10 Best Subwoofers: Reviews and Buying Guide

A subwoofer provides the sound experience of a special kind. While the rock massages the skin during the rock concert and it throbs in the pit of the stomach, the sound of action films makes the walls shake. This experience is the responsibility of the subwoofer, which will enhance your home theater. The extraordinary sound experience can significantly enhance the action film or a concert on CD and turn it into a true listening pleasure.

In general, normal speakers can not play frequencies below 100 hertz with sufficient sound pressure. This means that you need a special speaker for this. The subwoofer is a complement to a traditional speaker system that can provide the required sound pressure for the bass, significantly enhancing the sound. In our subwoofer comparison we introduce you to 12 of the best devices, describe technical data and in the guide, you will receive important information for the purchase of a subwoofer.

Top 10 Subwoofers

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What’s the use of a subwoofer?

Subwoofer or bass box and woofer called, are special speakers that you can integrate into the domestic speaker set. The subwoofer is responsible for the reproduction of low-frequency sound waves, ie for very low tones, and offers a corresponding sound experience. In the end, this is nothing more than bass and thus the typical thumping in the epigastrium.

For movies or music, the bass provides a special experience of sound and especially in action movies or rock music, these deep tones are not missing, so you can experience film and music in the truest sense of the word. The deep sound is created by the movement of large volumes of air for which the subwoofer is responsible.

Many users of hi-fi speakers still believe that the system is perfectly adequate. Basically, although there is a sufficient upper bass available, it is about the low notes, Schachter most boxes tremendously. Especially when it comes to the cutoff frequency of 30 hertz or even lower, the normal speakers cannot keep up. These are usually present in many music recordings as well as in movies and for a subwoofer the smallest problem.

Does a Subwoofer for Home Cinema Benefit?

This question can clearly be answered with “yes”. Because not only that you can experience the bass close up and so can conjure up a home theater at home. Also, the remaining boxes of the system are significantly relieved and thus concentrate on their own frequency range. At the same time, this means that you can cover your own areas undisturbed and thus an even better sound image can be achieved.

In addition, with a Home Activ subwoofer you can significantly increase the bass sound and improve the music or movie enjoyment significantly. However, you must also adjust the Woofer for Home Cinema accordingly and adjusted to the spatial conditions. But the perfect interaction with the other speakers is also very important for Home Cinema.

What are the differences between subwoofers?

There are numerous subwoofers that are used for different purposes. On the one hand, there are special subwoofers for the home cinema area and, on the other hand, woofers are available that are specially used for music. Furthermore, the manufacturers offer car or car subwoofer and PC subwoofer, which are almost perfect for the game enjoyment. Which bass is of interest to you depends on whether you want to use the woofer in the car, on the PC, for home theater or for music.

Subwoofer construction methods

Subwoofers are available in three different designs, which are crucial for the purchase depending on the application. Therefore, you should know before buying if you want to use the subwoofer for home theater, music or games. That’s the only way to make sure you buy the right subwoofer that suits your preference.

The three subwoofer construction methods differ mainly in the construction. While the membranes on Frontfire subwoofers are clearly visible, they are hidden in the Downfire subwoofer. The Free Air subwoofer does not even have housing.

  1. Frontfire Subwoofer: The Frontfire subwoofer is especially recognizable by the clearly visible membranes. They also have a protective grid behind which the membranes can be found. With the Frontfire subwoofer, the sound waves send the chassis forward, which means that the ambient air and not the ground is made to oscillate. Therefore, this subwoofer construction is mainly used for music fans, as furniture, walls, and floors hardly vibrate at all.
  2. Downfire Subwoofer: Especially for home theater lovers, these Home Cinema subwoofers are ideal. The membranes are not visible, the boxes are completely closed and only at the bottom of the housing is a speaker cone. Thus, the sound is radiated towards the floor, which then causes walls, floors, and furniture to vibrate. Therefore, in-home theaters, this subwoofer system is almost perfect, because here the characteristic quake of the walls comes into play.
  3. Free Air Subwoofer: The Free Air Subwoofer have no housing and are usually intended for the car, so pure Car Subwoofer, which is also mostly passive woofer. They are usually installed in the trunk, which means that the vehicle interior serves as a resonator.

What is the difference between active and passive subwoofers?

Subwoofers also differentiate between active and passive subwoofers. An active woofer thus has a built-in amplifier and offers you plenty of options. In addition, they are built much more compact and handling is much easier, which is why they are mainly found in domestic use. In addition, the active subwoofers contribute to relieving the remaining speakers and are therefore the home theater or music enjoyment at home the first choice. But also because you can make much more adjustments on the active bass speaker than on the passive woofer.

passive bass box needs to be powered by an external amplifier. The functionality can be compared with a normal loudspeaker box. The settings of the device are then made directly on the amplified, which is why they are usually used in the car. Passive subwoofers are usually much cheaper than active woofers.

What role does the housing of the woofer play?

The speaker housing, which is also called chassis, is especially important for the sound. In the last few years, two types of construction have become so popular. On the one hand, this is the closed housing, as is also the case with normal loudspeakers, and on the other, the design that an opening on the front or back is available. Which of the construction methods you choose, of course, depends on your priorities.

This opening on the front or back has the task that the sound of certain frequencies is amplified. This means that the physical principle behind these constructions resembles that of a Helmholtz resonator and should be familiar to everyone.

Thus, the bass reflex enclosure makes use of this principle and the sound is generated inside the housing. The sound waves radiated from the rear wall of the loudspeaker diaphragm then amplify in the sound box, that is the loudspeaker enclosure and come out through the opening. At the same time, this means that the case has to be perfectly adapted to the speaker in order to achieve the desired effect.

However, this is problematic anyway, because not always the desired effect is achieved, which is why you need to find the perfect place when setting up the Home Cinema Subwoofer. Because the woofer is too close to the wall, the sound waves can be thrown back from the back wall and an unpleasant roar is created. But even the rumbling in the stomach that some people feel uncomfortable by a wrong setting up the bass box arise.

Advantages of different housing types:

  • Enclosed Case: A closed case provides deep and precise bass. In addition, it contains only a limited amount of air, but that means it tends to deliver bass accurately. For music lovers who want a flat, accurate frequency response without a jumpy character, the closed subwoofer is recommended.
  • Open Case: If you need a pompous bass for action movies, you’ll be well served with a subwoofer with a bass reflex opening. However, these devices often deliver a jumbled bass, making them more suitable for movie fans and home cinema enthusiasts.

What should be considered when building a bass box?

However, if you can call a subwoofer your own, you have to pay a lot of attention when it comes to setting up. On the one hand the neighbors should not be disturbed and on the other hand, the sound experience should be perfect. Therefore, the position of a woofer is particularly important. Meanwhile, there are also subwoofers that fit perfectly under the couch. These are not only very effective but also space-saving and adapt perfectly to the room.

When setting up a subwoofer, make sure that it does not disappear behind a chair or even behind a plant. Because even if the woofers only radiate higher frequencies to a limited extent, you will miss the best sounds at such a site.

What should you look for when buying a subwoofer?

Of course, you must first consider which priorities you are setting. Should the woofer be more for the enjoyment of music or for quivering walls in action movies? If this question is answered, it must, of course, be considered where the place of use is, how big the room is and whether there is enough space for the subwoofer.

Especially for home use, active subwoofers are recommended. For the sound enjoyment in the car, a passive woofer is better suited. If the woofer in the living room and are used for music or movies, the size of the subwoofer is not crucial. Important for the right choice here is the built-in electronics, which affects the Tiefbassvermögen. In addition, the features are of great importance.

These features are especially important:

  • Control of the volume
  • Regulation of the frequency
  • phase control
  • advanced filter function
  • different connection options

Another point is, of course, the case, which not only has to look beautiful but should also be stable. As a rule, the housings are made of sturdy MDF wood and therefore offer a certain level of stability. In addition, it should also be considered that a very powerful subwoofer should also have a size that the sound is good.


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