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Best Soundbar Without Subwoofer in 2022 – Reviews & Buyers Guide

One of the Best Soundbar Without Subwoofer in a white background
Premium Choice
Best Overall
Best Budget Pick
Description:
  • 2 Channels
  • Bass Reflex Speaker
  • S-Force PRO
Description:
  • All-new Sonos Arc
  • 3D sound with Dolby Atmos
  • Tuned to perfection
Description:
  • Beam
  • High definition sound
  • TV, music and more
  • Easy control 
5.0
4.9
4.6
Premium Choice
Description:
  • 2 Channels
  • Bass Reflex Speaker
  • S-Force PRO
5.0
Best Overall
Description:
  • All-new Sonos Arc
  • 3D sound with Dolby Atmos
  • Tuned to perfection
4.9
Best Budget Pick
Description:
  • Beam
  • High definition sound
  • TV, music and more
  • Easy control 
4.6

If you want to upgrade your TV-watching experience, it might be time to invest in a soundbar. Soundbars are not only affordable speakers, but they are so easy to set up and offer improved sound quality over your built-in TV speaker. That’s why soundbars are more popular than home theater speakers, AV (audiovisual) receivers, and subwoofers.

There are many soundbars in the market right now, and they are bound to offer better audio quality than your current built-in speakers. That’s because they offer clear sound, more than one sound mode, and can even work with your existing smart speakers. So, yes, you can talk to your soundbars through Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

With many soundbars to choose from, finding the best one that suits your home can be challenging. But this guide will surely help you narrow it down to the perfect soundbar for your living room or even your home theater system.

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Choosing the Best Soundbar

Center speaker close-up

To test the quality of the best potential soundbars in 2022, we compared them against similarly priced models with a combination of movies and music.

Product specs were also considered, as well as account features like multiroom capabilities, the number of HDMI ports, high-resolution audio, Bluetooth connectivity, surround sound, or Dolby Atmos.

We considered the following factors in terms of choosing the best soundbars:

  • Sound Performance
  • Design
  • Connectivity
  • Device Controls

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Here Are Our Picks for the Best Soundbars of 2022:

Listed below is our shortlist for the best soundbar without a wireless subwoofer.

1. Sony HT-S100F

Premium Choice
Sony S100F 2.0ch Soundbar
  • 2 Channels
  • Bass Reflex Speaker
  • S-Force PRO
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The Sony HT-S100F is a prime choice for those working on a budget. Sony HT-S100F is a good soundbar with a 2.0 setup that has a very clear and accurate reproduction of voices. I was impressed at the maximum volume because this soundbar can get pretty loud while still performing well.

But it did struggle to produce some low bass frequencies. It has trouble reproducing the deep rumble and punch of bass which affects its performance with the bass-heavy music and movies. While it offers always-on surround sound, it will not give you the most immersive experience.

It lacks support for DTS and does not have any HDMI In inputs which can be frustrating for some users. Also, the HT-S100F is battery operated. The box comes with two AA batteries.

Overall Rating: 6/10

  • Sound Performance: 8/10
  • Design: 8/10
  • Connectivity: 5/10
  • Device Controls: 5/10

Pros

  • Great for dialogue content
  • Performs well at maximum volume
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Lacks bass
  • No wireless connectivity
  • Runs on AA batteries

Sony HT-S100F Specs

Dimension:37.8″ x 14.7″ x 9.2″ (W x H x D)
Weight:6 lbs
Warranty:1 year
Wireless Connectivity:No
Dolby Atmos:No
DTS X:No
DTS Virtual X:No

Related: How to Sync Sony Sound Bar With TV Remote

2. Sonos Arc Wireless Sound Bar

Best Overall
Sonos Arc
  • All-new Sonos Arc
  • 3D sound with Dolby Atmos
  • Tuned to perfection
Check Amazon Price

The Sonos Arc soundbar packs an immersive Dolby Atmos experience into a slim package. You will surely be impressed with the performance as it has 11 built-in speakers that envelop you in the sound, thanks to the positioning of the top and side speakers. The bass response is tight and deep because of the dual bass drivers within the Arc’s design. Everything is easily controlled with the Sonos S2 app from your mobile device.

Reviews are pretty good for the Sonos Arc, and you will understand why. Sonos Arc Wireless Sound Bar is the perfect smart soundbar that has all-in-one features. Customers also commended the easy setup: plug it into the wall with the supplied power cable and into the TV with the supplied HDMI cable and you’re all set. So if you really want to upgrade your sound quality at home, this is a great choice worth every dollar.

Overall Rating: 9/10

  • Sound Performance: 10/10
  • Design: 10/10
  • Connectivity: 10/10
  • Device Controls: 9/10

Pros:

  • Built-in Google Assistance, Alexa, Apple AirPlay 2
  • Easily connected
  • Sonos is designed for music systems

Cons:

  • Higher price point
  • Relatively heavier and larger, not ideal for wall mount brackets

Sonos Arc Wireless Sound Bar specs

Dimensions: 3.4″ x 45″ x 4.5″ (W x H x D)
Weight:24.6 lbs
Wireless Connectivity:Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Dolby Atmos:No
DTS X:No
DTS Virtual X:No

3. Bose Soundbar 700

Bose Smart Soundbar 700
  • Best Bose Soundbar
  • Built-in Alexa
  • TV Voice Control
  • Bose Simplesync Technology
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The Soundbar 700 contains four mid-range drivers, as well as a single-center channel driver. It is custom designed using Bose’s proprietary engineering, so the low-profile transducers provide exceptional clarity without requiring a bulky outer shell. Bose Soundbar 700 weighs 10.5 pounds, so it can sit on your entertainment center or TV stand or be mounted on the wall. Measurements are at 4.25 x 38.5 x 2.25 inches.

Distortion is virtually eliminated because of their “QuietPort Technology,” and their “PhaseGuide” allows for accurate sound directions. When tested, it gave us the full range of tones and sounds. It offers a wide array of input ports and connectivity alongside Bluetooth technology and Wi-Fi features. Lastly, it has built-in voice controls through Alexa and Google Assistant and additional remote control.

Most buyers give this Soundbar 700 a full five out of five stars. We really loved the customizable settings on the Bose app, so you can adjust it to sound like a full-on movie theater, even if you are just in your living room.

However, some customers found it tricky to set up. Reviews included comments like this was not a simple plug-in set up because you do need the app on a smartphone or tablet or voice control through a smart speaker. In addition, some experienced crashes and bugs on the app while starting.

The Soundbar 700 is a great high-end product for people looking to boost their home theater audio for an affordable price without purchasing a full surround sound system.

Overall Rating: 9/10

  • Sound Performance: 9/10
  • Design: 9/10
  • Connectivity: 8/10
  • Device Controls: 8/10

Pros:

  • Easily integrates with other Bose products, taking this from a 2.0 soundbar to full 5.1
  • Well-built to ensure durability over time
  • Supports Dolby and DTS series inputs, among others
  • Easy to set up

Cons:

  • Does not include full HDMI ports
  • The sound may become slightly distorted in larger spaces
  • Only upgrades through compatible Bose products

Sound Bar 700 Specs

Dimensions:31.5” x 1.75” x 4” (W x H x D)
Weight:7 lbs
Warranty:1 year
Watts:600
Wireless Connectivity:Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Dolby Atmos:No
DTS X:No
DTS Virtual X:No

4. Sonos Beam

Best Budget Pick
Sonos Beam - Smart TV Sound Bar
  • Beam
  • High definition sound
  • TV, music and more
  • Easy control 
Check Amazon Price

The Sonos Beam is the smart, compact soundbar perfect for a rich, detailed sound that will fill your room – all for an affordable price. Sonos Beam offers easy control through a remote, your voice, or the Sonos app.

Sonos Beam is a light product at 6.2 pounds and 25.6 x 2.7 x 3.9 inches. What makes this unique is its part of a buildable surround sound system. You can add more Sonos products for a fantastic sound system – like Sonos One SLs for a surround sound system or Sonos Sub for added bass.

Customer reviews average 4.6 out of five stars, and with good reason. It already comes with an HDMI cable and has complete HDMI inputs, so you can use this to connect converters or analog audio for a better listening experience. The app even allows for settings such as “Ambient” surround setting or adjusting in between music and TV use.

The Sonos Beam offers a wealth of convenient features and produces exceptional sound for smaller rooms. Despite being a compact soundbar, you don’t have to worry about compromising audio quality or lacking Alexa voice control.

Overall Rating: 8/10

  • Sound Performance: 8/10
  • Design: 9/10
  • Connectivity: 7/10
  • Device Controls: 9/10

Pros:

  • Includes HMI ARC, Ethernet, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth connectivity
  • Exceptional sound in a compact, sleek design
  • Vocal Enhancement mode helps to optimize dialogue outputs
  • Great technology for smaller spaces

Cons:

  • Does not support Dolby Atmos
  • Complicated set up without HDMI ARC

Sonos Beam Compact Smart Sound Bar with Voice Control Specs

Dimensions:25.625” x 2.7” x 3.94”(W x H x D)
Weight:6.2 lbs
Warranty:1 year
Wireless Connectivity:Wi-Fi
Dolby Atmos:No
DTS X:No
DTS Virtual X:No

The best overall product is the Sonos Arc – it is the smartest all-in-one soundbar for surround sound right in your home without breaking your bank account. Next to the Sonos Arc, I can definitely recommend the Bose Soundbar 700 for surround sound speakers right at home.

Meanwhile, the Sony HT-S100F 2.0 is the best choice for a premium soundbar. That is, of course, if your budget and space permit. Otherwise, you would already be satisfied with the budget-friendly Sonos Beam.


Buyers’ Guide

Finding the perfect smart soundbar for your sound system at home depends a lot on your personal preferences. This includes the physical space you are working with, your budget, and your objectives with the speaker use.

Finding a smart soundbar with exceptional sound quality but no external subwoofer can be tricky, but hopefully, this buyer’s guide will be a big help. We tested out the most popular speakers in the market to come up with this short guide.

Before purchasing, here are some things you should know.

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Choose a soundbar with 3 or more channels.

With 3 or more channels, you can simulate surround sound for a more immersive experience without breaking your bank account. There are still 2-channel soundbars out there, but at this point, they are no more than glorified mini-stereos. So instead, opt for the soundbar with 3 or 5 channels and get as close as possible to a surround sound environment right in your home.

Consider where you want to place your soundbar.

Placement is essential because this will dictate the appropriate soundbar for you. For example, is it light enough to be wall-mounted or placed on the TV stand? Will it block the signal between your TV and remote?

In terms of aesthetics, your new soundbar shouldn’t be wider than your TV. We have tried and tested, and the perfect spot for the soundbar is centered beneath or above your TV!

Go with an active soundbar over the passive one.

Active soundbars come with built-in amplifiers, so it is definitely worth it as you’ll be saving space and not worrying about the power sources.

Passive soundbars do not have a built-in power amp, so you need an external receive or amplifier to work. However, they have better speakers, resulting in a great sound. However, these are more expensive, and you will have to connect more components, such as a traditional sub, if you want extra bass.

Getting an active soundbar will be sufficient to upgrade your audio at home. Passive soundbars are better suited for custom installations, like a full-blown Dolby Atmos system.

Pay attention to connectivity.

Most soundbars today come with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, allowing you to easily stream music, shows, or podcast from any gadget. Your soundbar is now a stereo, too.

Always check for HDMI switching so you can switch sources without re-routing your HDMI cables.

In the past few years, soundbars are now equipped with voice controls. As a result, you can use Alexa or Google Assistant to control your listening experience, which is an absolute convenience.

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Buy from an authorized dealer.

The soundbars we have recommended all come from reputable brands that are leading in the field of consumer electronics. Buying from an authorized dealer is the right move because you will get the manufacturer’s warranty, service, and support.

Don’t glaze over this because purchasing gadgets can get tricky, and you’ll want security if there is a problem in your unit.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here are customers’ most common questions, answered all in one place.

Can you add a subwoofer to a soundbar?

Many wireless soundbars ship with a wireless sub. The ones that don’t usually incorporate a woofer port allow you to add your own. However, if you want an even more immersive experience, you shouldn’t skip this!

What are Dolby Atmos soundbars?

Some newer soundbars in the market come with Dolby Atmos technology, which bounces the audio off ceilings to simulate a surround sound effect. It’s pretty good because it mimics the theater right in your house, but of course, it is not the real thing.

What is “Cinema Sound”?

Most soundbars have the “cinema sound,” “movieplex sound,” or “virtual surround sound” feature – which manufacturers claim will mimic actual home theater sound. In reality, this cinema sound adds a digital delay like reverb or echo. It is not the authentic home theater clear audio, but you feel that you are in a bigger room. Some soundbars perfected this, but it comes with a cost.

Can a soundbar be used as a center speaker?

Yes and no – some can, and some can’t. For example, a passive soundbar could potentially be used as a center channel speaker, but we don’t recommend this. Passive soundbars are not designed for this purpose, so they won’t shine if you force them to function as a center speaker in your home theater.

Conclusion

Thanks to the impressive technology for sound quality, you will find many soundbars and subs in the market. Take it from us that you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars for excellent sound quality in your home theater system.

Soundbars have built-in features that you will surely enjoy and easily customize through the remote control, voice controls, and mobile app. You don’t have to spend hours adjusting the wires or standing up and down from the couch to fix the connections.

Most importantly, you can certainly achieve a fantastic sound experience without a subwoofer. Choose the best soundbar that suits your needs and calibrate it so you can make the most out of your purchase.

Don’t Miss Out!

We can share an expert tip to do a full assessment of your needs and the room you are working with before making a purchase. These factors basically dictate the soundbar that you should get and how you can use it. So please don’t make the mistake of buying the soundbar you like and discovering later that it does not fit your home theatre.

Another thing to remember is to leave room for scaling up! For example, you can easily add an external or wireless subwoofer to build your speaker system for a full-blown entertainment center at home.

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SVS SB 2000 Reviews (2022)

SVS SB-2000 Reviews

If you have been searching far and wide for the perfect sub, you have probably encountered the world-renowned company SVS.

SVS is pretty much the crowd favorite among audio and home theater publications. They have earned it because of their high-performance subs and speakers at reasonable prices.

Their subwoofer lineup is impressive, and they move from the top of the line going down. They scale back on the advanced features and aesthetics without comprising performance.

With that, their entry-level subs are at par (or even better) than most of their competition’s mid-level to premium offerings in the market.

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SVS SB-2000 500 Watt DSP Controlled 12" Compact Sealed Subwoofer (Premium Black Ash)
  • The SVS SB-2000 Subwoofer combines power, quickness, intelligent...
  • Dimension: 14.6-Inch H x 14.2-Inch W x 15.4-Inch D

What Makes the SVS Subwoofer Line Stand Out?

Well, SVS made a name for itself through its Prime and Ultra speakers, audio products, and accessories that the previous generation surely loved.

These products can disappear, and the brand’s reputation would not suffer because of their world-class subwoofers. Their subwoofer lines currently include 1000, 2000, new 3000, 4000, and 16-Ultra Series. As you climb the ladder, of course, there are added features, more low-frequency depth, and the ability to pressure larger spaces with more bass energy.

SVS advocates for getting multiple subs, too. The listening room in your home will benefit from two smaller subwoofers vs. one large sub. Each sub will have different peaks and dips caused by the geometry of the room and its placement therein. Installing multiple subs gives you more bass coverage over a larger number of variable seating positions, thereby increasing everyone’s music listening experience.

This article will discuss their SB 2000 and compile a handful of relevant customer reviews from various websites like Amazon.

SVS released 2000-series, made up of the PB-2000 ($799) and SB-2000 ($699). These two products are the prime example of SVS’s mastery of the art of thoughtful sound engineering and design.

SVS PB 2000

SVS PB 2000

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The SVS PB-2000 is a large, ported sub capable of delivering loud and deep bass in large rooms, while the SB-2000 is sealed and much more compact and perfect for home theaters. The ported PB-2000, available in black ash, has a 12-inch front-firing driver but in a ported enclosure that reaches deeper down to 17 Hz, versus 19 Hz in the sealed version, and extends to 250 Hz versus 220 Hz of the SB 2000. In addition, the four-inch front port takes up more space, making the enclosure larger at 20.9 x 17.3 x 23.3 inches and weighing at 66 lbs. It’s almost double in the SB 2000 due to the size difference and increased internal bracing.

SVS SB 2000

SVS SB 2000

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Meanwhile, the SVS SB-2000 has a 12-inch front-firing woofer with a 500 watt RMS amplifier in a sealed 14.6 x 14.2 x 15.4-inch enclosure. It is made available in premium black ash ($699) or piano gloss black ($799) at about 45 lbs. Its powder modes include Auto On via a toggle switch and a 3-12V trigger (3.5mm TRS mini-jack) input to link with other equipment. Audio connections are stereo line-level RCA left and right/LFE inputs, along with left and right RCA outputs.

You will find that SVS offers the optional SouthPath Wireless Audio Adapter for $119.99. On the back, you will find continuously variable gain control, continuously variable phase control between 0 to 180 degrees, and a continuously variable 50 to 160 Hz 12 dB/octave low pass filter with disable/LFE setting. Note that the filters will be set via those controls if you are using the LFE output from your surround sound processor. Lastly, a fixed 80 Hz 12 dB/octave high pass filter on the line-level outputs.

SVS makes both sealed and ported versions of their subs. It’s definitely up to you to choose the version that best suits your needs and space. For example, if you create a surround sound system for mostly gaming, movies, and watching TV, you may prefer a ported enclosure as it offers more punch and thump. But if you prioritize music over explosions and bullets and similar sound effects, you might be better off with the tighter sound of the sealed sub. These are the main sonic differences between the two versions. In the case of the PB 2000 and SB 2000, note the size and weight differences, too.

Related: Woofer vs. Subwoofer

SVS SB 2000 Summary

Pros

Pros
  • Protective non-resonant steel mesh grille
  • Rivals much more expensive subwoofers
  • Even and smooth from top to bottom
  • Tight, highly-articulated bass

Cons

Cons
  • Grill is large, adds to footprint
  • Vinyl veneer is unremarkable
  • No brass spikes/footers included

SVS SB 2000 Specifications

Watts RMS500 Watts
Speaker MaterialSubwoofer
Subwoofer Size12″
Frequency Response19-220Hz
Crossover Frequency1800 Hz
Speaker typeBox
ColorBlack Ash, Piano Black Gloss
Mounting TypeFloor Standing
ConnectionsWired, audio line-in, audio line-out, trigger
Power500 W room energizing power
Enclosure500 watt RMS amplifier in a sealed 14.6 by 14.2 by 15.4-inch
Inputs3.5mm TRS mini-jack
Dimensions15.4 x 14.2 x 14.6 inches
Weight35 lbs (16 kg)

What are the Different SVS SB 2000 Specs?

Hookup

SB 2000’s packaging is pretty much in line with what you’d expect from SVS. It is nothing too fancy but also secure and straightforward.

Unboxing the 40 lb sub is manageable. In terms of connections, you can run a couple of SVS Soundpath interconnects to the LFE (low-frequency effect) input on each sub from the LFE outputs of another receiver. If you find yourself lacking dual sub connections on your receiver, you can either use a Y-splitter or connect one cable between your receiver and one of the subs and daisy chain the output of that sub to the input of the other. If this sounds confusing, you can refer to the SVS manual, as they have outlined this process in great detail. Otherwise, you will find plenty of tutorials online for reference.

Technical Features and Design

The SB-2000 relies on a custom-made 12-inch driver that SVS designed specifically for their 2000 series. Technical details behind the driver are endless, but it is basically a driver that can stand up to the power delivered by the sub’s lifeblood, which is a 500-watt RMS, 1100-watt peak Sledge STA-500D DSP amplifier.

Most people also loved that SVS designed the amplifier to have a carefully integrated DSP control. This not only changes the sub’s output but protects it from going overboard and becoming damaged. With this, you can use the sub as much as you want with your loudest movies or music and it will push certainly deliver. Also, thanks to the DSP control, you won’t have to worry about it overheating or anything blowing up in your living room, bedroom, or home theater.

The SB-2000 does not have any speaker-level inputs on its amplifier, so you won’t be able to use it with older receivers that lack a subwoofer output. However, it has stereo line-level outputs to go with its stereo line-level input. This means you can use it with pre-amp or amp combos and integrated amps outfitted with pre-amp outputs and amplifier inputs. SVS designed this product with a lot of room for personal tweaking, so your options are not limited.

As for the controls, there are three high-quality metal knows for volume, phase, and low pass filter. The low pass filter frequency range is a whopping 50-160 Hertz (Hz). They also included an LFE or low-frequency effects setting, which bypasses the low pass filter entirely. This function of the LFE leaves the receiver or an integrated amp’s bass management settings to do the heavy lifting.

Setup and Test Conditions

Since subwoofers do not have a port, the SB-2000 allows for more flexibility in its placement options. For those with a smaller space to work with, you can easily tuck the SB 2000 in a corner without worrying about port noise. The best place for this subwoofer depends on the size and shape of the intended room to place it in and considering your listening position. Given the manageable weight of the SB 2000, it’s pretty easy to move it around the space and test it around for sound quality.

If you have other loudspeakers or subs in the room, it is now time to manually calibrate everything to build quality to achieve the sound experience you like.

SVS SB-2000 500 Watt DSP Controlled 12" Compact Sealed Subwoofer (Premium Black Ash)
  • The SVS SB-2000 Subwoofer combines power, quickness, intelligent...
  • Dimension: 14.6-Inch H x 14.2-Inch W x 15.4-Inch D

Performance

One user tried it out by playing frequency sweeps to determine if there are peaks or valleys in the sub’s performance (without considering the room resonance). According to them, there were no anomalies, and the even and consistent performance of the SB 2000 was impressive – from 150 Hz down to 25 Hz, with a slight drop off at 20 Hz and beyond, which is perfectly understandable.

This review from Amazon claims that the SB 2000 is the best subwoofer they have ever heard in person, paired with HTD Level 3 bookshelves. If the frequency is too low to play (which is far lower than anything you’ll normally encounter in music, games, and movies), the sub goes silent. There is no distortion, and it reproduces everything clearly until the driver is physically incapable of reproducing the sound.

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Music

To test out sound quality with music, selections such as Paramore’s “Ain’t it Fun,” Johnny Lang’s “Bump in the Road,” and Russell Gunn’s “Eighty-One” were played and tested.

As for “Bump in the Road,” it isn’t loaded with deep bass, but there is a bass guitar that moves all over its available range, with a constant level of punch and quick musicality. Playing on the SB-2000, the sub proved it could start and stop perfectly, but it had no problem singing beautifully in its upper-frequency range while delivering perfect precision. Overall the performance was reminiscent of the SVS SB-13 Ultra – which is expensive by at least $1,000 more.

The SVS SB 2000 was also tested against LL Cool J’s “Going Back to Cali” as it gets deep at the 45-second mark. Impressively enough, the SB 2000 didn’t break a sweat. The sub played louder and much deeper than their size and specs would indicate. It only wavered by losing accuracy and getting a bit boomy at maximum (borderline dangerous) volume output levels, which you won’t be utilizing most of the time anyway!

Based on its performance for music sound quality, the SB 2000 presents a pretty good deal and exceeds expectations for its price point.

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Movie Sound Quality

Since subs are perfect for home theatre setups, an SB 2000 review would not be complete without analyzing its performance on movie soundtracks.

While playing the Life of Pi, the SB 2000 nailed every single pulse during the Tiger’s guttural roar. This added a level of realism to the sound experience that listeners might have never experienced before.

Another review looked at the movie Skyfall – and the sub did not disappoint. It was only a little short of the SB-13 Ultra. There was plenty of ultra-low frequency production, shaking up the seats a little bit.

However, it was missing the mush and mud from the rest of the sound spectrum – something you would expect from the highest-performance ported subs. For larger rooms, you can expect some of the visceral experience to be lost. (But this is what the larger PB-2000 sub is for.)

What About the SB 2000 Cons?

Every gadget has its downside. But looking at customer review notes for SB 2000, there are only a handful of negative comments especially given the price point.

Some users mentioned wanting a more premium finish and the ability to create and tweak custom EQ settings. Others may prefer brass spikes or footers for an added level of acoustic control, but these can always be bought separately and added on as desired.

They did nitpick the connection flexibility because the SB 2000 Pros lack XLR inputs. But this is rare given its price point, and the performance of the sub already raises expectations.

In terms of the control app, it was greatly convenient not to get behind the subs to make adjustments. But it might be improved if you can set the app to control both subs at once. As far as we can tell, there is currently no option to adjust both subs concurrently. Instead, users have to manually adjust one sub then switch over to the other sub to control it. While this sounds like a minor step, it can leave you double-checking the volume level on each sub, which can be distracting during critical listening hours. People are hoping these can be rectified and updated on the app in a few years.

This customer review outlines the cons: unremarkable vinyl veneer, no brass spikes or footers included, and the large grill, which adds to the footprint.

Given all the pros and cons, you might be wondering how the SVS SB 2000 fares compared to other subs in the market.

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How Does the SB 2000 Compare with Other Speakers?

Given the $699 price point, if you are not convinced that dual subs are the right choice for you and your home, you can look at other brands.

Not all subs are created equally, so here are some alternatives to consider.

1. JL Audio E-Sub

JL Audio E-Sub

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You can spend roughly the same amount of money and buy the JL Audio E-Sub e110 for $1,850. However, you will lose a bit in driver size because the JL’s has a 10-inch driver vs. the 12-inch driver of the SVS. JL does make up for it with the raw power, as you’ll go from 500 watts up to 1,200 watts. JL Audio is well-known for its car audio lineup, but its home theatre products are also worth your buck.


2. Definitive Technology SuperCube 6000

Polk Audio T15 100

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If you are truly interested in a dual subsystem but are working with limited space, try the Definitive Technology SuperCube 6000 for $999/each. It is way more compact than the SB 2000, with a 9-inch front-firing driver, flanked by dual 10-inch passive radiators, and powered by a bigger 750-watt amplifier. Technology subs are definitely impressive in performance despite the small enclosures as their engineers have mastered the compact sound technologies.


3. Polk Audio DSW Pro 660

Retailing for $649 each, Polk Audio promises to deliver a deep bass impact with a classic box style. This is their most powerful sub to date, with a 400-watt digital amp to move the 12-inch dynamic balance driver. Average reviews are 4.7 stars for this product, and people seem to love its deep bass notes and durability for up to five years. This is a great option if you are working with a smaller budget.

Conclusion

Given all of these pros and cons, if the SVS SB-2000 fits your budget, look no further. It is the best offering in its price range, and SVS has made the SB 2000 a class of its own as far as sealed subwoofers go.

The sub offers a deadly combination of potent bass bower, tight articulation, deep extension, and room-rumbling fun. For a high-end bass set up under $1,500, perhaps the only thing better than owning an SVS SB 2000 is to own two of them.

SVS SB-2000 500 Watt DSP Controlled 12" Compact Sealed Subwoofer (Premium Black Ash)
  • The SVS SB-2000 Subwoofer combines power, quickness, intelligent...
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How to Power a Passive Subwoofer

How to Power a Passive Subwoofer

Passive subwoofers require an external power source and there are many ways to get them running. For one, you can choose to connect a passive subwoofer to a receiver. This article will tell you how to connect a passive subwoofer to a receiver through the use of speaker wire connectors and an external amplifier.

How to Power a Passive Subwoofer

Passive Subwoofers

Passive subs are built without their own built-in amplifiers, so they function much like old loudspeaker units. If you have a passive subwoofer, you need to connect it to an external amplifier to power it.

On the other hand, active or powered subwoofers are self-contained. It features a speaker or amplifier configuration in which the characteristics of the amp and subwoofer speaker are optimally matched and encased in the same enclosure. For this type of sub, you do not need an external amp.

Passive Subwoofers

Are Passive Subwoofers Better Than Powered Subwoofers?

There are pros and cons to each type of sub, and it really depends on many factors, such as your budget, the sound quality you are looking for, and the space you have.

Passive subwoofers are more lightweight since they have fewer components. They are also easier to maintain. But the truth is that a subwoofer’s performance is not determined by whether it is powered or passive.

Some users may argue that powered subs are better because their built-in amplifiers allow you a worry-free experience. However, active subwoofers are more popular because they produce a deeper, more impactful sound without requiring extra components.

Meanwhile, the passive subwoofer is generally a better choice if you will place it in a small room with limited space, and you won’t be needing the powerful sound. It is easier to transport and move around since it’s smaller and less bulky. Even if you plug the passive subwoofer into an external amplifier, you can still reposition the amp in the future to improve the sound quality.

Is it Dangerous to Connect a Passive Subwoofer to a Receiver?

It can get dangerous because passive subwoofers require a lot of power to reproduce the bass. As a result, there is a possibility that your receiver may not deliver the required power for your subwoofer to function optimally. Keep in mind that you might even blow the receiver if you are not careful with your sub! The chances of this happening are definitely higher for older and lower quality gadgets, though.

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Connecting Wired Subwoofer to Soundbar

Where to Connect the Subwoofer to the Receiver

Receivers are made with many switches, ports, and toggles. Wiring is definitely required to complete the connection between a subwoofer and a receiver.

First, check the back of your receiver and look for the setting for either “Yes” or “No,” which is linked directly to your passive subwoofer. This is referring to whether or not you have an active or a passive sub. Since you have the passive sub, be sure that the setting is on “Yes.” By doing so, you are telling your receiver to send all of the bass information through the sub-out connection on the back. All of this information is then transferred down into your passive sub.

Speaker Connector

You will need to have your passive subwoofer wired to one of the speaker connectors. Then you can connect the speaker wire to the speaker line of the subwoofer. There will be ‘Speaker In’ ports on your passive sub.

Be very careful that your sub is not pulling too much power beyond what the receiver can supply. This can result in overheating and become flammable.

Zone 2 Connectors

Another quick and easy way to connect passive subs to your AV or audiovisual receiver is the use the Zone 2 ports on the receiver.

The typical setup goes like this:

#1. Loopback the sub’s pre-out to phono (analog line) in.
#2. Activate the Zone 2 port.
#3. Enter the AVR’s setting and configure the receiver to play the phono input. This will now become the sub via your Zone 2 connection.
#4. Set the Zone 2 midrange (and up) frequency attenuated down. This allows you to use the AVR itself as a crossover.

However, some of the Zone 2 receivers do not have a crossover. Instead, it supplies a full-range signal. If this is the case for you, then use the power in Zone 1 for your sub.

Receiver Sub out

The sub-out port is popular on most older receivers. This port can power your passive subwoofer, and it is usually located on the bottom half. You can then use the receiver’s cutoff to control the audio frequencies sent to your passive subwoofer.

Subwoofer Wireless Connections

Recent subwoofers in the market now allow for wireless connections. There are two major types:

  • Wireless subwoofers with built-in wireless receivers. These receivers connect seamlessly to the subwoofer line output of your home theater receiver. So if you happen to have this sub, all you need to do is connect the receivers to the line output. No need for extra tools, connectors, and equipment!
  • The second method is a wireless transmitter that connects to any home theater receiver and a powered subwoofer with a line output. You should opt for this if your subwoofer does not have a built-in wireless receiver.

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How to Connect a Passive Subwoofer to a Receiver

Step #1: Check the Subwoofer

Before attempting any wired connections, inspect the kind of passive subwoofer you’ve got. Next, check whether it has a dual or single voice call woofer system. Double voice call woofers have multiple wiring options compared to single voice call ones.

Depending on what you’ve got, read the manufacturer’s manual and recommendations before moving forward. The last thing you want is to break your sub or your receiver.

Step #2: Double Check That You Have the Right RCA Cables

The most commonly used connectivity cables between subwoofers and receivers are RCA. But this connection depends on the type of subwoofer available, either a mono or stereo transmitter.

If your subwoofer is a monotype, you only need one RCA cable between our passive subwoofer and receiver. But if you are using a stereo subwoofer, you will need two RCA cables in your setup.

In this step, you will need to confirm that the color of the cables matches the ports on your subwoofer where the connection should be made.

Step #3: Connect The External Amplifier

Since passive subwoofers allow you to work with any amplifier, you are free to experiment with any external amp. But be careful before attempting to connect it to the amplifier.

Start by ensuring that your passive subwoofer is switched off. Then wire the RCA cables to the sub and ten to the external amplifier. The jack on the amp where your RCA cables are connected should be labeled subwoofer output or LFE (low-frequency effects).

The same goes if you are connecting more than one subwoofer.

Step #4: Connect The Amplifier To The Speakers

Once the external amplifier is wired to the subwoofer, it is finally time to connect the speakers!

Check the rear side of the amp for output jacks labeled ‘Front’ or ‘Main,’ then use the outputs to connect the speakers to the amp. Ensure that the right and left speakers are connected appropriately during this wiring step.

If your speakers are not labeled left or right, check for the polarities label instead. The negative terminal of the speaker should be connected to the negative terminal of the amplifier, and the same goes for the positive terminal.

Step #5: Switch On The Sound System And Fine Tune The Sound To Your Liking

Once you have connected everything and the subwoofer and speakers are properly wired to the receiver, switch on the main power supply and receive. As you test this out, make sure that the volume is not too high. Then use the bass management on the receiver to control the sound performance. This is the perfect time to customize your home theater and listen for any distortions or errors in the sound quality so you can adjust accordingly.

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How to Connect a Passive Subwoofer to a Receiver

The Bottom Line

If you are an audiophile or movie enthusiast, you surely will not regret investing in a subwoofer over traditional speakers. Unfortunately, the typical loudspeakers you get in a home theater system cannot reproduce all the sound frequencies they receive. So, essentially, you miss out on a better sound experience whenever you watch movies or TV at your home.

Listening to music alone is already an improved experience with subwoofers. The extra bass, instrumentals, underlying vocals will shine through thanks to the LFE or low-frequency effects that are pretty much the specialty of subwoofers.

Lastly, if you enjoy gamers or watching sports, the subwoofer will improve the audio experience. You will be even more immersed in the game or match because of the sound effects that your speaker system will reproduce.

Make sure that you purchase a passive subwoofer or powered subwoofer that fits all of your needs. Be sure to check all the wires and ports too. These should be in good condition to ensure proper connections to an external amplifier or AV receiver if needed. Not to mention, the size and structure of your home theater are important in determining if a front-firing or down-firing sub is best for you. Finally, the surrounding sound and low-frequency range will be worth the price and setup. Once you tick all of these boxes, get ready to enjoy the high-quality sound in your home theater.

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How to Connect a Subwoofer to an Old Amplifier

old amplifier that connects to a subwoofer

Sound technology and audio equipment are rapidly evolving in today’s Silicon Valley era. Hundreds of brands launch new and better gadgets every year. Yet, many of them deserve your attention. As a result, these advancements turn the older types obsolete. Soon, it won’t be enough just to dust out some classic woofer or amp. Simply put, they will be products from the distant past. So, due to the gap, we’ll encounter compatibility issues that did not exist before.

how to connect a subwoofer to an old amplifier
Photo by Gritte on Unsplash

For example, let’s take an older amplifier, leaving its other aspects aside. As it ages, it loses its sound quality and bass range. After a while, it devolves into a box that’s prone to overheating. If we attempt to use it, we’ll hear only whining noises and a total absence of bass.

However, buying a new amplifier is a good option; we can also ‘reinvent’ our old one. For this, we can take the stylish route and connect it to a subwoofer. But, before we can resort to such measures, we should know a couple of things about subwoofers and amplifiers. After all, it’s our ears we’re taking care of with this!

What a Subwoofer Does

what a subwoofer does

The Low-Frequency Champ

A subwoofer makes the heavier, low-frequency sounds more pronounced. While a regular speaker is a jack-of-all-trades for sound frequencies, subwoofers (or subs) specialize in a particular range. Specifically, most of them are at home around the 20-200 Hz frequency. However, some unique subwoofers can go lower even than 20 Hz.

So, these frequency ranges fall into their sub-categories. That’s why we refer to anything below 20 Hz as the ‘low’ frequency range’. Next comes the 100-1000 Hz, or the ‘lower-middle’ frequencies, followed by the ‘upper-middle’ ones between 1k-10k. Lastly, we call the range between 10-20k ‘high’.

No Distortions

Not every piece of audio equipment has the same output signal. Hence, you should use them for their general purpose. Also, don’t expect marvelous results outside those limits. For example, even full-range speakers with aural flexibility will underperform around frequencies lower than 50 Hz.

Deep bass can over-burden standard speakers at such ranges, resulting in irritating distortions. At this point, subwoofers come in to save the day. Since they differ from regular speakers, they will provide much clearer audio.

Types of Subwoofers

subwoofer type
Photo by Robert Torres on Unsplash

To figure out how to connect an old amplifier to a sub, we also need to know about the types of subwoofers. Once we figure out which subwoofer is in question, we are one step closer to solving the compatibility problem.

Active Subs

Active subs have their internal amplifiers. Hence, they do not need an external amp or receiver to work. This type of subwoofer may also have built-in equalizers. In practice, this means the frequency filters will impact the overall sound quality in practice.

Passive Subs

On the other hand, passive subs do not have internal amplifiers. Therefore, you’ll need to get one separately. They also do not have a built-in equalizer or frequency filter. TAs a result, it might be a little more challenging to restore a passive subwoofer.

The Two Types of Amplifiers

two types of amplifiers
Image by DFL-Denver on Pixabay

Depending on the type of connection they offer, there are two kinds of amplifiers. Let’s check out their ins and outs. 

With RCA or Sub-Outs

The first type is amplifiers with sub-outs. A sub-out is the output port that filters the audio. As such, it allows active amps to utilize the crossover function of the sub’s audio. In that way, it makes their job easier and boosts performance.

For a passive sub, a sub-out is sometimes necessary. However, we could also do without a sub-out. Only, in that case, we will need a low-pass crossover taking care of the sub-out’s job. In short, since a passive subwoofer does not have a built-in equalizer, an external component must do the filtration.

Without RCA or Sub-Outs

The second type of amplifier comes without a sub-out. Because of this omission, ff we use a subwoofer, we’ll have to get an audio filter component, i.e., a low pass crossover. As a result, the added number of elements will make putting everything together a hassle.

Five Ways to Connect Subwoofers to Old Amplifiers

amplifier and equalizer
Photo by José Pinto on Unsplash

So far, we’ve covered a lot of ground regarding subwoofers and amplifiers. Next, we can dive straight into connecting them and making them tick. For example, consider these five convenient ways to re-configure your audio equipment.

1. Active Subwoofer With Speaker Input If Your Amp Does Not Have Sub-Outs

Old amplifiers may not have a dedicated subwoofer output. However, they should have a speaker signal out. And since your sub has speaker-level inputs available, you are in business.

Connecting the subwoofer with a vintage or old amplifier is relatively easy. Just take your amp’s speaker wires and pass them to the sub. Keep an eye on their polarity, though. Sometimes it may be defined, and you will have to manually connect the positive and negative ends to their respective slots.

This kind of connection allows for parallel links with the other speakers in the sound system. Also, if your sub has both speaker-level inputs and outputs, that is even better. This way, you can run the circuit through the subwoofers to the speakers, saving you some time. Then, the subwoofer’s internal circuit will convert the high-level speaker input into low-level RCA signals. The result is clean, quality sound.

If Your Amp Has Sub-Outs

It’s not usual for older amplifiers to have sub-outs. But on the off-chance that you got one of those, you’re in luck. Thanks to it, you can quickly connect the amp with a subwoofer using the RCA to RCA connection between them.

Just remember that it is always better to have more than one RCA cable set connecting your amp with the sub.

2. Active Subwoofer Without Speaker Inputs If Your Amp Does Not Have RCA or Sub-Outs

If your amplifier does not have a dedicated sub-out, you would’ve to use a line converter instead. Under this term, we refer to the RCA low-level line converters. Also, you might find them as RCA-speaker level adapters. As for their purpose, they convert high-level speaker sound signals from your amplifier into low-level RCA signals.

Your sub can use these low-level RCA signals to run your subwoofer besides your speakers. Thus, you can also connect your speakers and sub in parallel with this kind of connection if you wish.

Just make sure that your amp and sub are both turned off when you connect them. Plug the power in only after the circuit is complete.

If Your Amp Has RCA or Sub-Outs

If your amplifier has a dedicated subwoofer out, the process is simpler. Just connect this RCA jack out to the sub’s input, and you are good to go. If there is space for two sets of RCA cables instead of one, you may even connect two at once. Such a combination can enhance the quality of the sound.

3. Passive Amplifiers With or Without Speaker Inputs

The General Problem

A passive subwoofer does not have its own amplifier or crossover. Hence, there are two things to take care of here.

Firstly, it will need an amplifier. That may not appear like a problem in this hypothetical situation since you already have an old amplifier in your hands. But here’s the catch: unlike the circuits we discussed above, you can not use the same amplifier for your speakers alongside the sub for this system to work. So, if you have some means of running your speakers without a parallel connection to the sub, you can connect the audio set-up this way.

The second problem would be the absence of a crossover or a frequency filter. Without this filter, your subwoofer might get high-frequency audio input alongside the low-frequency input. However, that is not a good thing. If you assemble the abovementioned combo without the low-frequency pass, your ears might suffer.

So another thing you have to do is get a low-pass crossover. A low-pass crossover can help you filter out the unnecessary noise from your sub.

If Your Amp Does Not Have a Dedicated Sub-Out

In this case, you will have to connect the amp to your sub using an RCA-speaker level adapter. On top of that, you will also have to use a low-pass crossover for quality audio. And as we discussed before, avoid using this circuit in parallel with other speakers.

If Your Amp Has a Dedicated Sub-Out

Again, if your amp has a dedicated sub-out, then it’s easy. The solution is a straight RCA to RCA connection, possibly with a Y-type RCA jack. Of course, since this is also a passive amp, you will have to run it through the low-pass crossover.

4. Connecting a Subwoofer With an Old Amplifier in a Stereo-System

You should consider another type of outlet if you use a subwoofer and an old amplifier in a stereo system: pre-out. So, if you are running a receiver with a set-up of stereo speakers and subwoofers, you may run into some problems. Namely, you may find that the built-in amp lacks the juice to run everything. So what do you do? Get some extra Hz power. This is where a pre-out comes in.

A pre-out is a port that gives you an unamplified signal. If the built-in amp can not handle all the load, it outsources some to the pre-out. From here, the connection runs to another amplifier. In this case, it would be your old one.

Presumably, this external amplifier of yours does not have an RCA sub-out, so you will connect it to your subwoofer using a speaker to RCA line converter. If your sub has speaker signal input jacks, it could also be a speaker-to-speaker connection. When the connection runs through the external amp, this amp shoulders the subwoofer’s heavy load of bass frequencies.

The sudden sound fluctuations and distortions indicate that your subwoofer might be underpowered. If present, they confirm the need for an external amplifier input, namely a pre-out.

5. Connecting Your Subwoofer to a Surround Sound System and an Old Amplifier

Stereo systems consist of at least two audio output units, typically the left and the right speakers. Surround sound systems go two steps further and have at least five different audio output units, including the subwoofer.

On modern surround sound A/V systems, you can have both pre-outs and dedicated LFE/ sub outs. Each of these two features is worth looking at. If you find the audio quality from your surround sound system sub-par, one possible reason might be the lack of power. There can be several causes for this.

Similar to before, one solution could be to re-direct some of the heavy lifting to an external amp. So, you can try and connect the receiver and the amp. Then, the port used as output from the receiver would be the pre-out.

As for the dedicated bass track output, modern surround sound receivers give the bass an edge by providing the subwoofer a separate audio track for low frequencies. As a result, the user can enjoy a more immersive experience. However, the subwoofer doesn’t spread the load over all the speakers. Instead, it takes the responsibility away from every audio output unit.

You can find the dedicated port for this under ‘X. 1’ channels, where X would be the number of speakers. Usually, the X is two for stereo systems. If that is the case, then the bass channel would be 2.1. Similarly, it would be 5.1 for five speakers.

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Connecting Your Subwoofer With an Old Amplifier via Speaker Cables V/S RCA Cables

old amplifier connected to subwoofer
Image by Marvin_ahlers on Pixabay

We have analyzed the two main types of connections in this guide: speaker or high-level signal connection and RCA or low-level signal connection.

As is evident from our summary, connecting a subwoofer with an amplifier is effortless if both of them have RCA connections available. Also, some amplifiers have specified RCA outs for LFEs like subwoofers. That’s why this output is sometimes named subwoofer output.

We also mentioned that it would be better to have a set of RCA cables connecting your old amplifier to your subwoofer; if you have the luxury of having two. Usually, though, subs will only have a single RCA input.

Anyhow, connecting your amp and your sub via the speaker cables might be the preferable setup. Also, expect some slight lag when using a straight RCA connection between the speakers and the subwoofer. In that case, your speakers are running on a higher signal than the sub. As a result, you might hear some desynchronization.  Speaker cable connections can resolve this problem.

Furthermore, the lag between the two should diminish when running a parallel system. So, if the speakers and the subwoofer use the same high-level output signal, the audio will be clearer and less jittery. 

In Conclusion

This guide presented some practical ways to combine your outdated audio equipment and give it new life. By following our tips and tricks, you can indeed improve your setup and, at the same time, put some bucks aside.

However, there’ll always be newer intricacies when it comes to such technology. Therefore, remember to refer to our explanations whenever you encounter a different issue. In any case, the fundamentals will likely stay the same.

Best 8 Inch Subwoofer in 2022 – Reviews & Buyers Guide

Best 8 Inch Subwoofer in 2021 - Reviews & Buyers Guide

What is Bass?

Bass consists of different types of low frequencies that can each contain different properties. This may not be evident when listening with low-quality audio equipment. One thing to take away from this is that bass is a sound that has a relatively wide frequency range.

If you get an excellent subwoofer, that subwoofer is capable of producing a bass’ full range. That’s why subwoofers elevate the listening experience. It provides depth to the audio and even gives more options when it comes to sound customization.

Producing bass requires so much power. That’s why the bass moves the cabinet and produces a pounding movement. This is because of the large drivers that are inside the subwoofer. Subwoofers may come in 8, 10, or 12-inch drivers.

What to Look for in a Sub?

Buyers’ Guide What to Look for in a Sub?
Photo by JC Gellidon on Unsplash

It’s important to know what you want from your 8 inch subwoofer to choose the right one for you. Several important factors may affect your decision-making.

Power

– To identify the power a sub produces, pay attention to RMS power ratings, not the peak power. The RMS power rating measures continuous power handling output and is closer to the actual listening experience than peak power.

Sensitivity

– Power and sensitivity work together to achieve the maximum output. Remember that a sub with a high sensitivity rating needs less power to produce loud sounds you can get from other subs with a lower sensitivity rating.

Frequency range

– This is what tells you how low or deep the bass can get. Even an 8 inch unit can have an impressive frequency response. Take note of the Hz ranges of these different 8 inch subwoofers. Usually, the lower the Hz, the more bass you will get from your unit.

Enclosure type

– The enclosure affects the sound quality. There are two types: a ported or sealed enclosure. If you want to get accurate, deep bass, go for the sub with a sealed enclosure. If you want a louder sound with thunderous bass, go for one with a ported enclosure.

Single or dual voice coils

– There’s a single voice coil or SVC and dual voice coils or DVC. A single voice coil unit only supports one specific ohms rating, so it is not as versatile as a dual voice coil unit. On the other hand, dual voice coils give you more wiring options to connect your subs with amps allowing you to hit the correct impedance loads you need for the best sound possible.

Impedance

– This is an important factor when sub and amp matching. There are correct matches that will give you the best possible sound quality.

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Best 8 Inch Subwoofer

An 8 inch subwoofer is a good choice because of its affordability and size. This is for those working with tight spaces and who have a limited budget. In this article, you’ll know which of these is the best 8 inch subwoofer, has good power handling and delivers a punchy bass despite its small design.

The products included have been proven and tested by bass lovers and are known for their quality. Expect them to be reliable in doing their job in giving superior sound production. Build quality and long-term durability are also factored in. The recommendations in this article are all made with high-quality materials that will surely last a long time.

1. Best Overall: Polk Audio PSW111 Compact Powered 8 inch Subwoofer

Polk Audio PSW111 Compact Powered 8 inch SubwooferCheck Latest Price

Polk Audio PSW111 Compact Powered 8 inch Subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:150 Watts RMS/300 Watts peak power
Weight:21 lbs
Materials:Dynamic Balance composite cone driver, solid MDF cabinet
Dimensions:14 x 11 x 12.2 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 10
  • Sound: 9
  • Value for Money: 10
  • Product Quality: 9

This is the best 8 inch subwoofer for home theaters or audio systems. Polk is a reliable brand for loudspeakers, and their 8 inch subwoofers, the PSW111 models, hold the same reputation. This compact subwoofer has a beautiful design. The design feels luxe and the materials used are high quality. It will definitely look good with your setup.

Its best features are its automatic open and off feature and the customizable audio controls. It works well with other loudspeakers. Expect that there will be no distortions in the sound, even in higher volumes. Some cons include the bass not being as punchy, but it’s still a good bass boost. The frequency response is not low.

Both cons are also mostly unnoticeable, especially for an average user. Overall, this is the best of the best 8 inch subwoofer you could get for your home entertainment setup. It is good to use for casual movie watching and music listening.

Pros:
  • compact and punchy
  • loud and clear sounds
  • high-efficiency
  • good looking build
  • sleek design
  • good connectivity options
Cons:
  • The capacitors are known to break
  • Polk does not have the best customer service should you have an issue

Polk’s a reliable brand overall. You can expect excellent craftsmanship when it comes to this subwoofer. Furthermore, it comes at a good price that is just right for the quality and performance you will get from the unit. Finally, it is stylish but functional.

2. KEF KUBE 8b Subwoofer

KEF KUBE 8b SubwooferCheck Latest Price

KEF KUBE 8b Subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:300 Watts RMS
Weight:24.6 lbs
Materials:acoustic suspension (sealed) cabinet design
Dimensions:11.6 x 11.6 x 11.6 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 10
  • Sound: 9
  • Value for Money: 7
  • Product Quality: 9

With regards to power, this is may be an alternative to the Polk Audio PSW111. The only downside is that it is twice the price of the PSW111. However, it is a little bit punchier and louder. The KEF KUBE 8b is also good for watching movies and listening to music.

If you have a few hundred dollars more to spare and you want to upgrade your entertainment system’s sound quality, this might be for you. This is an active/powered subwoofer which means it has an amplifier built-in which is a good plus!

The KEF KUBE is a fairly good-looking subwoofer. It’s not that hard to blend it in your home to match the interior of your house. The only real con is the price.

It can be a little expensive for what it offers since the frequency response range is quite narrow, and although the amplifier is strong, remember that it is only an 8 inch. It’s still not comparable to subwoofers with larger drivers but is definitely one of the best 8 inch subwoofers.

Pros:
  • It elevates how immersive the sound will be
  • Sleek and classy design
  • Easy to use because of the flexible connectivity options
  • High-end and well built.
Cons:
  • One of the most expensive choices on this list

The KEF KUBE sub ticks off all the boxes on what a good subwoofer should be but at a cost. This sleek and stylish unit boasts impressive performance and amazing quality of sound as an active/powered subwoofer with its built-in amplifier.

3. Audioengine S8 250W Powered Subwoofer

Audioengine S8 250W Powered SubwooferCheck Latest Price

Audioengine S8 250W Powered Subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:125 Watts RMS/250 Watts peak power
Weight:30 lbs
Materials:anti-resonant steel frame and heavy-duty rubber speaker surround
Dimensions:11.25 x 11.25 x 11.25 in

Ratings

  • Performance:8
  • Sound: 8
  • Value for Money: 10
  • Product Quality: 8

This is a great option for gaming purposes. This subwoofer shines with a separate speaker. If you spend a lot more time on your desk than on your TV set, it might be worth grabbing this sub. It will definitely add a more immersive experience when playing as it adds depth even if it is a softer sound.

Aside from gaming, of course, you could also use it when playing music or streaming movies and shows on your computer. It is a viable sub for gaming consoles, record players, and TVs as well. The multiple inputs make it easy to hook it up with any device.

A feature it has that shines is its auto sleep energy-saving function. Again, that’s why it’s perfect for desktop use. Its compact form also makes it perfect for any desk setup as it’s easy to keep in the background and keep your computer the star of the show. It’s worth mentioning that being a powered sub, the Audioengine S8 already has a built-in amp. The price isn’t too bad too.

Pros:
  • Simple design but still amazing build quality
  • Provides low, tight, and smooth, and loud bass
  • Works with many devices such as turntables, powered or passive speakers, televisions, cd or DVD players, and video game consoles—basically all devices with a 1/8″ mini-jack or RCA outputs.
  • Audioengine is a trusted brand that builds quality speakers.
Cons:
  • Too small for a whole-room setup

Compact and simple, this subwoofer is the answer to your prayers if you’re looking to perfect your desktop setup. It provides tight and smooth bass that will be the finishing touch to your gaming or editing workspace.

4. Best Compact Car Subwoofer: Pioneer TS-SWX2002 8 inch shallow mount pre-loaded enclosure

Pioneer TS-SWX2002 8 inch shallow mount pre-loaded enclosureCheck Latest Price

Pioneer TS-SWX2002 8 inch shallow mount pre-loaded enclosure Product Specs

Power output:150 Watts RMS/600 Watts peak power
Weight:5.17 Kilograms
Materials:IMPP – Composite cone, Elastic Polymer surround
Dimensions:21.31 x 37.31 x 32 cm

Ratings

  • Performance: 10
  • Sound: 9
  • Value for Money: 10
  • Product Quality: 9

Now, this car subwoofer is no doubt one of the best 8 inch subwoofers. This unit has an oversized cone structure and is perfect for a shallow and compact sub. It is also fairly easy to install since it does not require any specific modifications. The quality is certainly good enough to blast music for hours and hours during a road trip.

Do note that the Pioneer TS-SWX2002 only performs extremely well in smaller cars. It may lack power and volume when placed in bigger cars. However, you can modify it to gain more volume, but it defeats this sub’s quick and easy cob. Another downside, compared to other models in the same price range, it’s not the most powerful one you can find. But it’s still up on the list.

Pros:
  • Tight bass even from a shallow compact design
  • Fair pricing
  • Reliable performance
  • Excellent build quality that features carpeted, non-slip, and scratch-resistant enclosure surface.
Cons:
  • It may not be strong enough for larger cars
  • Not as powerful as other subwoofers

Elevate any road trip you go on starting today with this car subwoofer. Its compact design makes it unobtrusive in smaller spaces. If you’re a casual music listener, this will be the best choice to bump up your experience as a beginner.

5. Skar Audio Dual 8-inch SDR Series

Skar Audio Dual 8-inch SDR SeriesCheck Latest Price

Skar Audio Dual 8-inch SDR Series Product Specs

Power output:700 Watts RMS/1,400 Watts peak power (pair)
Weight:53.2 Kilograms
Materials:Premium Vented Enclosure Made of 5/8″ MDF and Finished in Black Carpeting
Dimensions:18.5 x 14 x 27.5 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 10
  • Sound: 9
  • Value for Money: 10
  • Product Quality: 9

Now, if you want the best car subwoofer to really elevate the quality of your car audio systems to the next level, this might be for you. This beast is mighty. Expect high performance because this dual voice coil unit boasts up to 700 Watts RMS power and peak power handling as high as 1400 Watts. You will definitely get enough bass boost to shake your car.

If you want a subwoofer that is chest-thumping and hard-hitting, you need this installed in your car ASAP! There will be minimal distortion in the sound produced because of the wide frequency range. Whatever song you listen to, it will be clear, and it sure sounds amazing. It is a worthy entry in our list of the best 8 inch subwoofers on the market.

This subwoofer is boxed in a wooden enclosure. This sub is beautiful and incredibly easy to install despite its size. All you need is an amplifier that you can connect it to, and it works. You can also buy this sub with an optional amplifier kit which makes the buying process really easy—no need to look for other amplifiers.

You skip the part where you have to research what amplifier works with your sub. Tasks like that are boring, especially to those who aren’t that techie and too specific with their equipment. Since the Pioneer TS-SWX2002 is the recommendation for compact cars, the Skar Audio Dual 8 inch, on the other hand, is what you want if you have a big car such as an SUV.

Pros:
  • a really powerful sub
  • easy to install
  • premium build
  • attractive design
  • compact in size despite being having a superior bass output
Cons:
  • May have too much power for smaller cars
  • It is better for those who have more space and may be unnecessary for smaller vehicles

If you want s sub that’ll blow you away, this is the one. This unit is not only a powerful one but a stylish one as well. Boasting its wooden enclosure, it really is a unit that will live up to its name when it comes to performance, as well as big cars are no problem for this subwoofer.

6. Best Overall Car Sub: Skar Audio VVX-8v3 D4 8 inch subwoofer

Skar Audio VVX-8v3 D4 8 inch SubwooferCheck Latest Price

Skar Audio VVX-8v3 D4 8 inch Subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:400 Watts RMS/800 Watts peak power
Weight:17.9 lbs
Materials:Copper voice coil, custom tooled basket, competition-grade paper cone, high roll foam surround
Dimensions:9.50 x 9.50 x 8.00 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 10
  • Sound: 10
  • Value for Money: 8
  • Product Quality: 9

For overall best car audio subwoofer, this is what you want. This subwoofer can cater to different needs. It is high-powered and well made. With 400 Watts RMS power, you’ll be getting big bass and big volume. Extremely reliable for that bass boost that you want and need. The Skar Audio VVX-8V3 is well made. Expect to use this sub for a really long time. Definitely worth your money!

One of the unique features it has is its advanced cooling system. You can’t find that in any other sub in the market. You don’t have to worry about overheating, blowing out, and being worn out. You can use it whenever you like without having to think about ruining your audio gear.

Play loud music for as long as you like! This is the number one 8 inch car audio subwoofer available right now. The only downside is that it might not be a good option for beginners since it needs a custom-built enclosure. But, if you have the resources, this is a good car subwoofer, especially for advanced audio enthusiasts.

Pros:
  • high performance
  • competition grade
  • well made
  • compact size
  • highly efficient cooling system
Cons:
  • Simplistic design
  • Requires a custom-built enclosure

If you’ve got a trained ear and you’ve been in the audiophile game for some time, this is the car subwoofer for you. You don’t have to worry about damaging this subwoofer due to overheating or blowing out, but the quality of sound is superb and powerful with 400W RMS.

7. Best Budget Car Sub: Bazooka BT8024DVC BT Series Subwoofer

Bazooka BT8024DVC BT Series SubwooferCheck Latest Price

Bazooka BT8024DVC BT Series Subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:400 Watts peak power
Weight:15.45 lbs
Materials:passive bass tube enclosure with dual voice coils
Dimensions:19 x 8.6 x 10.1 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 8
  • Sound: 8
  • Value for Money: 8
  • Product Quality: 9

Unlike other car subwoofers in this list, the enclosure of the Bazooka BT024DVC BT is tubular in shape. That design is to improve the sound pressure to produce powerful sound no matter what you play. The con of the design is that not everyone digs the shape.

It is slightly heavy, however, it is effortless to mount. The price point is also the reason why this sub is on the list. This sub is incredibly inexpensive. It’s also versatile as it is suitable for almost any vehicle—definitely a decent choice in its price range. The immersive surround sound experience is decent. Do note that this is a passive sub.

Pros:
  • Includes mounting straps for easy installation and secure mounting
  • High efficiency
  • Passive Bass Tubes enclosure with dual voice coils
  • Corner-loading optimization provides maximum bass performance
Cons:
  • Is a passive subwoofer that still needs to be powered by an amplifier

The Bazooka subwoofer is a budget-friendly option for those who want powerful sound without spending a powerful amount. It is one of the more innovative entries on the list with its unique design to perform and provide loud bass.

8. JBL Stage 810 8 inch Subwoofer

JBL Stage 810 8 inch SubwooferCheck Latest Price

JBL Stage 810 8 inch Subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:200 Watts RMS/800 Watts peak power
Weight:2 lbs
Materials:polypropylene woofer cone with hi-roll rubber surround
Dimensions:10.63 x 10.63 x 5.51 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 9
  • Sound: 8
  • Value for Money: 10
  • Product Quality: 8

This is the best option for those on a budget. The build quality on this 8 inch sub is amazing. JBL as a brand itself has a good reputation–you know that they’re reliable. Expect loud and clear sound with this bad boy. It’s unbelievable how inexpensive it is for the performance it brings. You can use this sub for both cars and an entertainment system!

You do need to provide your own enclosure since it doesn’t come in one. There is something good about that, though. It makes the JBL stage 810 a good replacement for stock factory speakers and worn-out audio components. Just take out the old one from your old subwoofer box or cabinet and then install this sub. It is a good upgrade because it fits a high-quality polypropylene cone and rubber surround.

This is unlike any factory set that you can get. That material makes the sub last longer compared to others. You won’t be thinking about damage or burnout for a long time. This thing sounds amazing. You do not need a premium amplifier with this. Distortion is basically non-existent when listening to any music or when watching any show. You can enjoy anything with it.

Pros:
  • Produces high output with minimal distortion
  • Power handling capability of up to 800 watts peak power or 200W RMS
  • Sleek design
Cons:
  • It needs a custom enclosure
  • Not the most powerful output

The JBL stage 810 is your go-to when you need to replace any stock audio components. It’s an east-to-install subwoofer that is a step up from components that come with your vehicle because of its improvement in materials. Even if it may seem like a glorified replacement part, it still has great output with minimum distortion and powerful handling at 200W RMS.

9. Boss Audio Systems Elite BE8D 8 inch car subwoofer

Boss Audio Systems Elite BE8D 8 inch car subwooferCheck Latest Price

Boss Audio Systems Elite BE8D 8 inch car subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:600 Watts peak power
Weight:‎4.47 lbs
Materials:Aluminum dual voice coils, Polypropylene cone, Butyl Rubber surround
Dimensions:9 x 9 x 4.3 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 8
  • Sound: 9
  • Value for Money: 8
  • Product Quality: 8

Another good option for those who are looking for an affordable 8 inch car subwoofer. This dual voice coil sub provides decent performance and builds quality. Not as good as the JBL Stage 810, but it will still get the job done. It’s just weird that it’s a little bit more expensive than the JBL, but it’s still mighty for its price range. It’s still an improvement compared to a stock car sound system.

Pros:
  • Well made and high-quality build
  • Made with durable materials
  • Attractive design
  • The voice coils can withstand high temperatures while maintaining their strength.
Cons:
  • More expensive but less powerful than other entries on this list

The Boss subwoofer highlights its high-quality materials. If you’re looking for a sub that will allow you to enjoy your music better while on the road, this is a great choice because you’ll be able to enjoy it for far longer, thanks to the time and effort put into its construction.

10. Most Powerful Car Sub: CT Sounds 8 inch car audio subwoofer

CT Sounds 8 inch car audio subwooferCheck Latest Price

CT Sounds 8 inch car audio subwoofer Product Specs

Power output:600 Watts RMS/1,200 Watts peak power
Weight:‎25 lbs
Materials:Competition mega foam surround, 5% carbon fiber reinforced cone, signature CT Sounds chrome low carbon iron bottom plate
Dimensions:11 x 11 x 11 in

Ratings

  • Performance: 10
  • Sound: 9
  • Value for Money: 10
  • Product Quality: 8

Suppose you want the best of the best for your car. Here it is. This is what you want to get. This is by far the most powerful 8 inch subwoofer on the market. It’s so good that it can outperform other subs that are dual-preloaded enclosures. It can produce the same volume output as many 18-inch subwoofers. What else would you want?

A really powerful sub in a really compact size. The price isn’t that bad too. Some subs that aren’t as good are more expensive than the CT Sounds, which says a lot. The only con for his is that it is prone to overheat, and it’s heavy. But for all the pros it offers. It’s certainly worth it and the best.

Pros:
  • A really powerful sub
  • Competition grade
  • Excellent and superior looking design
  • Great sound
Cons:
  • Heavy and prone to overheating

From the materials to the sound quality to the power output, the CT Sounds subwoofer may confuse you because it performs like a much larger subwoofer. However, this has great value for money and would definitely not be a wrong purchase should you make this your choice of subwoofer.

Buyer’s Guide

Where do you place a subwoofer?

Buyer's Guide for the best 8 inch subwoofer

A subwoofer can elevate the sound quality of your audio system. However, the positioning or where you place your subwoofer also affects the performance, so sound adjustments and experimenting with audio frequencies are necessary.

Bad placement may cause a problem called room modes wherein the low frequency is amplified in your room, making it more prominent than the other sound layers. This often happens if the subwoofer is too close to a corner or even a wall. Another problem is called bass traps. Bass traps mean the bass that your subwoofer produces appears to be “thin” because of where it is located in the room.

Subwoofers send sound in circles, and it’s dispersed in all directions, so theoretically, it can be placed anywhere. There are just some locations that can make the output a lot better. This is because the bass sound will remain clear until it reaches your ears, but it affects the audio signal and causes distortion in the sound if it encounters obstacles or passes interference.

A good tip in positioning your subwoofer is to avoid setting it in corners or placing it by a wall. It is not advisable to hide it inside a cabinet, shelf, or console table. Some people don’t like how it looks or additional wire clutter, so it might be tempting to hide it away. Don’t do it!

By putting it somewhere that encloses it, you’re adding another extra box that is unnecessary to the subwoofer’s performance. It hinders the signal from arriving at you undistorted. Blockage or interference distorts the bass sound! The cabinet that houses the subwoofer is designed for music and positively influences the sound. Subwoofers tend to cause vibrations. You don’t want stuff on your shelf, cabinet, or console table moving around.

An easy and simple way to tell you where to place your subwoofer is just to place it in front of the room or at the back of the room. You can use calibration systems and measuring systems which can be complicated, but that’s how to figure out the placement professionally. Newer and more advanced subwoofer models now have their own measurement and equalization system!

Sometimes the room may be the problem or what you can improve on. If that’s the case, then that’s what you call an acoustically poor room. The quality of the subwoofer to produce clean and accurate bass can also be ensured by having a room with acoustic treatment. You can put acoustic panels, diffusers, and bass traps to improve your room’s acoustics.

What kind of subwoofer should you get?

Best Subwoofers Under 200 USD
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There are two main types of subwoofers. Passive and Active/Powered. A passive sub is a subwoofer that does not have a built-in amplifier, and a powered sub is subwoofer is a sub that has a built-in amplifier. Whether or not you have an amplifier, this is a good place to start. Aside from that…

If you’re buying a subwoofer for a car’s audio system, there are a couple of different types to choose from.

Component Subwoofer

-A component sub is just the speaker itself. It still needs to be mounted or installed in a subwoofer box, and you need an external amplifier to power the sub. Component subs come in a range of sizes and also vary with the power rating it has. Building a component sub allows you to pick different impedance and voice coils setups.

Enclosed Sub

– This is a sub that already comes in its own sealed enclosure. There’s no need to build a system, so you save time and effort. The downside of getting an enclosed sub is that you only have a limited option to choose from. You also need an external amplifier to power the sub.

Powered sub

– This is definitely what you want if you want to save space. It’s compact because it already has a woofer and amplifier built-in. It’s easy to install since you’re only dealing with one thing. Powered subs are reliable in producing decent bass and a quality subwoofer. Still, their smaller drivers and amplifiers my not provide the loud sounds that some look for in a car audio system. If you want thunderous bass, this may not be for you.

Vehicle-specific sub

– This is either powered or unpowered. A vehicle-specific sub is designed to blend with your car’s interior. The sub will be installed strategically so that it matches well with the car. Again, not the best for bass lovers out there who wants a big bass with intense sound. But like the powered sub, it definitely improves the audio performance car’s sound system.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a speaker and a subwoofer?

What are Subwoofers and Why Do You Need One? | Klipsch

Speakers are designed to be an output for the sound or audio that your device produces. Unlike speakers, subwoofers are only able to produce bass. As discussed earlier, the subwoofer takes care of the low-frequency side of the audio while speakers only deal with mid and high tones. That’s why you need a subwoofer with your speakers because these are made to work together.

Regular speakers can never FULLY reproduce everything. Pushing it to the limit causes stress which is bad for your equipment.

Where can you use subwoofers?

Many people actually avoid using subwoofers because they can be big and clunky. Some may also think that these add to wire clutter they’ll have to deal with. But the pros of getting a subwoofer are far greater than its cons.

Listening to the music itself is a form of entertainment, and to some, they even consider it a form of relaxation. You can also add it to your workstation or home office, especially if you like to work with music or listen to music to relax during breaks when you work. If you constantly listen to music, upgrading your setup will no doubt make your listening experience better.

Using subwoofers can also allow you to utilize your audio equipment to its maximum potential. And if you have a budget to mid-range setup, a subwoofer can stretch its capacity and produce even better sound.

Adding a subwoofer can definitely improve a car’s audio system as well. The factory speakers that come stock in cars are often not the best, especially when producing low frequencies because car speakers are small and cramped in a small space.

The waves that the bass creates are really long and can produce high-quality sound, but there should be enough space for it behind the drivers. That is the reason why subwoofer cabinets are really huge, and that’s why most car speakers do not have subwoofers built-in.

Do you need a subwoofer?

Buying a subwoofer can be expensive. However, it is surely a worthwhile investment! You can get bass from speakers but subwoofers are the only equipment that can produce correct and clean bass. Getting a subwoofer relieves your speakers from necessary stress.

This prolongs the life of your speakers. If you have nice, high quality, and not to mention expensive speakers, don’t you want to take care of these and keep them in really nice working condition?

Sometimes it’s not a question if you need a subwoofer but rather how many do you need! Multiple subwoofers allow you to distribute the bass better. Positioning and placement are important when it comes to subwoofers but more on that later!

How does adding a subwoofer improve your audio setup?

Even though subwoofers are designed to solely produce low-frequency sounds, a high-quality sub will improve the overall sound quality even if it’s for your car’s stereo system. Therefore, use a subwoofer for optimum performance if you want your audio system’s sound production to be the best possible sound.

Conclusion

Using a subwoofer, even an 8 inch one, allows you to “feel” the deep end of the sound. Listening to music is one thing, but feeling it is a different experience! “Feeling” the music makes you want to dance to it, nodding your head with the rhythm, tapping your hand or foot to the beat. Music like hip-hop, rap, EDM, or pop is good but even better with good bass!

Even when watching movies, bass makes you “feel” the sound. Thriller, horror, and action movies are come alive with good bass! With this list of the best 8 inch subwoofers, you can a step closer to adding to the thrill, make what you’re watching scarier, and your action even more exciting.

Expert Tip

Get More Out of Your Bass

If you’ve opted for a subwoofer that may not be boasting the biggest frequency response numbers, there is a great way to get more bass. Experts will say that optimal placement is a few feet away from your walls or a tight space. This is because the sound becomes too “boomy,” but it may be a good idea to do just this if you want extra power and booming sound for little to no cost.

Did You Know?

Buyer's Guide for Best 8 Inch Subwoofer

For the movie Earthquake (1874), Universal Pictures made use of their model called Senssurround, which let film-goers experience more enhanced audio. The deeper bass and even the feel of these low-frequency sounds was a hit with the audience. This led Earthquake (1974) to become one of the highest-grossing films of that year and Sessurround winning a special Academy Award.

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