A subwoofer is a sound bolster that gives the music a massive, bass-powered texture and the best 12-inch subwoofer will come in handy to get such sound. These subs are a great choice for many reasons, including improved overall sound quality and their ability to produce heavier bass.
Due to the high demand for the 12-inch subs, there are a variety of brands that sell a wide range of speakers with a number of unique features. However, even the most seasoned subwoofer enthusiast may find it difficult to select one model out there. I believe that better purchasing decisions are influenced when you have the right information; that is the purpose of this guide.
In coming up with this 12-inch subwoofer compilation, I have tested all of the featured products and am able to ascertain what aspects and capacities are important for any buyer. Also, as part of a guide, to help you, there are notable factors to consider such as the types of enclosure, sensitivity, voice coils, etc. Read and refer back to this article for the best 12-inch subwoofer that suits your specific sound and music preference. Let’s get right into it.
12-inch Subwoofer Reviews
This is one 12-inch car subwoofer that provides maximum quality at its price point, having 15 x 19.8 x 11 x 7 inches. It comes with a 3 in 1 package which includes a remote Punch control, a custom sealed enclosure and an amplifier of 400W to 800W as its powerhouse. When compared to the 10-inch subwoofer by Rockford, this upgrade accommodates higher frequencies between 27Hz and 250Hz. The sync between the woofer, amplifier, and the enclosure is made possible by the closed-looped design. Its deep low end makes for clearer and more detailed notes. If you are one who loves the bass of your speaker tuned, then you can take advantage of its 12dB low pass cross over. With that, the bass can be adjusted to meet individual specifications.
Another benefit is the extended convenience provided by means of the power protector. In other words, this makes it easy to connect and disconnect the negative and positive wiring. Unlike some others on the market, this model uses an auto-on setting that prevents the amplifier from draining the car battery when it is not in use.
- The built-in amplifier can be easily customized to sync smoothly with other amplifiers.
- Everything is plugged into one side, so it is easy to take this sub out.
- It is designed with a solid and durable material, which is scratch-resistant.
- There is a chance it might tip over if it is not fitted securely.
- It is quite heavy, up to 30 lbs of weight.
- The volume is affected by the sealed enclosure.
Video Rockford Fosgate P300
This dual 12-inch subwoofer offers both sealed and vented enclosures with a ⅝-inch MDF construction. It comes packaged with a pair of 12-inch subwoofers. This feature is essential because the combined effect of both subwoofers has a way of improving the bass by increasing the low-frequency level. Speaking of frequencies, the subwoofer allows 37Hz – 150Hz. The bass sound it produces is also affected by its wooden enclosure which is built to provide sounds that are distortion-free. Each woofer in the set is designed with 200W of RMS power, making it a total of 400W when combined. At their peak, they have 1200W of RMS power. You’ll also find in each woofer, cones crafted from strong and high-quality materials.
One thing I appreciate about this model is the controlled and nuanced sound it produces; this is majorly influenced by its closed enclosure. Because of the single voice coil contained in each woofer, you might want to consider passing an amplifier through both of them consecutively; most especially if you are really particular about volume. Usually, voice coils get overheated due to extended power load. However, that won’t be an issue with these. The spider plateau venting process takes care of that by cooling the coils down with air refreshments. I love the fact that this model is not bulky at all and it won’t take up space in the trunk unlike some other models on the market. The dimensions include 14 x 29 x 13 inches.
- This sub is capable of filling out the low end.
- The bass is improved by the built-in amplifier that comes with it.
- It is adequately protected with polypropylene dust caps.
- It requires quite a lot of voltage.
- The cones on each woofer can be very sensitive.
- It produces very low frequencies.
Video MTX Terminator Series TNE212D
This JBL 12-inch subwoofer is designed with a die-cast aluminum basket. Its built-in amplifier serves as the powerhouse, producing 150W of power (and a peak of 450W). I like to consider the power it produces, as the right fit because of its ported enclosure; apparently, this gives it the ability to create massive sounds, without the need for more power. The frequency response is 35Hz – 120Hz. The ported enclosure does this by equalizing the atmosphere with the air pressure inside the box. Consequently, this allows the woofer to move more freely. You can always tune the bass to suit your preference using the low-pass crossover.
The bass is clear and strong. This is further enhanced by the slipstream port which serves as a noise remover, allowing for high output level for the bass. However, because it comes with a sealed enclosure, it may not be as detailed and accurate as other ones with vented enclosures. The remote knob control enables you to easily adjust and control the volume from the driver’s seat. All thanks to its auto-on setting, the battery of your car will not be drained constantly when it is not in use. It comes with a polypropylene cone with a rubber surround that provides superior reliability. With this subwoofer, you won’t have to worry about overheating because it has a vented pole piece that provides a cooling effect for the entire system. The full dimensions are in the range of 12 x 22.4 x 14.5 inches.
- It provides decent deep hard-hitting bass.
- The die-cast aluminum produces more solid sounds.
- Extra line out converter is unnecessary as it comes with a built-in one.
- It is very bulky and takes up a lot of trunk space.
- The panel located on the backside is difficult to access once it is installed.
Video JBL GT-BassPro
The Sundown Audio 12-inch sub has a commendable sound quality. It is greatly influenced by the RMS power of 750W which it possesses, making it one of the most powerful 12-inch subwoofers. It measures 14.6 x 14.3 x 14.2 inches. This makes it suitable for producing what some have described as earth-shaking sounds. When using this subwoofer, I doubt that the genre of music you choose to play will be a problem. This is because it’s quite compatible with a variety of music genres.
It comes packaged with sealed enclosures and dual aluminum faraday rings, which removes any form of distortion and fatigue from the woofers. The construction of this is quite good, as it made with a fine competition SPL paper cone. It also has a 2.5-inch voice coil made from anodized aluminum. The frequency is 36Hz. These coils when fixed into the ported and vented enclosures, have a way of influencing the bass sound. The impedance level is normally at 2 Ohms, but it can be wired to 4.61 Ohms in series or 1 Ohm in parallel. It has been tested to have the capacity to attain up to 19mm of one-way Klippel verified excursion; this goes a long way to enhance the performance level of the bass and prevents clipping as well. The in-built cooling system of this subwoofer helps prevent overheating after a long time of use. This particular model is equipped with a double stitched cone, sporting custom airflow ventilation, and a bulletproof surround sound system.
- It is constructed with tough and durable materials.
- It comes with a 2-year warranty.
- Its level of impedance can be adjusted.
- It requires a rather powerful amplifier in order to work properly.
- There’s a chance that the subwoofer can burn the amplifier.
Video Sundown Audio D2 REV.3
There is no doubt that you’ll enjoy durability and performance quality with the Pioneer TS-A3003D4. One of the benefits that come with installing this subwoofer, is the amount of power it is capable of handling. It has 1500W of power, which goes a long way to remove strong low frequencies from your sound. The size is about 4 x 9 x 14 inches. I like this model because it adequately applies this power, for the production of high-quality sound. One other feature of this model that affects its sound is the 4-ohm impedance which it possesses. You can always switch things up by wiring the voice coil to achieve lower impedance. It has dual-layer voice coil, double-stacked magnets, and a venting system, for proper handling of the power it uses. It is rated for a high sensitivity level of about 96 dB and frequency as low as 32Hz. If you have other Pioneer a-series automotive loudspeakers, you won’t experience any difficulties integrating them with this subwoofer. This car subwoofer is constructed with a touch of elegance and class, matched with great aesthetics. It is made with a rubber surround and suitable cotton spiders that make it even stronger. You’ll enjoy all these values from this subwoofer.
- It is quite versatile and can be used for a wide range of car models.
- The TS-A300D4 is a surprisingly really loud sub.
- It produces strong lows.
- It is quite heavy which makes it less portable.
- It doesn’t come with a built-in amplifier so you will have to get one.
- It has the tendency to smoke up when used on higher wattages.
The Pioneer 12-inch subwoofer is a good fit for someone looking out for a subwoofer with good sounding bass. Its mounting depth is unlike other subwoofers in this class available on the market. The mounting depth is measured at 3-⅜, making it easy to fit into a slender enclosure. For this reason, I highly recommend it for those who have minimal space in their trunks to fit the normal-sized subwoofers. The frequency response is 12Hz to 125Hz. The size makes it suitable for tight spaces without compromising the quality of sound it generates. Its sealed enclosures contribute a great deal to the quality of bass it produces. Impressively, it has a sensitivity rating of 93 dB with the capacity to project sounds at a very high volume. With this subwoofer, rigidity and responsiveness are guaranteed by the oversized cone it comes with. This oversized cone structure makes for a better gasket and cone surface, which moves more air and produces louder sounding bass. I’ll also recommend this 12-inch shallow mount sub because of its high sensitivity rating, which gives it the capacity to handle up to 400W of power. However, at its peak, it can handle as high as 1500W of RMS power. The size is 13 x ⅗ x 8 inches.
- It comes with a one year warranty.
- It can fit into any corner of the car.
- It comes with an elastic polymer surround that enhances the quality of the sound it produces.
- It doesn’t have an in-built amplifier.
- After the precise measurement, this model appeared to be bigger than 12 inches.
Video Pioneer TS-SW3002S4
The Kenwood sub comes in the same size (12 inches). It is a dual voice coil model with a mounting depth which allows for a creative approach to its installation. In the event that your car trunk is a bit small or cannot accommodate the other bigger size, then you should consider going for this subwoofer because its dimensions are 13.4 x 13 x 5.2 inches.
The frequency response is 30Hz – 700Hz. It makes use of a cast aluminum basket and it can be fitted into a diverse range of cars. It is usually powered at 350W and a maximum peak of 1400W. The ample amount of power it handles enhances the quality of sound it produces. It is recommended that users keep the power range between 300 and 400W to prevent sound lags and distortions.
One thing I appreciate in this subwoofer is the efficiency with which it performs. This is made possible by the 2-inch voice coil it utilizes along with a single stack ferrite magnet. It is quite easy to install and it comes fully packaged with an already installed concealing ring and some mounting screws. When tuned properly, it produces a really clear and detailed bass suitable for different genres of music. It has a high sensitivity rating of up to 91 dB which enhances the volume of the sound it produces. If you have Kenwood door speakers, you won’t experience any difficulty integrating them with this sub. With this subwoofer, you are guaranteed a durable terminal efficient system, which also has its own way of improving the bass.
- It makes use of polypropylene woofer cones, which enhances the strength of the cone.
- It is designed with high-quality materials including a high-tech glass cone and butyl rubber surround.
- It has no grill.
- There’s only one voice coil so it could easily burn out because it has a high-frequency range.
The Pioneer TSW126M is a recommended choice if you are working with a tight budget. In spite of its affordability, the quality of this subwoofer is still guaranteed. It has a power capacity of 350W of continuous power and a peak of 1300W of RMS power. Additionally, it has a Voice Coil Cooling System (VCCS) and an IMPP cone that gives off light and bass.
Although this is not as powerful as some other subwoofers available on the market, it is still applied to produce deep and powerful bass. With this model, you can choose between mounting it in a sealed or ported box. The cone design of this cheap 12-inch sub
enhances its overall performance and reduces noise distortion as well. In my opinion, it has just the right sensitivity rating of 96 dB and the frequency cover — 25Hz to 125Hz.
Overheating is not a problem with this subwoofer because it comes with a voice coil cooling system for its only one voice coil. However, this does not affect the huge low-end that it produces. This single voice coil offers quality power handling, linear movement, and good excursion that enhances the output of the bass it produces. The dimensions are as follows: 13.20 x 13.20 x 6.60 inches.
- It has great connectivity settings.
- It can be installed in both enclosed and sealed ports.
- There is a chance you might experience some sound distortions especially when it is used at higher volumes.
- I noticed it blows out after using it for long hours.
- It doesn’t come with in-built amplifiers.
Video Pioneer TSW126M
The Skar Audio 12-inch sub offers unique value for its price. It has the capacity to handle 1250W of RMS power while in continuous use. At its peak, it can handle 2500W of RMS power, which is one of the highest among a wide range of subwoofers. This amount of power is not a cause for alarm for overheating; when it is used for high power sound performance over a prolonged period, the advanced cooling design system comes into play. The 4-layer aluminum voice coil also plays a vital role in ensuring that the system doesn’t overheat after prolonged use of the subwoofer. The frequency response is between 20Hz — 250Hz. Every component in it works together to produce a very clear and articulate bass sound. These components include a high-temp coil, competition level cone, premium stitched wires amongst others. It has a sensitivity rating of about 85 dB which is well within the ideal rating for sensitivity. The volume of the sound it produces is great, making it a good fit for anyone who loves really loud music. This is further enhanced by the high-grade magnet which allows for efficient movement of the voice coil. The size (14.5 x 14.5 x 11.5 inches) makes it versatile and suitable for fitting into smaller compartments.
- It has solid and deep bass quality.
- The voice coils make it capable of withstanding extreme high-performance conditions.
- It has a rather low sensitivity rating.
- The dust cap can be easily dented.
Video Skar Audio EVL D2
What Determines the Quality of Subwoofer Sound?
One of the major reasons for getting 12-inch subs is to improve the quality of sound your car stereo produces. Among many considerations, you should focus on when choosing one is the output level of the bass and the clarity of the sound produced by the subwoofer..
Passive and Powered Sound
A subwoofer of 12 inches is classified under two modes of operations: passive or powered. They both have differences that have a way of impacting the sound produced by the subwoofers.
A passive subwoofer has a woofer enclosed in it which is powered by external amplifiers. It has been tested and confirmed to produce cleaner sounds and is flexible when it comes to the overall configuration of the wiring.
A powered subwoofer, on the other hand, has its woofer enclosed within, with an in-built amplifier. In other words, it is powered without the aid of an external source. Generally, subwoofers in this class are easier to operate and configure. However, the sound quality they produce is worse than that of the passive subwoofers. There are quite a few brands that produce powered subwoofers. In making a choice for one, you should take your music and sound preferences into consideration.
Types Of Enclosures
There are typically two types of enclosures for subwoofers: sealed and ported enclosures.
The cabinet size and footprints of sealed enclosures are typically smaller. The advantage of this is that it makes the subwoofer easier to integrate into the cabinet without tampering with the aesthetics and decor. The sound produced by sealed subwoofers is clearer and more articulate. The reason for this is that they are designed to have less phase rotation and reduced group delay. The bass produced by a sealed enclosure is more accurate. However, it needs more power to achieve a louder bass.
The ported subwoofer, on the other hand, is usually designed to be a bit larger. This is to allow for a deep system tuning frequency and enhanced system efficiency in the deeper octaves. These ported subwoofers also have low distortion and flat frequency response. I’ll recommend this type of subwoofer if you want to enjoy very loud volumes. The bass produced by the ported enclosure is very boomy, yet less accurate.
The voice coils are simply the wires that are attached to a subwoofer’s cone. They are the connection between the subwoofers and the amplifiers. Voice coils are either single or dual. While a single voice coil has one winding coil, a dual one has two winding coils.
Single coils are less expensive according to some 12-inch subwoofers for sale, but they are compatible only with a few amps. This becomes an issue when it doesn’t work with the amplifier you have readily available. Dual voice coils, on the other hand, are pricey. However, they have a higher capacity to be compatible with different kinds of amplifiers.
The sensitivity of a subwoofer simply means the amount of power it requires to produce volume. If you prefer to play music on really high volumes, then this is one area of consideration you ought to focus on. For example: subwoofer box design for 12 inches with higher sensitivity, produce more volume and require a less amount of power to reach a high output level. On the other hand, a lower sensitivity rating produces a lesser volume. The recommended sensitivity rating for a subwoofer is between 80 dB to 99 dB. In order to get the best sound possible, the sensitivity rating ought not to go above the 99 dB. Unfortunately, anything above this has a way of muffling and distorting the sound output.