The 8 greatest subwoofers for 2024: add growth to your film or music room

Meghan Trainor was on to to one thing: It actually is all about that bass. The neatest thing about these low, low numbers on the frequency scale is that it does not matter for those who’re playing some vinyl, streaming music from Qobuz, or watching sand worms rumble out of the Arrakis desert in your big, bright TV, including a subwoofer to your sound setup is the easiest way to do it.

However, there are actually lots of of subwoofers to select from. Should you spend money on a status speaker brand like SVS, Cambridge Audio, or KEF that’s famend for audio high quality? Or might you save your self a couple of bucks and go together with one thing a bit extra modest, reminiscent of a sub from Klipsch, Kanto, or Fluance that additionally make unbelievable merchandise for the worth? Or perhaps you are locked in (and loving it) to Sonos’ full techniques and need to add some rumble. Whatever your woofer wants could also be, we’ve created this roundup of the perfect subwoofers for 2024 to make your buying expertise a lot simpler.

svs sb16 ultra review sb 16 subwoofer no grill
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

SVS SB16 Ultra

The greatest total subwoofer

  • Gorgeous design
  • Incredibly deep, {powerful} bass
  • Smooth and articulate
  • Does the work of two subs
  • First-class management app
  • Could be massive for some rooms

The SVS SB-16 Ultra has been on our listing for a while, primarily as a result of we have not discovered something worthy to take its place. This subwoofer has turn out to be our measuring stick, which could truly be unfair to the competitors — it is that good. Beneath a glossy, trendy subwoofer field, the cubic SVS SB16 homes a monstrous 16-inch Ultra driver with an 8-inch, edge-wound voice coil and a ridiculous 1,500-watt steady Sledge amplifier with discrete MOSFET output that tops out at 5,000 watts peak energy.

Additionally, a smartphone app for iOS and Android has upped the SB16 Ultra’s recreation considerably, taking the ache out of organising your sub by permitting you to fine-tune the speaker out of your optimum listening place and create customized presets for various listening conditions.

All of that is to say: No matter the way you’re utilizing the SB16, it impresses. Gunshots and explosions in movies register with a hefty thump to the chest, and the sub manages low-end instrumentation fantastically, permitting acoustic bass to bounce easily whereas digital bass and kick drums shake the inspiration of your house. For our cash, that is the perfect subwoofer you should buy, interval.

Honorable point out goes to the HSU ULS-15 MK 2 and the Monoprice Monolith range of subwoofers, two of the best-sounding $1,000-plus subwoofers we have checked out lately.

SVS SB16-Ultra
SVS SB16 Ultra
The greatest total subwoofer

The Klipsch Reference Series 12 R-121SW set up next to a table.

Klipsch Reference Series 12 (R-121SW)

The greatest subwoofer for the model acutely aware

  • A glossy and classy aesthetic
  • Powerful digital amplifier
  • Revamped cone design means little distortion
  • A bit expensive
  • Klipsch-style drivers will not be for everybody

Klipsch is consistently reinventing its personal wheel, and when you think about the truth that there aren’t many issues to deal with within the first place, it solely goes to point out simply how a lot the model cares about seems and efficiency. Thus, we arrive on the Klipsch Reference Series 12 R-121SW.

We love the truth that Klipsch went again to the drafting board to create an all-new woofer design. The sub’s front-firing 12-inch cone consists of what the corporate calls thermoform crystalline polymer, delivering a powerful low-end expertise with minimal distortion, and with a a lot lighter chassis. There’s additionally the onboard digital amplifier, the guts and lungs of the 121SW, supplying as much as 400 watts of unequaled energy with pinpoint accuracy.

If you are searching for a rock-solid woofer from a reputation that ensures reliability, the Klipsch Reference Series 12 R-121SW is actually the best way to go.

Klipsch Reference Series 12 R-121SW
Klipsch Reference Series 12 (R-121SW)
The greatest subwoofer for the model acutely aware

The Kanto Sub8 in Matte White set up next to a chair.

Kanto Sub8 Powered Subwoofer

A boutique woofer for a non-boutique worth

  • Up to 300W peak energy
  • Classy design
  • 40Hz to 120Hz crossover adjuster
  • Includes section change
  • May sound muddy when paired with sure audio system

Brands like Kanto are great at delivering the sorts of audio system that scream “boutique” with out smacking you with specialist pricing. In the case of the omnipotent Kanto Sub8, the corporate has designed a woofer that may be simply built-in with just about any speaker model on the market.

Available in Matte Black or Matte White finishes, the Sub8 makes use of medium-density fiberboard housing to maintain vibrations and distortion to a minimal. Rubber ft, a metallic grille, and a remaining layer composed of vinyl are paired with Kanto’s sturdy cabinetry, making for a sub that may reply to audio info in a quick and detailed method. And at nearly 11 inches (each in width and peak), the Sub8 is straightforward sufficient to tuck away, though the its look is one we wouldn’t move up seeing each day.

Delivering as much as 300 watts of peak energy, the Sub8 additionally features a high-pass filter (adjustable from 40Hz to 120Hz) and a section change, guaranteeing you’ll have the ability to match this formidable woofer with any Kanto or non-Kanto encompass setup.

Kanto SUB8 Powered Subwoofer
Kanto Sub8 Powered Subwoofer
A boutique woofer for a non-boutique worth

The KEF KC62 subwoofer.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

KEF KC62 Subwoofer

The greatest small subwoofer

  • Can ship as much as 1,000 watts
  • Incredibly small footprint
  • Excellent sound high quality
  • Plenty of EQ choices
  • Very costly

KEF is a type of speaker manufacturers that’s at all times arising with new methods to blow our minds, and the KC62 Subwoofer (obtainable in black and white finishes) is a jaw-dropping sub that is no larger than a basketball. And the craziest half? This basketball can ship as much as 1,000 watts of clean, thumping low-end. We’re not kidding.

That’s on prime of two 6.5-inch Uni-Core force-canceling drivers, an assortment of EQ choices to actually dial within the sound, and a cupboard tailored to cut back undesirable distortion and vibrations. Yes, it is dearer than a majority of the woofers you may discover on this roundup, however KEF is solely probably the greatest manufacturers cash should buy, and simply take a look at it, for Pete’s sake.

How can one thing so small be so {powerful}? Thank KEF for that.

KEF KC62 Subwoofer
KEF KC62 Subwoofer
The greatest small subwoofer

The Cambridge Audio Minx X201 Powered Subwoofer.

Cambridge Audio Minx X201

Great for smaller areas

  • Rich and punchy sound
  • Takes up little or no area
  • Built-in DSP for fine-tuned efficiency
  • Somewhat expensive
  • Not the best choice for bigger areas and audio system

Not each front room might be the dimensions of a full-on movie show. For all of the condominium dwellers on the market, we completely perceive the annoyance of making an attempt to suit a encompass system right into a room with square-footage limitations. This is why we’d like to attract your consideration to the Cambridge Audio Minx X201.

Whether you go for the Gloss Black or Gloss White end, the Minx X201 is the proper powered sub for small areas and smaller audio system. At proper round 8.5 inches in peak, width, and depth, you’ll have the ability to match the X201 into nearly any residence theater — and it’s filled with extremely helpful audio options too. One of our favorites has bought to be the “auto-on” mode, which routinely turns the sub on when an LFE sign is detected.

You’ll additionally have the ability to modify the crossover from 36Hz as much as 200Hz, and might select from zero, 90-degree, and 180-degree section settings. There’s even a built-in digital sign processor (DSP) that calibrates each audio supply to make sure the perfect low-end supply for whichever motion pictures, reveals, and music you’re listening to.

Cambridge Audio Minx X201
Cambridge Audio Minx X201
Great for smaller areas

The Fluance DB10W next to a tower speaker.

Fluance DB10W 10-inch Subwoofer

The greatest subwoofer on a price range

  • Meshes nicely with different audio system
  • Classy design
  • Solid worth
  • Doesn’t ship the deepest bass

Fluance is an superior AV firm, buddies. Whether you want a strong set of powered Bluetooth speakers, a full encompass sound configuration, otherwise you’re searching for a sub (which might be why you’re studying this text), Fluance has bought you lined. In phrases of the latter, we’re massive followers of the Fluance DB10W 10-inch woofer.

Available in Natural Walnut and Black Ash finishes, the DB10W makes use of MDF materials and a front-facing, precision-tuned bass port to ship clear, distortion-free sound. That’s on prime of Fluance’s next-level built-in amp, which ensures you’ll have sufficient energy at high and low volumes.

One of our favourite DB10W options is the auto power-on operate. Whenever the DB10W detects an LFE sign, it routinely powers on, and shuts down if you toggle off your AV receiver. You’ll additionally have the ability to modify the sub’s grasp quantity and crossover vary (40Hz to 180Hz).

Fluance merchandise are fairly understated and classy-looking too, so even for those who’re including the DB10W to a non-Fluance speaker setup, it ought to play properly with no matter cones and drivers you already personal.

Fluance DB10W 10-inch Low Frequency Powered Subwoofer for Home Theater (Natural Walnut)
Fluance DB10W 10-inch Subwoofer
The greatest subwoofer on a price range

The Polk HTS10 subwoofer in a living room.

Polk Audio HTS 10 Subwoofer

The darkish horse subwoofer

  • Terrific efficiency for motion pictures and gamings
  • Distortion-reducing tech for noise-free sound
  • Includes crossover and section changes
  • Not as {powerful} as different fashions

The Polk Audio HTS 10 is an unsung gem on the earth of subwoofers, and we’re glad to have unearthed it.

Utilizing Polk’s spectacular Dynamic Balance Technology, this 10-inch front-firing woofer is engineered to evenly distribute sound all through your theater area. That’s on prime of Polk’s distortion-reducing tech that ensures each final decibel is as articulate and profound as might be.

You’ll additionally get changes for quantity, low-pass filtering, and section toggle — and, relaxation assured, wattage juggernauts. While the HTS 10 will not attain the height heights of one thing just like the KEF62, you possibly can count on peak wattage to hit round 200, which is loads of thud for many music, motion pictures, and video games.

Polk Audio HTS 10 Powered Subwoofer with Power Port Technology
Polk Audio HTS 10 Subwoofer
The darkish horse subwoofer

The Sonos Sub Gen 3 wireless subwoofer in the living room.

Sonos Sub (third Gen)

Best subwoofer for Sonos techniques

  • Huge, clean low finish
  • Easy setup
  • Can be hidden away
  • Seamless addition to a Sonos encompass system
  • Expensive
  • Can solely be used with Sonos

If you are already been the proud proprietor of some Sonos Wi-Fi audio system and have been inquisitive about including a Sonos Sub to both enhance the oomph of your music or create a encompass sound system in your residence theater, then we’re in all probability not the primary to inform you that this can be a nice thought. While it’s kind of on the costly aspect at $800, what you are getting is a few spectacular deep bass sound that not solely provides well-blended room-filling low finish to your tunes but additionally affect and chest-pounding depth to motion pictures.

Make certain you warn your neighbors first as a result of the Sonos Sub can get loud. Compatible with any Sonos speaker (new or previous), together with Era, One, Move, and Roam, in addition to the Beam and Arc soundbars, including a Sub (or a number of Subs) to your setup is straightforward with the Sonos app — and cable-free.

You can then use the app to configure your sound, fine-tune the EQ and mix stage, and even tweak it to particular rooms with the Trueplay software program that measures acoustics and units the sound accordingly. Music is evident, the bass is tight and by no means boomy, and you’ll just about place the Sub wherever fits your decor or furnishings scenario — even below media stands.

But the place Sonos lovers may be most intrigued is how straightforward it’s to create a encompass sound setup by combining a Sub with different Sonos audio system — for instance, the Dolby Atmos-capable Sonos Beam (Gen 2) or Arc soundbars within the entrance with a pair of stand-mounted Ones or Era 100s as rears is a great-sounding configuration that is straightforward to do.

Sonos Sub
Sonos Sub (third Gen)
Best subwoofer for Sonos techniques

Frequently Asked Questions

Are larger subwoofers higher?

They might be. Larger woofers can produce extra correct, room-filling bass with an even bigger “shake” issue than smaller fashions. But that is just one consideration. A poorly constructed massive subwoofer could rattle an excessive amount of, for instance, whereas smaller fashions with loads of energy can nonetheless do a fantastic job.

Does my speaker system want a subwoofer?

It’s a very, actually good thought. Home theater techniques are typically designed with a subwoofer in thoughts. So are the most recent film audio requirements.

Can I exploit two subwoofers directly?

You can, though it is not frequent in residence setups. Just make it possible for your receiver can deal with two subwoofer connections. Some folks favor utilizing two smaller woofers that they will strategically place of their theater to get the perfect multi-directional bass.

Wait, is there a distinction between a woofer and a subwoofer?

The phrases are steadily used interchangeably. Traditionally, a “woofer” can consult with a driver that has the next frequency response than a subwoofer, much less devoted to pure bass sound, and extra prone to be a part of a speaker than a standalone unit.

How do you check?

We run the subwoofer for a number of hours earlier than starting any vital analysis. While there’s a lot debate over whether or not the “break-in effect” is actual, we favor to get that issue lined so it does not play a job in our analysis a method or one other.

Our subwoofer exams happen in at the very least two totally different rooms, any of which we’re intimately acquainted with, and we typically check the subwoofer in three areas that we all know provide the very best response inside these rooms. Testing materials contains every little thing from check tone sweeps to blockbuster motion pictures and a choice of music from a number of genres. We search to find out how deep a sub can play, how visceral the low bass response is, how nicely it may be adjusted to combine with each small and enormous satellite tv for pc audio system, and the way musically correct it’s able to taking part in.

We hope for a flexible subwoofer, which can’t solely belt out the massive bass notes wanted for a high-impact motion film, however one which might additionally keep tight and tuneful when taking part in acoustic upright bass, or reproducing the basic Fender P-bass tone. A great subwoofer will keep away from tubby, boomy sound that lacks definition, and as a substitute combine itself seamlessly into a bigger audio system, calling consideration to itself solely throughout situations through which its pure muscle cannot be ignored.

If you’ve got already made your alternative, check our subwoofer setup guide to get every little thing put collectively appropriately and our calibration guide to assist maximize efficiency in any listening area.

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