Are you a driver looking to upgrade the sound system in your vehicle? Replacing car speakers can be a great way to ensure you get optimal sound quality from your audio setup.
A common question is whether it’s possible to replace 6.5 speakers with 6×9 ones. I remember working on such a project, and there were many points to confirm, but is even such a replacement possible? Let’s find out.
6.5-inch car speakers can be replaced with 6×9-inch speakers. However, ensure there is enough space in the mounting location to accommodate the larger 6×9-inch speakers. It is often required to modify the mounting holes or use adapter rings.
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Tip: When replacing 6.5-inch speakers with 6×9, make sure that the 6×9 speakers will fit properly in the intended location.
Sometimes, you may need to use a speaker gasket or extension ring to fill the gap between the speaker and the cutout or increase the cutout size if the 6×9 speakers are too large to fit.
When you decide to increase the hole sizes, remember to add cushioning gaskets between the speaker and the metal panel. The best ones I can recommend are from Design Engineering (link to Amazon).
In the article below, I will explain the details of replacing smaller 6.5-inch speakers with 6x9s, so you can make an informed decision on whether this is the right option for your sound system upgrade.
Can 6.5″ Speakers Be Replaced With 6×9″?
6.5-inch speakers are a standard size for car audio systems and are often used in the door of many vehicles.
6×9-inch speakers, on the other hand, are typically used in the rear deck or trunk, and they can handle more power than 6.5-inch speakers, which may result in improved sound quality and volume, especially when filling the car with more bass.
#1. First, let’s start with the most obvious difference between the two:
The size and shape of the speakers. 6.5″ speakers are round, while 6×9″ speakers are oval, meaning that the cutout for the speaker will have to be modified to fit the 6×9 speaker.
Depending on the specific installation, this could be as simple as using a jigsaw to enlarge the cutout, or it could be more complex and require additional steps.
If you’re not comfortable with modifying the cutout yourself, it’s a good idea to consult a professional or the manufacturer of the 6×9 speakers for guidance.
If you want to know more, check out my other article about cutting speaker holes in cars.
#2. Next, you’ll need to consider the volume of the enclosure that the 6×9 speaker will be placed in.
By enclosure, I mean the air volume behind the magnet. The right amount of free space is especially important if you want a deep bass and installing speakers in the rear deck.
If the 6×9 speakers go to a car door or the rear deck, you may not have much control over the enclosure volume.
To improve their dynamic, install speaker baffles that will help “tune” the speakers and, more importantly, protect them from dripping water or moisture.
#3. Another factor to consider is the depth of the speaker. For example, 6×9 speakers may be deeper than 6.5 speakers and have a larger magnet, which could cause a problem if you try to fit the speaker into a tight spot.
Although this does not matter for speakers mounted in the trunk or rear deck but is critical when installed in the door.
Make sure to measure the depth of the speaker and the space it will be installed in to ensure that it will fit properly.
You do not want the magnet to touch the metal door panel or worse, be unable to open a window when the speaker locks the slot.
What Are the Benefits of Replacing 6.5 Speakers With 6×9?
The pros and cons of replacing 6.5 speakers with 6×9 speakers will vary depending on the specific car and personal preferences regarding the sound expectation.
For example, if you’re looking for a more powerful bass response, the larger size of the 6×9 speakers may be a pro, but if you’re on a tight budget, the cost may be a con.
Sound Quality and Performance
One of the main benefits of replacing 6.5-inch speakers with 6×9-inch speakers is the increased cone size and power handling of the larger speakers.
The larger cone size allows the speaker to move more air, which can result in improved bass response and overall sound quality.
The increased power handling also allows the speakers to handle higher volume levels without distorting or overheating.
However, it’s important to note that the specific acoustic characteristics of the speakers will also affect their performance.
These characteristics include:
- Frequency response (the range of frequencies that the speaker can reproduce)
- Sensitivity (the amount of sound pressure that the speaker produces for a given input power)
- Distortion (the amount of deviation from the original signal)
Consider these factors when selecting your 6×9-inch speakers to ensure you get the best sound quality for your system.
Most 6×9 speakers have larger frequency responses (starting lower), and if you want them to work optimally, you may need to install an amplifier.
Installation of 6×9 Speakers
Installing 6×9″ speakers can be more challenging than installing 6.5″ ones due to their larger size and the need for adapters or mounting brackets in some cases.
Here are a few tips to help you get the best results:
#1. Choose High-Quality Speakers
If you want the best sound quality and performance, look for top-quality speakers with good frequency response, sensitivity, and low distortion levels.
Also, consider the materials used in the construction of the speakers, such as the type of cone and surround.
When searching for good bass speakers, check out my other article about the best 6×9″ speakers for bass.
#2. Use Adapters or Mounting Brackets if Necessary
Some vehicles may require adapters or mounting brackets to install 6×9-inch speakers in the door.
These components can help ensure a secure and adequately aligned fit for the larger speakers and give enough offset to place bigger magnets in the door panels.
Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing any adaptor rings.
#3. Test and Adjust the Settings
After installing the 6×9-inch speakers, test them out and adjust the settings on your audio system as needed.
You may need to play and test different gain or crossover settings to get the best sound from the speakers, especially if they are more powerful.
Also, to listen to various music genres to understand how the speakers perform across the frequency spectrum.
Pros and Cons of Installing Larger Speakers in the Car
The pros and cons of replacing 6.5 with 6×9 speakers will vary depending on your specific situation and desired final effect.
Here is a list of pros and cons of replacing 6.5 speakers with 6×9 speakers:
- Larger size: 6×9 larger than 6.5-inch speakers, which means they can produce more bass and a fuller sound overall.
- Better sound quality: Depending on the specific 6×9 model, you may experience an improvement in sound quality compared to the 6.5-inch speakers.
- Modification required: As mentioned above, the cutout for the speaker will have to be modified to fit the 6×9 speaker, which could be a hassle if you’re not comfortable with DIY projects or do not want to change the car’s chassis.
- Compatibility issues: Make sure that the 6×9 speakers are compatible with your audio system in terms of power handling capacity and frequency response. You may experience distortion or other issues if the speakers are not compatible with the rest of the system, and this is especially apparent with impedance mismatch.
- Cost: 6x9s may be more expensive than 6.5s, depending on the brand and model.
Replacing 6.5-inch speakers with 6×9 can offer several benefits, including improved sound quality and volume due to the larger cone size and power handling capabilities of the 6×9-inch speakers.
However, this will work only if the 6×9-inch speakers are compatible with your vehicle and there is enough space in the door or mounting location for the larger size.
When you decide to replace 6.5 speakers with 6×9, you may need to make the following upgrades:
#1. Check the depth of the speaker: Make sure that the 6×9 speaker will fit in the desired location, as some may be deeper than 6.5 and have larger magnets.
#2. Modify the cutout: Because of the different sizes, if you want to fit 6×9 speakers into 6.5 mounting locations, the original mounting holes may need to be modified to accommodate the wider gasket.
Will 6×9-Inch Speakers Fit in the Door of My Car?
In most cases, 6×9 speakers will fit on the car doors, but it depends on your vehicle’s specific make and model.
Some cars are designed with 6×9-inch speakers in the door, while others may require adapters or mounting brackets to install 6×9-inch speakers in this location.
Will Replacing My 6.5-Inch Speakers With 6×9-Inch Speakers Improve the Sound Quality of My System?
6×9 speakers are larger than all and can handle more power than many 6.5-inch speakers, which may result in improved sound quality and volume.
However, the specific acoustic characteristics of the speakers, such as their frequency response, sensitivity, and distortion levels, will also affect their performance, so when making changes, do not rely just on the size.
Consider these factors when selecting new 6×9 speakers for the best possible sound quality.
How Do I Install 6×9-Inch Speakers in My Car?
Installing oval speakers may be more challenging than installing 6.5″ in the exact locations.
Depending on your vehicle’s specific make and model, you may need mounting brackets or adapters to fit the larger size.
There are however cars where installing 6×9 speakers requires only removing the plastic adaptor rings from the door panels.
Can I use 6×9-inch speakers in the front and rear of my car?
Technically, 6×9-inch speakers can be used in the front and rear of your car, depending on the make and model of your vehicle.
Be sure to measure the speaker locations because replacing speakers with 6×9 without modifications may not be possible.
Can Replace 6.5 Car Speakers With a 6×9 Void Car Warranty?
Replacing the factory speakers in your car will not void your warranty if you use proper installation techniques and do not damage any other car parts.
However, it’s always a good idea to check your specific warranty agreement, as some warranties may have specific provisions about modifications to the car.
If you are concerned about voiding your warranty, consider having the new speakers installed by a professional car audio shop or mechanic at the car dealer.
This will ensure that the installation is done correctly by an authorized service and that no damage is caused to the car during the process.