The 10 Best Car Amplifiers With Bluetooth
This wiki has been updated 11 times since it was first published in March of 2020. It's not that common for car amplifiers to integrate Bluetooth capabilities, but models that include this feature are extremely useful for some specific cases. These devices can be used to add wireless connectivity to vehicles that lack it, eliminate the need for a dedicated car stereo in DIY setups, or create a new audio system for an old automobile that's compatible with your phone. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
April 20, 2021:
One of the primary benefits of owning a Bluetooth-enabled amplifier is the fact that you don't need a compatible head unit in order to stream music from a Bluetooth-enabled device, bypassing all the unnecessary functionality along the way. This is particularly useful onboard boats, in trailers, ATVs, and other vehicles that may not have a dedicated stereo built-in.
Many of those ranked here, including the Kenwood Compact Automotive Amplifier, Velex Water Resistant Amplifier, and the Massive Audio TX48 Trident, have the extra benefit of being waterproof, making them extra-resilient when used in exposed environments, such as marine applications and outdoor sports. This feature also makes these amps a popular addition to golf carts, especially given their small size.
When choosing a suitable amplifier, you should be sure that it matches the capabilities of your speakers, and that they are not underpowered enough that your amp is overdriven to the point of clipping. It is also useful to check that it is CEA 2006 compliant, to ensure that the manufacturer isn't making bold and unsubstantiated claims with regard to their power output. When sizing up your amp, prioritize the RMS (root mean square) rating over peak power output, as this is a better indicator of true power at safe operating levels, and is the rating usually considered by industry professionals.
Another thing to take into account is the number of channels you need, and this is determined by the number of speakers you have, and how you have them configured. smaller units, such as the Dutison Mini Audio Amplifier, have just two channels, meaning they are only able to power two speakers or one subwoofer. If you wish to power two drivers and a subwoofer, then a minimum 3 channel amplifier is required. As a general rule, the more channels you have, the more expensive the unit, and the larger it is, so these are also important considerations when buying the ideal Bluetooth amplifier to suit your requirements.
March 27, 2020:
The situations in which someone will desire an amplifier that features Bluetooth capability are quite varied, so we've included a wide range of models on our list best suited to several common predicaments.
If you're trying to add Bluetooth to a high-fidelity, high-volume speaker system you're going to want to look at the higher-end models on our list, such as the Kenwood Compact Automotive Amplifier, Infinity K5, and Rockville RXM. They are all on the more expensive side, but they also generally offer a significantly larger amount of RMS watts per a speaker, which is absolutely essential for those trying to drive multichannel systems or large subwoofers at loud volumes while maintaining quality. They're generally design to go between speakers and an existing stereo head unit, but if you're alright with having limited inputs they'll also work by themselves.
Items like the Velex Water Resistant Amplifier and Kicker Bluetooth Amplifier are good for people trying to avoid the use of a dedicated car stereo altogether since they feature things like 3.5-millimeter auxiliary inputs and remotes with transport and volume controls. However, it should be noted that the latter item is a 2-channel unit.
If you want a significantly lower cost, you'll appreciate items like the Dutison Mini Audio Amplifier or Nobsound Lepy, which can simply be mounted to a dashboard or in a more discreet location with just a few screws. These options represent a very affordable way to easily add Bluetooth functionality to an older car, but they won't produce the cleanest aesthetic, and their quality and loudness is definitely lesser than more expensive units.
No matter what item you choose, be aware that most do not come with mounting hardware, speaker wire, or tools, so you will most likely have to provide these things as well as a bit of know-how in order to use them effectively.