5 Best Powered Car Subwoofers Reviews

There are various ways to solve the lack-of-bass problem in your vehicle, however, using a car powered subwoofer remains the easiest way to add punch to your setup without breaking that bank and without sacrificing your trunk space.

A powered subwoofer will save you from the hassle of looking for a good subwoofer, building an enclosure, and matching up your sub with a compatible external amplifier.

A powered subwoofer (also referred to as “active” or “amplified” sub) consists of a slim subwoofer and an amplifier combined in an enclosure.

Car powered subwoofers offer an ease-of-use and portability which makes them very convenient if you drive a rented or leased vehicle. Because of their portability, these subs can be removed quickly if decide to sell or exchange your vehicle. They also take up less space than a separate amplifier and subwoofer.

So what are the best car powered subwoofers of 2016? Read on to find out.

Pros and cons of powered subwoofers

Understanding and weighing the pros and cons of powered subwoofers is a great way to decide if this type of subwoofers will suit your needs.

Pros

  • Convenience. Adding a subwoofer to you car audio system is a daunting task. I mean, think about it. You’ll have to buy a separate subwoofer, build or buy a pre-made box, look for an external amplifier that’s compatible with your subwoofer, wiring, mounting…etc. It’s just not for everybody. Not everyone has the experience or the time to do all of that. In a powered subwoofer, it’s all done. So, it’s just a matter of plug and play.In a powered subwoofer, the amp and the sub are optimized for each other, so there is no worry about matching an external amplifier.Additionally, powered subwoofers come in their own enclosure. This eliminates the step of matching the subwoofer to an appropriate enclosure, where a mismatch can result in poor performance or a sub fatality.
  • Cost-Effective. Powered subwoofers are significantly cheaper than traditional subwoofers. Most car powered subwoofers out there cost less than $200.
  • Easy to Install. Car powered subwoofers are very easy to install. Unlike passive subwoofers, which require running cables from the head unit to the amplifier to the subwoofer, powered subwoofers are paired directly to the headunit.
  • Compactness and Space Saving. Being compact is one of the best features to amplified subwooofers. This makes them an ideal solution for people with smaller cars as well as for those who don’t want to sacrifice their trunk space for a giant subwoofer enclosure.

Cons

All good things have a down side and powered subwoofers have a set of weaknesses inherent in their performance (bass output). Most car powered amps are fitted with small drivers that can’t compete with conventional subs and external amplifiers in terms of performance. That said, the bass produced by powered subs may not be powerful enough for serious bassheads.

Best Powered Subwoofers Reviews

Rockford Fosgate P300-12 Review

Rockford Fosgate P300-12 Powered subwoofer reviewRockford Fosgate is one of the best car subwoofer brands in the market. They were established in 1973, and have made a name for themselves in the car audio industry.

We’ve reviewed a ton of Rockford Fosgate amps and subs on this before and the story hasn’t changed. Rockford Fosgate makes quality product at a reasonable price.

The P300-12 is one of the best car powered subwoofers under $200 that Rockford Fosgate has to offer. It’s very well-made and offers solid performance. It features a hard-hitting Punch 12 inch subwoofer in a sealed enclosure powered by an internal 300 watt amplifier. The sealed enclosure provides optimum sound quality, and it’s covered in rugged industrial vinyl coating which protects it wherever you choose to install it.

The P300-12 is equipped with a variable low-pass crossover, phase switch, and variable bass boost so you can adjust the sub to sound just the way you want. The powered subwoofer also comes with High- and low-level inputs which allow you to connect it to any car audio system, while the included remote knob lets you adjust bass intensity on the fly from the driver’s seat.

The P300-12 would be a great investment for anyone who’s looking for a budget-friendly “all-in-one” bass solution. However, it’s not going to turn your ride into a rolling thunderstorm of bass. Don’t get me wrong, the bass output that this subwoofer produces is more than enough for most people. This makes a great add-on to any factory system.

Rockford Fosgate P300-12 Specifications
  • Woofer Size    : 12″
  • Power handling 
    • RMS : 300 Watts
  • Frequency Response : 35 – 150 Hz
  • Impedance  : N/A

Kicker 11HS8 HideAway Review

Kicker 11HS8 Hideaway reviewKicker 11HS8 HideAway is one of the best compact powered subwoofer on the market. At just over 3″ tall, the Hideaway™ will fit under many seats and in storage areas where you don’t usually find powered subs.

This tiny enclosure can fit almost anywhere and still make a night and day difference. This makes it one of the best bass systems for vehicles with very limited space.

Despite its tiny size, the Kicker 11HS8 HideAway is built and optimized to add punch and depth to your music and let you enjoy those hard hitting bass tracks without taking up the entire cargo area on your car.

The Kicker 11HS8 HideAway is fitted with a small 8 inch subwoofer powered by 150 watts internal amplifier. It comes with a remote control bass knob that you can use to adjust the bass level on the fly.

Kicker 11HS8 HideawayIf you just want to upgrade your stock system and add some depth to your music without compromising storage space in the trunk, the Kicker 11HS8 HideAway is a great small powered subwoofer to consider. You will not get earth shattering bass by any means using this system, still your music will sound way better than it did before. This small powered sub can perfectly fill out the low end.

Kicker 11HS8 HideAway Specifications
  • Woofer Size    : 8″
  • Power handling 
    • RMS : 150 Watts
  • Frequency Response : 25 – 120 Hz
  • Impedance  : N/A
  • Sensitivity   : N/A

Dual SBP8A Review

Dual SBP8A powered subwoofer reviewThis is another reasonably priced amplified subwoofer from Dual. It’s going to be the cheapest pick of the lot by far. I mean while most powered subs are priced at over $200, the Dual SBP8A gets the job for a lot less – around a $100 to be exact. That’s a major bargain, and It might sound too good to be true — but it’s not.

The Dual SBP8A is fitted with an 8 inch high-performance subwoofer that can handle up to 80 watts RMS. It features a stylish design with its full view plexiglass window and the cool illuminite lighting system that provides a cool blue glow which will make your vehicle look as great as it sounds.

The Dual SBP8A is a great bang for the buck. It’s very well-made and It carries a nice tight bass. As with most powered subs, the Dual SBP8A isn’t going to win any competition, yet still it would be a great budget addition to any stock system.

Dual SBP8A Specifications
  • Woofer Size    : 8″
  • Power handling 
    • Peak   : 160 Watts
    • RMS  :   80 Watts
  • Frequency Response : 20 – 200 Hz
  • Impedance   :  4 Ohms

Cerwin Vega VPAS10 Review

Cerwin Vega VPAS10 Powered Subwoofer ReviewCerwin-Vega is one of the most recognized brands in the car audio industry. They were founded in 1954, and they’ve been producing quality subwoofers ever since. Cerwin Vega became noted for producing an 18″ speaker capable of producing 130 dB in SPL at 30 Hz, an impressive level during its time.

Cerwin Vega offers a wide range of professional and home audio components as well as car audio components. Cerwin-Vega is mostly known for its quality subwoofers capable of reaching low frequencies ranges using low power input.

The VPAS10 is one of the best powered car subwoofers that Cerwin Vega has to offer. It’s fitted with a specially developped active low profile 10 inch subwoofer than can handle 80 watts RMS powered by MOSFET power supply with an integrated thermal protection circuit.

Encased in a solid cast aluminum body frame for superior heat dissipation, the VPAS10 is very compact and slim – measuring in at approximately 13.6″ x 9.6″ x 2.6″ (L x W x H) – which makes for an easy installation in the tightest of spaces, such as under seats.

The Cerwin Vega VPAS10 is equipped with an adjustable input sensitivity, auto power turn on, phase switch, and RCA and High-Level inputs. It also comes with a remote bass control knob.

If I had to pick some criticisms for the Cerwin Vega VPAS10, It would be just the price. This unit has a fairly price tag.

Cerwin Vega VPAS10 Specifications
  • Woofer Size    : 10″
  • Power handling
    • Peak : 160 Watts
    • RMS :  80 Watts
  • Frequency Response : 75 – 150Hz
  • Impedance   :  2 Ohm

JBL GT-BassPro12 Review

JBL GT-BassPro12 Powered subwoofer reviewJBL is one of the most recognized names in the car audio industry. They’ve been in business for quite a long time and they offer a wide array of various speakers and subwoofers for every purpose.

The GT-BassPro12 is one of the top rated car powered subwoofers that JBL has to offer. This thing can make a night and day difference. It’s built to add a blast of bass to your vehicle so you can really feel your music’s impact as you drive.

The GT-BassPro12 enclosure features a high quality powerful JBL 12 inch subwoofer with polypropylene cone supported by hi-roll rubber surround for consistent, reliable performance. This 12 inch sub is powered by a perfectly matched built-in 150-watt amplifier, all housed in a relatively large custom ported enclosure that’s covered in high quality black carpet.

This vented enclosure features a slipstream port design which allows for clean, distortion-free bass even at the highest output levels. It also comes with remote level control, which lets you adjust level of bass on the fly from your seat.

As you can tell from the pictures, the GT-BassPro12 is a bit large than most powered subwoofers we listed here (22-1/2″W  x  14-5/8″H  x  12″D1  x  9-1/8″D2). That said, make sure you’ve got enough available space in your vehicle for this bass beast.

Bottom line, if you’re looking to add bass to your audio system and aren’t interested in rattling the windows of the cars next to you, this is the way to go. It’s a great deal for the buck.

JBL GT-BassPro12 Specifications 
  • Woofer Size    : 12″
  • Power Handling 
    • Peak : 450 Watts
    • RMS : 150 Watts
  • Frequency Response : 35 – 120 Hz
  • Impedance :  N/A
  • Sensitivity  :  N/A

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