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Old 06-04-2005, 02:31 PM   #1
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Default Speaker Replacement - 8ohms vs 4ohms

I noticed when I first got my 2004 Bonneville SE (regular CD player stereo), the speakers seemed weak compared to my previous vehicle (96 Monte Carlo). The rear factory speakers on this car have 8 ohms printed on them which I found odd for car audio.

After reading these forums, I learned that 4ohm handles more power than 8ohms, so because of this I'm looking to repace my speakers (all of them hopefully) but I have a few questions that I'm hoping someone will know the answers to.

1. Does the head unit (factory) put out at 8 ohms or 4? I thought 4 ohms was standard for all vehicle audio whereas 8 was for home. I read that it'* ok if the speakers have a higher ohm rating than the stereo, but not vice versa or you'll blow the stereo.

2. I couldn't find any benefits of 8 ohms over 4, so why bother? Are there any advantages of 8 over 4? Clearer sound?

3. Has anyone here put in 4 ohm speakers on their 2000+ without a new head unit or amp? Any problems?

I talked to the parts guy at the dealer and he didn't have any answers. Their computers don't list the ohms on radios/speakers at all.

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 06-04-2005, 02:57 PM   #2
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Well GM has made many different speakers. They have anywhere from 2 OHM all the way to 10 OHM. If you can find some factory speakers that are 4 OHM'*, or better yet aftermarket ones. It will help the output and sound, you are correct. The higher the resistance, the more power it takes to produce the same levels of sound. If you lower the resistance, you raise the amount of current going to the speakers at any given time, therefor increasing your overall volume and power.
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Old 06-04-2005, 04:03 PM   #3
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1. the factory head unit wll work fine at 4 ohms, if you use lower ohm speakers you will get more volume but it will be harder on the stereo but you should be just fine.

2. there is no benefit to either 8 or 4 ohms, its just the resistance, some high end home speakers can be anywhere from 2-16 ohms. it all depends on how the system was designed.

Generally, lower ohms ---> more current ---> more power this is true until you turn up the volume until it distorts (true for any speaker system) just keep the volume to a level that still sounds good, any crunching or farting sounds and your gonna cause problems.
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