Best 4 Channel Amps For Sound Quality
- Operates as a two- or four-channel amp
- Supports most types of stereo connections
- Built-in current and temperature protection
- Respectable power rated at 75W x 4 channels RMS
- Premium sound at a reasonable price
- Handles heat with well-designed internal heat sinks
- Delivers up to 400W per channel
- Fully IC-controlled for circuit protection
- Built-in adjustable 12dB equalizer
1. Rockford Fosgate R300X4 – Best All-Around Car Amplifier
It comes with features like current and temperature sensors to protect it from damage, and the aluminum chassis efficiently dissipates heat.
The speaker-level inputs make it possible to connect it to most stereo models that you might have in your car.
We recommend this audio system amp for any standard speaker setup, whether you have a set of four speakers or want to add a subwoofer to a pair of speakers.
2. Alpine MRV-F300 – Best 4 Channel Amp For Door Speakers
It weighs in at only 4.5 lbs and measures just 13 x 9 x 4 inches.
If you already have a primary amp and want to install a second one, the MRV-F300 is a good candidate.
This mid-range amp has plenty of power for normal music and radio volume or to boost two channels as a secondary amp.
It’s rated at 75W x 4 channels RMS or 150W x 2 channels RMS. It’s also equipped with circuit protection like a MOSFET power supply and safeguards against overloads, shorts, and overheating.
3. Rockville dB45 – Best 4 Channel Car Amp For The Money
The IC-controlled circuit includes a peak-limiter that eliminates distortion in the audio when you crank it up.
The maximum wattage reaches 3200W and 1600W RMS. With that kind of power output, it also comes with undervoltage and overvoltage protection at 10 and 16 volts respectively.
4. Kenwood KAC-M3004 – Best Budget Compact Digital Amplifier
That’s thanks to a fully digital audio processor that delivers a peak power rating of 600W.
It can be set up for 50W x 4 channels, 75W x 4 channels, or 150W x 2 channels.
With its compact size, it’s ideal for audio systems in cars, boats, and ATVs. That also means it’s designed to survive the elements with conformal coating on its main board to prevent corrosion.
We recommend this amp for the value you get from its durability, digital clarity, and respectable power profile.
5. Pioneer GM-D8604 – Best 4 Channel Amp For Mids And Highs
Pioneer’s GM-D8604 is the best compromise we could find that combines these two features. It’s a Class D amp ready to squeeze into a tight space behind your dash or mount next to a primary amp.
The peak power on this amp is 1200W, with four-channel setups ranging from 100W to 150W RMS. You can also bridge it to power a subwoofer with 300W RMS. The signal is kept clean with high- and low-pass filters and a frequency range of 10-50 kHz.
We definitely recommend this amp if you want more than the standard power and good sound quality.
What is a 4-channel car amplifier?
A 4-channel amplifier is a type of amplifier that can take a signal from a stereo and send it to four individual speakers in the vehicle. It’s important that you have this kind of an amp if you want to get a decent sound balance in your vehicle. It’s also going to save you time and money in installation time because it simplifies the process.
There are many different brands out there when it comes to 4-channel amplifiers, so what do you need to know before you buy one? Read on for more information about what these amplifiers have to offer, and how they differ from other types of amplifiers.
Why Do I Need a 4 Channel Car Amplifier?
You may just think that a single four-channel amp is good enough for your vehicle. But the problem with this kind of approach is that your sound can get unbalanced in the car, making it seem louder in some places than others. If you have a 4-channel amplifier, however, it will split up certain frequencies to each speaker so that all of them are getting an equal amount of power.
The reason this is so important is that the human ear has trouble detecting sound in places where there’s no air or little air. It’s also able to detect frequencies better when they’re at similar levels than if one speaker was substantially louder than another one. This is why it’s generally recommended that your speakers receive an equal amount of power.
How to Select the Right Four-Channel Amp
Four-channel amps are not all the same beyond the fact that they provide four channels of audio signal. What other factors should you consider when comparing them? That depends on the type of speakers and stereo you have and the quality of sound you want. Below are the major specs that you should check as you narrow your choices down to the right amplifier.
The wattage of an amplifier is a measure of how much power it can deliver to your speakers, which translates into volume when converted to sound. The primary function of an amplifier is to multiply the wattage of the original audio signal to the speakers. For most audio systems, wattage ratings between 50W and 75W RMS will provide plenty of power. Be sure to check that your speakers are rated for the amp’s wattage before you buy it.
Resistance is an electrical spec measured in ohms. It matters because you’ll want to choose an amp and speakers that match each other’s resistance to ensure they work well together. In particular, you’ll want to avoid matching speakers with a resistance that’s lower than an amplifier’s minimum.
Of course, you need to have a place somewhere in your vehicle to mount your amplifier, so its physical shape and size can be a deciding factor as you compare options. A larger vehicle like an SUV will have more free space for an amplifier than a compact car, so find the place you want to put your amp and measure the dimensions carefully. Check candidate amplifiers against those measurements before you place an order.
There are a couple of different classes of amplifiers you’ll see designed for car audio systems. Class A/B amps have less efficiency than Class D amps, but their noise levels are lower. On the other hand, Class D amplifiers are more compact, which makes them ideal for fitting them into cramped spaces behind a car dash.
The price of a 4-channel amp is going to vary depending on the features that it has. More advanced amps will have more features, which means they’re likely to cost more than a basic model that doesn’t have as many features. Just remember though, you get what you pay for when it comes to amps so if you buy one of the cheaper models rather than the more expensive one, you may not be getting an amp with as many features and it may not last as long either.
Other Extras to Look For
Amplifier technology is fairly standard today, but not all amps come with the extra features you’ll find with premium products. Sound quality is affected by the noise level and filters included in an amp’s design. You may want to get an amp with crossovers, especially if they are adjustable. The materials and design of the terminals are important, too, for good sound and longevity once the wiring is done.
In this year’s guide to the top five 4-channel amplifiers, we’ve tried to give a cross-section of the most common alternatives that support different car audio needs. If you’re looking for raw power, Rockville's dB45 and Pioneer's GM-D8604 were the two options we liked best. Those in need of crystal clear audio will be impressed by Kenwood's KAC-M3004. Watch for future reviews of the best car audio amplifiers as more become available!
- Best 4 Channel Amps For Sound Quality
- What is a 4-channel car amplifier?
- Why Do I Need a 4 Channel Car Amplifier?
- How to Select the Right Four-Channel Amp
- The Bottom Line