All You Need to Know on How to Find Best Subwoofers for Your Car
First of all, let’s see whether you’re really in a search for a subwoofer. Many people don’t even know what a subwoofer is and what kind of sound it provides. This is why before you go shopping, it’s best to see check if you really need one.
By definition, a subwoofer is a part of audio equipment whose role is to reproduce the low frequency sound, better known as the bass. This technology has been around for almost half a century, but it wasn’t until the nineties when it became popular among car enthusiasts. Since then, it’s become a sort of a rule that every well-tuned car had to feature a set of speakers, together with a mighty subwoofer.
But, the more power it has, the more room a subwoofer takes. That is the reason why in most cases it has to be installed at the back of the car. Not only do subwoofers can’t fit the interior of the car, but even if they did, the setup wouldn’t look very nice. At the back of the car, though, the subwoofer is bound to look cool.
Looking amazing is not the only purpose of subwoofers. Their main purpose is producing powerful bass, sometimes so powerful that can even be bad for the health of certain people. In fact, this feature of subwoofers is what gave the idea to car enthusiast to use them for competitions, where the sound pressure level often goes well above over 140 decibels.
Competition subwoofers have so much power that when switched on maximum, they can make your body shake and your hair fly around, like in this YouTube video. When the subwoofer is at its max, you might not be able to hear the music at all, only the noise made from the vibration. But exactly that is what attracts a number of fans to compete whose car is going to make the most noise.
The so-called SPL wars are competitions in which people test their car subwoofers to see which one is going to get to the highest sound pressure level. Such competitions are popular around the world, with those taking part in the UnitedStates tract more than 20 thousand people every time. This is why the manufacturers have decided to start making more and more powerful subwoofers, making a kind of revolution in the world of audio equipment.
How Subwoofers Changed Over the Years?
As the main role of a subwoofer is to produce bass, it was meant to be an additional part of the equipment. Actually, in order to listen to music on the audio set in your car, you don’t have to own a subwoofer. That is why in the beginning, subwoofers were made tiny, so they could find a place on the instrument panel.
However, when the manufacturers of audio gadgets realized that people want the subwoofer to be the main part of the sound system, they decided to go along with it. In the 1990s, the companies like Alpine, LG, or Kenwood started designing subwoofers for the purpose of being really loud. Actually, they started making them so powerful that they could produce the noise that goes over recommended limits.
Apart from competing who is going to make a more powerful subwoofer, the manufacturers have also started competing one another in terms of design. The times when it was enough for the sound system to be loud are long gone. Today, people want a loud subwoofer that’s going to make a strong impression on fellow car enthusiasts.
The good news is that all of the major companies that deal with sound systems for cars, have recognized the wishes of the customers. That is why you can find literally hundreds of beautifully-designed, yet insanely powerful subwoofers. The trick is in knowing how to choose the best one. That is why the first thing to consider is the subwoofer’s brand.
Best Brands of Car Subwoofers
Although it shouldn’t be the decisive factor, but choosing a reputable manufacturer means that you don’t have to worry about the life of the subwoofer. Almost all top-class brands offer a good warranty, not to mention that their devices are made from best quality materials. If you decide to go with a less known brand, you risk that your subwoofer might die in the middle of an SPL war.
The subwoofer that’s not going to let you down is the one made by Alpine. This Japanese company with the 50-years-long history, is one of the champions of production of audio equipment for cars. Alpine audio equipment will provide amazing sound, but will also impress you with its looks. Their subwoofers seem to be perfect for any type of car, whether its sports car, SUV, or hatchback. Still, the number one reason that makes Alpine products stand above the competition is the fact that they are very reliable. When you buy an Alpine subwoofer, you buy it to serve you for ages!
Another Japanese manufacturer that deserves your attention is Pioneer. Just as its name implies, this company is a true pioneer in the field of audio systems. Their sound devices have been known for the high quality of the sound that they produce. Apart from that, Pioneer subwoofers also look very nice, which is why they are one of the favorite choices of car fans from all around the world.
Those looking for the best car subwoofer for off-road vehicles should look no further than the products manufactured by Rockford Fosgate. This company is famous for designing custom audio systems, regardless of the type of the car. That is the reason why Rockford Fosgate is the favorite brand of the owners of YXZs and motorcycles. Surely, this company can install an audio set consisting of a powerful subwoofer, an amplifier and a set of speakers, in virtually any type of vehicle.
Another great brand of subwoofers for cars is Boss. This company makes devices of super-high quality, which is bound to last for a long time. Apart from the aforementioned brands, you should also take a look at the products offered by other manufacturers. Some of the companies that deserve your attention include Kicker, Planet Audio, Skar Audio, etc.
Of course, it all depends on what you exactly want from a subwoofer. If you want one that’s going to be your humble servant for years, choose one from the manufacturers mentioned above. However, if only loud noise is on your mind, you can look on other places as well. There are certain manufacturers that have dedicated themselves in making the loudest subwoofers in the world!
Loudest Subwoofers on the Market
One of the loudest competition subwoofers on the market is the Orion HCCA154SPL HCCA Subwoofer. This 18-inches-wide beast can create the noise of up to 10,000 watts. Such noise can be really dangerous. In fact this subwoofer will make your whole car shake. Now imagine what can this do to your internal organs!
DS18 TM-SN18 Troublemaker has the same size as Orion HCCA, but the noise it makes is a bit more bearable. This bass maker is definitely going to make impressive vibrations with its 7,500 watts. On top of that, it features the speakers capable of producing up to 170dB of sound pressure.
But, it’s not all about how loud a subwoofer can get. Before making the decision, it seems wise to take a look at a few other features. Instead of purchasing the loudest, first you need to make sure that it will fit your ride. You also need to see will it be suitable with other parts of your audio system. You also need to make the decision on whether you want the subwoofer to have its own amplifier or use an external.
Powered vs. Passive Subwoofers
If you are wondering why it is important to know the difference between passive and powered subwoofers, it’s all because of the space. Because space in the back of your car is limited, you want to get the most of it. That is why you need to choose your audio system wisely. Powered subwoofers are those that come with an amplifier installed. This means that you don’t need to perform any complicated installations in order to have the subwoofer working.
Although the things are just a bit different when it comes to passive subwoofers (they require a connection with external amplifier), people usually decide on powered subwoofers. In fact, such subwoofers are the number 1 choice of car enthusiast. Apart from being simple, there are a few more good sides of this type of subwoofers.
If you sport a powered subwoofer in your car, you will not have to worry about inadequatepower. Furthermore, the chances that something will go wrong while it’s working are much lower than in the case of passive subwoofers. It’s because the amplifier in the powered subwoofer was designed especially for that model.
Other Things to Consider When Buying a Subwoofer
Choosing the best subwoofer is not easy as it might see as there are plenty of important things that need to be considered. First of all, you need to see whether the preferred subwoofer would fit your car. A superb-quality device that produces a lot of power will be of no use if you can’t place it in your car. That is why you need to thing wisely before making your choice. Check how many room you have in your car and see whether the 8, 10, 12, or 15-inch subwoofer will do the job.
Another thing to consider, of course is the design of the subwoofer. You also need to pay attention whether it’s sealed or ported. The difference is not only in shape and size, but also in the type of sound the subwoofer creates. If you want a competitions subwoofer, it’s best to go with the ported enclosure. It’s because it features vents that are responsible for creating the noise that will make your whole car vibrate. On the other hand, if you prefer to enjoy the music, it’s better to choose the subwoofer in the box.
Price of Subwoofers
One of the most important questions every car owner asks himself is how much money should you invest in your ride. If you’re a passionate car enthusiast you might end up spending your monthly salaries on making your car more superb. One of the things that always need improvement is the sound system. We’re not saying that your car’s audio system is bad, but the technology is evolving all the time. This means that every few years, you might be in a need of a new sound system.
However, getting a new audio for your car every few years is surely not good for your budget. That is why you need to be careful to buy one that’s good, while not costing too much. It also needs to be durable so that you could offload it easily once you get a new one. With that in mind, you need to be prepared to spend, at least a few thousand dollars if you want to own a good subwoofer.
Top 5 Best 18 Inch Subwoofers On the Market Right Now
For some people, finding the best 18 inch subwoofer seems as a mission impossible, especially knowing that there are literally thousands of amazing devices out there. If you are one of those people, it doesn’t mean you should give up. Instead, you can put your trust in us. We have done all the work for you – browsing through the vast offer of subwoofers, we have managed to hand-pick the very best subs currently on sale.
The following 5 subwoofers have all the features you can wish for. They are loud and powerful, yet very durable. These subs will not break easily, meaning that you’ll be able to enjoy your favorite music for as long as you want. Furthermore, these subwoofers will not make you bankrupt.
1. Skar Audio EVL-18
Skar Audio is not only one of the best manufacturers, but also a company that knows how to design a beautiful product. That is exactly the case with the subwoofer named EVL-18, which surely will fit your car’s interior. Colored black, with the only white bits being the company’s logo, this 18 inch subwoofer is elegant, yet gives away the impression of power. Speaking of power, Skar Audio EVL-18 can deal with quite a lot of watts.
The maximum power handling of this subwoofer is 2,500 watts, while the RMS stands at 1,250 watts. The voice coil is made of four layers of black aluminum. The material is making the sub look nice, but also takes care the device doesn’t get too hot. Aluminum is great for heat dissipation and so are the other materials of which this subwoofer is made. This means that no matter how long you play music continuously, Skar Audio EVL-18 will not get overheated.
But, it’s not just the materials that deserve credit for dealing with high temperature. The air flow cooling design of the subwoofer is another thing that deserves praise. Other technologies used for the subwoofer are dedicated to producing the very best quality of low-end bass sound. For this reason, a number of audiophiles decide to put Skar Audio EVL-18 at the back of their car. Of course, we are talking about those audiophiles whose car has enough room at the back for an 18 inch device.
The good news for those who don’t have a large truck in their car is that this model of subwoofer comes in several different variants. Apart from the 18 inch version, you can find this subwoofer with diameter of 15, 12, 10, or even 6.5 inches. Of course, the lower the diameter of the device, the lower the price. The cheapest version is the 6.5 inch, while the most expensive sub from the Skar Audio family is the 18 inch subwoofer.
2. Rockville RVW1800P8
Rockville is one of the most reputable manufacturers of audio equipment for cars, with their brand’s name being a synonym for quality. So, if you are looking for a powerful subwoofer that will serve you well for a long time, you won’t make a bad decision if you buy one made by Rockville. If we had to choose their bets 18 inch subwoofer, we would pick the model coded RVW1800P8.
What makes Rockville RVW1800P8 stand out from other 18 subwoofers is that it’s made of materials of the highest quality. There’s no way this subwoofer will get damaged in any way, regardless of how loud and for how long you play it without breaks. For example, Rockwell Audio decided on using Kevlar for the cone of the subwoofer. Being one of the toughest compounds in the world, Kevlar is surely making the cone more durable. This means that you got nothing to worry that the subwoofer will get damaged if you play it extensively.
Apart from being designed to last for a long time, Rockville RVW1800P8 is also made with the quality of sound in mind. This subwoofer is very powerful, meaning that it can win you awards at bass competitions. The competition subwoofer can deal with quite a lot of power – its peak power handling is 1,800 watts, while the RMS is two times less.
When it comes to the sound this subwoofer produces, it is simply brilliant. The device is capable of producing very low frequencies, meaning that the bass made by Rockville RVW1800P8 is bound to shake your whole car. In fact, the subwoofer is capable of creating the sound in the frequency range between 20 Hz to 500 Hz. Its sensitivity is 105dB, much more than most other subs on today’s market. Basically, this means that you can play the bass really loudly, but still be able to enjoy your favorite music.
Another thing that makes Rockville RVW1800P8 deserve to be called one of the best subwoofers in the world is the fact that its price is fairly low. In fact, you probably can’t find a cheaper 18 inch subwoofer with so many amazing features. For less than a hundred dollars, you will get a powerful subwoofer that will last for a long time.
3. DS18 TM-SN18 Troublemaker
The Troublemaker is a professional subwoofer that’s considered by a number of audiophiles to be the best in the world. An important thing to know about this subwoofer is that it’s not cheap. In fact, it costs quite a lot, but its price is justified. If you are a true bass fan, or you want to win bass competitions, this subwoofer is your dream device.
The power handling of this device is just impressive. Its maximum power handling is 7,500 watts, which is much more than most other audio devices can handle. On top of that, the RMS is 5,000 watts. Such power handling means that this subwoofer can make quite a lot of noise. In fact, its sensitivity goes up to 170dB! Such loud noise is illegal in many countries, so make sure to check the law, before switching DS18 TM-SN18 Troublemaker to the maximum.
Playing it to the maximum might get you in trouble with law, but you can freely use it at competitions. In fact, a number of car enthusiasts decide to get this subwoofer, so that they would be able to compete with other bass-lovers. When at competition, you can hope to win some awards as this subwoofer can create an impressive bass sound. On top of that, the device will not fail you. It will not stop working in the middle of the competition, nor will the sound it makes drop in quality. It’s all due to the high-quality compounds used for the construction of DS18 TM-SN18 Troublemaker.
The magnets are made of Neodymium, an extremely reliable compound. When it comes to the voice coil, the manufacturer decided to use aluminum. It seems as the perfect choice, as this metal is very durable, but also great for heat dissipation. In fact, all the materials of which the subwoofer is made are great for dealing with high temperature. This means that there absolutely no chance that any of the parts of the subwoofer will get overheated after playing it continuously for a long time.
On top of everything, the subwoofer also looks amazing. The color combination black/red seems very elegant, so the device will not disturb the harmony of your car’s interior. The only thing you got to worry is whether you have enough room at the back of your vehicle for this 18 inch subwoofer. If the truck space is not an issue, you might even think about getting the 32-inch version of this model!
4. Lanzar Distinct DCTOA184
Lanzar is a manufacturer of audio equipment for cars, which has been around for a long time. Still, the company made a big change a couple of years ago, when they started focusing on the production of subwoofers for competition. Since, Lanzar became a favorite among dB drag professionals, most of whom fall in love with the Distinct series of subwoofers. One of the best products from this series is the subwoofer named DCTOA184.
Lanzar Distinct DCTOA184 is made to be used for competitions, which is why its power handling and sound pressure sensitivity is brilliant. Although it can’t compare with the Troublemaker, this device can handle a fair amount of power. For example, the peak power handling is 600 watts. When it comes to the loudness of the device, Lanzar Distinct DCTOA184 will have no problems creating a bass sound of up to 95±2dB.
True audiophiles will appreciate the bass sound created with this device, as it is capable of making the sound in the frequency range from 30-1.8kHz. Basically, this means that you are not restricted to use it only for making that vibrating bass sound. This device will also allow you to enjoy the quality sound of your favorite music.
What makes this subwoofer so special that it got on our list of top 5 best subwoofers on the planet, is that its design is superb. First of all, the subwoofer looks amazing. Colored black, the device looks elegant, so it would fit perfectly any type of car interior design. Furthermore, Lanzar designers made sure to make it use a minimum of air-space. The forward firing projection allows you to save space in your car. Because of this, you don’t even have to put it at the back of your car, which is the case with most other subwoofers. Instead, you can put Lanzar Distinct DCTOA184 under the seats and other tight spaces in your car.
The final reason why Lanzar Distinct DCTOA184 is one of the world’s best subwoofers is that it’s pretty cheap. Its price is under one hundred dollars, meaning its worth investing in such a great device. Furthermore, the device is bound to last for a long time, something which is backed by a manufacturer’s warranty.
5. Skar Audio ZVX-18v2
Here’s another Skar Audio product on our list, which is a proof of how great this manufacturer is. The American company is dedicated to making the best possible devices of audio equipment for cars. Although Skar Audio makes all kinds of devices, their subwoofers are what the company is now famous for. One of the best subs from their offer is the model called Skar Audio ZVX-18v2.
This 18 inch subwoofer is one of the world’s best for a number of reasons. The first reason is that it can handle quite a lot of power. This device’s RMS is 1,500 watts, while the maximum power handling is two times bigger. Skar Audio ZVX-18v2 can also handle quite a lot of loudness, as its sensitivity level is pretty high. On top of that, the subwoofer is also great in dealing with high temperature.
Only the top-quality materials were used for the construction of this subwoofer, meaning that it’s bound to last for a long time. The voice coil is strengthened with copper-clad aluminum wire, which not only makes it tougher, but also helps deal with heat. In fact, because the quality materials are used, the chances of the subwoofer getting overheated are minimal.
The heat dissipation is dealt with by using heat resistant compounds, but also by taking the advantage of the design, which allows air cooling of the device on its own. Speaking of this subwoofer’s design, it’s fair to say that it’s amazing. Its color is black, with the name of the brand engraved in white in the center of the subwoofer. Because it is very elegant, the subwoofer will look very nice in your car, regardless of the interior design.
When it comes to installing the subwoofer, the process is done easily. Once mounted, the device will stay in its place, no matter what. Even if you drive your car over bumpy roads, the subwoofer should remain in its place. But, even if it falls out of the slot, you don’t have to worry that it will get damaged, as this is one of the most durable audio devices on the market. That is just one of the reasons why this subwoofer deserves your attention.
When it comes to choosing the best car subwoofer, it’s all about you, not about the device. You need to make the decision according to whether you want a subwoofer to show off, participate in competitions, or enjoy music with powerful bass. Furthermore, some car owners don’t care so much about the power of the subwoofer, but more about its design, which is another thing to consider. Speaking of the shape, you also need to choose the dimensions properly.
Finally, there’s also the question about the price. Let’s face it – subwoofer is not the most crucial device in the car. It’s there to provide some extra fun, which means that you shouldn’t spend all your savings on it. Still, you also must not get a cheap one, as it’s bound to be of a poor quality. The solution is to find some middle ground.