It goes without saying that factory sound systems don’t provide satisfactory sound. This forces many car owners to purchase amplifiers for their vehicles. However, not all people can afford to sink hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars toward purchasing new car amplifiers.

In this scenario, you might need to look for budget amps in the range of $50 – $150.

Buying a budget car amp will involve some compromise. So, you might need to settle for amps offering basic feature sets and specifications – but don’t be discouraged we have done our homework and found some of the best units you can get in the previously mentioned price range.

ImageCheap AmpsRMS PowerNo. ChannelsAmp Class
Pioneer GM-A6704 4-Channel...
4-Channel Pick

$159.00 at Amazon
60 watts RMS x 4 at 4 ohms (95 watts RMS x 4 at 2 ohms);
190 watts RMS x 2 in bridged mode (4-ohm stable in bridged mode)
4 channelsClass AB
Crunch PX1000.4 Power...
4-Channel Under $100

$60.00 at Amazon
250W x 4 at 2 ohms;
125W x 4 at 4 ohms;
(5,000W x 2 at 4 ohms mono bridged)
4 channelsClass AB
1-Channel Pick

@ 1 Ohm: 350 Watts x 1 Channel;
@ 2 Ohms: 250 Watts x 1 Channel;
@ 4 Ohms: 150 Watts x 1 Channel
1 channelsClass D
Rockford Fosgate R150X2 Prime...
2-Channel Pick

$199.95 at Amazon
50 watts RMS x 2 at 4 ohms (75 watts RMS x 2 at 2 ohms)

150 watts RMS x 1 bridged output at 4 ohms (4-ohm stable in bridged mode)
2 channelsClass AB
Soundstream PN5.640D Picasso...
5-Channel Pick

$146.95 at Amazon
4 ohms: 60 watts x 4 chan. + 200 watts

2 ohms: 80 watts x 4 chan. + 350 watts

4 ohms Bridged: 160 watts x 2 chan. + 350 watts
5 channelsClass D
BOSS Audio Systems R1002 Car...
2-Channel Under $50

$34.99 at Amazon
75 W X 4 RMS @ 2 ohm

38 W X 4 RMS @ 4 ohm
2 channelsClass AB

Budget Amps – Under $100 – $150

4-Channel Pick

Pioneer GM-A6704

RMS: 60 watts RMS x 4 at 4 ohms (95 watts RMS x 4 at 2 ohms);
190 watts RMS x 2 in bridged mode (4-ohm stable in bridged mode)

Amp Class: AB
Bridgeable: Yes
Channels: 4

Pioneer’s GM-A6704 four-channel amplifier makes the case for installing an external amp in a car stereo system. This punchy Pioneer will power your front and rear speakers with 60 watts RMS each – a significant jump in power compared to what is supplied by a typical head unit – allowing you to hear much more of the little details in your music, especially when your system is cranked up to overtake road noise.

Why begin building a system around a four (4)-channel amp? You can run your front speakers with the front channels (A) and then combine the rear channels (B) to drive a subwoofer.

Then, if you decide to add a second sub and a dedicated amp for your bass, you can use this Pioneer to run all your speakers, even putting this versatile amp into a two-channel model to send up to 190 watts RMS each to a couple of component speakers or subwoofers. The bottom line? Versatility is the name of the game with the Pioneer GM-A6704.

1-Channel (Mono) Pick

Skar Audio RP-350.1D

Max Power: at 1 Ohm: 388 Watts x 1 Channel (14.4v)
RMS: @ 1 Ohm: 350 Watts x 1 Channel;
@ 2 Ohms: 250 Watts x 1 Channel;
@ 4 Ohms: 150 Watts x 1 Channel

Amp Class: D
Bridgeable: No
Channels: 1

The Skar Audio RP-350.1D, as well as its higher-spec’d and priced siblings, was designed to deliver clean power in a compact chassis. Perfect for powering a low-power subwoofer in a daily driver application, the amp includes performance-grade internals often unseen at this price point, enabling it to pump out a solid 388 watts at one (1) ohm – and making this mono amplifier ideal for pairing to a single 400-watt subwoofer or two 200-watt subs.

What’s more, the RP-350.1D features a thick metal outer shell with built-in heatsinks that will keep it cool while delivering rich and full sound to any ride. This makes our Mono Pick the perfect solution for situations when you need versatility, but refuse to sacrifice power output.

In addition to the specs, we listed above, the eight (8)-gauge power and ground terminals on the amplifier allow for maximum current flow, thus higher power output and more efficient operation.

Further, you have full reign over your amp with the built-in user control panel, featuring a bass EQ switch (0, +6, +12dB) and variable adjustment tunings for gain level, low-pass filter, and a subsonic filter. And, thanks to its four-way protection circuitry, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that you are protected against damage to the amp, whatever the hazard may be – from overheating to an electrical shortage, low voltage, and more.

2-Channel Pick

Rockford Fosgate R150X2 Prime

RMS: 50 watts RMS x 2 at 4 ohms (75 watts RMS x 2 at 2 ohms)
150 watts RMS x 1 bridged output at 4 ohms (4-ohm stable in bridged mode)
Amp Class: AB
Bridgeable: Yes
Channels: 2

If you’re on a budget and looking for cost-effective 2-channel amplifiers, the R150X2 should be taken into account.

This relatively cheap amp comes with an RMS power rating from 2 to 4 ohms for 50 and 75 watts respectively.

When you take all these traits and features into account, you will find that this budget amp packs a lot of benefits in its compact size. Given these details, it’s hardly surprising that this amp remains one of our top considerations cheap amps.

But, equipped with high- and low-pass filters, heavy cast-aluminum chassis, and other features, this amp offers plenty of bang for your buck.

The Rockford Fosgate R150X2 also remains immensely easy to install. The high-level inputs provided negate the need for RCA cables and line output converters.

5-Channel Pick

Soundstream PN5.640D Picasso Nano

RMS: 4 ohms: 60 watts x 4 chan. + 200 watts
2 ohms: 80 watts x 4 chan. + 350 watts
4 ohms Bridged: 160 watts x 2 chan. + 350 watts
Amp Class: D
Bridgeable: Yes
Channels: 5

In the past, you might have installed amplifiers and subwoofer systems in your vehicle. With the Soundstream PN5.640D Picasso, you’ll be able to power an entire speaker and subwoofer system with minimal fuss.

This five-channel amplifier (see more 5-channel amps) might not look all that great in terms of dimensions. After all, it remains quite small at 4.75×10.3×2 inches (WxLxH). However, it offers a maximum power output of 640 watts that can power the entire audio system of your car.

More importantly, it will be able to fit in some really tight locations by virtue of its compact size. The amp also has an RMS power rating of two to four ohms for 440 and 670 watts respectively.

This amplifier has a soft turn-on circuit. And, it comes with thermal and speaker short protection circuitry as well. The package will contain a dash mount remote bass level control also.

When you come across an amp that packs all these features and costs under $150, you will consider it to be a superb bargain.

Car audio enthusiasts will feel delighted on purchasing the Soundstream PN5.640D. This device has an output of four channels of 60 watts RMS to full-range speakers. In addition, it can put up to 350 watts to the subwoofer system as well. Because of this, car audio system experts rank this amp pretty highly as it offers an impressive balance of power between speaker and subwoofer levels.

Besides this, the Soundstream budget amp comes with various other attractive features. For instance, high-pass filters on the front and rear channels will keep the low bass out of the full-range speakers to enable them to play more cleanly and loudly. The subwoofer channel comes with a variable low pass filter and bass boost too. These enhance the performance levels of the amp significantly.

Budget Amps – Under $50

2-Channel Pick

Boss R1002

Max Power Output: 200W
RMS: 75 W X 2 RMS @ 2 ohm;
38 W X 2 RMS @ 4 ohm;
Amp Class: AB
Bridgeable: No
Channels: 2

As a brand, BOSS Audio has an enviable reputation when it comes to audio systems. Many people purchase the BOSS range of audio systems and amplifiers for their budget prices.

Achieve clear, crisp sound with the Boss Audio R1002 two-channel Class AB amplifier. With 200 watts max power and MOSFET power supply, this two (2)-ohm amp gives your music quite the boost and is an unbelievable value, to boot. Choose the R1002 when moving door and dash speaker amplification from the head unit to a dedicated amplifier – because if you’re still using your head unit for amplification, you have no idea what you have been missing.

Tried-and-true Class AB amp technology, two (2)-ohm stability (for powering a pair of four [4]-ohm speakers off a single channel) and way more than enough power for even the hungriest door, dash or deck speaker makes the R1002 an easy contender for our Two (2)-Channel Pick. As part of the RIOT Series of amps, The R1002 comes packed with advanced features usually reserved for models at more than twice the price.

Also Great 2-Channel

Sound Storm Laboratories EV2.200 Evolution

Max Power Output: 200W
RMS: 75 W X 2 RMS @ 2 ohm;
38 W X 2 RMS @ 4 ohm;
Amp Class: AB
Bridgeable: No
Channels: 2

Enjoy the high performance with the Sound Storm Evolution EV2.200 two (2)-channel Class AB full range amplifier, offering 200 watts max power and fixed high pass crossover to provide pure quality sound. With clean lines and simple, subtle styling, Evolution amps bring big performance and mobile audio excellence to more folks with limited budgets.

When it’s time to spark up your audio system, the EV2.200 can rock any playlist you throw at it, its efficient power output making it a natural selection for those lusting after clean sound. Sound Storm’s Evolution IC MOSFET two-channel amplifiers allow the user to power a combination of tweeters, full-range speakers, and subwoofers in order to tune their vehicle’s sound system to their exact specifications.

The two (2)-ohm stable EV2.200 comes standard with a fixed low-pass crossover (120Hz), variable input gain control, power and protection LED indicators and line/speaker level inputs, in addition to chrome-plated RCA connectors and screw terminals – and even a small footprint that enables the user to employ the amp in tight spots.

Everything else we recommend

Under $100 4-Channel

Crunch PX1000.4

Max Power Output: 1500W
RMS: 250W x 4 at 2 ohms;
125W x 4 at 4 ohms;
(5,000W x 2 at 4 ohms mono bridged)
Amp Class: AB
Bridgeable: Yes
Channels: 4

The Crunch PX1000.4 is the perfect entry-level amplifier for your car audio needs, boasting high-quality circuit and hardware designs along with exclusive technologies to improve sound quality and minimize distortion.

Crunch POWERX incorporates full Class AB technology in stereo and four-channel amps along with Class D in the mono variants; in the case of the PX1000.4, Crunch has trimmed away some of the more esoteric features to deliver a down-to-earth amp that exhibits the classic sound from this brand.

As part of the POWERX line, this amp includes QTD (Quick Thermal Dispersion) technology, putting more aluminum on the heatsink than a standard amplifier while ensuring it delivers gobs of power and runs cool with nearly undetectable musical distortion.

Also Great 4-Channel

Blaupunkt AMP1504

Max Power Output: 1500W
RMS: 150W x 4 at 4 ohms;
300W x 4 at 2 ohms
Amp Class: AB
Channels: 4

The Blaupunkt AMP1504 four-channel full-range amplifier embodies over 90 years of innovation and excellence in products from this manufacturer, making it the perfect amp to install into your motor vehicle.

With an optimized 150-watt RMS output and a max power output of 1,500 watts, you can give your music a massive boost in power that will have you and your passengers bopping your heads to whatever is blaring. This amp’s slim design, meanwhile, allows it to fit perfectly into any trunk or hatch space so it can be easily connected to your system.

This product also offers full-range clarity for a two, three or four-channel setup, and while it’s a bit larger than many options in its class, its AB classification helps keep distortion low while maintaining a safe operating temperature, ensuring long-term reliability.

Among the pros we often hear about the Blaupunkt are its 150-watt RMS rating which will power almost anything and the fact that it’s a high-end piece of hardware at a low cost; one con, if we had to select one, would be its lack of single-ohm subwoofer output.

Also Great 4-Channel Option

Power Acoustik EG4-1000

Max Power Output: 1000W
RMS: 2Ω 4×125W
4Ω 4×65W
4Ω Bridged 2×250W
Amp Class: AB
Bridgeable: Yes
Channels: 4

Priced at just over $50, the Power Acoustik EG4-1000 remains an amplifier worth purchasing. Its elegant design complements its superb feature set. This Class A/B full range two-ohm stable four-channel amp offers a total power output of 1,000 watts. We also did a review of 2000 watt options.

It also provides a four-channel stereo output with possible impedances of two and four ohms. You can also dual bridge this budget amp for two-channel operation with an impedance of four ohms. The middling size of this amplifier, at 9×10.25×2.25 inches (WxLxH), makes it suitable for use in an assortment of vehicles too.

The manufacturers of this amplifier, Power Acoustik, have earned a reputation for unsurpassed levels of craftsmanship. In addition, they have been leading the industry when it comes to technological innovations for more than 30 years.

Not surprisingly, the reputation of this company remains superlative when it comes to manufacturing mobile electronics that offer optimal value for money while suiting contemporary lifestyles to the ‘T’. This amp’s MOSFET power supply houses a robust PCB with PWM. Similarly, the internal circuitry remains safe from thermal hazards, direct shortages, and power surges. Four-gauge power wiring and eight-gauge speaker wire outputs provide a higher and stable flow of current.

In case your car features a factory stereo system, you could enhance its audio levels with the high-level speakers that accept the speaker signal and the low-level RCA inputs that accept the signal from the pre-amp outputs of the source unit.

With variable 12 dB high and low pass crossovers, this amp provides nice audio quality. In conjunction with its affordable price, it can be a must-buy for people looking for budget multi-channel amps.

Also Great 2-Channel

Lanzar VCT2610

Max Power Output: 6000W
RMS: 3000W x 2 output at 4 ohms
6000W x 1 bridged output at 2 ohms
Channels: 2

It would hardly be a surprise to know that many car audio enthusiasts know little, if at all, about Lanzar and its range of amps. Despite this, the Lanzar VCT2610 will not fail to catch your attention and win you over with its features.

Backed by power speakers and subwoofers, this amp offers a total power output of 6,000 watts. Its RMS power rating ranges from two to four ohms for 6000 and 3000 watts respectively.

With a frequency response range from 15 to 30,000 Hz and a signal-to-noise ratio of more than 95 dB, it becomes easy to see why this amp has caught the imagination of many people looking for quality amplifiers at affordable prices.

Given all the features the Lanzar VCT2610 offers optimal value for money. But, its large size and ordinary design place it below the Soundstream PN5.640D.

The size of the Lanzar VCT2610 remains relatively bigger at 10.63×21.97×1.78 inches (WxLxH). It features two 60 Amp Maxi-type fuses. The bridged power at an impedance of four ohms translates into a massive 8,000 watts.

The device features LED power and protect indicators. It utilizes a pulse width modulated MOSFET power supply. It has a soft start turn-on and its pre-amp RCA outputs to daisy chain multiple amps as well.

The Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) of this amplifier remains extremely low at 0.1 percent. And, installing this amp doesn’t present any difficulties either.

Smallest 2-Channel Option

JBL Stage A6002

RMS: 60Wx2 @ 4 Ohms
Channels: 2

The sound quality offered by a JBL product remains quite distinctive. Their diverse selection of amplifiers comes in a wide range of prices. In addition, these amps can be easy to install in almost all types of vehicles. Because of their reputation, many car audio enthusiasts do not think of looking for JBL amplifiers when they shop for new amps.

However, the JBL Stage A6002 can be right up to the alley for these individuals. This can be the case because this particular amplifier offers JBL’s superb sound quality with an entry-level price tag of under $100.

This relatively cheap two-channel amplifier offers a total power output of 280 watts. It can send 60 watts RMS to each of the two speakers, thereby enhancing the impact and the clarity of the music. Some people use this amp in the bridged one-channel mode as well. This enables them to power their subwoofers with up to 140 watts of RMS.

One interesting fact about this budget JBL amp remains that it can work with most systems and in almost all cars. Its compact size of 9.05×7.25×2 inches (WxLxH) and speaker-level inputs render this possible.

This amp relies on its separate high-pass and low-pass filters to maximize the audio system’s performance. Thus, you’ll be able to use the bass boost to make your subwoofer sound incredible.

Among other things, this amp features dual speaker terminals that simplify the process of hooking up multiple speakers. And, its heavy-duty aluminum alloy heat sink facilitates the dissipation of heat. These features make it a good investment for people on a budget.

Vincent Talbot

Last update on 2020-11-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API