JL Audio W1 vs Kicker CompVR: Subwoofer Comparison | ClassicCarStereos.com
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JL Audio W1 vs Kicker CompVR Subwoofer

JL Audio W1 vs Kicker CompVR Subwoofer


JL Audio W1

The JL Audio W1 series subwoofers offer value in the mid-power subwoofer market. These subwoofers use many of the same patented technologies as the other JL Audio premium subwoofers and are super reliable while limiting distortion.

Kicker CompVR

The Kicker CompVR subwoofer line is the most popular among all of the Kicker subwoofers. The Kicker CompVR has been around forever and is a benchmark for performance among car audio subwoofers.

Sizes

The JL Audio W1 series has subwoofer models in the 8", 10", and 12" sizes. The Kicker CompVR series comes in a 10", 12", and 15" model. These two lineups stack up against each other in 2 of the sizes available while the W1 series offers a smaller 8" model for versatility with smaller installations and the CompVR series offers a larger 15" model for versatility in larger installations.

Voice Coils

All models of the JL Audio W1 series feature single coil construction, but feature a 4-ohm 8" model, with both 2-ohm and 4-ohm options in the 10" and 12" models. The Kicker CompVR series come with a dual voice coil in both 2-ohm or 4-ohm configurations across all of the models. There's a wide variety of choices here between ohms and sub sizing. There's plenty of options between both lineups when you're planning your installation.

Power Handling

The W1 series features RMS power handling at 300 watts in the 10" and 12" models with the 8" model coming in at 150 watts. The Kicker CompVR series features RMS power handling at both 2 and 4-ohms in the 350-500 watt range across its models. For comparably sized subwoofers, we do see better power handling from the CompVR series.

Mounting Depth

When comparing similarly sized subwoofers in both lineups, we do see a shallower top-mounting depth from the JL Audio W1 lineup when compared to the Kicker CompVR line. In installations requiring as much space-saving design as possible, the JL Audio W1 line would be a great place to start when comparing similarly sized models.

Recommended Enclosure Size

Both manufacturers offer recommended enclosure sizing for both sealed and ported enclosures for the JL Audio W1 and CompVR lines of subwoofers. Between comparably sized models of subs, both have recommended enclosure sizes in sealed and ported dimensions with the JL Audio W1 lineup offering lower overall recommendations compared to the high-end recommendations of the Kicker CompVR models. Be sure to look at the specifics at each size when planning what will work best for your installation.

Recommended Amplifiers

The recommended amplifier for your subwoofers will vary greatly depending on the size and quantity of subwoofers you select for your installation. The following lists are comparisons between amplifiers for subwoofers in the same dimensions between the different models. The list begins with a factory recommendation for amps that provide enough power handling for the subwoofer(s), and then move on to our professional recommendations that may vary slightly from the factory recommendations. These Classic Car Stereo recommendations may be an amp with a higher price point that will service the subs better, or an amp that provides RMS power handling over the recommended amount which will allow you to not have to maximize the output on your amp to provide full power to your subs.

Sub: (Qty 1) JL Audio W1 10"

  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): JD250/1
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: JD250/1

    Sub: (Qty 1) Kicker CompVR 10"
  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): 2 or 4-ohm DVC KEY500.1, CXA400.1, or KXA400.1
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: KEY500.1 or CXA400.1

    Sub: (Qty 2) JL Audio W1 10"
  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): 4-ohm JD500/1, RD500/1, or XD600/1
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: JD or RD 500/1 (Our recommendation here depends on your available budget for your install)

    Sub: (Qty 2) Kicker CompVR 10"
  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): 2 or 4-ohm DVC CXA800.1 or KXA800.1.
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: CXA800.1

    Sub: (Qty 1) JL Audio W1 12"
  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): 2-ohm JD250/1, JD500/1, or RD500/1
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: JD or RD 500/1 (Our recommendation here depends on your available budget for your install)

    Sub: (Qty 1) Kicker CompVR 12"
  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): 2-ohm KEY500.1, CXA400.1, or KXA400.1
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: KEY500.1

    Sub: (Qty 2) JL Audio W1 12"
  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): 4-ohm JD500/1, RD500/1, or XD600/1
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: JD or RD 500/1 (Our recommendation here depends on your available budget for your install)

    Sub: (Qty 2) Kicker CompVR 12"
  • Factory Amp Recommendation(s): 4-ohm DVC CXA800.1 or KXA800.1
  • Classic Car Stereo Recommendation: CXA800.1

    Price Points

    The price point for the JL Audio W1 models is higher than the Kicker CompVR models. There is value in the upgraded materials and construction in the JL Audio W1 series. With many similar specifications between the two series, there's also considerable value wrapped up in the Kicker CompVR series of subs. The final decision on cost should depend on the entire scope of your install project and if the money is available for the upgraded JL Audio W1 lineup of subs.

    In Conclusion

    The Kicker CompVR is hard to beat in comparison here in terms of overall value. With similar available sizing, at comparable sizes, the CompVR offers better RMS power handling at a better price. JL Audio die-hards will find value in the JL Audio W1 series construction and reliability. For the money, it's hard to pick against the Kicker CompVR series in this comparison.

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