PROS / The frequency accuracy grades were the highest in our tests.
CONS / The continuous power handling is a low 80 RMS watts.
VERDICT / The Pioneer D-Series are among the best car speakers, because it provides high-end audio quality and loudness, though the continuous power handling is a bit below average.
The D-Series is Pioneer's high-end car speakers. Each speaker in the series has a woofer made of a basalt fiber interwoven with aramid fiber, which provides an exceptionally rigid and stable woofer, especially after long periods of playback. The quality of the woofer is reflected in the incredibly accurate frequencies and very good audio quality overall. In our comparative loudness tests, it proved to be very loud despite a low sensitivity rating. And while the continuous power handling is below average, the peak power handling is excellent. For these reasons, the Pioneer D-Series earns the Top Ten Reviews Bronze Award for best car speaker.
The D-Series has many speaker sizes but lacks the 5 x 7-, 4 x 6- and 3.5-inch speakers. We reviewed and evaluated the 6 x 9-inch speaker – the TS-D6902R. We found that the 6 x 9-inch speaker was the best reflection of a speaker series' overall quality. It's important though that you measure the speaker installations in your vehicle before purchasing any speakers.
To determine the audio quality of the best 6 x 9-inch speakers in each series, we performed frequency accuracy tests and subjective ear tests. In the frequency accuracy tests, we recorded the speaker as it played a tone that transitioned from 20Hz to 20kHz. Then we analyzed the frequency signature and graded the low, mid and high range frequencies. In these tests, the TS-D6902R had the best overall grades. It received an A for the low and midrange frequencies and an A- for the high frequencies. When it comes to reproducing an audio signal accurately, this is the best car speaker in our review.
In the subjective ear tests, where we had listeners rate the speaker as it played various songs, it was also among the highest-rated car speakers, giving it a very good overall audio quality score. The one minor downside is the lack of user reviews. While the user reviews are generally glowing, there are very few of them, which is likely because these are more expensive speakers than most coaxial car speakers on the market.
One of the best ways to determine how well a car speaker handles power is to measure how it converts electricity to volume. To do this, we performed a comparative loudness test similar to the sensitivity measurements performed by manufacturers. We measured the decibel level at 1 meter that each speaker produced when the volume setting on the amplifier was equal. And in this test, the Pioneer TS-D6902R was very loud – about 1.5 decibels quieter than the loudest measurement taken. This made it one of the most efficient car speakers in our review, despite the low 90-dB sensitivity rating reported by the manufacturer.
The one downside is the low continuous power-handling rating of 80 RMS watts, which is 30 watts below average. However, this downside is minimized by the excellent comparative loudness results, because the speaker requires less power for loud volumes than most car speakers require. Also, the peak power handling is 360 watts, which is about 15 watts above average. So it gives you plenty of breathing room for the spikes in the audio.
Speaker Design Options
The Pioneer D-Series features just two-way coaxial speakers and component car speakers. The two-way speakers consist of just two drivers: a woofer and a tweeter. Many car speaker series have three-way, four-way and five way coaxial car speakers. Each of these speakers consist of a woofer, a midrange tweeter and multiple super-tweeters. However, the D-Series tweeter is exceptional, as shown in the frequency accuracy tests, so having the option to add multiple tweeters is unnecessary. In addition, the tweeter is adjustable, so you can aim it for the optimal listening experience for your vehicle.
Help & Support
Every speaker that Pioneer makes comes with a full one-year warranty and a 30-day return policy. This gives you the opportunity to test the speaker. If you have any issues or questions, you can contact customer support by phone or email. You can also check out the FAQs page for quick answers to common questions. The only missing support feature, which we deemed important, was a user forum. Car audio can be complicated, and it helps to be able to consult other users about questions that you have.
The Pioneer D series is one of the best car speaker series in our review. The high-end woofer and tweeter provide exceptionally accurate frequency responses, and the overall audio quality is very good. The 6 x 9-inch speaker proved to be among the loudest in our comparative loudness tests, which is good, because the continuous power-handling rating is below average. These speakers provide an exceptional upgrade over any factory-installed speakers.