Finding a suitable amplifier can be a strenuous exercise. The vast number of options to choose from doesn’t help either. To make the best choice, find an amp suitable for your existing setup, keeping in mind that if you have a subwoofer in your setup, you may need a monoblock amplifier. Many people use a monoblock amplifier and a 2 channel amplifier or monoblock amplifier and a 4 channel amplifier in their setups.
That being said, let’s check out the best five monoblock amplifiers for car speakers and subwoofers.
1. Best Overall: Rockford Fosgate Prime R2-1200X1
The Rockford Fosgate Prime R2-1200X1 is an excellent blend of power, simplicity, and features. It uses Rockford Fosgate’s C.L.E.A.N. (Calibrated Level Eliminates Audible Noise) technology setup system to make your bass powerful and clean.
It’s simple to use, and the speaker-level inputs let you include the amp in many audio systems.
The amp is powerful, dishing out as much as 1200W RMS at 1Ω. At 2Ω, you get 800W, and at 4 Ω, you get 400W.
The frequency response covers the spectrum from 15Hz to 250Hz. With Rockford Fosgate’s Punch Boost, you can use the power and frequency response to your advantage.
This amp does not skimp out on build quality, in line with its quality and user-friendly features.
It has a wide selection of controls and ports for various connectivity options. Sadly, you have to purchase some additional tools for complete installation. This does not make it less appealing because it has several extra features that keep the balance.
2. Best Compact Monoblock: Alpine S-A60M S-Series Class D Mono Amplifier
The Alpine S-A60M comes in a small body that can fit in the smallest of spaces. Out of the tiny package comes an astonishing amount of bass response. The sound quality is phenomenal, considering it’s a tiny package.
The frequency response is exceptional, low enough to give you the chest-thumping bass many of us like, and high enough to give you extra frequency headroom. It starts at 10Hz and goes all the way to 400Hz.
The amplifier has some features to improve user experience. An example of this is the Enhanced Shutdown Performance technology which dials back the output a little when the amplifier is on the verge of overheating. This allows it to keep playing until the amp cools down.
The amplifier can pump out 330W at 4Ω and 600W at 1Ω. It is well-built, compact, and can withstand a few knocks. However, we won’t advise you to rough-handle it. The major drawback is that the amp sometimes overheats, especially when cranked up to the max for extended periods.
Overall, this is an excellent amplifier that packs great features and quality sound in a small package.
3. Easiest to Install: Kicker 47KEY500.1 500-Watt Mono Amplifier
Not everyone likes installing and tuning amplifiers for hours, and this amplifier caters to that group. The Kicker 47KEY500.1 tailors the audio output to your stereo system using automated signal processing technology.
You only need to download the KEY sine sweep and a test tone from Kicker. The KEY Auto Setup analyses your system’s response and automatically applies the equalization and bass boost needed to produce great bass.
Some eco-friendly cars start up or turn off as the car starts or stops. The resulting voltage dip could allow an amplifier to pass clipped signals or shut down. The amplifier includes a limiter to prevent this.
The amplifier comes in a compact and sturdy chassis that can fit almost anywhere. The design is plain but very functional. The 47KEY500.1 has a respectable power output, delivering 150W at 4Ω, 300W at 2Ω, and 500W at 1Ω. This should be enough for most users. It also has a chest-thumping frequency response from 10Hz to 160Hz that lets you hit all those low notes without worry.
4. Best Powerful Monoblock: Soundstream Tarantula TXP 1.8000D
The TXP 1.8000D is cheap but powerful, giving you more bang for your buck than many amplifiers. At 4Ω, you’ll get 1800W RMS, 3600W at 2Ω, and at 1Ω, you’ll get a whopping 7000W of raw power.
This easily makes it one of the most powerful amplifiers on the market.
The design is another area where the TXP 1.8000D shines. It comes in a sleek, two-tone, cuboidal enclosure, characteristic of Soundstream. However, only the build quality tells the whole story.
The TXP 1.8000D uses some high-quality components, but they are not assembled to be knocked about. The wires look too thin, the bass control is made of plastic, and there’s an audible rattle when you crank the power to the max.
The tarantula is not bad when it comes to functionality. It does its job quite well, as long as you don’t stress it too much. As a bonus, you get a good selection of controls to tune the sound output to your taste while making general use easier.
5. Best Budget Monoblock: Skar Audio RP-350.1D Monoblock Amplifier 350W
The RP-350.1D is excellent if you have a space constraint or want to minimize your footprint. The compact amplifier pumps a respectable amount of power from a small chassis.
This is a well-built and reliable amplifier to cater to all your power needs. The frequency response is good for its size, ranging from 20Hz – 250Hz.
This RP-350.1D does not win any power awards, conservatively rated at 350W RMS at 1Ω and 388W peak power output. It can power two subwoofers rated 200W each or a single subwoofer rated about 400W.
This is enough for most people, but if you’re one of those few at the edge of the power bell curve, you might want to look elsewhere.
The amplifier’s design shows that it was built to be efficient, with a plethora of controls in the built-in control panel, featuring a bass EQ switch, variable adjustments for the subsonic filter, gain level, and low-pass filter.
For a budget amplifier, this more than does the job.
Can You Use A Mono Amp For Speakers?
Yes, you can, but this is not advised as that is not the purpose of mono amps. However, there are some major caveats. Firstly, you can only amplify single channel audio. If you want a stereo experience, you’ll need two mono amplifiers. Also, the amplifier should be capable of amplifying the full audio signal range. Most monoblock amplifiers are built to amplify low frequencies. So, ensure that your amp can produce the full frequency range.
How Many Subs Can You Run Off A Mono Amp?
You can run up to four subwoofers, depending on your amplifier. To run four subs, wire each pair in parallel before you connect them in parallel to your amp. Each of the subs should have at least 4 ohms resistance to prevent the overall resistance from going below 2 or 1 Ohm. Keep in mind that you will not get stereo output from a setup like this.
Is A Mono Amp Good For Bass?
Most mono amplifiers are purpose-built for delivering bass frequencies. So, they are quite good for producing bass. Some monoblock amps can deliver the full range, but the bass frequencies are usually the priority.
Finding the right amplifier does not have to be complicated. Once you’ve pinpointed what matters, the rest is finding an amp that fits the description. Finally, the list above is always here if you don’t want to go through any hassles.
Norvan Martin is the founder of BoomSpeaker.com. He is a professional Electronics Engineer and is passionate about home theater systems and AV electronics. BoomSpeaker was created as an online hub to share his knowledge and experiences as it relates to home theaters and home audio electronics.