What subwoofer will work best for me?
Typically, you match the size of the sub to the size of your room, As a rule of thumb, if your room is around 4mtr x 5mtr or larger, a 12” subwoofer is the better choice for your needs especially if home theatre is the main priority. For rooms smaller than 4mtr x 5mtr we would commonly recommend a smaller 10” version as they tend to deliver a faster tighter bass wave which better suits a smaller room. We have found that people more interested in a faster and tighter musical bass actually prefer a smaller subwoofer over the larger models as they do tend to be more controlled for musical reproduction.
Another very important consideration are the differences between front firing and down firing subwoofers, generally speaking down firing subwoofers are NOT a great choice for the majority of rooms and a front firing sub will deliver a far more accurate and tighter sound than their down firing cousins. Down firing subs tend to deliver a very muddy style of bass that isn’t particularly accurate and a common complaint from customers about down firing subs is that they are very boomy and become annoying after the first week and the novelty wears off.
There are three main factors that combine to make a great subwoofer that you will be happy with for years to come and they are,
Quality of in built amplifier.
Many subwoofers use a poor quality or low powered amplifier board that does not have control over the driver resulting in poor quality “boomy” or distorted sound quality. Amplifier boards would ideally be a high current “toroidal” design and have good capacitors and heatsink in their design.
Box design and cabinet quality.
Likewise with many budget subs the cabinet is generally only built to look good on the outside and not too much thought goes into the structure and flow design of the enclosure. The subwoofer box can add as much as 30% to the overall performance of a subwoofer when designed and built to a high standard.
The driver unit.
There are various styles and designs of woofer drivers on the market and some of the materials include, pulp, polypropylene, and aluminium. All have different performance styles and ideally the type of cone material should be chosen as part of the overall design and they will have quite different bass characteristics.
The performance is also affected by the quality of driver and factors such as the size of the rolled suspension rim and the size of the voicecoil and magnet.
If any of these 3 factors are compromised then you wont really be getting a quality subwoofer for your money.
Here is a guide to help you decide which sub is right for you,
if you have a small to medium size room with small bookshelf or tower speakers as your main speakers then a 10 inch front firing will be your best option for both movies and music.
if you have a larger room with tiled or timber floors then we would generally recommend a 12 inch front firing model or in some cases twin 10 inch front firing subs.
if you want to acheive very large amounts of bass for parties or loud music the consider a larger model combined with a smaller sub to help acheive the best of both worlds.
Any av receiver with a subwoofer line out can be split with a one to two rca splitter so that twin subs can be connected easily with no loss in performance and because the subs have their own in built amplification there are no issues with overloading the av receiver.
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