A studio subwoofer makes all the difference in music production. Even with the best studio monitors, you still can’t produce a high-quality sound without a studio subwoofer. Why? They’re built to produce low-frequency/low-pitched sounds, also known as the bass.
Subwoofer placement is also an important and necessary step in recreating thunderous lows to enhance your music in your studio or bedroom setting.
Since many options are available to choose from, we have covered some of the best studio monitors you can buy in 2021.
The Best List
|Model||Type||Size||Frequency Response||Output Power|
|JBL Professional LSR310S||Active, down-firing, bass port||10-inch||(+30 dB) 33 Hz||200 W|
|PreSonus Temblor T8||Active, down-firing||8-inch||30 – 200 Hz||200W|
|Fostex (PM-SUB-MINI-2||Active, sealed-box||5-inch||60 – 150 Hz||50W|
|Fluid Audio F8S||Active, bass-port||8-inch||30 – 200 Hz||200W|
|Electro-Voice ELX200-12SP||Active||12-inch||41 – 165 Hz||1200 W|
|Samson MediaOne 10S||Active||10-inch||35 – 300 Hz||100W|
|Mackie CR8S-XBT||Active, sealed-box||8-inch||40- 180 Hz||200 W|
|Behringer NX3000D||Active, subwoofer inbuilt in a monitor||N/A||N/A||3000 W|
|Yamaha HS8S||Active, sealed box||8-inch||22 – 150 Hz||150 W|
|Monoprice Multimedia Studio Subwoofer||Active, Sealed-Box||10-inch||20 – 150 Hz||200 W|
|KRK 10S2 V2||Active, front-firing||10-inch||31 – 110 Hz||160 W|
Why Do You Need a Studio Subwoofer?
Subwoofers are an important addition to stereo in your home cinema. Studio subwoofers focus on sound accuracy necessary for music production. Some of these compact units can easily be stored away providing you with palpable bass without the clutter.
JBL Professional LSR310S -Channel 10-inch Studio Subwoofer
The Best Overall Studio Subwoofer
JBL is a leading manufacturer of music production systems. If you already have one of their monitors, why not get the JBL LSR310S studio subwoofer too? If you have a studio monitor from another brand, this subwoofer would still make a great addition to your arsenal.
Featuring a stylish furniture look, this subwoofer will surely make your studio look good. Thanks to the down-firing system, you can place it even against a wall, and it will still output a high-quality sound. This feature makes it ideal for smaller studios.
For starters, it’s a 200-watt subwoofer. When this power is coupled with the 27 Hz frequency and 113 dB max output, you can expect more clarity in your sound. The XLR and TRS outputs are also compatible with a wide range of monitors.
For the best sound output in concerts, this subwoofer comes with the JBL’s patented Slipstream Port. It’s accurately designed to offer optimum frequency response/bass response for all playback levels.
It also comes with an XLF Extended Frequency similar to the bass tuning you’ll find in dance clubs, which helps you infuse that “dance club theme” into your soundtrack. For the best experience, place this subwoofer at one corner of the room and switch on the XLF setting.
PreSonus Temblor T8 Active 8″ studio powered subwoofer
This subwoofer is designed for critical listening. It compliments any full-range monitoring system and injects unmatched low-end frequency into your home or studio.
This subwoofer will take your listening experience to the next level. The PreSonus Temblor T8 will take control and lets you take charge of your mix’s low-frequency foundation.
It comprises an 8-inch, downward-firing, low-frequency transducer glass- composition. And it comes with integrated rubber feet to give it that stability when you place it on the surface. It has a round, rear-firing and bass-reflex acoustic port, and the interior is made of an internal damping and heat sink.
The speaker has a continuously variable low pass filter of 50 t0 130 Hz. And a switchable high pass that removes any content below 80Hz high range signal from Temblor output to the main monitors, allowing you to create a smooth crossover transition.
To ensure the subwoofer is compatible with most speakers, it comes with a polarity inverter. It also has a Class-AB amplifier, which ensures maximum power of up to 200 watts. The top speakers are connected via its round, front-firing acoustic port, 1/4″ TRS and RCA main inputs, and 1/4″ TRS and RCA pass-through.
Fostex (PM-SUB-MINI-2) 50-Watt, 5-Inch Powered Subwoofer
Fostex PM-SUB-MINI-2 is an active subwoofer combined with Fostex speakers such as; PM0.3 or PM0.1 to allow you to enjoy a high-quality different music environment.
The Fostex PM-SUBmini-2 has a highly efficient digital amplifier of 50-watts with a built-in PSU. It has a standby feature to reduce unnecessary power consumption and save energy. It can fit anywhere due to its space-saving compact design. And the rigid and supple fiberglass diaphragm makes it stable.
It has an automatic power-saving feature that turns the subwoofer into sleeping mode when you’re not using it. For better lows, the voice coil has a 4-layer wound to control the mid/highs.
Made by Fostex, the PM-SUBmini is an active mini subwoofer featuring a 5″ woofer in a compact enclosure, dedicatedly designed to produce powerful low frequency. The unit can easily be integrated with your existing compact speakers by utilizing the built, pass through RCA terminals for better low-frequency enhancement.
It’s also designed in a sealed type speaker to reduce accidental sounds and reproduce music sources faithfully. This model also includes a phase changer for tuning the subwoofer according to your environment.
Fluid Audio F8S: Active 8-inch studio subwoofer, 200W D-Class
The fluid audio F8S is an active subwoofer that produces an exceptional bass response in a compact footprint. It is suited for home entertainment, gaming system, and project and professional studio applications.
The Fluid Audio F8S comes in a compact design and an output suitable for both studios and home applications. Below is a summary of the features it offers.Fluid Audio F8S has a switch power supply with 200W of Class D power.
- Switch for “flat” and “punchy” settings
- Front baffle fader volume control
- Includes bypass footswitch
- Low energy standby by mode
- Variable low pass filter
- Magnetically shielded
The single 8-inch driver has powered the 200W power amplifier, while the optimized front-loaded front slot port simplifies placement and directs the low-frequency energy towards the listeners. It also includes a footswitch to enable/disable the bass as you figure out what works best for the mix.
The subwoofer produces a frequency response of 30 to 200 Hz for rich deep bass. The subwoofer has two built-in equalizers settings – A “punch” setting, which is ideal for dance or mid-bass-heavy music, and as well as, a more conventional Flat response. It has a standby function to conserve energy.
Electro-Voice ELX200-12SP 12 inch 1200W Powered Subwoofer
The Electro-Voice EXL200-12SP is a 200W, 12-inch powered subwoofer designed to produce amplification of dependable low frequency, easy to install, and convenient control for theaters, sound engineers, DJ setups, live stage applications, and mobile rigs.
The Electro-voice ELX200-12SP is made of plywood and steel grille enclosure to provide durability and stability.
The Electro-voice ELX200-12SP is designed with integrated QuickSmartDSP and a high-efficiency Class-D amplifier delivering up to 129dB SPL. It features a 12-inch woofer driven by 1200 watts of Class-D amplification producing a 41 to 165 Hz frequency range. The model has easy to set up via its three presets (Music, Live, and club). It also comes with built-in carry handles to ensure easy handling.
It boasts a balanced source like a stereo mixer output through its two XLR-1/4 inch combo jack inputs and utilizes the two XLR Link outputs to connect to full-range speakers.
You can adjust the system parameters via the single-knob interface and LCD. You can control the Subwoofer via Bluetooth too.
Its EV QuickSmart Mobile application allows wireless configuration, and you can simultaneously monitor up to six EXL200 loudspeakers.
The EXL200 is a one-package deal of a high-quality Electro-Voice. You’ll love the control it gives you over the sound output. Whether you need a 10-inch, 12-inch, 15-inch, or passive subwoofers, Electro-Voice has got you covered.
Samson MediaOne 10S active studio Subwoofer
Another budget studio subwoofer
Whether you’re producing tracks, gaming, listening to music, or watching videos, Samson MediaOne 10s Active Studio Subwoofer offers premium performance with incredible low-end clarity. This is one of the best studio subwoofers under $200 you can get.
Samson MediaOne 10S is designed with a Vinyl wrapped MDF cabinet. And a protective mesh grille to protect the speaker from damage and at the same time giving the speaker a simple but sleek look. Being a down-firing subwoofer, you can place it at any section of the room and expect optimum low-frequency sound quality.
The built-in selectable audio sleeping mode can be activated to conserve power whenever the subwoofer is not in use. It includes a variable low pass frequency control that lets you fine-tune the response of the subwoofer to suit your listening environment.
Speaker level inputs and outputs allow you to connect additional speakers to expand your entertainment setup. It also comes with additional controls such as phase switch, polarity switch, and auto-sleep feature.
As mentioned earlier, it’s a single 10″ down-firing copolymer woofer with a bass tuned port powered by a 100W amplifier to produce a frequency range of 35Hz to 300 Hz. And a low pass filter that runs from 80 to 160 Hz. The subwoofer also features RCA inputs for connecting directly to a music source and RCA outputs for connecting to the main monitor.
Mackie CR8S-XBT 8” Multimedia Subwoofer
The Best Stylish Studio Subwoofer for Your home
Whether you’re creating content, making music, or just listening to your favorite music, Mackie CR8S-XBT Multimedia Subwoofer offers a professional studio quality reinforcement sound at home or in a studio. The subwoofer produces deep bass, convenient desktop volume control, and Bluetooth capability to your studio monitoring unit.
It’s an active subwoofer featuring a classic CR green, brushed metal faceplate and a textured cabinet to give your desk a distinct outstanding look. It also comes in different sizes ranging from 3-inch to 8-inch.
Mackie CR8S-XBT flexible rear panel adjustable input and output levels including 1/4” TRC and TRS easily provides Bluetooth pairing for effortless wireless streaming. CRDV desktop control allows separate level control for desktop monitors and subwoofers.
You can create music, test how your videos and podcasts will sound, listen to video games output, or just relax listening to music.
Featuring powerful 200 watts of amplification producing 40 to 180Hz and variable crossover, this subwoofer has the best low-frequency sound you can get at that price range. It also includes a polarity switch and a built-in headphone output. The speaker volume automatically mutes when the headphone is plugged in.
This isn’t just a studio subwoofer. It’s a studio monitor with an inbuilt subwoofer.
The rack-mountable Behringer NX3000D is a lightweight, compact, high-density Class-D technology. This technology ensures there’s no thermal build-up within the system.
Behringer NX3000D boasts of a stereo power amplifier with high-performance DSP capable of producing 2x 440 watts at 8 Ohms per channel and a frequency response of 20 Hz to 20 kHz.
NX3000D amplifier can be set up, controlled, and monitored using a computer via Bluetooth or USB. The professional twist-lock speaker connectors offer ultimate reliability. The front panel LCD enables setup and adjustment without PC, and the LED’s and 4-segment signal helps you monitor the performance of the subwoofer.
It has two dented illuminated gain controls for a precise level setting. Also included is a thermal overload protection to offer protection for your speakers and amplifier.
The Zero-attack limiter also supplies maximum output with reliable overload protection.
It also features a SmartSense impedance compensation that ensures excellent high-frequency and low-frequency sound production. It also improves the frequency response.
The DSP and 24-bit/96KHz converters facilitate a high-quality signal. While the higher damping factor allows you to control the amplifier based on your frequency needs.
Yamaha HS8S 100w Powered Subwoofer
Yamaha manufactures some of the best sound systems in the world. It’s perfect for low-frequency sounds since it can go as low as 22Hz. It also works great with HS8 monitors, but you can still use it with other monitors.
Like most subwoofers, the Yamaha HS8S has a simple but stylish look that will blend in with other studio equipment.
The HS8S is one of the subwoofers in the HS series. The systems in this series are designed to offer clarity, especially at low-frequency levels. Yamaha engineer’s experience and skillset are revealed in the transducers. You can feel how well they handle the frequency response and transitions.
The inputs support a wide range of sources, whether balanced or unbalanced. These include the TRs and XLR.
To complement the transducers, HS systems also have bi-amp amplifiers. This means the woofer and tweeter have their designated amplifier. Yamaha’s engineers figured it would ensure a consistent, high-quality sound and flat response, and it worked.
This studio subwoofer is designed to offer the best sound quality. Besides the transducers and amplifiers, the MDF enclosure improves sound accuracy and minimizes resonance. It also includes a thoroughly tested and approved noise reduction technology. You can also install it anywhere in the room, including wall-mounting, for the best sound experience.
Monoprice 10-Inch Studio Subwoofer
This is another highly rated studio subwoofer that presents simplicity and excellence in music production.
This is a 10-inch subwoofer that’s designed for soundtracks that need a heavier bass. It also comes in black color and a fiberglass composite cone for accurate sound.
This studio subwoofer is compatible with a footswitch to help you cascade crossovers and prevent gaps in the track. It doesn’t come with a footswitch, though, but you can find an effective one for less than $20.
Thanks to the class AB inbuilt amplifier and 200 watts output power, this subwoofer works great in professional music production, mastering, or mixing. It also features XLR and TRS outputs that work with most sound systems.
The frequency response on this studio subwoofer ranges between 20 and 150 Hz, one of the lowest I’ve come across. And as mentioned earlier, the design and internal components ensure clarity at all levels.
KRK 10S2 V2 10-inch Studio Subwoofer
The Best Studio Subwoofer under $500
KRK is one of the most popular music system brands, soaring high with Yamaha and JBL. Even though they sometimes get some negative reviews, they got it right with the KRK 10S2 10-inch Studio Subwoofer.
KRK subwoofers are recognizable because of the yellow driver. This 10S2 also has a gorgeous MDF enclosure that’s durable. And a curved design finish that allows you to place it anywhere in the room.
The front-firing design complements the overall look. And the controls are at the back, as with all KRK products, making it easier to blend with other studio equipment.
These model’s features uphold KRK’s reputation for sound accuracy. If you don’t need the sub-frequencies, you can bypass them with the footswitch. On the other hand, the Class-D Amplifier gives you more control over the subwoofer’s punch and response. The fact that it has 4 crossover points makes it compatible with a wide range of studio monitors.
Regardless of where you place it in your room or your sitting position, you’ll get the same response. That’s how flexible it is. And they come in 8-inch, 10-inch, and 12-inch sizes, depending on the amount of bass you need for your soundtrack.
Factors to Consider When Purchasing Studio Subwoofers
Below are the main features each studio subwoofer should have:
Humans can hear sounds ranging from 20 Hz to 20 kHz. But a subwoofer can only achieve a maximum of 300Hz. The low frequencies recreate ground-thumping sound. So if you want to experience deep bass, you’re better off with subwoofers that can achieve very low frequencies. They hit the bass lines effectively and let you ‘feel’ the music.
The crossover frequency helps the subwoofer expel the excess power/pressure that produces high frequencies. Doing this allows the subwoofer to switch to low-frequencies. But for it to work, you have to know the exact crossover frequency. Luckily, most monitors will suggest the ideal frequency, and you can always find the information from documentation.
The size of a speaker determines how much bass it can handle at all frequencies. Generally, yhe bigger the speaker – the more powerful it will be. For professional music production, always go for an 8-inch or larger studio subwoofer.
Types of Studio Subwoofers
· Front-firing vs. down-firing
· Sealed Box vs. Bass Port
· Active (powered) vs. Passive
Front Firing vs. Down-Firing
This type is based on the direction the subwoofer fires (blasts) the sound. As the name suggests, front-firing subwoofers fire towards the front, while down-firing subwoofers fire towards the ground. Front-firing subwoofers tend to be more accurate and easier to use. While down-firing subwoofers produce a much-desired reverberation, they need some technical expertise to achieve the best sound.
Sealed Box vs. Bass Port
Ever seen the opening that’s often at the bottom of a subwoofer? Most people assume that they’re just for aesthetics, but they play a significant role. With that in mind, a sealed box subwoofer has no opening, while those with openings are also known as bass port subwoofers.
So, what’s the role of the bass port? It causes a resonation that leads to deeper frequencies, a slightly similar experience to the down-firing types. This opening also regulates the temperatures around the driver, and it prevents vacuum accumulation.
Active vs. Passive Studio Subwoofers
This type refers to the type of amplifiers. Active subwoofers have an in-built subwoofer. On the other hand, passive subwoofers need an external amplifier. Most studio subwoofers in the market today are of the ‘active’ type. They are convenient since they do not need any complex configuration. Passive subwoofers are quite rare and complex but they can still achieve low frequencies.
The JBL Professional LSR310S takes the crown among the studio subwoofers in 2021. One, because there are studio monitors from the same brand, making an excellent combination for your studio equipment. Secondly, it has a frequency response as low as 27 Hz. Finally, it is a 10-inch subwoofer, which is large and powerful enough for most professional applications. So there it is – the best subwoofers to equip your sanctuary into an exciting bass-driven venture. It is important to note that subwoofers serve as powerful companions to stereo sound from speakers – hence investing in one is a wise decision.
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