What Size Subwoofer Do I Need 2023? Top Full Guide

What Size Subwoofer Do I Need? Top Full Guide 2023
  • Anthony

The subwoofer market is huge, but confusion arises when figuring out what size subwoofer one actually needs. The size of the subwoofer depends on how much space you have, what type of room you’re in, and what type of bass you want to hear.
Check out Hooke Audio‘s guide to help you find the answer to the question What size subwoofer do I need for my setup?

Subwoofer Size Explanation

How loud or low a sub can go will depend on its size. The bass is generally larger the bigger the sub. You will need to measure the space available before choosing the model. If you want the loudest bass possible, you might consider the largest subwoofer that can fit within the space.

8-inch Subwoofer

This is the smallest size and most affordable. Pre-installed versions are usually included in most car factory systems. These are the easiest upgrade, as they can be installed right in the factory. They can be mounted under the seats.

This size is ideal for people who don’t necessarily want big bass but prefer clear and crisp bass. This size is ideal for fast-paced music genres such as Country, Punk, Classic Rock, and others.

The small cone in the 8-inch subwoofer delivers a quick and detailed response to the frequencies that these music genres contain. To ensure the best bass performance, the subwoofer needs a set of good door speakers.

10-inch Subwoofer

A common size is 10-inch due to its small size and ease of installation. This size sub delivers a better bass response than 8-inch models. It is also a great dimension if you need a little more power but not to compromise sound quality or overwhelm your car audio system.

A 10-inch subwoofer will typically bring your music to life, whether you are listening to pop, rock, or even blues. You can draw in additional air to provide a quick response to heavy drums beats.

12-inch Subwoofer

It is the largest dimension and can handle many types of music. This is a popular aftermarket item and is very popular with audiophiles who have a greater bass appetite. The 12-in subwoofer can generate extra bass and works well with many frequencies.

These subs are smaller than average and are therefore less responsive. They are ideal for slower music like RnB, Rhythm and Blues, and Rap.

15-inch Subwoofer

15-inch Subwoofers provide the best bass and power due to their large magnitude. However, they lack the responsiveness and power of smaller subs. These subs can take up a lot of cargo or passenger space, which is why they are often used in large trucks and SUVs.

Subs of this dimension may be required to replace your car speakers. However, it may result in your music being flooded with bass. This sub is the best if you enjoy listening to Hip Hop, Rap, and other EDM music. A sub 15 inches can move a lot of air to reproduce the heavily synthesized bass found in this type of music.

What Size Subwoofer Do I Need?

How to choose the right subwoofer?

Larger subwoofers will generally displace more air. They produce a deeper and louder sound. You will also enjoy the car-shaking rumble rider sound of larger subwoofers.

Smaller subwoofers provide punchier sounds. They are also easier to control and require less electricity input. They are less efficient in vibrations.


Subwoofers with larger boxes and subwoofers are more expensive. Price, along with size, determines the quality and longevity of the subwoofer bearings. The size of the subwoofers you can purchase may be limited by price.

Space Available

Small cab vehicles, such as pick-up trucks and pickup trucks, might find it difficult to install a subwoofer without exposing the device to the elements.

Because they are small, subwoofers can be placed underneath seats. The seat above the subwoofer, people’s legs, or other items can block sound clarity.

Subwoofers are usually placed in the cargo area of vehicles. For more powerful bass vibration, some drivers prefer to place subwoofers in their backseat passengers. Drivers must make a tradeoff between bass intensity and extra cargo space if they do not purchase a custom subwoofer.

Types Of Music You’ll Play

There are patterns in the way different music genres use sound frequency. Based on what music you listen to, you can determine the size sub to purchase.

The smaller subwoofer cone sizes like the 6.5-inch or 8-inch models give you a more punchy performance but don’t have a lot to rumble. These subwoofers are best for music genres with low basses, such as country, pop-rock, jazz, alternative rock, and rock.

Subwoofers eight inches in diameter provide superior audio quality for bass notes such as pop and rock.

The 12-inch and ten-inch speakers offer a balanced sound for all music genres. The sound from the ten-inch speakers is a bit more punchy than the 12-inch Subwoofer. So choose the smaller speaker for metal and rock.

Both the 12-inch and ten-inch subwoofer speakers are great for rock, metal, rap, and pop. These are a great compromise for those who want to increase useful bass extension but don’t have enough space for a larger subwoofer.

Subwoofer speakers 15-18 inches are best for bass-heavy genres, such as rap and dubstep. These speakers are a bit lagging due to their size. They’re ideal for bass-heavy music with slower beats, such as rap or reggae. To prevent subwoofers overpowering your car’s speakers, you will need to upgrade them.

For rap, dubstep, and hip hop, larger subwoofer speakers are best.

Types Of Car Subwoofers Explained

Subwoofers and speakers must be placed in a correctly side enclosure to deliver accurate performance and useful bass extension. Speakers are complex devices and their performance at lower frequencies is dependent on the enclosure in which they are placed. Your sound system designer must balance many factors to get the sound you desire.

There are many options for subwoofers to suit your car audio needs. How the enclosure is mounted will determine the quality sound. A sealed enclosure will be more reliable than a ported one. The sealed box ensures that you have deep and accurate bass. However, the ported enclosure can be used to play louder music where volume matters. These are the main types of car subwoofers.

Component Subwoofers

The component sub refers to the speaker. To function properly, it must be placed in an enclosure. These subs can operate in a variety of enclosures and on both low- and high-power. To power the sub, you will need an external amplifier. If you are looking to create a custom system, component subs are the best choice. To build the system from scratch. Component subs are an ideal choice for those who want to build a truly personalized system, i.e. to develop the system from the ground.

Subwoofers enclosed

Enclosed subwoofers are basically component subwoofers that come pre-mounted and packaged in a customized box. If you are looking to improve the bass quality, but don’t have the time or resources to build your sound system from scratch, this type is a good option. These subs are not as good as component subwoofers in terms of bass production. You will also need to add an amplifier to power them.

Powered Subwoofers

Powered subwoofers are compact in design. A powered sub will contain both the amplifier and woofer in the same enclosure, eliminating the need to use an external amp. Powered amps, as mentioned earlier, are small and can fit in places where other types might not be possible. Their small amplifiers and drivers might not be powerful enough to produce big bass, especially if they aren’t very powerful. These bass producers are nevertheless very effective and they can be easily installed in your factory system.

Subwoofers that are vehicle-specific

Subwoofers that are vehicle-specific can be either powered or unpowered. They can be adapted to the dimensions of your vehicle. They are often color-matched to the interior of your vehicle. They are similar to the powered subs and will provide a good listening experience without taking up too much space. However, they may not be the best option if you want big bass.

Why Do You Need A Car Audio Subwoofer?

To produce clear, loud bass you need a lot more air movement. The small speaker that is 4 inches in diameter can’t travel far enough to produce acceptable bass. Subwoofers are speakers designed to play frequencies below 100Hz. These speakers have large voice coils that dissipate heat and suspension designs that allow for a lot of cone movement.

Subwoofers can be installed in a well-designed enclosure to reduce the need for smaller speakers to attempt to reproduce bass frequencies. Cone excursion is reduced and distortion is decreased by being able to concentrate on the midrange.


The more powerful the subwoofer, the more air it can move and the lower frequencies it can produce. Before you buy a new subwoofer, ask your favorite music dealer to recommend the right size for your subwoofers and room. You’ll get the deepest bass and the right punch in the mid-bass range with the proper setup.

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