Last Updated on: May 25, 2022
For audiophiles, a regular car speaker is never enough. If you want to level up your sound system, then a subwoofer is a must! It reproduces low frequencies to improve bass.
Most subwoofers, however, are bulky. The large enclosures may not be suitable for small cars. The best under seat subwoofer offers the perfect alternative. It is compact but powerful if you choose the right one.
Are you on the lookout for a high-quality underseat subwoofer? We got you! Read on as we walk you through some of the top products. If there is one winner, it is Rockville RW8CA Powered Subwoofer.
Table of Contents
- Our Top Picks for the Best Under Seat Subwoofers
- 1. Rockville RW8CA Powered Subwoofer – Best Overall
- 2. Kenwood KSC-SW11 Subwoofer – Best for Ease of Installation
- 3. Rockville SS8P Subwoofer – Best For People On A Budget
- 4. Sound Storm Laboratories LOPRO10 Car Subwoofer – Best Wattage
- 5. Pioneer TS-WX130DA Subwoofer – Best for Deep and Soulful Bass
- 6. Kicker 11HS8 Hideaway Car Audio Powered Subwoofer – Best Plug-and-Play Functionality
- 7. Cerwin-Vega VPAS10 Subwoofer – Best for Loud Music
- 8. Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 Subwoofer – Best Premium Option
- 9. JBL BassPro SL Subwoofer – Best Design
- 10. Kenwood KSC-PSW8 Subwoofer – Best for Efficiency
- Essential Considerations When Looking for the Best Underseat Subwoofers
- Watch This!
- Frequently Asked Questions
Our Top Picks for the Best Under Seat Subwoofers
1. Rockville RW8CA Powered Subwoofer – Best Overall
On the top of our list is the Rockville RW8CA Powered Subwoofer, which promises incredible bass despite its compact body.
With its impressive technical specifications, the performance is top-notch. It has a peak power of 600 watts and RMS power of 150 watts. The ratings are third-party approved, so you can be confident of their accuracy.
It has Pulse-Width Modulation or PWM MOSFET power supply. With a switching power supply, it regulates voltage effectively, especially in instances when it is not constant. It is helpful as well in signal amplification, making bass punchy and clear.
Ease of installation is another good reason to choose this compact powered subwoofer. It comes with high-level inputs, which you can connect directly to a speaker. All inputs and outputs are on the same side, which makes the assembly a breeze.
It offers several options for customization. Aside from the adjustable input sensitivity, it also has a bass boost, low-pass filter, and phase switch to personalize your car audio.
- Has convenient controls for customization
- Punchy bass despite the size
- Installation is a breeze
- Can be prone to distortions at high volumes
With its slim profile, various adjustments, user-friendly installation, and punchy bass, the Rockville RW8CA Powered Subwoofer will make a notable addition to car audio systems.
2. Kenwood KSC-SW11 Subwoofer – Best for Ease of Installation
No need to pay a pro to install the Kenwood KSC-SW11 Subwoofer. It is designed to offer easy installation, which you can complete as a DIY task.
Installing this under seat car subwoofer is as easy as wiring it to a battery, grounding it, and connecting it to the head unit.
The built-in amplifier in this model has 75 watts RMS power and 150 watts maximum. Even if it is tiny, the power is surprisingly decent.
Like many of the products on this list, it also has a wired remote that allows quick control of the different functions, including volume, low-pass crossover, and phase control. Plus, it comes with remote bass control, so you can adjust the output accordingly.
The construction is also notable. It has a die-cast aluminum enclosure that protects against external damages. It is also effective in promoting good thermal management.
- Effortless installation
- Wired remote for easy control
- Durable aluminum die-cast housing
- Lacks depth of bass
From the wired remote to its aluminum housing, the Kenwood KSC-SW11 is another product that should be on your radar.
3. Rockville SS8P Subwoofer – Best For People On A Budget
Even if you are on a budget, your car’s audio system can be top-notch, which is possible with the Rockville SS8P Subwoofer.
Among others, one of its stand-out features is the cast aluminum enclosure. The latter provides effective thermal protection to prevent damage from overheating.
Another nice feature is the heavy-duty mounting feet. It keeps the unit stable under the seat even when you are driving on rough terrains.
More so, it has various tuning features, which will let you personalize your car audio. You can set the bass boost from zero to 12 dB. Meanwhile, the low-pass filter is adjustable from 50 to 150 Hz.
To deliver top-notch sound, it also comes with a subsonic filter. It attenuates frequencies while also protecting the sound system.
- Well-designed enclosure that prevents overheating
- Comes with heavy-duty mounting feet
- Offers various tuning features for personalization
- Flimsy control knob
The Rockville SS8P Subwoofer is exceptional because of its effective thermal management and different options for customizing audio.
4. Sound Storm Laboratories LOPRO10 Car Subwoofer – Best Wattage
With a peak power of 1,200 watts and an RMS power of 600 watts, the Sound Storm Laboratories LOPRO10 Car Subwoofer is a powerful unit that delivers unrivaled sound quality.
It comes with a wide array of built-in features to ensure longevity. With its thermal protection circuit, it can operate even at high temperatures without worrying about overheating.
This under seat subwoofer has input overload and short circuit protection. Once it detects a problem, it will go into self-preservation mode. The LED will light up red, which means that the unit is in Protect Mode.
Another notable feature of this slim subwoofer is the input gain control. It is for adjusting the amplitude or bass level, making sure that it matches the other components of a car sound system.
To deliver the best sound quality, it also has a bass boost, low pass filter, and subsonic filter. Plus, it has a convenient remote bass level control for quick adjustments.
- Has special protection circuitry for longevity
- The input gain control allows matching with other components
- Easy adjustments with a remote control
- Installation can be tricky
Another ideal candidate for the best underseat subwoofer, the Sound Storm Laboratories LOPRO10 Car Subwoofer is excellent because of its built-in protection features and various adjustments for the best audio quality.
5. Pioneer TS-WX130DA Subwoofer – Best for Deep and Soulful Bass
Level-up your car’s sound system with the Pioneer TS-WX130DA Subwoofer. It adds depth and soul to bass, resulting in better overall sound quality.
This powered amplified subwoofer has a 160-watt Class D built-in amp. It comes with an aluminum cone, for acoustic suspension, resulting in great sounding bass.
The digital bass control is another good feature of this slim car subwoofer. This way, you can choose from two listening modes – Deep or Dynamic. It tunes the music output to suit different genres.
With its two bass mode settings, you can set the frequency range. It can be anywhere from 20 to 200 Hz or 40 to 160 Hz, depending on the chosen setting.
However, if you want to enjoy the benefits of this pick for the best under seat subwoofers, be ready to spend more. It is not for users on a budget.
- The aluminum cone presents excellent acoustic suspension
- Has a digital bass control for selectable listening mode
- Adjustable frequency response for better tuning
- Not for people on a budget
While it is expensive, the Pioneer TS-WX130DA is another top pick for an under seat subwoofer. From its aluminum cone to digital bass control, there are plenty of reasons to choose this model.
6. Kicker 11HS8 Hideaway Car Audio Powered Subwoofer – Best Plug-and-Play Functionality
With a height of three inches and a length of 14 inches, the Kicker 11HS8 Hideaway is one of the best under seat subwoofers on the market. Its slim profile, however, does not mean that it compromises power and performance.
One thing that makes it stand out amongst other car subwoofers is its plug-and-play functionality. Aside from the quick-connect plug, it also has Velcro nylon straps for easy installation and removal.
With a convenient remote control, you can adjust different settings to personalize the listening experience. It has a variable bass boost, adjustable low-pass crossover, and phase-canceling switch.
It has high and low-level inputs. The latter allows easy integration with almost any factory head unit, making it versatile.
Lastly, it has a frequency response of 25 to 120 Hz. It will reproduce even low frequencies to make them sound more audible.
- Effortless plug-and-play installation
- Has inputs that will connect to almost any aftermarket radio
- Excellent audio clarity even at a low-frequency range
- Prone to getting blown
Wrapping up, the Kicker 11HS8 Hideaway Car Audio Powered Subwoofer is excellent because of its plug-and-play functionality while offering various controls to customize the output.
7. Cerwin-Vega VPAS10 Subwoofer – Best for Loud Music
The Cerwin-Vega VPAS10 is an excellent under seat subwoofer as it does not distort even when playing music at high volumes.
Looking at its construction, the cast aluminum heat sink is one of the most notable. Complemented with the thermal protection circuit, it is effective in minimizing the risks of overheating, especially when playing continuously.
The bass knob is another reason why this under seat subwoofer deserves a spot on this list. It allows remote control of the subwoofer, including its variable bass boost and frequency response.
Lastly, it comes with a MOSFET power supply. The latter allows clean and efficient functionality even when operating at a high temperature and current.
- Not prone to distortion even at full volume
- The aluminum heat sink helps in effective thermal management
- Convenient controls through the bass knob
- Overheating can be an issue
With its aluminum heatsink, bass knob control, and MOSFET power supply, the Cerwin-Vega VPAS10 Subwoofer is an exceptional product.
The first thing that most people will notice in Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 Subwoofer is its price. Yes, it is expensive, but the cost is justifiable given the high-quality sound that it can deliver.
With a peak power of 240 watts and RMS power of 120 watts, it is not as high-powered as other options on this list. Despite such, it has an impeccable performance.
Looking at the technical specs, this model has a frequency response of 32 Hz to 150 Hz. This is a bit limited compared to the traditional frequency range of 20 to 200 Hz.
It has a rugged cast metal enclosure, which is another reason why it is one of the top under seat subwoofers on the market. Even in tight installation locations, the durability is commendable.
More so, the wired remote control knob allows effortless control from the driver’s seat. You can customize its various settings, such as the variable phase control and low-pass crossover.
Lastly, it has auto-sensing inputs, making the subwoofer intelligent. It has a side panel that detects the inputs to optimize the performance.
- Durable enclosure
- Has a wired remote for easy customization
- Comes with auto-sensing inputs
- Short power cord
To conclude, the Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 Subwoofer is notable because of its cast metal enclosure, auto-sensing inputs, and wired remote.
9. JBL BassPro SL Subwoofer – Best Design
Most of the under seat subwoofers in this list have a similar design. They are thin and boxy. The JBL BassPro SL Subwoofer, meanwhile, stands out because of its geometric pattern.
The built-in amplifier of this subwoofer has a peak power of 250 watts. It may not be the most powerful, but for most small cars, it is more than enough.
One of the best features of this subwoofer is the soft-start turn-on. It is responsible for gradually turning on the unit to prevent unnecessary strain on the internal components.
With the bass boost, you have an option to adjust the output to suit your listening preference or match the music genre. It is adjustable from 0 to 9 dB.
Another adjustable setting of this subwoofer is the low-pass crossover filter, which is variable from 50 to 120 Hz. Meanwhile, its frequency response is at 35 to 120 Hz.
It is also worth noting that this subwoofer does not easily overheat, even with continuous operation. This makes it more suitable for installation in tight spaces and other locations with minimal airflow.
Nonetheless, take note that it does not include a wired remote. You will need to purchase such separately.
- Prevent strain with the soft-start feature
- Has bass boost to improve your listening experience
- Does not easily get hot
- A wired remote is not included
Overall, the JBL BassPro SL Subwoofer is remarkable because of its geometric design, adjustable settings, and cool operation even with continuous use.
10. Kenwood KSC-PSW8 Subwoofer – Best for Efficiency
The Kenwood KSC-PSW8 is an eight-inch sub that is known for its efficiency. It delivers good performance without being power-hungry.
Equipped with a Class-D built-in amp, you can expect clear and crisp audio with minimal distortion.
It comes with a rigid enclosure, which is responsible for minimizing rattling. Even when you are on rough terrains, expect the sound quality to be great.
Like most of the under seat subwoofers on this list, it also allows controlling the unit through a wired remote. This will let you adjust the volume and low-pass crossover. This is also where you can select phase control.
Lastly, it comes with an optimized magnetic circuit, so you can expect deep bass. For its size, the audio quality is quite surprising. Although, some users complain that its volume is too low, even when it is already set to high.
- The Class D amp generates minimal distortions
- Has a wired remote for convenient adjustments
- Generates deep bass through its magnetic circuit
- Some might find the volume to be too low
From its magnetic circuity to its built-in Class D amplifier, the Kenwood KSC-PSW8 has a long list of features that make it an ideal candidate for the best underseat subwoofer.
Essential Considerations When Looking for the Best Underseat Subwoofers
With the long list of alternatives, you will most probably be overwhelmed. To help you decide, here are some of the most important considerations.
One of the factors with the biggest impact on the performance of the under seat subwoofer is its power. You do not always need the most powerful, especially if you have a small car. The most important is to match it with the other parts of your sound system.
If you are looking for deep and hard-hitting bass, then you should choose one with high peak power. The higher the wattage, the louder the unit will be. Even if it is loud, however, there should be no audio distortion.
Ease of Installation
Those who do not have the budget to pay a pro for the installation of a subwoofer should consider ease of installation. It must come with a comprehensive manual, as well as everything that you will need, including the harness and wires.
Controlling a subwoofer should be a breeze. Most will include a wired remote with a knob, which will let you adjust various settings. This way, there is no need to access physical buttons on the unit when you want to change anything.
From the variable bass boost to low-pass crossover, underseat subwoofers have several options for personalizing the audio. This will give you complete control of the output depending on your preference or the genre of music you are playing.
Consider the different features that are present for protection. The most common include thermal, short circuit, and over-voltage protection. With such features, you can expect the unit to last longer despite the fluctuations in its operating conditions.
Housing is crucial because it impacts the longevity of the subwoofer. Cast aluminum or metal is the most common material. Aside from protecting the internal components, it can also prevent rattling for better audio.
Do you want to make a DIY box for a subwoofer under the seat? Watch this video!
Frequently Asked Questions
Are underseat subwoofers any good?
Yes, underseat subwoofers are good! They are great for those looking for an exceptional in-vehicle music listening experience without the luxury of space. Even in tight spaces, these subwoofers will fit. Despite being tiny, they can deliver powerful sound, replicating low frequencies for the best bass.
Can you install an under seat subwoofer in the trunk?
Despite the name, you can install an under seat subwoofer in the trunk. However, take note that when you do so, the power is compromised. You will have a hard time hearing the audio once you are seated in the car, so it is best to choose a different type of subwoofer for the trunk, when possible.
Of the ten products in this review, if we have to pick one winner, it would be Rockville RW8CA Powered Subwoofer. This 8-inch subwoofer with a built-in amplifier has excellent thermal protection, user-friendly installation, and punchy bass. Plus, it is affordable, especially considering the audio quality that it can deliver.
Are there other under seat subwoofers that you would like to add to this list? Do not hesitate to leave a comment below.