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I start on the premise that a home system can be in optimal surroundings for room quality, room acoustics and reverb. time characteristics. That was the studio environment used mostly when the music was mastered (Garages excluded!) Sound in an auto is a huge challenge and compromise, with many conflicting and interfering sound sources. I've always thought you can only get the best car sound with free field speaker drive units mounted each side of a seat head rest, then when you adjust the seat, add pasengers or drivers change, the listening position doesn't change. Personally I now prefer in car sound to be less obtrusive so I can concentrate more on driving with less distractions and road idiots.

Amplifier power output is more important now because loudspeakers are made cheaper (but sold expensive), less sensitive and with lower impedance to improve cone damping. Compare the on axis sound output pressure level of a car speaker with the same size high quality room speaker. It's now cheaper to mass produce bigger amplifiers and less sensitive speakers. If you want more acoustic output from a small speaker you either have to increase its diameter, have more, or increase the distance of cone travel. Increasing driver power to compensate for lower sensitivity requires larger diameter higher current rated speech coils on the cone reducing its volume and increasing mass. With powerful neodymium magnets you can improve sensitivity for less power. But how many comparing speaker power specs look at acoustic efficiency? More cone travel is what you have to do in a car. Once you do this, low frequency distortion increases. Subs are a special case where an efficient ported enclosure design is more important than the driver put in it. LF distortion will be much higher, but is tolerated.

When manufacturers test their in car systems they may start with lab measurements and component specs, but ultimately it's not the quality or faithful rendition of sound which determines their final design, but the subjective opinions of drivers, their age profile, listening tastes and marketing. In car sound 'quality' is an individual choice. It doesn't mean everybody will like it, that all music will sound good, or as faithful as the artist intended as mixed in the studio.
 
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