Best Kenwood Amplifiers

John Kopischke
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If you’re looking for a high-quality, reliable and long-lasting car stereo system, you’re likely going to pay a pretty penny.

Instead of paying top dollar for a brand name stereo system, why not choose a stereo component by Kenwood? You know Kenwood is high quality, yet you also know they aren’t going to brand their products with celebrity endorsements. That’s just not them — they’re about delivering great, reliable products at a reasonable price.

Kenwood car stereo (or car stereo system) systems have been around for decades and remain one of the best stereo brands available. With dozens of available Kenwood car amplifiers and hundreds of options for those amplifiers, you may be overwhelmed with all of the possibilities.

NameCategoryProduct
Kenwood KAC-M3004 Compact 4 Channel Digital AmplifierBest OverallKenwood KAC-M3004 Compact 4 Channel Digital Amplifier
Kenwood KAC 5207 Stereo Power Amplifier 500 Watts MaxBudget PickKenwood KAC 5207 Stereo Power Amplifier 500 Watts Max
Kenwood 1177524 Compact Automotive/Marine Amplifier Class D Kac-M1824BTUpgrade PickKenwood 1177524 Compact Automotive/Marine Amplifier Class D Kac-M1824BT

1. Kenwood KAC-M3004 Compact 4 Channel Digital Amplifier

Our rating: 9 / 10

Kenwood KAC-M3004 Compact 4 Channel Digital Amplifier

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Pros:

  • This one cleans and has enough power to run an entire stereo system for a fraction of the cost of a CD player
  • This amplifier easily plugs into a vehicle's cigarette light and allows users to run speakers from CD, MP3 player or anything else capable of producing audio
  • It makes it easy to listen to tunes on the road

Cons:

  • This one does not support Bluetooth connectivity or any satellite radio or any other modern technology
  • The metal housing is not the most attractive, but it is constructed to provide years of use

With 50 x 4 Max Power, MOSFET Power Supply.

The Kenwood KAC-M3004 Compact 4 Channel Digital Amplifier with MOSFET Power Supply has 4 channels and 50 watts per channel, so it has plenty of power to run your entire stereo system.

This model is a basic amplifier, but it is sufficient for running speakers from a car CD player, MP3 player and anything else capable of producing audio. It plugs into the 12 volt car cigarette lighter, making it easy to listen to tunes on the road.

2. Kenwood Excelon X801-5 5-Channel Car Amplifier

Our rating: 8 / 10

Kenwood Excelon X801-5 5-Channel Car Amplifier

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If you’re looking for the best car amplifiers for your money, then Kenwood’s KAC-X801-5 series may be an excellent choice.

Indeed, you might think that the experience of listening to your favorite songs will be similar to the experience you make on your car with any cheap car amplifiers. But there is a huge difference between the two, and that’s the pure quality of it.

As a music lover and maybe someone who is used to listening to high-end stereo systems back home at home, you might know how important the quality and the power of music can be to your lifestyle.

3. Kenwood 1177524 Compact Automotive/Marine Amplifier Class D Kac-M1824BT

Our rating: 8 / 10

Kenwood 1177524 Compact Automotive/Marine Amplifier Class D Kac-M1824BT

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Pros:

  • Multiple control options
  • Has car stereo and marine level protection
  • Adjustable bass boost and low-pass filter
  • Huge power output
  • Switchable car stereo and marine level protection

Cons:

  • Small display screen
  • Doesn’t come with a subwoofer

Bluetooth, 200°F.

Kenwood’s model KAC-M1824BT is a stereo amplifier that is specifically designed for automotive use. This is basically automotive stereo in a box.

The KAC-M1824BT features a variety of ways to control it wirelessly or with a wired connection, as well as a variety of modes, making it a very versatile piece of equipment. For example, you can wirelessly connect this amp to your smartphone to control it and play music, stream Pandora, and even make hands-free calls through an included mic. You can also wirelessly connect it to a variety of media sources.

4. Kenwood KAC 5207 Stereo Power Amplifier 500 Watts Max

Our rating: 8 / 10

Kenwood KAC 5207 Stereo Power Amplifier 500 Watts Max

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Pros:

  • Low Power Consumption
  • Upgradeable
  • Durable
  • Can be used with Home Theater systems
  • Compact

Cons:

  • Power consumption
  • Operating voltage

The Kenwood KAC-5207 is a solid choice for many home audio buffs who want to pair it with other entertainment equipments like DVD players, radio or TV for a complete home theater experience.

This amplifier is created with Kenwood’s electronic amplifier technology and designed to be flexible enough for custom installations. It has an auto power cutoff feature that cuts power automatically when the speakers are no longer connected.

It has a maximum power output of 500watts and comes with brackets that can be easily mounted to a wall or placed on a shelf. It also has reinforced lower terminals on the back to protect the internal circuitry from unnecessary damage and looseness.

5. Kenwood KAC-M3001 600W Class D Monoblock Compact Digital Car/ATV/Marine Certified Amplifier

Our rating: 8 / 10

Kenwood KAC-M3001 600W Class D Monoblock Compact Digital Car/ATV/Marine Certified Amplifier

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Pros:

  • 600 watts of power = good for most vehicles
  • Comes with a remote control
  • Includes a system-on switch
  • Compact design tube/class D amps
  • Includes a subwoofer crossover
  • 4-channel input
  • Subwoofer output signal
  • Features an adjustable high voltage
  • Great for many types of music
  • Is compact enough to fit almost anywhere

Cons:

  • May not fit well in your vehicle if it doesn’t have enough room
  • Doesn’t include the installation kit

This Kenwood model was designed with the car enthusiast in mind.

6. Kenwood KAC-D8105 5 Channel 1600 Watts Max Power Amplifier

Our rating: 7 / 10

Kenwood KAC-D8105 5 Channel 1600 Watts Max Power Amplifier

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Pros:

  • 3D surround sound
  • 4 channels
  • 160 watts per channel RMS x 4 channels
  • Max Power: 126 Watt x 4 chanels
  • Dimensions: 10.25 L x 15.75 W x 2.25 H in.
  • Weighs 17.1 Ibs.

Cons:

  • Only two preamp outputs
  • No ETC (electronic time correction)
  • No selectable crossover
  • Some reports of hard to set gains with this amplifier

The Kenwood KAC-D8105 is one of the best 5 channel AMPs (1600 watts max power) on the market for the money. It outputs a powerful 1600 watts RMS x 5, giving you amplification that can handle any speaker you plan on using. The 4 channel functionality allows you to connect 4 different speakers in two different ways: running the front, rear, and subwoofer, front and subwoofer, and rear and subwoofer. This gives some pretty sweet options if you want to save money on a subwoofer purchase.

New in this amp are the added features such as 3D surround sound, 90w RMS x 2 rear, automatic turn on if you forget, 4 step bass boost, and variable low pass filters.

7. Kenwood KAC-D5101 1000 Watts Max Power Class D Mono Amplifier 2 Ohms RMS 500×1 Stable

Our rating: 6 / 10

Kenwood KAC-D5101 1000 Watts Max Power Class D Mono Amplifier 2 Ohms RMS 500x1 Stable

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Pros:

  • Two Outputs
  • Includes Phone Holder
  • All the Necessary Cables
  • Input Sensitivity (RCAs)
  • Included Adapter
  • Stable with 6 Gravity Magnets
  • Burned in

The Kenwood KAC-D51 is a 1000 Watt max power Class D Mono amplifier with 2 ohms RMS that is perfect for the bass head looking for a clean punch. It’s a very underrated amp for bass heads. It is very well known for being very clear with a smooth mid range and its ability to power multiple speakers with no problem. In addition, it’s quite efficient by taking up only a sliver of space.

It is so efficient that it will pass as a 500 watt amplifier by using it at 4 ohms or lower. It’s not going to blow you away with great sound quality but for the price it’s a great amplifier.

Design:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Which brand amplifier is best?

There are many manufacturers of amplifiers on the market today but if you asked around the majority of musicians would recommend a few brands as the best. Some of the best amplifiers in the world are made by Marshall, Fender, Peavey, and VOX. But this is not true across the board as many other high quality brands also exist.

What are the top 10 car amplifiers?

Do more powerful amplifiers sound better?

Yes, the more powerful your amp is, the better your sound will be. Unfortunately, this is not the whole truth. Something that goes hand-in-hand with increasing power is increasing distortion. If you increase your amplifier’s power without increasing its efficiency (power-to-sound ratio), all you will have is lots of distorted sound with very little true volume. This is because an amplifier will only go as far as its operational limits allow in terms of output voltage. You can only get more power simply by increasing the voltage running through an extremely efficient amplifier. Two amps of 50W might sound much different, even if they have the same voltage.

What is the most powerful car amplifier?

No way to tell… I’m just an engineer. I guess if you really wanted to do epic SPL you could use a couple Kenwoods on bridged mode, say a KAC-9106D in bridged mode, though not sure what you’d be driving it with… the most powerful Kenwood amp I’ve seen in a car was an old KA-20100D.

Conclusion

Is the amp on the back of your speaker getting a bit old? Maybe it’s time to put in a new one. If that is so the information on this website should help you do that. You can get replacement amps for all different sorts of speakers from here. Just find the right amp and you can keep rocking away.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Kenwood KAC-M3004 Compact 4 Channel Digital AmplifierBest OverallKenwood KAC-M3004 Compact 4 Channel Digital Amplifier
Kenwood KAC 5207 Stereo Power Amplifier 500 Watts MaxBudget PickKenwood KAC 5207 Stereo Power Amplifier 500 Watts Max
Kenwood 1177524 Compact Automotive/Marine Amplifier Class D Kac-M1824BTUpgrade PickKenwood 1177524 Compact Automotive/Marine Amplifier Class D Kac-M1824BT