There's quite a few threads on choosing a 5 channel amps but most of them advised the OP in going with a high end and expensive model such as the Alpine PDX-5. As much as I would love to buy a PDX-5, I just don't have the budget to spend that much on an amp . So what I've been looking at are sub-$250 5 channel amps and these are the ones that I'm the most curious about.

As we all know, Maxxsonics is the parent company of MB Quart, Hifonics, and Crunch. Unfortunately for people like myself, the same company offers three different 5 channel amps under three different brands. This makes it hard to speculate if there is a jump in quality going from Crunch to Hifonics or from Hifonics to MB Quart. Maxxsonics does, however, make three very budget friendly 5 channel amps that seem to have pretty promising numbers on paper.

**Crunch P5000.5**$149 shipped @ onlinecarstereo.com

# PowerZone Series 5-Channel AB Car Amplifier

# Peak (Dynamic) Power Rating:

* 4 ohms: 125 watts x 4 chan. + 300 x 1

* 2 ohms: 200 watts x 4 chan. + 500 x 1

# Max Power Output: 1300 watts

# MOSFET power supply

# Soft start

# LED power and protection indicators

# Tuned Bass EQ 0-12dB at 45Hz

# DC, short, thermal, overload protection

# Full range line output

# Unbalanced input(RCA jack)

# Variable input level control: 0.2V-5.0V

# Phone jack for remote control

# Bass boost remote control module

# Illuminated Crunch badge for a clean appearance

# Frequency response: 15-300 Hz

# Dimensions: 20.94"L x10"W x 2.16"H

**Hifonics ZXi8010**$199 shipped @ ebay

# Zeus ZXi Series 5-Channel Class AB Car Amplifier

# RMS Power Rating:

* 4 ohms: 55 watts x 4 chan. + 200 watts x 1 chan.

* 2 ohms: 110 watts x 4 chan. + 300 watts x 1 chan.

* Bridged, 4 ohms: 220 watts x 2 chan. + 200 watts x 1 chan.

# Pulse width modulated (PWM) MOSFET power supply

# LED power and protection indicators

# Tuned Bass EQ (0-10 dB bass boost at 45 Hz)

# Variable input control

# 5/4/2 Channel operation

# Soft turn-on circuitry

# DC, short, thermal, and overload protection circuitry

# Heavy duty aluminum alloy heatsink

# Chrome-plated RCA level inputs

# Chrome-plated screw terminals

# Variable high-pass filter (50-4000 Hz, 24 dB/octave)

# Variable low-pass filter (250-4000 Hz, 24 dB/octave)

# Channel 5 variable low-pass filter (30-150 Hz, 24 dB/octave)

# Frequency response: 10-30000 Hz

# Dimensions: 15.98"L x 9.45"W x 2.4"H

**MB Quart PAB-5400**$230 shipped @ onlinecarstereo.com

# Premium Series Class AB 5-Channel Amplifier

# RMS Power Rating:

* 4 ohms: 55 watts x 4 chan. + 200 watts x 1 chan.

* 2 ohms: 80 watts x 4 chan. + 300 watts x 1 chan.

* Bridged, 4 ohms: 160 watts x 2 chan. + 200 watts x 1 chan.

# Max power output: 400 watts x 5 chan.

# PWM MOSFET power supply

# Wired remote bass level control included

# LED power and protection indicators

# Tuned Bass EQ (0-9 dB bass boost at 45 Hz)

# Soft-start

# Preamp RCA outputs

# DC, short, thermal, and overload protection circuitry

# Wire concealing detachable end panels

# Focused mass aluminum heat sink

# Gold-plated RCA level inputs

# Gold-plated screw terminals

# Crossover for 1+2 channel

* Variable high-pass filter (50-4000 Hz, 24 db/octave)

* Variable low-pass filter (35-250 Hz, 24 dB/octave)

# Crossover for 3+4 channel

* Variable high-pass filter (50-150 Hz, 24 db/octave)

* Variable low-pass filter (250-4000 Hz, 24 dB/octave)

# Crossover for channel 5

* Variable low-pass filter (50-150 Hz, 24 db/octave)

# Subsonic Filter (included in high-pass filter)

# Frequency response: 30-30000 Hz

# Dimensions: 19"L x 10.4"W x 2.25"H

And the last 5 channel amp I'm looking at isn't made by Maxxsonics..

**Powerbass ASA-700.5**$190 shipped @ sonicelectronix.com

# ASA Series 5-Channel Class AB Car Amplifier

# RMS Power Rating:

* 4 ohms: 50 watts x 4 chan. + 200 watts x 1 chan.

* 2 ohms: 100 watts x 4 chan. + 400 watts x 1 chan.

* Bridged, 4 ohms: 200 watts x 2 chan. + 400 watts x 1 chan.

# Max power output: 1400 watts

# PWM MOSFET Power supply for a high power output with the best stability

# Remote bass level input (remote level control sold separately)

# LED power and status indicators

# Soft delay start for remote turn-on

# Variable Bass EQ (0-18 dB bass boost at 40 Hz)

# 5/3 channel operation

# Preamp RCA outputs

# 4-Way System Protection (SSP) circuitry against impedance over-load, speaker short circuit, thermal overheating, and DC output

# Variable gain input

# Aluminum alloy heatsink for heat dissipation

# RCA level inputs

# Screw terminals

# Variable high-pass filter (40-250 Hz)

# Variable low-pass filter (40-250 Hz)

# Frequency response: 20-22,000 Hz

# Dimensions: 2"L x 15"W x 9-1/4"H

I honestly wouldn't mind picking up any of these amps under the condition that they are not specifically known to be prone to problems.

The Crunch P5000.5 is a steal at $149, granted that it works well and doesn't overheat. The power numbers are strangely listed at peak power and Maxxsonics has advised that the RMS is roughly half of the listed peak power. At only $149, it's kinda fishy...that's where the Hifonics Zxi8010 comes in. Would the extra $50 net me some extra quality? And if I step up to the Hifonics Zxi8010, what's keeping me for paying $30 more of the MB Quart PAB-5400? You see this is what is frustrating, three products made by the same company with very similar numbers with less than $50 price difference between each of them. I mean how do I know that when I'm paying $80 more for the MB Quart PAB-5400 that I'm pretty much not getting a Crunch P5000.5 with an aluminum case?

Personally the two that I'm looking closely at are the MB Quart PAB-5400 and the Powerbass ASA-700.5. I'd be lying if I were to tell you that it isn't because I'm drawn to the aesthetics...because it is. But other than that, I'm hoping these also have a bit more quality in them. But when it comes down to it, if the Crunch P5000.5 works perfectly fine and has no glaring issues...that is what I'll be picking up for $149.

If anyone has any insight on the amps listed above...please please please chime in and make my decision a little easier because right now it all seems like a crapshoot.