10 Best Subwoofer Under 500: Expert Reviews

A high-end set of speakers is nothing without a deep-sounding subwoofer. Whether it is for your home theater, gaming PC, or media room – you’ll want a subwoofer that gets the job done.

That’s why we think the Klipsch R-120SW Subwoofer is a go-to option. After reviewing every single feature it offers plus browsing through its advantages and disadvantages, we found it a perfect choice.

From its power output to its stunning design, and even the special bass delivery – it is the best subwoofer under 500 you will find.

If you want to save some time, then don’t hesitate and pick this one. But if you’re willing to take the time and learn more about subwoofers and the different options available, keep scrolling.

We’re reviewing 10 of the highest-quality subwoofers below the $500 range that will make you install soundproof curtains. Below you’ll see why!

Best Product - Our Top 3 Picks

Polk Audio PSW10

Best For: Small Spaces

10 Best Subwoofer under 500
  • Wattage: 50 RMS / 100 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 80 to 160 Hz
  • Driver Size: 10 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 14 x 16.3 x 14.4 Inches

Klipsch R-120SW

Best For: Bass Quality

10 Best Subwoofer under 500
  • Wattage: 200 RMS / 400 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 29 to 120 Hz
  • Driver Size: 12 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 14 x 19.2 x 16.5 Inches

BIC America F12

Best For: Bass Depth

10 Best Subwoofer under 500
  • Wattage: 150 RMS / 475 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: : 25 to 200 Hz
  • Driver Size: 12 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 19 x 22 x 21 Inches
    Best For: Bass Depth 

10 Best Subwoofers Under 500 Reviews in 2021

We went through hundreds if not thousands of subwoofers under $500. Some of them were not good enough. Others were awful. And some of them didn’t meet our standards completely.

After this, we ended up with only 10 subwoofers. We decided to bring them to you. Here, you will also find our review of each. So you will not only learn their basics but their best and worst features accordingly.

Are you ready to find out more about them? Then check them up:

1. Klipsch R-120SW Subwoofer

Exquisite design with one of the most pleasant bass performances, the R-120WS from Klipsch will surpass all your expectations.
It all starts with a 400-watt of PEAK performance. This is ideal for anyone in search of powerful-enough system. Along with the 200-watts of RMS, you can enjoy decent bass delivery every time.
But the real advantage comes from the bass-reflex port. It has a rear-firing design that makes your bass subtle but effective, reducing noise and vibrations that may affect the sound. You can just sit on the recliner and enjoy hours of clear sound with this piece. 

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Flush Capacity: 0.92 / 1.28 GPF
  • Seat Height: 16.5 Inches
  • Rough Opening: 10 Inches
  • Warranty: 5 Years
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

All of that is only possible with the 12-inch spun-copper IMP (injection-molded graphite) driver. It can handle frequencies going from 29Hz up to 120Hz – ideal for getting your sound to the deepest levels.

This also helps to reduce distortion exponentially. And with the built-in amplifier, you can take your sound to a whole new level of sound quality.

And if all that wasn’t enough, you still get a good-looking product. The small black box with a wooden finish will give any room an aesthetic appeal. Pair it up with an enticing set of speakers, and you’ll get a beautiful sound system.

Top 3 Features

Distortion-Free Performance

If there’s something we loved about this subwoofer is the addition of an injection-molded graphite woofer. The lightness and rigidness it offers are ideal for preventing any type of unwanted noise.

Highly Efficient Amplifier

A built-in digital amplifier takes the speaker to the highest wattage use. This increases sound quality and volume exponentially. So there’s no chance you won’t feel the bass.

Gorgeous Design

The spun copper driver, an elegant MDF wood grain vinyl box, and a soft grill – they make it one of the most enticing woofers in the market. It matches with almost any decoration seamlessly.

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Sounds super-clear & loud
  • Doesn’t produce any distortion
  • Looks fantastic in any place
  • Has a small and practical design

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Not enough ports or controls

2. Polk Audio PSW10 10-Inch Subwoofer

An affordable subwoofer doesn’t have to be a bad one. The PSW10 from Polk Audio is an almost perfect example of that.

With a 10-inch driver size and 100 watts of PEAK power – it delivers a decently loud performance. The 50-watt RMS built-in amp power makes it possible to enjoy a clear and distortion-free sound most of the time.

But the real advantage comes from the port that adds extra depth to all sounds, bringing everything to life.

You won’t have any problem setting your sound to the max and enjoying excellent sound quality at decent volumes.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 50 RMS / 100 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 40 to 160 Hz
  • Driver Size: 10 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 14 x 16.3 x 14.4 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

There’s a lot more to enjoy from this woofer, though. This includes an 80 to 160 Hz crossover and a frequency response of 40 to 160 Hz. Together, they make it easy to power up your favorite music or movies without a single touch of distortion.

Another exciting feature includes the Klippel Measurement Technology. It is laser-based, meaning it optimizes the structure, voice-coil alignment, and even the suspension of the driver. This increases the ability to deliver super-low frequencies with little interference.

Last but not least, you get a gorgeous piece that fits almost anywhere. The rear controls and inputs are straightforward to use for extra handiness.

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Delivers ultra-clear bass
  • Fits anywhere with ease
  • Offers decent bass for the size
  • Has an attractive design

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Not recommended for large rooms

3. BIC America F12 12-Inch Powered Subwoofer

We want you to have only the best among the best subwoofers for the cost. In that case, we couldn’t leave the F12 from Bic America out. In fact, we had to bring it soon.

It is the third-best option in our list for its ability to go the extra mile in terms of volume capacity while reducing noise and distortion. This is only possible with the BIC Venturi vent that reduces any noise coming from the port.

Even then, this happens thanks to the 12-inch IMP throw woofer and a BASH-designed amplifier. Together, they reach a remarkable capacity of 475 watts of PEAK performance. That’s enough to push your sound to the max volume and listen to everything with maximum quality.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 150 RMS / 475 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 25 to 200 Hz
  • Driver Size: 12 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 19 x 22 x 21 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

Don’t forget this subwoofer boasts a frequency response of 25 to 200 Hz. This adds up to the 90dB of sensitivity so you can enjoy super-loud and vibrant bass every time.

You can expect this small but powerful 175-watt RMS woofer to get the extra mile in style as well. An appealing black-box design makes it compatible with almost any decoration. And even the front driver looks superb to add a modern look to any room.

And if all that wasn’t enough, you can still enjoy gold-plating terminals, Dolby Pro Logic and Digital/DTS inputs, plus practical volume and crossover controls on the back. Get some pillows on your sofa and enjoy the best home-theater sound quality with this one.  

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Explosive bass delivery
  • Looks fantastic anywhere you place it
  • Gets pretty loud if needed
  • Connects easily with home theaters

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Tends to overheat in long sessions

4. Cerwin-Vega SL-10S 10-Inch Subwoofer

Among the many brands we will never stop loving, Cerwin Vega stands out as one of the best. And it’s clear why when you take a look at the SL-10S powered subwoofer – a piece of art all around.

First of all, the subwoofer has a 10-inch driver. That’s not the largest you can pick, but enough to deliver a super-punchy bass. This is only possible with the 150-watt RMS amplifier. You can enjoy excellent sound volume every time.

Second, you get a frequency response going from 28 to 150 Hz. That’s enough to meet even the lowest and punchiest deliveries, without fault. You’ll feel how the bass vibrates no matter what you’re listening to. Along with the Bass Reflex cabinet, you can enjoy these lows for even more time.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 150 RMS / 212 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 28 to 150 Hz
  • Driver Size: 10 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 12.6 x 16.3 x 17.7 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

The subwoofer is still good-looking. You get a black design with orange details, including the driver’s front. This adds up to a classic design that you can install anywhere in your house. Along with a removable grille, you can set it up however you want for maximum style.

Despite its ultra-enticing design, the woofer is still one of the most practical. You get the chance to control the crossover with a variable LFP system going from 60 to 150 Hz. At the same time, you can change the level phase with its 0 to 180-degree controls.

And if all that wasn’t enough, you get practical inputs to handle any type of receiver. It will make your sound delivery a lot better overall.

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Gets decently loud
  • Delivers a vibrant bass
  • Offers practical adjustments
  • Works well with almost any audio system

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Needs to be equalized before using

5. Yamaha NS-SW100BL 10-Inch Powered Subwoofer

In fifth place, we have a high-end subwoofer from one of the best brands in the audio market, the NS-SW100BL from Yamaha.

People who love to rejoice with high-quality sound will find this woofer an almost perfect choice. With 10-inch driver construction, it will get the sound across every room with ease. And sure enough, with exceptional frequency response going from 25 to 180 Hz – this woofer can handle super-deep bass.

This excellent bass capacity is complemented by the Advanced YST II technology. It controls the driver perfectly to prevent any distortion and increases the accuracy of the low range frequencies. You will enjoy not only higher sound quality but a deeper bass with this system.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 50 RMS / 100 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 25 to 180 Hz
  • Driver Size: 10 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 13.9 x 13.9 x 16.12 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

There’s a lot more to enjoy from this woofer, though. This includes the Twisted Flare Port. It extends the bass delivery by smoothing out the airflow. Your sound will be a lot clearer and distortion-free, so you can enjoy the tightest bass every time.

Despite all that, the woofer is still decently good-looking. You get a stylish yet practical design all around. It is only 13.9 inches by 13.9 inches in width and depth accordingly. And with its 16.12 inches of height, it fits almost anywhere.

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Comes in an ultra-handy & small design
  • Delivers a deep bass
  • Does not produce noise or distortion
  • Requires little effort to set up

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • It’s not too loud

6. Sound Town METIS 18SDPW 18-Inch Subwoofer

Probably the largest subwoofer in the list, but still a high-quality option – the 18SDPW woofer from Sound Town won’t disappoint.

What sets it apart at first is the unbeatable power delivery. You get a PEAK performance of 2400 watts and 700 watts of RMS. If you’re looking for loudness and punchiness, then this one won’t let you down.

This tremendous power capacity pairs up with a Class-D amplifier. This amplifier makes it possible for the 18-inch driver to reach super-low frequencies. So you’re not only getting an extra-loud bass but also as little as 35Hz of frequency response that makes your body vibrate.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 700 RMS / 2400 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 35 to 500 Hz
  • Driver Size: 18 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 25 x 24 x 27.2 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

If you’re looking for a practical product, then this woofer will also meet your standards. It boasts a set of quality inputs and outputs, including 2 RCA, 2 XLR, and more. You also get a 35mm pole mount port if you want to set it up high. Add the ergonomic handles on the sides for easy carrying when needed.

Despite all that, you get a giant piece with the 18-inch driver. Its case is wholly made of birch plywood to reduce distortion. And with the carpet finish outside plus the heavy-duty grille, this woofer won’t stop working even after an electricity surge.   

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Can get super-loud if needed
  • Gigantic design works in large rooms
  • Boasts easy-to-carry handles on the sides
  • Provides practical inputs & adjustments

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • The bass is not deep

7. Theater Solutions SUB8SM Slim Subwoofer

A bottom-firing woofer never feels like a bad choice. The SUB8SM from Theater Solutions offers this type of design, ideal for an excellent performance.

It all starts with a 4.75-inch tall design. The woofer is one of the shortest you will find, delivering over 250 watts of PEAK power and 100 watts of RMS. Along with the 8-inch driver, this woofer is enough to handle even your deepest-sounding audio without a single bit of distortion.

The slim design is decently small as well, boasting a 24.6 inches width plus 15.75-inch depth. That will make it small enough to fit under sofas, tables, and even beds.

And despite all that, the enclosure is made with high-quality MDF that does not only protect the woofer but also ensures a more precise bass delivery. Your sound will be fantastic every time.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 100 RMS / 250 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 35 to 150 Hz
  • Driver Size: 8 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 24.6 x 15.75 x 4.75 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

There are other features to enjoy from this subwoofer, like the 35 to 150Hz of frequency response. Along with the 50 to 150Hz variable crossover, you can set it however you prefer. The woofer will perform exactly how you need it.

Thanks to the volume and crossover controls, you can tweak the woofer to your liking. And with the practical array of RCA adapters plus other inputs, you can make it work with any receiver. There’s almost no drawback from this subwoofer to consider. 

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Slim design can go almost anywhere
  • Decently loud for its size
  • Comes with a comfy & durable seatOffers tons of controls to tweak
  • Looks super-enticing

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Plastic feet may produce a buzz

8. Dayton Audio SUB-1000 10-Inch Subwoofer

Few brands offer the quality of sound that Dayton Audio does. That’s why we had to bring the SUB-1000 woofer into this article.

This 10-inch model handles your heaviest-hitting bass songs without problems. It comes with 100 watts of RMS output, perfect for handling anything you throw at it with ease.

This gets better when you consider the flared port with bass reflex design. It is specifically designed to reduce bass vibrations and noises. You’ll feel how the bass hits cleanly and with maximum accuracy. And don’t forget it is a downward-firing port, meaning it is even cleaner than you expect.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 100 RMS / 200 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 30 to 140 Hz
  • Driver Size: 10 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 14.2 x 15.75 x 14.75 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

Despite its excellent sound quality, the real advantage of this piece comes from the ultra-handy design. Around the 10-inch driver, you get a high-quality enclosure that looks outstanding. It boasts a black vinyl design that you can pair with almost any decoration.

Sure enough, the woofer still comes with low-level inputs, high-level outputs, volume control, an automatic on/off switch, a phase switch, and an electronic low-pass filter. In short, you get the whole package of features in a small and practical design.

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Delivers a super-clean bass
  • Offers excellent controls
  • Gets decently loud for its size
  • The extra-small design fits anywhere

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Won’t work well in large rooms

9. SVS SB-1000 12-inch Subwoofer

Small but powerful, the SB-1000 subwoofer from SVS is an excellent piece for people who want to save some space but still get exceptional bass.

This is possible with a 12-inch driver inside a 13 by 13 inches box. Even though it seems unlikely, the combination can handle up to 750 watts of PEAK power. That’s sufficient to get the bass hit across small, medium, and even large rooms.

The driver pairs up with the Sledge STA-300D amplifier. At 300 watts of RMS, you can expect magnificently high volumes and bass tightness with little to no distortion. And with the addition of 24 to 260Hz of frequency response, there’s no doubt the bass will be fantastic.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 300 RMS / 750 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 29 to 120 Hz
  • Driver Size: 12 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH):  13 x 13 x 13 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

There’s a lot more to enjoy from this subwoofer, like the DSP engine that lets you tune the sound however you like. Want to tweak the low-pass filter? Checked. Looking to increase volume? Also checked. Interested in phase switching? Obviously, it also has that.

Sure enough, the small but sonically inert box with tune-sealed materials will give you perfect sound every time. Paired up with excellent inputs and outputs, plus a super-enticing black-box design, you can make it work almost anywhere without losing style.

WHAT WE LIKED

  • The small box is a piece of cake to set up
  • Can get ultra-loud for its size
  • Delivers super-deep bass
  • Won’t cause noise or distortion

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Is a little expensive

10. Acoustic Audio PSW-8 15-Inch Subwoofer

Looks like a simple subwoofer, but offers what others in the list do not – the PSW-8 from Acoustic Audio is an excellent woofer in every way.

The first thing you’ll notice is the massive 15-inch driver. It is enough to handle up to 600 watts of PEAK power. Along with the 22 to 250 Hz of frequency response, the woofer can hit a loud and tight bass every time.

The PVA-treated cone and the down-firing subwoofer also help with bass quality. You get one of the clearest basses in the market, even at high volumes.

QUICK SUMMARY

  • Wattage: 300 RMS / 600 PEAK
  • Frequency Response: 22 to 250 Hz
  • Driver Size: 15 Inches
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 16.5 x 18.5 x 14.6 Inches
10 Best Subwoofer under 500

You get the whole package with this woofer, though. The slotted port makes it possible to deliver a super-clean bass. And the Bass Reflex design keeps it steady even at the highest volume. The black ash MDF enclosure looks superb as well.

On the back, you also get low-level and speaker-level inputs & outputs. Also, the low-pass filter and crossover controls can’t miss. Add the auto shut-off and phase control switch, for even better controls.

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Boasts a good-looking ash design
  • Delivers loud sound
  • Comes with practical controls
  • Intense bass for the cost

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

  • Rattles at high volume

How to Pick the Right Subwoofer Under 500 - Buying Guide

Everyone wants the best subwoofer under 500, but few really know what to look for. That’s why most people end up either disappointed or wishing they had bought something better. We want to prevent that from happening to you.

That’s why we’ve arranged this section. Here, you will find all the vital factors to consider before making your final choice. By learning about subwoofers this way, you will have an easier time picking the ideal piece. So, want to learn how to choose an excellent subwoofer? Below is everything you should check:

Power Output (Wattage)

The wattage, or also known as the power output, refers to how much power the woofer can handle.

Obviously, the more power the subwoofer can work with, the more likely it is to be loud, clear, and deep. So you’ll want to go for as much wattage as possible.

For subwoofers below the $500 mark, you can expect models offering 50 watts that don’t get too deep or loud but won’t affect the sound. But you can also find subwoofers bringing over 400 watts of power, perfect for a decently loud and deep bass delivery.

In this section, however, look for the highest RMS (continuous) wattage possible. The PEAK (dynamic) wattage doesn’t help too much, because it tells you the highest amount of wattage the woofer can meet. But often, this is not necessary as long as the RMS is high enough.

Frequency Response

This refers to the range of frequencies the woofer will operate in. It is measured in hertz (Hz) and will tell you whether the woofer is deep enough or not.

For example, a woofer offering 10 to 100 Hz will focus on deep bass delivery, while a woofer offering 30 to 150 Hz will be a little less deep, but louder. So, the higher the range goes, the louder the bass will be. But the lower it goes, the harder it will feel.

Crossover

When you connect the woofer to your speaker system, do you know at what frequencies it starts to work? Well, the crossover helps you set that up.

In short, you should say the crossover is the tool that lets you decide at what frequency range the subwoofer will handle the sound. So if you have a speaker system with 50Hz to 20kHz, you can determine if you want the woofer to start at 50Hz or at 100Hz by controlling this crossover measure.

We recommend crossovers that go as close to their frequency range as possible. This will help you get the most out of it (always depending on the speaker system you’re working with, of course).

Driver Size

This is the internal mechanism that emits the sound or bass. Of course, the larger the driver is, the higher the quality of the bass and the louder the sound you’ll receive.

Here, you will have to pick between several sizes, going from 8 inches for small designs up to 14 inches or more for the largest ones.

For example, if you want decent results without going too far, then a 10 or 12 inches woofer will suffice. But what if you don’t care about volume? Then an 8-inch model will work wonders. Want maximum output? Then go for a 14-inch woofer. These large models are rare at the $500 mark, though.

Design & Size

It is mostly about fitment and comfort in your house/apartment. But it’s still worth considering a small or large speaker accordingly.

For this price, you’re likely to find small and medium-sized models instead of large ones. That should be enough to power up a sound system in most livings rooms.

Extra Features

Last but not least, consider any extra feature that may add better sound to the woofer. This often includes patented technologies, unique port/vent designs, and even cone constructions or shapes. All these extra features can help to increase volume, reduce noise, or get a tighter bass hit.

Should I Choose a Passive or Powered Subwoofer?

A passive subwoofer doesn’t have a built-in amplifier. That means you won’t have a power output to work with.

A powered woofer comes with its own built-in amplifier. You won’t have to connect it to an exterior amp if you don’t want to. Only need to set it up alongside a receiver, and it will do the rest of the job.

What’s the Difference between Down and Front Firing Subwoofers?

A down-firing woofer has the driver or cone pointing down. The sound goes to the bottom when the bass hits.

In contrast, front-firing woofers deliver the bass through the front. You will see the driver or cone on the front of the piece.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

So you read our reviews and buying guide, but you’re still somewhat confused about which model to pick. Well, don’t worry – this section will help you out.

Below, we talk about common questions people ask about subwoofers under 500 and some more. So take a look below to learn:

What is the best subwoofer brand?

If we had to pick only one brand, we wouldn’t think twice before choosing Klipsch. While other brands like BIC, Cerwin Vega, Yamaha, and Polk Audio are also exceptional, few can match the quality of Klipsch at this price range.

How to get best sound from subwoofer?

The main thing you need to do is to match the subwoofer volume to the receiver. This way, you get rid of the distortion that comes from unmatched volumes. Then, you need to adjust the woofer using the low-pass filter, crossover, and gain as necessary.

Will a subwoofer under 500 work for a 7.1 surround system?

Yes, a subwoofer under 500 will easily match the quality necessary for a 7.1 surround system. You only need to match the volume and filters properly. However, be sure to get the right subwoofer for the job by considering the frequency response of the speakers.

What do I need to install a subwoofer?

You don’t really need much. An RCA cable to connect the receiver or amplifier, then just a large-enough place where you can fit the woofer. That should be enough to make it sound well. Try to locate the woofer in an area far from things that may vibrate when the bass hits, so you can reduce distortion.

Conclusion

There’s no need to spend a fortune on a new subwoofer when an affordable yet well-made model gets the job done.

With the best subwoofer under 500 reviews and our buying guide, you have enough information to take a quality woofer home. So don’t let your home theater lack the enticing bass that makes music and movies so pleasant, and get one of these now.

We’re sure that once you hear how the bass hits, you won’t have a single regret – especially for such an superb cost.

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