Mid-bass is a frequency range that not many audio enthusiasts talk about, and some don’t even worry about it. However, it is a vital frequency range, and the correct speakers and setup can elevate your car audio sound to new levels. But, how can you improve midbass in a car? Let’s find out.
As a general rule, midbass in a car can be improved by adding separate midbass speakers and setting the equalizer correctly in the range between 200Hz and 500Hz. Another way is to sound deaden the door and install speakers on the foam baffles to further boost mid-bass sounds.
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Tip: Adding more power to the mid-bass frequency range is not too complicated, and simply replacing your door speakers with mid-woofers will make a significant change in your music dynamic.
My favorite mid-bass speaker is Skar Audio FSX65 that is a fantastic addition to the subwoofer. However, if you do not have much room in your door for speakers with large magnets, you can still achieve the unique mid-bass effect with shallow mounted Earthquake Sound SWS-6.5X. Both are conveniently available on Amazon, so if you want something powerful in your car, check their price now.
In this article, I will detail everything you need to know about midbass, including what it is, what speakers are used for it, how to get a better quality sound.
I will also look at midbass with other frequency ranges and speakers, enabling you to understand how they work together to achieve the best possible car audio sound.
What Frequency Is Considered Mid Bass?
Midbass is the frequency range between 200Hz and 500Hz. It is one of the most critical frequency ranges, as many essential instruments lay within this range, such as the voice, viola, cello, brass instruments, and the guitar.
What Are Mid-bass Speakers?
Midbass speakers (or mid-bass woofers) are designed to accentuate a specific frequency range between 200Hz and 500Hz (a high bass frequency).
This will give more depth to your sound because typically, in a car audio setup or even a home audio setup, you only have midrange speakers, tweeters, and a subwoofer.
Midrange speakers are designed to produce a frequency range of between 500Hz to 4kHz. Then subwoofers are designed to function at a frequency range of between 20Hz to 200Hz.
Some individuals opt to use subwoofers and midrange woofers to achieve a result where the midbass is blended between the two, but if not set up correctly, they are spread out and become thin and muffled.
Midbass speakers cure this ailment by being specifically made to tackle the frequencies that are just too high for subwoofers and just too low for midrange speakers.
Can You Have Too Much Mid Bass?
Like any other frequency range, you can have too much of it, which will also apply to midbass.
You might think that adding midbass speakers to your sound system will be too much, but in fact, it won’t overpower other frequencies. Instead, it will only make the midbass frequencies more clear.
If you are in a situation where your subwoofer and midrange speakers are playing the same frequencies as your midbass speakers, then indeed, you might find that you have too much midbass.
This is because not only the midbass speakers will be accentuating that frequency range, but so will your subwoofer and midrange speakers.
What Is the Difference Between Mid Bass Speakers and Subwoofers?
Mid-bass speakers are designed to produce sound in the frequency range of between 200Hz and 500Hz. A subwoofer is made to play the lowest frequencies of between 20Hz and 200Hz.
But, this is not the only difference. Subwoofers have a large diaphragm due to the frequencies it has to push out. Remember that low frequencies push out large and slow sound waves, while higher frequencies push out short waves that move through the air quickly.
The most straightforward explanation is by comparing a tweeter to a subwoofer. The subwoofer is much larger. Due to the sound waves that are large and move slowly, a subwoofer needs to be designed to cope with them, especially when they are being pushed out with force (volume).
If you’ve ever watched a subwoofer that is working at its full force, you will notice how much it vibrates. This is because it pushes in and out a massive amount of air through its enclosure.
If you stand close enough to it, you will actually be able to feel the air and the speaker’s vibrations. The vibrations occur because the subwoofer produces such low frequencies that are almost inaudible to the human ear, and you can feel more than hear the lowest bass.
Midbass speakers are designed similarly to subwoofers, except they are relatively smaller. This is because they are intended to operate at a different frequency range and thus do not need to be as large.
Mid-bass speakers will also be circular like subwoofers, but they will not come in an oval 6X9 shape like midrange speakers.
Midbass and subwoofers are round so that the diaphragm can stay stiff. This is because, as we said, those low sound waves can cause havoc on your speakers. Especially when played loud and having a not symmetrical cone can cause the speakers to be damaged when they are being pushed really hard.
Another aspect of subwoofers and how they are entirely different from midbass speakers is that subwoofers are actually there to accent the sound and should not technically be heard (they are supposed to be used in the background).
In other words, subwoofers are meant to expand the soundstage because of those additional low frequencies that other speakers, such as midbass or midrange speakers, cannot produce.
They also help fill in the audio that is not audible to our ears but that we know is there. For example, many people won’t even notice a subwoofer that is set up correctly, but when you take it out of the audio system, they will tell you something is missing but might not be able to tell you what it is.
On the other hand, midbass speakers are not designed to be part of the background and accentuate the soundstage but rather improve it by making those frequencies clearer. I already mentioned how many instruments lay within this frequency range.
If you feel that your subwoofer is muffling the midbass frequencies, you are probably sitting with a subwoofer that is not set up correctly.
If you want to hear this in reality, check out this short video that goes over how low bass affects midbass clarity. You will understand better the real difference between subwoofers and midbass speakers.
Can You Get Good Mid Bass Without a Subwoofer?
The word “good” is relative and individual when it comes to audio and audio perception. If you have midbass speakers and midrange speakers, you will produce good quality sound in the frequency range of 200Hz and above.
However, as highlighted earlier, a subwoofer is there to expand the sound stage, giving the audio depth, and without it, you may feel that something is missing or feel that the other frequencies are enhanced. Therefore, your perception of the sound (midbass) might be limited. In addition, without a subwoofer, your system will not be able to produce frequencies below 60Hz.
Furthermore, you will most likely use a crossover (frequency filter) if you have subwoofer and midbass speakers. A crossover of frequency filter (either high-pass or low-pass) is an element in audio that lets you adjust the frequency range sent to the speakers.
Most, if not all, modern amplifiers, including car amplifiers, come with some sort of crossover that you can adjust. If your system is set up correctly, you should only be sending low bass frequencies of below 200Hz to the subwoofer and frequencies between 200Hz and 500Hz to the midbass speakers creating an excellent overall sound.
If you do not have a subwoofer in your system and only have midbass and midrange speakers, you should still use a crossover for the specific frequencies.
Thus you will be getting a solid midbass coupled with the fact that it will be perceived to be more precise without a subwoofer.
How Do I Get More Bass From My Door Speakers?
As you already know, speakers are designed to push out specific frequency ranges, even at times having crossovers built into them for this exact reason.
Door speakers, in most cases, are actually midrange woofers meaning they will push out frequencies between 500Hz and 4kHz.
Of course, some mid-range speakers can produce lower and higher frequency ranges between 100Hz to 18kHz, but the fact remains that these speakers operate best between the midrange frequencies and not higher or lower than that.
With that being said, there are ways to improve the quality of the bass In your midrange (door) speakers. There are several ways in which you can achieve this.
- Connect speakers are set up to an amplifier that has a crossover for mid-bass frequencies. This will ensure that those midbass frequencies are indeed being sent to your door speakers.
- Set your equalizer on your stereo if it has one . An equalizer visualizes the audio frequency spectrum that you are hearing and can adjust it. It has individual frequency ranges or a combination or at least three individual settings (bass, mid, treble). What you would do is adjust the bass frequency ranges and make them louder by increasing their level.
- Sound deaden your car door. Covering a metal door panel with a sound-deadening rubber or foam will create the effect of the enclosure, and it will strengthen the dynamic of the mid-bass frequencies coming out of the speakers.
- Install door speakers in the speaker baffles. Adding additional foam around the door speakers allows you to increase the dynamic of sounds coming out of door speakers, and in addition, it will reduce the risk of any door rattling effect.
The last thing to consider is purchasing a pair of door speakers capable of handling an extensive frequency range. That means they will be able to produce bass frequencies better than other midrange speakers, and when combined with our other two tips above, you should be able to get a reasonably decent bass response.
How Many Mid Bass Speakers Do I Need in Car?
You may be wondering how many midbass speakers you need to get a good quality sound. This is because you only need one subwoofer, and the number of midrange speakers can range anywhere between two and six. But, how many mid-bass speakers do you need?
In general, you only need two mid-bass speakers to reproduce good quality midbass in conjunction with a subwoofer, your midrange speakers, and tweeters.
You will typically have more than two midrange speakers (door speakers) because they will be placed in the rear for the passengers, but essentially, you do not need more than two.
You will always have two speakers on two sides (left and right) for the best effect, and ideally, if they can be installed in the front doors. Hence, you will not need more than two midbass speakers in your vehicle to achieve better overall sound quality.
The reason you only have one subwoofer is that, as we said, the subwoofer is there to expand the sound stage (audio frequency range), and its place in the audio system is to be in the background and not emphasized.
How to Set Up an Amplifier for Mid-bass?
If your amplifier has a crossover, achieving an excellent sound quality is simple.
At first, I will focus on the crossover’s settings. What you will do is set your crossovers (filters) accordingly. That means you need to select your high pass filters to a frequency range that suits your tweeters and midrange speakers.
You can start by setting your high-pass filter at 500Hz and adjust accordingly. Next, you will do the same for the low-pass filter, starting by setting it to push frequencies out just below 200Hz.
What is leftover in between? This is the frequency range of the midbass. You now need to adjust the crossover of either the high or low-pass filters to extend into that range, considering where the filters overlap and if they should overlap.
Overlapping the filters at a specific frequency range can add clarity and depth to sound because it is coming from both the subwoofer and midrange speakers.
Most amplifiers nowadays do not come with equalizers because that is done through your car’s stereo. If you are lucky enough to have midbass speakers and an amplifier with a mid-crossover, the setting up process is exactly as described.
Which Are the Best Mid Bass Car Speakers?
Without a doubt, Skar Audio FSX65 is one of the best midbass speakers you can find and, at the same time, my favorite. They have excellent output handling and feature an impressive mid/bass driver to ensure an accurately balanced sound.
This small 6.5″ mid-woofer with 150W RMS (300W Pick) starts its work with a frequency of just 100Hz. Because it goes so low, it makes ideal balance with playing deeper notes woofers.
Their design is strong, and these speakers are robustly made from high-grade materials. Additionally, they have 1.5″ copper voice coils that allow large cone movements to make additional push effects.
Not as strong as the Skar mid-woofer, but the only one that you can fit in the car door with a limited depth. That is right, and Earthquake Sound SWS-6.5X is perfect for fit to a limited space thanks to its depth below 2″.
It has a frequency response starting from 39Hz that goes up to 1,000Hz, which is a fantastic achievement for such a small size. With 100W RMS (200W Peak), it makes a tremendous adjustment to any car sound system.
If you do not want to have a gap in the mid-bass frequency, there are speakers designed to handle this frequency range other than your traditional subwoofers and midrange speakers.
By now, you know everything there is to know about midbass frequency and the corresponding speakers, and hopefully, you can now go out and spec what you need to to achieve what you feel is a great car audio sound.