In any industry the word “budget” is never a good thing. Most companies, in all industries, have levels of products ranging in price points. This is obviously a way to try and get the brand into the hands of as many people possible, across all financial demographics. The budget line is almost always an under performer at a low price and normally the brand name is the selling point for the customer and not the actual performance. Car Audio is no different when it comes to budget lines. Almost every company has an entry level line that most of us in the industry wouldn’t piss on them if they were on fire. So, when Genius asked me to test the Genius GTM Amplifier line they didn’t tell me they were the budget line. I figured it out by looking at the pricing and then the rated power output which instantly told me these were going to be overrated and manufactured to be as basic as possible. After realizing this I wasn’t really excited about testing them due to not wanting to be a “Negative Nancy” and give a brand an honest review that is bad for them so I tried to talk them out of it. The owner, Mr. Alberto stuck to his guns and said that they were solid amps and would perform and do so at that price point. I agreed with hesitation to do the review and waited for the amps to show up.
Amps are delivered…….First opinion
So, the amps are delivered and my first impression was that I did not like the boxes. The marketing on the front said “compact” in a weird yellow font, but based on the box I would not consider this a compact amplifier. It also had “Max Power” ratings on the front, which I can say that everyone in the industry hates, that since it’s always basically the rated power multiplied by two and doesn’t really mean anything and is borderline false advertising. So right off the bat I’m not ready to be impressed with these amps. I open the box and remove the 1500.1 from its box and think to myself that it reminds me of an amp from the early 2000’s. Its silver aluminum and square with some ribs running down the chassis. Very basic but not ugly, just functional. I also noticed it had end caps to hide the wiring which I thought was odd since it’s an entry level amp that’s normally not an extra feature you would see. The end caps are held on by 4 tiny Phillips-head screws set back about an inch and a half so you will need a long skinny screwdriver. I knew as soon as I seen those screws that it would be a pain in the ass to put the bottom screws back in once the amp is mounted. I tested the theory and I was right, I guarantee if you check any of these amps installed those two screws will be missing. It didn’t prove to be a problem though because the end caps also sort of lock into the ribs on the chassis so really there is no need for those screws. Looking at the connectors I was happy to see Phillips-head screw downs for the power and speaker connectors. The RCA were basic style and not the Tiffany style like on their higher end amps. The amps also had the basic gain control and crossovers. The two mono blocks come with a bass knob as well. The amps all looked to be of solid quality but on the bench is where we will see what they are really made of.
On the bench
Each amp was tested for maximum power output and the results are below. The Genius GTM Amplifier 100.4 is CEA rated to do the following output. At 4 ohms is 100 watts, at 2ohm is 135 watts and bridged 240 watts. Those are solid numbers for any 4 channel and would be more than enough power to run mid woofers and highs in a car. So how did it test out? It actually kicked ass and beat all of its CEA rated numbers coming in at 4ohms 116 watts, 2 ohms 224 watts and bridged 4 ohms doing 357 watts. After seeing these numbers, I started to get excited to see the mono blocks and my dissatisfaction with having to test “budget” amps was fading away. So, I proceeded
with the sub amps and to keep from sounding repetitive I will just post up the results below and let you know my conclusion of the Genius GTM Amplifier.
|Model||Rated at 4 Ω||Actual at 4 Ω||Rated at 2 Ω||Actual at 2 Ω||Rated Bridged||Actual Bridged||Size||MSRP|
|GTM-100.4||100 x 4||116 x 4||135 x 4||224 x 4||240 x 2||357 x 2||2.25″H x 7″W x 12″L||$167.95|
|Model||Rated at 4 Ω||Actual at 4 Ω||Rated at 2 Ω||Actual at 2 Ω||Rated at 1 Ω||Actual at 1 Ω||Size||MSRP|
|GTM-1000.1||350 x 1||408 x 1||600 x 1||720 x 1||1000 x 1||1118 x 1||2.25″ H x 7″ W x 13″ L||$156.95|
|GTM-1500.1||450 x 1||558 x 1||800 x 1||969 x 1||1500 x 1||1452 x 1||2.25″ H x 7″ W x 16″ L||$185.95|
IT SHOULD BE NOTED THE 1500.1 AT 1 OHM PULLED 1452 WATTS AT 12.5 VOLTS. RATED POWER IS AT 14 VOLTS SO IT WILL DEFINITELY DO 1500 WATTS AS RATED. CONCLUSION
The Genius GTM amplifier are not the typical “budget” amps. To properly describe them I have to remove them from that category even though I refer to them as budget amps in my review video. After the video I thought about it and realized that calling them that was a disservice to the quality and the power they were able to achieve. These are just really well priced amps that will give you more than you pay for. While we are talking about price let me list the MSRP of them for you. The GTM 100.4 comes in at $167.95 which is a crazy price for that kind of performance. The mono blocks are just as good with the GTM 1000.1 at $156.95 and the GTM 1500.1 costing $185.95.
So far, the Genius Audio line has exceeded all my expectations and don’t show any signs of letting me down any time soon. If you’re in the market for a very reasonably priced amplifier then you should definitely take a look at the GTM series. Want to discuss more about car audio? You can always contact me at my shop Custom Audio Reimagined.