is a key factor to consider in car amplifiers. This is because no standard or certification process regulates the output. For this reason, some amplifiers do not deliver the advertised peak power or RMS.
To better understand these terms, the RMS(root mean square) refers to how much power can continuously be output by the amplifier. On the other hand, peak power refers to how much power the amplifier can hold without distorting the audio signal or ultimately failing.
For example, an amplifier advertised as 1500W can push up to 1500W, although not continuously. In this case, 1500W is the peak power output and not the RMS power. However, if you buy a more expensive amp from a reputable manufacturer, you will find this to be the RMS output.
When considering the power output, you must match the impedance and the power rating. For example, if you have 2 or 4 Ω speakers, each with a 250W RMS rating, this means that you will need a 2 or 4-channel amplifier with an RMS output rate of 250W per channel. While you could still get an amp with 200W RMS power, the sound output will not be the best and the amp will overheat.
3. Number of Channels/Speakers
The number of channels or speakers will always depend on the type of upgrade you want. For example, this could be an amp with 2, 3 or 4-channels. In addition, you may also go for a hybrid channel amp if you are upgrading your speakers and adding a subwoofer.
4. Amplification Type
The amplification type will look at the amp class. A class AB amp has a high operating temperature and is less efficient than a class-D amp. However, it is perfect for full midrange and treble reproduction. In addition, class-AB amplifiers are the most common types and include most multi-channel amps, making them an excellent choice if you want to install 2 or 4 speakers.
A class-D amplifier is also known as a mono amp since it only has one channel. Since it has a low operating temperature, a mono amp is perfect for a subwoofer that requires a lot of power. In addition, a class-D amp is more efficient than a class-AB amp.
5. Wiring Kit
Most car amp manufacturers do not include the wiring kit. Unfortunately, this means that you will have to buy it separately. Typically, you will find two wiring kit options. The first one is copper-clad aluminum(CCA) wire which is relatively cheap and priced under $30.
The second option is an oxygen-free copper(OFC) wire which is relatively pricier than the CCA and is over $100. While you may be tempted to go for the cheaper wiring kit, getting the OFC will give you the best performance.
It is essential to consider the price when looking for a car amp. Cheaper budget amps, often under $100, are not powerful and, more often than not, do not deliver the advertised power output. In the same way, amps between $100-$200 will offer you relatively better performance, although not the best. For this reason, if you want an amp that will pump 1500W continuously, you need to set a budget of at least $250.
7. Dimension of the Amp
It is best to compare the amp dimension against how much space you have available in your car. For example, if you want to fit the amp under your car seat, you will need to pay attention to the amp height. Additionally, when installing class-AB, multi-channel amps, leaving some space to enable airflow is recommended.
8. Other Features
Some amps have both high-level and low-level inputs. Depending on the type of head unit or receiver you have, be it aftermarket or pre-installed, you will need an amplifier with a high level in terms of the speaker or a low-level RCA input. In addition, you may also find RCA inputs that receive both low-level signals and speaker levels.
Another additional feature that depends on your amp type is the crossover filter. Some amps have fixed or variable low-pass and high-pass crossover filters. In addition, you will find that some amplifiers are bridgeable while others are not. For example, although class-D amps are not bridgeable, you may find some supporting connection to another amp to provide more power.
Finally, amplifiers made of advanced technologies may feature inputs such as HALOSonic and ADAS.