Skar Audio Amp Reviews

Skar audio is a well-known manufacturer of automotive audio components like amplifiers, subwoofers, and speakers. The brand has left its mark by being ranked as one of the fastest growing companies in the US in 2019. Hence it is of no doubt that Skar is one of the most looked after brands for amplifiers. In this article, we will be reviewing some of Skars greatest offers in each amplifier series and comparing them for a better understanding.

SK-M Series

The Skar Audio SK-M series features ultra-compact amplifiers that do not sacrifice their power for their size.

Specifications
SK-M4004D
SK-M5001D
SK-M9005D
Product type
Class D Full-Range Four Channel Car Amplifier
Class D monoblock Subwoofer Car Amplifier
Class D Full-Range Five Channel Car Amplifier
Dimensions
7.9 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches
7.9 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches
12.4 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches
Frequency response
10Hz - 40kHz
15Hz - 270Hz
0Hz - 20kHz for CH 1-4 & 10Hz - 500Hz for CH 5
Working Voltage
8.5V - 16V
8.5V - 16V
8.5V - 16V
Signal to noise ratio
85dB
85 dB
85 dB
RMS power
@ 2 ohms, 140 Watts x 4 Channels @ 4 ohms, 100 Watts x 4 Channels @ 4 ohms, 270 Watts x 2 Channels
@ 1 ohm, 500 Watts x 1 Channel @ 2 ohms, 380 Watts x 1 Channel @ 4 ohms, 238 Watts x 1 Channel
@ 4 ohm, 55W x 4 Channels + 300W x 1 Channel @ 2 ohms, 85W x 4 Channels + 450W x 1 Channel @ 4 ohms, 170W x 2 Channels (bridged)
Power & Ground Input Size
8 gauge
8 gauge
8 gauge
Low Level Input (Gain)
8V - 0.2V
8V - 0.2V
8V - 0.2V
Damping factor
100<
100<
100<
Fuse Rating
40 Amps
50 Amps
80 Amps
Low pass filter
20-200 Hz
-
50-500 Hz
Subsonic filter
10-50 Hz
-
-
Specifications
SK-M4004D
Product type
Class D Full-Range Four Channel Car Amplifier
Dimensions
7.9 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches
Frequency response
10Hz - 40kHz
Working Voltage
8.5V - 16V
Signal to noise ratio
85dB
RMS power
@ 2 ohms, 140 Watts x 4 Channels @ 4 ohms, 100 Watts x 4 Channels @ 4 ohms, 270 Watts x 2 Channels
Power & Ground Input Size
8 gauge
Low Level Input (Gain)
8V - 0.2V
Damping factor
100<
Fuse Rating
40 Amps
Low pass filter
20-200 Hz
Subsonic filter
10-50 Hz
Specifications
SK-M5001D
Product type
Class D monoblock Subwoofer Car Amplifier
Dimensions
7.9 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches
Frequency response
15Hz - 270Hz
Working Voltage
8.5V - 16V
Signal to noise ratio
85 dB
RMS power
@ 1 ohm, 500 Watts x 1 Channel @ 2 ohms, 380 Watts x 1 Channel @ 4 ohms, 238 Watts x 1 Channel
Power & Ground Input Size
8 gauge
Low Level Input (Gain)
8V - 0.2V
Damping factor
100<
Fuse Rating
50 Amps
Low pass filter
-
Subsonic filter
-
Specifications
SK-M9005D
Product type
Class D Full-Range Five Channel Car Amplifier
Dimensions
12.4 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches
Frequency response
0Hz - 20kHz for CH 1-4 & 10Hz - 500Hz for CH 5
Working Voltage
8.5V - 16V
Signal to noise ratio
85 dB
RMS power
@ 4 ohm, 55W x 4 Channels + 300W x 1 Channel @ 2 ohms, 85W x 4 Channels + 450W x 1 Channel @ 4 ohms, 170W x 2 Channels (bridged)
Power & Ground Input Size
8 gauge
Low Level Input (Gain)
8V - 0.2V
Damping factor
100<
Fuse Rating
80 Amps
Low pass filter
50-500 Hz
Subsonic filter
-

SK M4004D

Reasons to buy

Compact full range digital circuit with tons of power

Versatile connections

Reasons to avoid

Sets to protection mode with the gain increased

The SK M4004D is a full range class D four channel car amplifier that has a compact design but is fueled with unthinkable power. The design of the car amplifier includes a full range digital circuit and a high speed MOFSET power supply. SK M4004D incorporates a 4-way protection circuit with high purity copper printed boards and 4-gauge power and ground terminals. The design also includes a variable subsonic filter and a handmade high grade power supply.

SK M4004D includes input connections which are compatible for installations that do not include RCA connection. The controls in the amp include RCA jack input and HI input connectivity. There is a gain control which is used to adjust the gain level to match the signal level of different head levels. The LED power and protection indicators help to indicate the status of the amplifier. Overall, the amplifier is very versatile and packed with power when it comes to audio performance.

SK-M5001D

Reasons to buy

  • Efficient and compact design that is easy to install
  • Deep and dynamic sound with plenty of output
  • Easily delivers rated power

Reasons to avoid

  • Can overheat with long usage

The SK-M5001D is a Class D monoblock Subwoofer Car Amplifier with an efficient design for effective audio amplification. The amplifier features a compact design, with dimensions of 7.9 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches, adding to the versatility and usefulness of the device. Like the SK M4004D, the M5001D also includes a high functioning MOFSET power supply, 4-way protection circuit, 4-gauge power and ground terminals that help to drive the amplifier. An additional or new feature in the design of this amplifier is the 24dB/Oct, Variable Crossover.

To connect the factory system’s head unit, there is a HI input at the back of the device. There are also RCA jack input and gain control for connectivity. There is also a remote control port. The subsonic filter is used to control high pass point for speaker terminals to eliminate low frequencies. With the Linkwitz-Riley low pass crossover, low frequencies can be amplified.

SK-M9005D

Reasons to buy

  • Powerful amplifier
  • Designed for less heat dissipation
  • Compact size allows it to fit anywhere
  • Offers great sound with little distortion

Reasons to avoid

  • Remote bass control knob uses headphone style jack
  • Speaker output uses small plug instead of terminals

The SK-M9005D is a full class D full range five channel car amplifier that delivers promising results with its versatile, compact design. The premium built amplifier has dimensions of 12.4 x 4.6 x 1.7 inches and is a little larger than the previous models SK series. M9005D is designed to ensure that less power is used for maximum output and unlike traditional amplifier designs, this amp generates little to less heat.  It also incorporates a high speed MOFSET power supply along with all the other features included in the previous models.

The system includes an RCA jack input which can be used to plug in the cables from the head unit. The gain control can be used to adjust the signal level of the different head units at 6V to 0.2 V. The architecture of the amplifier further incorporates a Linkwitz-Riley crossover with a steep 12 dB oct slope which results in the highest and lowest frequencies being produced. This is paired with a crossover selector switch and also a bass boost which enhances the bass from 0 ~ 18dB @45Hz.

RP Series

The RP series are the most popular line of amplifiers produced by Skar Audio because of their reliable and powerful audio performance.

Features
RP-350.1D
RP-1200.1D
RP-2000.1D
Product type
Class D Monoblock Subwoofer Amplifier
Class D Monoblock Subwoofer Amplifier
Class D Monoblock Subwoofer Amplifier
Dimensions
6.23 x 6.3 x 2.2 inches
11.875 x 6.1875 x 2.25 inches
17.75 x 6.25 x 2.25 inches
Frequency response
20Hz - 250Hz
20Hz - 250Hz
20Hz - 250Hz
Working Voltage
8.5V - 14.4V
8.5V - 14.4V
8.5V - 14.4V
Signal to noise ratio
85 dB
85dB
85dB
RMS power
@ 1 ohm, 350 Watts x 1 Channel @ 2 Ohms, 250 Watts x 1 channel @4 Ohms, 150 Watts x 1 channel @ 1 Ohm, 388 Watts x 1 channel
@ 2 Ohms: 800 Watts x 1 Channel @ 4 Ohms: 500 Watts x 1 Channel @1 Ohm: 1,200 Watts x 1 Channel @ 1 Ohm: 1,600 Watts x 1 Channel
@ 2 Ohms: 1,400 Watts x 1 Channel @ 4 Ohms: 800 Watts x 1 Channel @ 1 Ohm: 2,000 Watts x 1 Channel @ 1 Ohm: 2,800 Watts x 1 Channel
Damping factor
150<
150<
150<
Fuse Rating
30 Amp
100 Amp
200 Amp
Low pass filter
50Hz - 220Hz
50Hz - 220Hz
50Hz - 220Hz
Subsonic filter
Off - 50Hz
Off - 50Hz
Off - 50Hz
Bass EQ switch
0, +6dB, +12dB
0, +6dB, +12dB
0, +6dB, +12dB
Features
RP-350.1D
Product type
Class D Monoblock Subwoofer Amplifier
Dimensions
6.23 x 6.3 x 2.2 inches
Frequency response
20Hz - 250Hz
Working Voltage
8.5V - 14.4V
Signal to noise ratio
85 dB
RMS power
@ 1 ohm, 350 Watts x 1 Channel @ 2 Ohms, 250 Watts x 1 channel @4 Ohms, 150 Watts x 1 channel @ 1 Ohm, 388 Watts x 1 channel
Damping factor
150<
Fuse Rating
30 Amp
Low pass filter
50Hz - 220Hz
Subsonic filter
Off - 50Hz
Bass EQ switch
0, +6dB, +12dB
Features
RP-1200.1D
Product type
Class D Monoblock Subwoofer Amplifier
Dimensions
11.875 x 6.1875 x 2.25 inches
Frequency response
20Hz - 250Hz
Working Voltage
8.5V - 14.4V
Signal to noise ratio
85dB
RMS power
@ 2 Ohms: 800 Watts x 1 Channel @ 4 Ohms: 500 Watts x 1 Channel @1 Ohm: 1,200 Watts x 1 Channel @ 1 Ohm: 1,600 Watts x 1 Channel
Damping factor
150<
Fuse Rating
100 Amp
Low pass filter
50Hz - 220Hz
Subsonic filter
Off - 50Hz
Bass EQ switch
0, +6dB, +12dB
Features
RP-2000.1D
Product type
Class D Monoblock Subwoofer Amplifier
Dimensions
17.75 x 6.25 x 2.25 inches
Frequency response
20Hz - 250Hz
Working Voltage
8.5V - 14.4V
Signal to noise ratio
85dB
RMS power
@ 2 Ohms: 1,400 Watts x 1 Channel @ 4 Ohms: 800 Watts x 1 Channel @ 1 Ohm: 2,000 Watts x 1 Channel @ 1 Ohm: 2,800 Watts x 1 Channel
Damping factor
150<
Fuse Rating
200 Amp
Low pass filter
50Hz - 220Hz
Subsonic filter
Off - 50Hz
Bass EQ switch
0, +6dB, +12dB

RP-350.1D

Reasons to buy

  • Designed with wide array premium internal components for maximum output
  • Clear audio amplification with little distortion

Reasons to avoid

  • Fuses blow out frequently

The RP-350.1D is a 350 Watt monoblock class D subwoofer amplifier high in power and performance. The RP-350.1D is the smallest amplifier in the RP series but don’t let it fool you, because it can deliver audio with much power to leave you surprised. The design of the amplifier includes an advanced PCB board layout. The amplifier is made up of reliable and premium components and it incorporates a high speed MOFSET power supply.

The system includes a 4-way circuitry designed with protection against any damage to the amplifier from overheating or electrical shortage. The 4-gauge power and ground terminals ensures smooth current flow for maximum output and efficiency. It also features a built-in user control panel that includes adjustments for gain level, low-pass filter, and subsonic filter, along with a bass EQ switch. There is also a remote bass knob which helps to control subwoofer bass level while the user sits in the car.

RP-1200.1D

Reasons to buy

  • Designed for less heat dissipation
  • Clean bass output
  • Adjustable EQ

Reasons to avoid

  • Can be underwhelming for bass heavy music

The RP-1200.1D is a one-ohm stable car subwoofer amplifier that is designed to stand out with its effective power output. One of the most popular and affordable models of the RP series, this amplifier is able to deliver 1,200 watts RMS power at a 1-ohm load. As seen with other models, the RP-1200.1D also includes MOFSET power supply and a 4-way protection circuitry. Similar components have been incorporated in building the crossover board and 4-gauge power and ground terminals.

At the back of the amplifier, there are adjustment knobs for gain, subsonic, bass EQ, remote, LPF and phase. The remote subwoofer bass allows the listener to adjust EQ levels from the car itself. There is also an RCA input connection port for connecting the cable to the amplifier.

RP-2000.1D

Reasons to buy

  • Good build quality
  • Powerful audio output
  • Oversized terminals for maximum output and efficient response

Reasons to avoid

  • Cannot work well with cheap speakers

The RP-2000.1D is an effective class D monoblock subwoofer amplifier that is capable of delivering around 1200 watts of powerful audio amplification. The design includes a thick metal outer shell which protects the circuits inside. The amplifier is also made more efficient by adding built-in heatsinks which help to keep the amplifier from overheating and allowing for efficient processing of the audio. The PCB board, 4-way protection circuitry and MOFSET power supply is also incorporated in this design. For control, the bass knob is also present in this design like the RP series predecessors.

One additional feature that is present in the RP-2000.1D is the oversized 1/0-gauge power and ground terminals. They have been designed to be oversized so as to allow maximum current to flow and thus result in efficient operation. The amplifier also includes various adjustments tunings for gain level, subsonic filter and low pass filter.

RP-4500.1D

Reasons to buy

  • Efficient design with premium build quality
  • Power output
  • Compact for easy installment

Reasons to avoid

  • No fuses inside or outside amp

The RP-4500.1D is the most recent amplifier in the Skar Audio RP series, with updated features and better audio amplification capacity. With high quality and efficient design, these speakers are able to deliver a powerful audio response. The amplifier is 1-ohm stable and it has a high speed MOFSET power supply and a soft turn on circuit. The interior of the amplifier is made up of advanced PCB board which gives it the ability to deliver power smoothly. RP-4500.1D is able to deliver maximum 7000 watts of power, making it suitable for big cars and blasting music.

The device incorporates a control panel which allows the user to control features such as gain control, bass EQ, low pass filter, phase filter and subsonic filter and also a separate bass knob. RP-4500.1D, unlike the previous RP models, includes both RCA input and output RCA connections. The amplifier is strappable and it includes an output master/slave input switch.

SKV2 Series

The Skar SKV2 series are made to provide high levels of power output with maximum efficiency.

SKV2-200.4D

Reasons to buy

  • Heavy Duty Advanced Heatsink Design
  • User Adjustable Variable High and Low Pass Filters
  • Plenty of power and clean sound

Reasons to avoid

  • Goes into protect mode

The SKV2-200.4D has a class D circuitry design which uses high quality components for maximum efficiency in output. The design features advanced engineering which allows the amplifier to fuel an entire vehicles audio system with power. The design of the amplifier also incorporates a heatsink which allows it to cool it down and avoid excessive heating. The 4-way protection circuity has the function of keeping the amplifier protected from any damage.

The amplifier includes an RCA input jack and output jack. The control panel includes a number of features. There is the high-pass filter with x1-x10 switch and a low-pass filter with x1-x10 switch, Switches for gain control and subsonic filter are also seen in the control panel. A Linkwitz-Riley low pass crossover feature is also present and crossover selector switch can be used to multiply the crossover range. Apart from this, there is also a remote control port. The amplifier is able to produce more than 1600 watts of power.

SKV2-1500.1D

Reasons to buy

  • Heavy Duty Advanced Heatsink Design
  • Impressive power and reliability
  • Great performance at a good price

Reasons to avoid

  • Bass knob doesn’t work sometimes

The Skar SKV2-1500.1D is a competition grade SPL Class D Monoblock MOSFET Car Power Amplifier. It includes an advanced sink design for maximum heat dissipation. The amplifier is capable of producing more than 2200 watts of power. The high quality engineering and design of these amplifiers is reflected in their performance.

To find the control panel you will have to check the sides of the amplifier. Versatility is a major feature of the SKV2-1500.1D since it incorporates so many different connectivity ports and control buttons. Both RCA inputs and outputs can be seen in the control panel and this is very useful since it allows the user to daisy chain multiple amplifiers together. Remote bass knob and wire is also included in the amplifier. Apart from the usual controls for gains and filters, there is an LED power indicator in the control panel.

SKV2-3500.1D

Reasons to buy

  • 1/0 Gauge Power And Ground Input Terminals for Maximum Current Flow
  • Remote subwoofer level control is included

Reasons to avoid

  • Not that effective for bass heavy music

The SKV2-3500.1D is monoblock class D subwoofer amplifier that utilizes premium components into a total integrated package of power and excellence. Skar uses a 4-way protection circuitry design for most of its products, which combines thermal, voltage, speaker and DC in a safe setting, protected from internal damage. The famous heatsink design is also found in the SKV2 amp which allows it to remain cool when it functions.

When it comes to controls, there are plenty in the SKV2-3500.1D amplifier. There are tunings for gain level, subsonic filter, bass boost, low-pass filter, and phase control. There is also RCA inputs and outputs found in the control panel. The amplifier is capable of producing maximum 4700 watts of power.

SKV2-4500.1D

Reasons to buy

  • Effective 4-way protection circuitry design
  • Lots of connectivity and adjustments options
  • Loud and clear audio

Reasons to avoid

  • The amps do not last long

The SKV2-4500.1D is the latest of amplifiers in the SV series. The design features a digital monoblock control into a convenient and integrated system. It incorporates a 4-way protection circuitry and is capable of delivering up to 4,500 watts RMS power.

At the side of the amplifier is the control panel which includes switches and input output terminals. The RCA low level input accepts signals from the output of the head units while the RCA jack output is used to feed a secondary full range amplifier in the system. A power and protection LED light shows the status of the amplifier- green lit means its operating smoothly whilst red light indicates malfunction. Apart from gain control, subsonic filter and low pass filter, there is a bass boost which adjusts upto 9 dB additional gain. The adjustable phase control can be used to fine tune bass response. There is also an output master/input slave connection.

Marine amplifiers

The Marine amplifier series of Skar Audio have been designed to survive in the harshest marine environments.

RP-150.4ABM

Reasons to buy

  • Fully marinized design with waterproof coating for protection
  • Versatile user adjustable controls
  • Easy installation

Reasons to avoid

  • Amp may blow out

The RP-150.4ABM is a Class A/B 4-Channel Multichannel marine amplifier that has a versatile compact design for effective functioning. The amplifier is composed of stainless steel hardware. It’s circuit board is fully marinized with waterproof coating and its mechanical case has rust proof painting on its surface. Like other skar amps, the RP-150.4ABM includes a high speed MOFSET power supply, with Soft Turn on circuit.

At one side of the amplifier is the control panel which incorporates switches for adjustable gain, crossover, high pass filter, low pass filter and bass EQ. A powerful cooling fan is mounted on the inside of the backplate to keep the unit cool at high temperatures and avoid overheating. There are RCA inputs and a remote turn on input. The amp also features a 4-Way Protection Circuitry along with 4 Gauge Power & Ground Input Terminals which ensures maximum flow of current.

RP-1500.1DM

Reasons to buy

  • High quality amplifier with durable design
  • Capable of producing power upto 2300 watts
  • Versatile connections

Reasons to avoid

  • Goes into protect mode

The RP 1500.1DM is an efficient and well-built Class D Monoblock Subwoofer Amplifier. Its design integrates an advanced marine grade PCB board layout with the MOFSET power supply. The amplifier is capable of reaching a power output above 2300 watts. It has a highly efficient design thanks to the heatsink property, allowing it to ensure prevention of overheating.

The control panel includes a bass EQ switch (0, +6, +12dB) and other features such as adjustment gains, low pass filter adjustments, subsonic filter adjustments that are found in the other amplifiers. It also includes RCA inputs for versatile connectivity.

What to look for before getting an amplifier?

Here are some of the things that you should be looking out for before getting an amplifier.

Amplifier classification

Amplifiers involve four classifications: A, B, AB and D. But what do these mean? This classification indicates the total harmonic distortion of the amplifier. A lower total harmonic distortion means that the original sound can be replicated and amplified. Whilst Class A amplifiers have the lowest THD, they are very less efficient. Class D is the most efficient but the sound quality is compromised. Nevertheless, Class AB would give you the best of both worlds- a perfect balance between efficiency and quality.

Wattage or power output

The power output is an indication of how loud the amplifier will be able to produce the sound. If you are someone who is planning to use amplifier at home in a tiny space, then any power rating between 20 watts and 50 watts would be enough. However, if you are looking to fill up a large space, you should look for amps with bigger power rating or wattage.

Signal to noise ratio

The signal to noise ratio compares the level of a desired signal to the level of background noise. So, the main idea is to make sure that the background level is kept at a minimum, meaning that more of what the amplifier is producing is heard. Hence the bigger the signal to noise ratio, the better is the functioning of the amplifier.

Number of channels

Here, you have to keep in mind two terms- monoblock and stereo amplifiers. A monoblock amplifier is one that includes a single channel. Stereo channels on the other hand, include more than one channel.

Input connections

It is always useful to ensure that the amplifier allows you to connect everything that you need to. Hence you should look out for input connections. Usually it is advised to look for RCA cables and optical cable connectivity options.

Crosstalk

Crosstalk is an indication of how much undesirable left signal is mixing with the right output and vice versa. A bigger crosstalk value would mean that it is difficult to separate the instrument with the vocals in your favorite song. Thus for greater stereo separation, it is wise to go for lower crosstalk.

Size of amplifier

This is quite obvious. If you are getting an amplifier, say, for your car, you must ensure that it fits inside your vehicle. You might think that smaller amplifiers mean less power but that is definitely not the case. Infact many small amplifiers can be quite powerful.

Amplifier wiring

The type and size of wire used in amplifiers is an important feature as well. Usually, OFC cables, oxygen free copper cables are more favorable than copper clad aluminum cables. The standard size for wiring is 4 gauge.

Speaker Specifications

In order to sync the amplifier to the speaker, it is necessary to know the speaker specifications. Some of the specifications that you can look out for is the sensitivity and impedance. If a speaker has a low sensitivity rating, then it is advised to use an amplifier to make it sound louder. Similarly, if a speaker has an impedance rating lower than 4 ohms, then a high current amplifier would be good pair.

Headroom

Headroom is known as the difference between the normal operating level of an amplifier and the maximum level that the amp can pass without distorting. Hence it is beneficial to look for more headroom in the amplifier.

Conclusion

Skar Audio is one of the most competitively priced brands of amplifiers. As seen from the review, most of the amplifier models in each series are quite similar with subtle changes. Nevertheless, the amplifiers sound great for the price that they offer.