We refer to the speaker’s electric resistance (technically known as impedance) when discussing whether an audio speaker is a 4 ohm speaker vs 8 ohm speaker. Loudspeakers’ impedance values vary from speaker to speaker and are generally measured as the “Ohm value.”
This write-up is dedicated to the difference between 4-ohm and 8-ohm car speakers and what sounds better between the two.
But let us first clear up a few misconceptions about impedance and other technical terms that could confuse you. Later on, we’ll throw light on what ohm speakers the Tesla Model X and Model S have.
- Does Ohm Value Directly Refer to the Sound Quality?
- Does Higher Impedance Mean Better Sound?
- Difference Between 4 Ohm Speaker vs 8 Ohm Speaker
- Which Speakers are Louder 4 ohms or 8 ohms?
- 4 ohm vs 8 ohm Speaker; Which is Better?
- 4 ohm vs 8 ohm Woofer
- How to Choose an Appropriate Impedance for Ambiance
- What Ohm Speaker Tesla Model X and Model S Have?
Does Ohm Value Directly Refer to the Sound Quality?
Know that Ohm value or impedance alone does not directly refer to the quality of the audio. It becomes relevant when combined with other factors:
- Thinner wires in the voice coil result in higher resistance (higher impedance), lower cone mass, and potentially higher driver sensitivity (more volume per power).
- A high damping factor (significant difference between the amplifier’s low output impedance and the headphones’ high load impedance) gives a more controlled sound. Also, since the sound won’t change much between different amps.
- Amplifiers have an upper limit on the voltage they can output. Remember Power = Voltage x Current. High-impedance headphones limit the current flow through impedance and “claim” all electrical energy in the form of voltage. Low impedance headphones carry more current, lowering the required voltage level for a given power level. Relatively easier with amplifiers.
Further, you must ensure that the speaker’s impedance matches the speaker’s amplifier. So, the audio system works at its best and in an efficient manner.
Suppose you have a 4 ohms speaker and want it to produce the same sound volume as an 8-ohm speaker. How could it happen? It needs more power from an amplifier.
Why? Well, because of the connection between current, voltage, and resistance in electronic circuits. Lower electric resistance means a higher current for a given voltage.
Because power is a combination of current and voltage, an amplifier with a higher power rating will provide more current to the speaker.
Does Higher Impedance Mean Better Sound?
High impedance is better because it provides better sound quality. However, lower impedance devices are better for casual listening on phones and laptops.
High impedance devices are intended for professional use or audiophiles, requiring bulky and special equipment.
Difference Between 4 Ohm Speaker vs 8 Ohm Speaker
An amplifier is like an outlet. It has the potential energy to power loads placed on it. A simple load, like a night light, plugged into an outlet draws only a few watts.
Pushing a paper clip into both slots will probably cause a bad spark and blow the fuse. This is because a bare wire has no resistance, and if the fuse is not blown, all electricity will try to destroy and fry the wire.
The speakers are the same. If you have an 8-ohm loudspeaker, there will be an 8-ohm resistance to the electricity flowing from the amplifier to the speaker.
If you drop the ohms down to 4, you can imagine doubling the electricity flowing from the amplifier to the speaker.
So why not use a high impedance such as a 100-ohm speaker? The amplifier can’t push much power through such a high resistance, and the speaker sounds very loud even with the volume knob up.
Amplifier manufacturers design their amplifiers to work best around 8 ohms, and the better ones work well at 4 or 2 ohms.
Amplifiers are generally unhappy with low impedance speakers, but some speakers are designed to survive.
Stick with 8-ohm speakers for years of good comfort with a typical home amp. Car amplifiers are designed for 4 ohm speakers.
4 ohm speaker
Which Speakers are Louder 4 ohms or 8 ohms?
If you have an amplifier that is intended to drive a 4-ohm speaker, it produces a much louder sound than an 8 ohm speaker at equal power.
Similarly, if your car’s amplifier is meant to drive an 8 ohm car speaker, the 8 ohm speaker will make a louder sound than a 4 ohm speaker with the same power.
A divergence in the electric resistance of the amplifier and speaker can harm the amplifier’s circuits and cause poor sound quality or distortion. The amplifier’s power demands are highest at high loudness levels.
4 ohm vs 8 ohm Speaker; Which is Better?
As mentioned earlier, a 4 ohm speaker requires a powerful amplifier capable of driving a 4 ohm load. That’s why speaker makers only use 4 ohm resistors in their top-end or flagship models, which are more expensive.
The 4 ohm speaker delivers incredible power and a natural sound with little distortion if your amp is equally good.
Also, another important aspect is sensitivity. A highly sensitive ohm speaker is just as effective as a low ohm speaker.
4 ohm vs 8 ohm Woofer
A 4-ohm speaker needs a more powerful amplifier than an 8-ohm speaker to produce the same volume. This is due to the electronic circuits’ relationship between current, resistance, and voltage.
The lower the impedance, the higher the current for a given voltage. Subwoofers with lower electrical impedance produce louder sounds than woofers with higher electrical impedance.
So a 2-ohm subwoofer is louder than a 4 ohm subwoofer. Such a subwoofer will be more audible but will likely degrade sound quality due to power consumption.
How to Choose an Appropriate Impedance for Ambiance
How to choose the most suitable
If you’re on a tight budget and have a choice of 8 ohm, 6 ohm, or 4 ohm speakers, go with 6 or 8 ohm speakers. It is recommended to use high impedance speakers such as 8 ohms to avoid overloading the AVR.
We’ve only dusted the dirt a bit, but these insights about the importance of impedance in audio and video systems can help guide your decision to choose the suitable impedance and avoid choosing the best mismatch. Hope it helps.
What Ohm Speaker Tesla Model X and Model S Have?
Tesla Model X and Tesla Model S have speaker components with fewer Ohm than 4 and 8 ohm speakers. The woofer assembly has only a one-ohm speaker in both models. In contrast, the mid and mid-range woofer is 2 2 ohms.
Changes may occur in the impedance with their latest models in the coming years. However, these are the updated woofers as of 2022.
A 4 ohm speaker has a lower resistance so that it will play louder than an 8 ohm speaker at the same volume setting.
But as someone else said, you get nothing for free. It will play louder at a particular volume setting, but that doesn’t mean it has a higher peak SPL. There are other variables, such as speaker sensitivity.
8-ohm speakers are always recommended for audio video receivers. So, don’t worry if they can handle 4 ohms without the receiver shortening its life, especially in the case of the type that increases the volume.
This is all from us on 4 ohm speaker vs 8 ohm speaker. We hope it was helpful. Good Luck.