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As sound systems for vehicles get better, people have become more aware of how good you can actually make the sound. There was a time when people relied on the usually rather poor, built-in car audio.
We don’t need to do that now.
We can get great systems by adding the Best Car Audio Equalizer we can find, which will ensure we get the best sound possible.
That is what the EQ will do. We will discuss the real benefits and the types of Audio Equalizer available later. But in essence, it allows you total control over how you hear your sound by fine-tuning that sound to your personal preferences.
So, let’s take a look at some of the very best equalizers for cars currently on the market and find the perfect one for you…
- Top 5 Best Car Audio Equalizer To Consider In 2021 Review
- 1 Power Acoustik PWM-16 Pre-Amp Equalizer – Best Budget Car Audio Equalizer
- 2 Massive Audio EQ-7X Car Equalizer – Best Compact Car Audio Equalizer
- 3 Gravity 7 Band Graphic Equalizer GR-EQ9 – Most Durable Car Audio Equalizer
- 4 Massive Audio EQ4 Car Equalizer – Most Versatile Car Audio Equalizer
- 5 Blaupunkt CEBP870 7-Band Digital Equalizer – Best Value for Your Money Car Audio Equalizer
- Best Car Audio Equalizer Buying Guide
- What are the benefits of a Car Audio Equalizer?
- Types of Car Audio Equalizers
- Best Car Audio Equalizers – The Top Brands
- Car Audio Equalizer Pricing
- So, what is the Best Car Audio Equalizer?
Top 5 Best Car Audio Equalizer To Consider In 2021 Review
1 Power Acoustik PWM-16 Pre-Amp Equalizer – Best Budget Car Audio Equalizer
This is a four-band parametric EQ from Power Acoustik. The parametric EQ is a step up from some other EQ’s and allows control of the frequencies at the center of the signal as well as control over the boost levels.
This EQ has a built-in preamp and four gain controls giving plus or minus 18dB. It has subwoofer controls and a switch for selecting Radio, CD, or an Aux. There are two balanced inputs, a master Volume and separate control for bass volume. It also has a fade control from front to rear. There are RCA input sockets.
A compact unit…
Measuring just 7 by 4-¼ by 1-¼ it isn’t going to take up too much valuable space in or around your dashboard. It has a Pulse width modulated or PWM power supply.
The frequency response is an impressive 10 – 50,000Hz, and it has a sound to noise ratio of 80dB.
A budget offering…
Not the top of the range by any stretch of the imagination. It also may have some reliability issues, but you usually get what you pay for, so you’ll need to weigh up the pros and cons if you intend to use it a lot.
However, it does make a significant difference to all the frequency ranges. On that basis, it is a decent buy. Unfortunately, it does not come with a mounting bracket.
- A compact unit at a very attractive price.
- Some basic but useful sound options.
- Not be the most reliable option, but the affordability makes up for it.
2 Massive Audio EQ-7X Car Equalizer – Best Compact Car Audio Equalizer
Massive Audio was established in 1999 and has developed a reputation for quality audio products. This is a half DIN seven-band Equalizer that has some impressive features.
Designed for sound…
What is included in the Equalizer improves the sound even from the best audio systems. It automatically corrects any dips or peaks, and frequencies are individually adjustable. There is a low pass crossover from 60Hz to 90Hz.
Achieving a better sound is enhanced with the RCA connectors terminals, which are gold-plated.
Plenty of control…
The options for controlling the sound are also impressive. There is a master volume and also control over the level of the subwoofer, front and rear. There is a fader and 6-channel outputs with RCA connections.
The bass sound from the subwoofer, if anything, is a little weak. It doesn’t provide the deep thump that some systems do. This will suit some people we are sure. But if you are looking for bass-heavy, this might not be the one for you.
There is an aux input on the rear of the unit that will take a smartphone, DVD, or MP3. Another nice addition is the option to change the colors of the LED display to either Blue or Red.
The Massive Audio EQ-7X Car Equalizer weighs under two pounds and is easy to install. And at 7 by 1 by 4 ⅛ inches will not take up too much room.
Built to perform and to last, this Car Equalizer should give you years of quality audio in your vehicle. The mid-range price point makes this an equalizer worthy of consideration.
- Some good sound control features in a compact unit.
- A reasonable price point.
- A bit light on the low frequencies.
3 Gravity 7 Band Graphic Equalizer GR-EQ9 – Most Durable Car Audio Equalizer
This is a well-built Equalizer with a tough chassis. It measures 9 by 1.8 by 7.7 inches and weighs a chunky 1.5 pounds. The control knobs are also very sturdy and make it easy to make adjustments to the sound.
Although it is set at slightly below the mid-range price, it offers a lot and creates a clean sound that is very impressive. If you have an in-car-system you can’t get to sound great; then this will help you do the job.
Plenty of control…
It is a seven-band equalizer with a 50Hz-16kHz pre-graph frequency. You have the choice of either a 60Hz or 90Hz subwoofer and a plus or minus 12dB range for equalization. The sound frequency range is 10Hz-50kHz, and the signal to noise ratio is 90dB.
Sound made simple…
It is a simple-to-use equalizer that has a wide-ranging effect on the sound. Fitting is easy as it comes with a wiring harness and brackets for mounting. On the rear is an aux socket for extra connections.
It has blue lights on the display that are actually rather bright. In fact, this could be rather distracting when driving at night.
For the money, it is a decent system. Not the best you will find, but still very good value.
- Comes with a wiring harness and brackets to mount.
- Well-made with sturdy controls.
- Bright display lights could be too much at night.
4 Massive Audio EQ4 Car Equalizer – Most Versatile Car Audio Equalizer
Back to Massive Audio again for another equalizer. This is very much a budget range option, but it still has the capacity to be able to enhance the sound of your car audio.
This model is a half Din equalizer with four bands, measuring 8.35 by 7.6 by 1.93 inches and weighing one and a half pounds.
This unit has a 12dB low pass crossover. You can select from either 60Hz or 90Hz. It has an 8-volt line driver. Frequencies can be adjusted from -12dB to +12dB, and the output from the subwoofer is fixed at 120Hz.
The output from the subwoofer is separated so that you can adjust the bass individually. This means you can add just the right amount of low end to deliver the sound you want. There is also a master volume.
It will automatically adjust and peak and troughs in the sound balances. However, there is a low level of distortion at higher volumes.
There is an adjustable gain on the aux two-channel RCA inputs. It has nickel-plated terminals that will ensure the connections are good. There are three RCA outputs in stereo for the front, the back, and the subwoofer.
It is certainly going to make a difference to any manufacturer fitted audio system. It is set at a very reasonable price, so it is an attractive option.
The LED display can be changed between red and blue, and it is here that there is a potential problem. The lights glow rather bright on Massive Audio systems, which is not a good thing at night.
- Well-made with plenty of sound options.
- A budget system offering excellent value for the money.
- Not as high end as some.
5 Blaupunkt CEBP870 7-Band Digital Equalizer – Best Value for Your Money Car Audio Equalizer
Blaupunkt was established in Germany in 1923. Producing quality audio ever since indicates they might have an idea of what they are doing. In many areas, that reputation precedes them, and rightly so. This is a unit that must be considered as the best Best Car Audio Equalizer.
It has a great looking build, though it is a little larger than some other models. Measuring 12 by 9 by 2.1 inches, you will have to ensure you have space to fit it. It weighs 1.5 pounds.
It has an equalization range of plus or minus 12 dB and a subwoofer frequency of 60 or 90Hz. The frequency response is 10Hz to 50kHz, and it has a signal-to-noise ratio of 90dB. There are outs at the front and rear.
Easy to use…
Controls are located on the front of the unit and can easily be recognized. Each band has its own control knob, and there are separate gain controls for volume and subvolume. There is also a fader control and MP3 input.
The controls allow you to improve even the most basic of car audio systems. Being Blaupunkt, it is well made with metal construction that feels solid to the touch. Plus, it is easy to fit.
Good quality all round…
Considering the quality of the sound produced, this is set at a very attractive price point. If there is a downside, it is that the fascia lights are very bright at night. This seems to be a common problem with many Equalizers.
- Easy to use controls producing good sounds.
- Sleek design at an attractive price.
- Bright lights in the fascia.
Best Car Audio Equalizer Buying Guide
There are some things that you may want to consider when choosing your Car Audio Equalizer. So, let’s go through them…
Number of Bands
There will be a variety of bandwidths available. The average of five will give you a low and mid-bass and a lower and upper mid-range. There will also be a treble band.
Depending on the number of bands, you will get a control for each. Obviously, the more bands, the better sound options you will have available.
You will find that some equalizers have faders. This can be a useful function. It will allow you to adjust the dispersion of the sound between the front and rear to get a nice balance.
That balance will change if people are sitting behind you. The fader also allows the sound to be adjusted to suit.
An important feature for some. Some filters operate when the subwoofer is used. These remove any frequencies some speakers were not designed to handle.
You will need to ensure that the controls are easy to use. Control knobs need to be firm and accommodating. You may also like to consider the location of inputs for aux in. Access on the front fascia is usually an advantage.
Some can be mounted on the dashboard while some, given space, next to the audio system. These units do come in a variety of sizes. And if you are planning to locate it in a certain position, check the measurements first.
This is a size standard introduced by German manufacturers in the 1980s. Principally BMW and Mercedes. The idea was to standardize audio sizing. Single DIN has an area to fit of two inches by seven. A Double-DIN is four inches by seven. Standard equalizers are usually a single DIN.
What are the benefits of a Car Audio Equalizer?
Simply put, it is an improvement in the quality of the sound. Of course, quality is subjective, and it all comes down to individual tastes.
We know people who are quite happy with the audio in their car. Having a better sound means nothing to them. A Car Audio Equalizer would be the last thing on their Christmas list.
So is there a benefit?
To many people, there is. For those that want the best sound they can get, an Equalizer is a path to achieving that. The sound in vehicles can be affected by a number of things. Engine or road-noise, even the absorbency of the seats or the design and shape of the cabin. These can all have an effect.
The standard audio in your car will not allow you to adjust the sound to accommodate that. Basic treble and bass controls will not do the job. Equalizers give added benefits.
It is usually for the music, of course. There aren’t many people who want the newsreader to have a better tone. There is a wide variety of musical genres, and each has different sound requirements.
If you install an Equalizer in your car, you have a choice. Choices that will enhance the sound of your particular preferred genre. You can add some bass, or you can take it away. The same holds true for all the frequency ranges.
You may be thinking that even with a high-end car and it’s better quality audio, an equalizer would not make a difference. But in some cases, the better the audio, the more pronounced the difference will be. A quality signal being given just a bit extra.
For music lovers…
The benefits are very real. Crisper and cleaner sound, deeper and more resonant bass. And, of course, the opportunity to set the sound up exactly as you want it.
For many people, that will be all the incentive they need.
Types of Car Audio Equalizers
If you have been associated with a recording studio in any way, you will know. The mixing and EQ of the sound can make or break a song. EQ is essential to clarity as well as depth. This is especially important where frequencies are competing for the same space. There are essentially three common types of Equalizer.
These are often found in most amplifiers and mixers. There are high-pass and low-pass varieties. It is about ‘shelving’ certain frequencies and not allowing them to pass through.
A low-pass filter will attenuate the frequencies above a designated point. But it will keep what is below, filtering it out. A high-pass filter works in reverse, allowing frequencies above the point to pass.
Shelving equalizers are good at enhancing the sound, sometimes called ‘sweetening’ it. They are, if you like, the most basic of equalizers.
They have several slider controls that allow you to boost or reduce the signal within a frequency. This is typically in a frequency range of 20Hz up to 20,000Hz. Basic Graphic Equalizers will only have two or three bands, More advanced versions will have anything up to twenty and even beyond.
Graphic equalizers will give you a lot of accuracy, but they do not control the shape of the filter. Nor do they have any control over bandwidth. This type of equalizer may work better by making smaller adjustments rather than attempting drastic changes.
It will depend on the number of bands as to how effective a Graphic equalizer can be.
Possibly the most used and certainly the most flexible in their application. The level of control using this type of Equalizer is usually far better than the other options.
They allow you to adjust the frequency and the volume for each band selected. You will also be able to adjust the width of the band, making it either narrower or wider.
Working with filters
When working with filters, you can adjust how steep the slope is when using Low or High pass filters. You can also select the filter shape of the selected band. A Parametric equalizer will usually give you more sound options. But they are not always best suited to what you need.
A great sound can be achieved by all three options. However, there are more control features with Graphic and Parametric equalizers.
Best Car Audio Equalizers – The Top Brands
Most people will have their own favorites, of course. Some of those opinions are based on past personal experiences or the experiences of others. And we are talking about products in the mid-range of price. Not those with a couple of dozen noughts.
On that basis, many would agree that Clarion would be top of most people’s lists. Founded in Japan in 1940, their car audio systems are rated some of the best in the world. But there are others. Blaupunkt from Germany and Massive Audio from the US. Both companies are manufacturing quality equalizers.
The interesting thing is that the top brands all offer very similar features and design interiors. The difference is that some just make it better than others.
Car Audio Equalizer Pricing
This is an area that may well affect your decision. But it has to be said there are some very good products available at a range of prices. For comparison, you can probably group them into three pricing tiers.
You will find some at this price point, but don’t expect too much. Features will be limited compared with more expensive models, as you might expect. However, if you are on a budget, then it might be worth considering just going up a little in price.
This is where you will find the most options. They tend to be of good quality and made by respected manufacturers. The vast majority of the equalizers we looked at will fall into this price category.
They will have good features and give you a decent length of service.
We won’t spend any time discussing this price bracket. This is only for those that are more than serious about the sound. And of course, have the budget to pay for them.
Need more options for car audio solutions and equipment?
So, what is the Best Car Audio Equalizer?
As we have progressed through our shortlist, it is clear there are some very good products on the market. All of them will improve the sound of your in-car system, even the very best built-in audio systems.
It is also apparent that you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a great sound. They all have their various merits, but we have decided to pick the…
A nice looking piece of kit with all the features we would need at a very attractive price point.
And it is, of course, Blaupunkt who has a big reputation for quality.
Until next time, may the road always treat you right, and your sounds always make you happy.