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Calling all bass enthusiasts!
We know how important subwoofers are to the immersive audio experience, whether that be for blasting tunes in your car or supplementing your home entertainment system.
Once you’ve felt the pounding bass under your skin, you’ll never want to go back to regular playback.
However, with so many options on the market, we’ve taken the liberty of breaking down the best subwoofers under $500.
So, prepare yourself, because we’re about to go deep into the world of bass.
Quick List: Top 12 Subwoofers Under $500
- SVS PB-1000 Subwoofer
- JBL Professional LSR310S Powered Subwoofer
- Polk Audio PSW10 Powered Subwoofer
- Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 Subwoofer
- Massive Audio Hippo84 Competition Subwoofer
- Rockford Fosgate P3-1X12 Enclosure Sub
- Rockville RW8CA Under Seat Subwoofer
- Bose Bass Module 500 Subwoofer
- BIC America H-100II 12 inch Subwoofer
- Klipsch R-112SW Subwoofer
- Sound Town METIS-18SDPW Powered Subwoofer
- Yamaha NS-SW300PN Powered Subwoofer
Researching the Best Subwoofers Under $500
We know how valuable your time is, so we made sure to find only the best subwoofers under $500. This means that while we included budget options, we made sure that they are high quality and not cheap and nasty units that will give out after a couple months of use.
For bigger budgets, we included excellent mid-range subwoofers and premium units that make for seriously good investments. Every subwoofer on this list has an excellent durable design that will ensure years of use and enjoyment.
Customizable sound is also a huge priority for you audiophiles out there, so we sought out subwoofers that include controls for volume, phase, gain, and low pass crossover. This means you can customize according to your preferred genre and tastes for the optimal bass experience.
We also know that while some of you are looking to pump in the bass in your cars, the film and music enthusiasts among you are also looking for an immersive audio experience.
We included a range of car subwoofers and subs that are suited to home entertainment systems.
Whatever your specific needs and preferences are for subwoofers, we’ve got something for everyone in this collection.
So, let’s get down to it!
The Best Subwoofers Under $500 in 2020
1. SVS PB-1000 Subwoofer
The SVS PB-1000 is a top-end 10-inch subwoofer with superior audio design and a bass that is clear, accurate, and deep.
✔️ What we like: An enormous subwoofer that reproduces huge but accurate sound.
❌ What we don’t like: Immense unit that is difficult to fit in smaller spaces.
👌 Standout Features:
- High excursion driver
- Durable design
- Huge SPLs
The PB-1000 features a 10-inch high excursion driver that creates a floor-shaking frequency of bass without distortion or losing any sound quality. It can reproduce a next level low frequency response that pounds inside of your body and fully immerses you in the movie you are watching or music you are enjoying.
The included amplifier packs a punch with 300W RMS and digital signal processing design. This results in highly precise driver control that reproduces accurate sound at all frequency responses. You will step inside a truly immersive audio experience that has to be heard to be believed.
Distortion is eradicated by the PB-1000 with the addition of huge SPLs and the cabinet design. It is attractive, durable, and designed for accurate sound, with its black ash exterior and a braced interior that includes a custom tuned and ported design. This maximizes the sound quality, ensures that your subwoofer will perform for years to come, and makes for an attractive addition to your home entertainment system.
Our only criticism with the PB-1000 is that due to its immense size, it is bulky and awkward to fit around other furniture. However, the large design allows the enormous bass response, so it’s a small price to pay for superior sound.
If you’re looking for a premium subwoofer to add powerful and accurate bass to your home entertainment system, you can’t go past the PB-1000 by SVS.
2. JBL Professional LSR310S Powered Subwoofer
The LSR310S by JBL is a mid-range subwoofer that combines truly professional and unique design elements for a deep, booming bass best suited to music.
✔️ What we like: Professional construction and advanced technology combined perfectly.
❌ What we don’t like: Settings need a lot of tweaking to achieve the best sound.
👌 Standout Features:
- Slip Stream Port
- XLF Extended Low Frequency Setting
- Professional quality construction
The LSR310S is a down-firing 10-inch subwoofer with an included amp that can reach an incredible 200W. Its design includes the JBL patented Slip Stream Port, which works together with the low frequency driver to reproduce a bass that is smooth, distinct, and accurate. The unique double-flared shape of the port maximizes sound at lower frequencies and ensures that the bass lines are pumping at a maximum volume of 113 decibels.
You have the option to achieve the extremely low frequency of 27Hz with the XLF Extended Low Frequency Setting. This feature emulates the pounding bass found in nightclubs and bars, making it a perfect addition to your entertainment collection if you love hosting house parties or events.
JBL is renowned for their superior construction, and the design of the LSR310S is no different in this regard. It’s designed with a sophisticated, black appearance that looks classy and can integrate easily with your other furniture. It also has balanced inputs and outputs, plus easy volume control. This makes for a subwoofer that is durable, beautiful, and reproduces a professional-quality bass with no fuss.
Some users have reported that on its original settings, the sound quality of the LSR310S is lacking. However, with some knowledge and adjustments, you can achieve the optimal sound across all frequencies.
If you have at least intermediate knowledge of subwoofers and are looking for a mid-range option with professional level design, the LSR310S by JBL is the one for you.
3. Polk Audio PSW10 Powered Subwoofer
The PSW10 by Polk Audio is a great budget subwoofer with huge volume, durable construction, and richly blended sound.
✔️ What we like: Budget subwoofer with design elements that make it worth more than double.
❌ What we don’t like: A limited crossover range.
👌 Standout Features:
- Great value for money
- Built-in distortion analyzer
- Dynamic Balance driver materials
The PSW10 features a 10-inch driver and its amp handles 50W of power for huge volume that can rock your next party or movie night.
While light on the wallet, the PSW10 is not lacking in its durable design. Its enclosure includes internal bracing and damping that gets rid of internal standing waves and other resonances that can affect sound quality. This leaves behind only the most accurate sound across low frequencies, which moves through a tuned, direct port for maximum bass from 80-160 Hz.
These durable design elements are complemented by Dynamic Balance driver materials, which are stiff and don’t allow additional resonance. This creates a rich and blended sound that rivals that of much larger and more expensive subwoofers.
The addition of a Klippel distortion analyzer ensures that there is no audible distortion at any frequency or volume. It optimizes the woofer’s suspension, position of the motor coil, and motor structure. This allows the sound to move more smoothly and easily across low frequencies, creating an immersive and high-quality audio experience.
Our sole criticism of the PSW10 is that the crossover range is quite limited when compared to other 10-inch subwoofers on the market. However, what it does, it does extremely well, and outperforms other units at its budget price point.
If you’re looking for a budget subwoofer to supplement your entertainment system, the PSW10 by Polk Audio is a fabulous durable option with high quality sound.
4. Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 Subwoofer
The PWE-S8 by Alpine Electronics simply rocks; it’s small but durable, with fully customizable sound, at a reasonable price point.
✔️ What we like: A compact but hardy car subwoofer with customizable controls.
❌ What we don’t like: One subwoofer by itself is lacking if you want the full bass effect.
👌 Standout Features:
- Customizable sound
- Easy to install
- Durable design
Alpine Electronics’ PWE-S8 is a compact subwoofer that packs a powerful punch with an 8-inch driver and 120W amplifier. This makes for heavy bass and serious volume, all from the convenience of under your car seat. It also covers a huge range of sound, with a frequency response of 32Hz to 150Hz.
The PWE-S8 features a cast aluminum structure that protects it from damage and ensures the unit will serve you for years to come. Its compact size and shallow mount design make it easy to install under any car seat without taking up too much space. This user-friendly design is continued with RCA and Auto-Sensing Speaker Level inputs that easily connect and integrate with your car audio system.
For those of you that love to customize your subwoofer settings, Alpine Electronics has you covered with the PWE-S8. It includes controls for phase, gain, LP crossover, and remote sub level, so you can play with the settings and find your perfect subwoofer sound.
Some users have reported that they feel a single unit is lacking in its bass capabilities, and that you really need a pair of the subwoofers to get that mind-blowing sound. However, considering how small and compact the PWE-S8 is, this is to be expected.
If you’re looking for a small but powerful, mid-range, under-seat subwoofer, with durable design and customizable sound, look no further than the PWE-S8 by Alpine Electronics.
5. Massive Audio Hippo84 Competition Subwoofer
Top of its class for car subwoofers, the Hippo84 by Massive Audio is small but features durable and reinforced design at a budget price.
✔️ What we like: A competition grade car subwoofer with superior design elements.
❌ What we don’t like: Smaller size means less depth of bass.
👌 Standout Features:
- Competition grade
- Superior construction
- Budget price
The Hippo84 comes with superior design elements that are focused on durability and ultimate performance. It includes a huge magnet size, heavy duty aluminum basket, and enormous mirror image dual poly/Nomex spiders. This attention to detail results in a huge sound that is amplified by an enormous 500W amp.
Clarity of sound is achieved by further design elements such as a 2.5-inch Kevlar spun lace voice coil and a paper cone reinforced with Kevlar fiber. This subwoofer reproduces only the cleanest sound, with clear distinction across all frequencies.
While the Hippo84 creates a truly thumping bass, the design is reinforced to prevent any sort of rattling at any volume. This includes a one-piece pole plate that exerts additional motor force, heavy duty direct input wires that connect to the voice coil, and a fiberglass woven dust cap. This means the bass will always be as smooth as possible, and you can genuinely enjoy your favorite tunes unimpeded by irritating sounds.
This is a competition grade subwoofer, designed specifically for car enthusiasts, and small enough to install comfortably within your vehicle.
The only concern with the Hippo84 is that because of its small size, it’s not going to deliver the same depth of bass as a 10- or 12-inch subwoofer. However, considering the budget price of the Hippo84 and its audio capabilities, it’s an absolute steal.
If you’re looking to take your car audio experience to the next level, the Hippo84 by Massive Sound will bring it in spades.
6. Rockford Fosgate P3-1X12 Enclosure Sub
The P3-1X12 by Rockford Fosgate is an enormous 12-inch subwoofer, perfectly suited to car lovers seeking quality and durability at a mid-range price point.
✔️ What we like: A superior subwoofer that will impress car enthusiasts and audiophiles alike.
❌ What we don’t like: Limited warranty period.
👌 Standout Features:
- High output SPL
- Intelligent design
- Crisp bass without rattling
The P3-1X12 is both powerful and durable, including the capacity to handle 600W of power when paired with a suitable amplifier. Its durable design includes a hardy MDF outer that protects it from any damage and helps to reproduce only the cleanest and crispest bass, and a dual 12-inch voice coil.
The design of the port is highly intelligent, featuring a high flow that eliminates unwanted noises, facilitates an easy flow of signal to speakers, and reproduces beautiful sound. This is situated within a vented loaded enclosure that is small enough to install in your car for excellent, pumping bass.
Sound quality is superior with the P3-1X12, partly due to its high output sound pressure level that facilitates accurate reproduction of low frequency sound. This, paired with the durable and intelligent design elements, ensures that there is no rattling at any frequency, and just rich and blended bass to enhance your audio experience.
It’s attractive with a smooth black design that you’ll love to show off, and many users have reported that one P3-1X12 is superior in quality to a pair of 10-inch subwoofers from many leading brands. Considering the price tag and quality of construction, this makes the P3-1X12 an absolute bargain.
Our only complaint with the Rockford Fosgate model is that it only has a one-year warranty, which is short considering the price tag. However, the P3-1X12 is so well-designed that you are sure to enjoy years of use without a problem.
If you’re a car enthusiast who is passionate about great sounding bass, the P3-1X12 by Rockford Fosgate is a standout, high-quality, and durable mid-range option.
7. Rockville RW8CA Under Seat Sub
The RW8CA by Rockville is slim enough to slip under your car seat and powerful enough to set your vehicle shaking with high quality sound.
✔️ What we like: A tiny but powerful under-seat car subwoofer.
❌ What we don’t like: Sound is slightly muddled at lowest frequencies.
👌 Standout Features:
- Compact size
- Customizable sound
The RW8CA has a compact, slim design, with a maximum thickness of only 2.7 inches. This makes it perfect to slot under the seat in your car without taking up excess storage space. It’s also incredibly easy to install, with all inputs and outputs on one side of the unit and set at high levels. This is ideal for those of you that aren’t as handy with electronics, or who don’t have the patience to spend time on installation.
It may be a pint-sized speaker, but it packs serious volume and bass capabilities. Including an 8-inch woofer and 150W amplifier, the RW8CA comfortable handles sound from 20Hz to 150Hz at a volume that will rock your socks off.
For you audiophiles out there, the RW8CA features various customizable sound controls, including a subsonic filter that filters out sounds not audible to the human ear. It also includes a low pass crossover filter that blocks high frequency sounds, phase control for better integration, a level control for volume control, and a mind-blowing bass booster feature. These features allow you to maximize your listening experience for only the most incredible basslines and sound quality.
The only area where the RW8CA falls short is its sound quality at the lowest frequencies. Some users have reported a muddled sound that lacks the clarity of the higher frequencies. However, considering how affordable the subwoofer is, and the quality of sound that it produces from such a compact unit, it’s still an excellent option.
8. Bose Bass Module 500 Subwoofer
The Bass Module 500 by Bose is the perfect subwoofer for a Bose home entertainment setup, featuring rich sound quality and user-friendly design.
✔️ What we like: A high-quality addition to a Bose entertainment system.
❌ What we don’t like: The unit is restricted to Bose products.
👌 Standout Features:
- Rich bass
- Easy pairing with Bose soundbars
While some may be content watching movies with ordinary speakers, we know that you know the value of a high-quality subwoofer to achieve that bone-shaking bass that puts you inside the film. If you’re already committed to the Bose entertainment system, the Bass Module 500 is an excellent addition to achieve the richest and fullest bass.
The Bass Module 500 is ultimately designed to be user-friendly and it excels at this. It pairs easily with Bose Soundbars and Soundtouch models and is a completely wireless subwoofer so there’s no tricky installation. It’s also compact, in an attractive cube shape of just 10 inches squared, making it easy to fit into your existing entertainment system without detracting from the overall aesthetic or dominating the space.
It’s also great value for money, with a mid-range price point for a premium speaker that delivers amazing depth and quality of sound. While it’s not going to shake your whole house, it adds the extra oomph to movies and music that you need to feel truly immersed.
Our only criticism with the Bass Module 500 is that you can only use it with other Bose products. However, if that’s your brand of choice and you’ve been considering a subwoofer under $500, this is the natural choice.
9. BIC America H-100II
The H-100II by BIC is a striking mid-range subwoofer with its gorgeous black and copper appearance, backed up by superior audio technology.
✔️ What we like: An attractive mid-range subwoofer with a huge frequency response.
❌ What we don’t like: High power consumption even when in stand-by.
👌 Standout Features:
- Automated controls
- Customizable sound
- Huge frequency response
There’s no denying that the H-100II is a showstopper. The sharp contrast of black and copper makes it a centerpiece of your home entertainment system and something you will want to show off to guests.
It’s also powerful, featuring a built-in amplifier of 150W and a front-firing 12-inch subwoofer that can handle a huge range of frequencies from 24Hz to 200Hz. This allows for serious volume and rich, next-level bass that can bring life to your favorite music and movies.
The H-100II is straight-forward, easy to install, and simple to use, making it perfect for those of you that are less experienced with audio systems. It has a plug and play design with no need for a complicated setup, and the RCS level and speaker level inputs make installation a piece of cake.
However, for those of you that like to adjust your subwoofer according to your preferences, there are options for customizable sound. These include controls for crossover and volume, so you can achieve the best quality sound.
One concern with the H-100II is its level of power consumption. While it does feature an automatic on/off switch that uses an LED indicator and signal sensing, some users have reported that even in standby mode the subwoofer uses a high level of electricity. If you’re budget-conscious or more environmentally minded, this might not be the subwoofer for you.
If you’re looking for an attractive mid-range subwoofer with user-friendly design and excellent sound quality across a wide range of frequencies, the H-100II by BIC is calling your name.
10. Klipsch R-112SW Subwoofer
The R-112SW by Klipsch is a top-end 12-inch subwoofer with intelligent audio design, huge volume, and customizable sound.
✔️ What we like: An attractive, premium subwoofer with superior technology and sound.
❌ What we don’t like: Some intermittent power loss at maximum volume.
👌 Standout Features:
- Internal flare technology
- Customizable sound
- Attractive and durable design
The R-112SW is capable of the loudest playback and the deepest bass, featuring a super powerful 300W amp and 12-inch subwoofer that can shake your walls and get your heart pounding in your chest.
It’s also optimized for the best quality sound, constructed with intelligent audio design elements that include a front-firing driver with internal flare design. This shape eliminates all sound from within the port, ensuring the resulting sound is clean and clear. The driver includes spun copper wire that is both rigid and light, which protects against any distortion and reproduces only the smoothest bass.
The amplifier itself is also fully digital, meaning all playback is both efficient and accurate. You’re not going to find any subpar bass with the R-112SW, just the highest quality sound that will take your home entertainment system to the next level.
Featuring customizable sound, the R-112SW includes controls for low pass crossover and variable phase control. You can be sure of the most even dispersion of pure bass across a large range of frequencies, with minimal subwoofer movement.
One issue with the R-122SW is that some users have reported intermittent power loss at high volumes, possibly due to the high wattage of the amplifier. If you’re looking for a subwoofer to handle bass at low to medium volumes then this won’t be an issue, but for more powerful sound you’re better off with one of the other subwoofers on this list.
11. Sound Town METIS-18SDPW Powered Sub
Welcome to Sound Town! This enormous 18-inch subwoofer must be heard to be believed.
✔️ What we like: A huge 18-inch subwoofer with professional design technology.
❌ What we don’t like: Audible feedback when you use the subwoofer with a passive speaker.
👌 Standout Features:
- Class D amp
- Large design voice coil
The METIS-18SDPW packs a serious punch with its combination of huge 18-inch subwoofer and mind-blowing 700W Class D amplifier. This reproduces a ground-shaking bass that is perfect to get the party started for weddings, club nights, special events, and DJ-driven house parties.
It features superior design elements, including a huge 4-inch voice coil that maintains absolute control over the speaker cone for the lowest and tightest bass imaginable. The enclosure is constructed from birch plywood that is durable and minimizes any distortion during playback.
Despite the high-power output, the METIS-18SDPW is comparatively lightweight and includes in-built wheels. This makes it easy to transport to your next party event without putting unnecessary strain on your back. The addition of multiple inputs and outputs makes integration a cinch; you’ll be enjoying incredible bass as low as 35Hz in no time.
One issue with the METIS-18SDPW is that some users have reported ear-splitting feedback when trying to combine the subwoofer with a passive speaker. However, considering the level of in-built amplification, most of you won’t have a need for extra speakers for your daily use or special events.
12. Yamaha NS-SW300PN
The NS-SW300PN by Yamaha is the highest caliber of subwoofer: superior design, huge frequency response, and amplified sound that will take your movies from average to immersive.
✔️ What we like: Intelligent design, huge range of sound, and premium construction.
❌ What we don’t like: Some units have a flat response at mid-level frequencies.
👌 Standout Features:
- Twisted Flare Port
- Anti-distortion design
- YST II technology
If you’re looking to invest in a premium subwoofer under $500, there’s nothing quite like the Yamaha NS-SW300PN. It’s a 10-inch subwoofer with a built-in 250W amplifier, that can handle frequencies from 20Hz to 160 Hz, at a volume that’s sure to impress.
The Yamaha subwoofer includes design features that set it apart from the competition, including a patented Twisted Flare Port that minimizes distortion by reducing air turbulence and evenly diffusing sound for balanced and smooth bass. The dual feedback unit reduces distortion as well, ensuring that this will be the cleanest bass you’ll ever hear. Within the voice coil of the woofer, the square wire design creates a denser structure that tightens the bass to its punchiest version.
Yamaha has also included their signature YST II technology in the NS-SW300PN, which uses ANIC circuits to maintain stable low range responses, further contributing to a top of the range sound quality.
For those of you that love customizable sound, the subwoofer also includes controls for phase, bass action selection, and sensitivity.
The NS-SW300PN is made to impress, with a sleek black design, rounded front, and accent panels that make it a gorgeous addition to a home entertainment system. It’s also friendly on your electricity bills, including an Auto Power Standby function and a high efficiency amplifier that reduces energy consumption.
The only concern with the NS-SW300PN is that some users have reported a flat response at mid-level frequencies. However, this seems to be isolated to some units and is not an overall design issue.
If you’re looking to invest in a gorgeous and powerful subwoofer that can bring high quality bass to your home entertainment system, the NS-SW300PN by Yamaha is in a league of its own.
A Guide to Choosing a Subwoofer Under $500
Where are you looking to use your subwoofer?
Where you intend to use your subwoofer will really determine the size and type of unit that is most suited to you.
If you’re looking to add a bass effect inside your car, there are a range of excellent car subwoofers from budget to premium price points.
However, the size of your car and the amount of space that you are prepared to sacrifice will also be determining factors. There are small and compact under the seat car subwoofers of 8 inches that will easily fit in any car and can produce an excellent, smooth bass effect.
However, if you’re able and willing to sacrifice a little more space, you have the option for larger subwoofers that can produce greater bass and have more customizable sound. With the larger subwoofers, it’s important to choose a model that includes internal bracing and durable design to minimize any rattling at high volumes.
For those of you that are looking to add a subwoofer to your home entertainment system, you have a greater range of subwoofers to choose from. If you have a little space to spare, there are larger and bulkier subwoofers that have larger drivers, greater amplification abilities, and more options to customize your sound. You have the option of both powered and standalone subwoofers, depending on whether you already have a suitable amp.
You’re likely to have guests around, so it’s always important to choose a subwoofer that is attractive and will blend in with the existing aesthetic of your entertainment system.
Some subwoofers are designed to integrate with other technology from the same brand, like Bose. If you already have a home entertainment system from a particular brand, it makes sense to choose a subwoofer that will effortlessly pair and is optimized to work together with that brand.
If you’re looking for a subwoofer to add impact to parties, special events, or even a nightclub, there are excellent portable options with wheels and handles that can be easily transported and set up.
How experienced are you with subwoofers?
Whether you are a complete novice, or an experienced audiophile makes all the difference in which subwoofer under $500 is best going to serve your needs.
For the less confident, there are excellent subwoofers that operate in a plug and play format, with simple controls. This will allow you to get used to the audio capabilities of subwoofers without needing to invest in an expensive and complicated unit that will overwhelm you.
If you’re looking for that high-quality, customizable sound, there are a variety of subwoofers under $500 that can suit your needs.
At an intermediate or advanced level, there are amazing subwoofers with controls that allow you to customize sound quality. Many subwoofers include variable phase control to allow better integration of sound. A control for low pass crossover blocks high frequency sounds and lets you reproduce the lowest frequencies at the highest quality.
If the subwoofer includes customizable gain, you can control the sensitivity of your system for optimal bass, and some subwoofers even include a bass booster function for that real nightclub effect.
What’s your budget?
How much are you willing and able to spend? This question will decide your starting point when choosing a subwoofer under $500.
At the budget end, you can choose from affordable but still high-quality subwoofers that have user-friendly controls and installation. These are usually compact units, of a smaller subwoofer driver size and moderate amplification abilities. They can reproduce a smooth, clean bass that will vastly improve the quality of your music or movies but won’t blow your head off with volume or shake your walls with throbbing basslines.
At the mid-range price level, you have more options for subwoofers of different driver sizes, levels of amplification, and customization of sound. You can choose subwoofers of 10 or 12 inches in driver size with larger amps that can really rock your socks off. Mid-range subwoofers also include more controls for sound quality, durable designs, and internal bracing that protects against rattling or distortion.
If you are looking to invest in a high-quality subwoofer, then the sky’s the limit. Premium subwoofers feature high quality construction, highly customizable sound, and greater sound capabilities. These subwoofers have a design that is both attractive and durable, often with unique, patented port designs that ensure only the cleanest reproduction of bass.
Premium subwoofers are larger, often 10, 12, 15 or even 18 inches in driver size, with superior amplification and the ability to reproduce truly wall-shaking bass. They include multiple controls for different aspects of sound, so if you are a true audiophile you can achieve the bass that your music deserves.
The Best Collection of Subwoofers Under $500
Subwoofers are an excellent investment if you are looking to take the quality of your music or movies to the next level.
Whether you’re searching for a car subwoofer to add a party feel to your drives, a high-quality addition to your home entertainment system, or a portable subwoofer for special events, we have you covered with the best subwoofers under $500.
We’ve put together excellent subwoofers of all sizes, budgets, and audio capabilities, so you can find the option that will give you the bass-heavy audio experience that you love.
Don’t settle for subpar playback, it’s time to add a subwoofer to the mix!