A customer asked us, “What is the difference between a 2-way and a 3-way speaker?” and we said...
Among popular types of speaker systems, 2-way and 3-way speakers are the most common ones in the AV landscape. Both of them have various degrees of sound waves, from highs to lows that can result in more precise and fuller sound experiences. However, speakers belonging to each category are equipped with a unique set of features. Let’s get into the details.
What are 2-way and 3-way speakers?
(We might sound a little obvious here but we are simplifying the concept for beginners) A 2-way loudspeaker has two speakers in it, each of them is meant to provide a separate frequency selection, usually high and low. Whereas, if the conversation is about a 3- way loudspeaker, it contains three speakers, wherein each loudspeaker is meant to deliver separate frequency ranges; high, mid-range and low. This gives you a basic idea about the audio spectrum that each category offers.
A 2-way speaker has two types of drivers which are known as a woofer and tweeter. The woofer is a speaker built exclusively for low-frequency sounds, while the tweeter is designed for high-frequency sounds. A 3-way speaker generates sound from three individual devices known as the mid-range, woofer and tweeter drivers. Each of these owns its specific efficiency in a wide range of sound frequencies. Due to the ability to get optimized to run in a certain range, this type of speaker can produce much clearer, fuller, and more precise sound than ever! Are you getting a little hint of what suits your needs? Not much? Okay, we have some more meat for you!
Which way to go? 2-way or 3-way?
It is very natural for a human mind to suspect that, since a 3-way speaker has an extra speaker involved, it’s more probable to sound better than a 2-way system. But, let us fill you in on a secret. The reality is – it depends. Although it makes sense that splitting up the job between three instead of two speakers should provide better sound reproduction, you have to take into account several other factors.
You need to consider:
- How well the crossover is set up? (Note: In order to split the audible frequency range between different speakers, crossovers are used. An optimal crossover setup contributes a lot to the overall sound quality)
- What is the quality of the components that are involved?
- What is the design of the cabinet and how are the speakers matched to each other?
There have been times where a high-quality 2-way system has completely outperformed a mediocre 3-way system. This is one of the major reasons why we would like you to consider the application you will be using them on.
For more details on how 3-way speakers are different than 2-way speakers, we’ve got a video for you
Major differences between the 2-way and 3-way speakers
If you opt to go ahead with 2-way speakers, you are in for some balanced sound (which feels really beautiful by the way!). We’ve got customers telling us that a balanced sound is like an organic and lively one due to the balance between one tweeter and another woofer driver. It’s made for music with less bass. If you’re a lover of lower bass music, your confusion ends right here! We already told you it sounds soothing, didn’t we? And if it makes any difference to you, these are far easier to install as they usually come with fewer cables to be connected.
If rock, R&B and similar kinds of music excite your soul, then you should probably hurry to get a 3-way speaker. It is designed specifically to aim at the lows as precisely as possible. An added advantage in case of 3-way speakers is its capability to offer customisation options. You can easily customize the entire frequency filter as needed to make your speaker sound like YOU!
So which way are you going?
Before reading this post, you were wondering what exactly 2-way and 3-way speakers are. Now that you know the answer, you are aware that selecting between these types of speakers is just a matter of one’s preference!
For instance, if you’re fond of music with less bass, a couple of 2-way speakers is the best deal! On the other hand, if the bass helps you make all way through every day, we recommend going ahead with 3-way speakers. Well, the final choice is yours, so we advise you to consider every aspect, starting from your budget to your specifications regarding the acoustic demands. Get the one that serves you best.