Audio

The 7 Best 8-Inch Car Subwoofers of 2020

Best 8 Inch Subwoofers

Photo: Rockford Fosgate

If you are a car owner, then a car subwoofer will add a level of harmonics to your music that you cannot get with most factory fitted speakers. Indeed, a subwoofer is a vital audio component that any music lover should own. 

However, one problem many car owners face when installing subwoofers is their size. Most will have enclosures that are big and take up a lot of space. If you have a small car, with a smaller boot, it is challenging to install a 15-inch woofer.

One way around this problem is using the smaller 8-inch car subwoofers. They still deliver excellent performance despite their smaller size and will easily fit in the boot of a small car. 

If you are on the lookout for the best 8-inch car subwoofers, we have done all the research for you! Here is our hand-picked selection of some of the best models on the market.

Best 8-Inch Subwoofers ​ Review

IMAGE

PRODUCT

​FEATURES

Boss Audio CXX8 8-Inch Car Subwoofer

1. Boss Audio CXX8 (Most Affordable)

  • Good value for money
  • Decent performance considering its price
  • Cone is polypropylene for durability
  • Easy to install by beginners
JBL Stage 810 8-Inch Car Audio Subwoofer

2. JBL Stage 810 (Excellent Build Construction & Great Value)

  • High-quality build construction
  • Good frequency response times
  • It can play fairly loud
Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8 8-Inch Shallow Mount Car Subwoofer

3. Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8 (Can Be Installed with Thin Wires)

  • A low impedance of 2 ohms
  • Many connection outputs at the back
  • Mounting depth is only 2-11/16 inches
Rockville RW8CA 8-Inch Low Profile Under-Seat Active Powered Car Subwoofer

4. Rockville RW8CA (Efficient & Highly Sensitive)

  • The sensitivity of 100 dB makes it efficient
  • Pre-amp model does not require an external amplifier
  • Small and compact form factor
Planet Audio AC8D 8-Inch Car Subwoofe

5. Planet Audio AC8D (Big Power & Affordable Price)

  • Decent performance with a power handling of 1,200 words
  • Affordable and good value
  • Voice coils are large at 2 inches for better midrange clarity
Alpine PWE-S8 Restyle Compact Powered 8-Inch Subwoofer

6. Alpine PWE-S8 (Compact & Superior Sound Quality)

  • Small and compact form factor
  • Crisp and clear music
  • Provides many customization options
Rockford P3SD48 Shallow Mount 8-Inch Subwoofer

7. Rockford P3SD48 (Outstanding Build Quality for Heavy-duty Use)

  • Excellent build construction for heavy-duty use
  • You can use thin wires for the installation
  • Very energy efficient subwoofer

PRODUCT

1. Boss Audio CXX8

 (Most Affordable)

Boss Audio CXX8 8-Inch Car Subwoofer
  • Good value for money
  • Decent performance considering its price
  • Cone is polypropylene for durability
  • Easy to install by beginners

2. JBL Stage 810 

(Excellent Build Construction & Great Value)

JBL Stage 810 8-Inch Car Audio Subwoofer
  • High-quality build construction
  • Good frequency response times
  • It can play fairly loud

3. Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8

 (Can Be Installed with Thin Wires)

Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8 8-Inch Shallow Mount Car Subwoofer
  • A low impedance of 2 ohms
  • Many connection outputs at the back
  • Mounting depth is only 2-11/16 inches

4. Rockville RW8CA

 (Efficient & Highly Sensitive)

Rockville RW8CA 8-Inch Low Profile Under-Seat Active Powered Car Subwoofer
  • The sensitivity of 100 dB makes it efficient
  • Pre-amp model does not require an external amplifier
  • Small and compact form factor

5. Planet Audio AC8D

 (Big Power & Affordable Price)

Planet Audio AC8D 8-Inch Car Subwoofe
  • Decent performance with a power handling of 1,200 words
  • Affordable and good value
  • Voice coils are large at 2 inches for better midrange clarity

6. Alpine PWE-S8

 (Compact & Superior Sound Quality)

Alpine PWE-S8 Restyle Compact Powered 8-Inch Subwoofer
  • Small and compact form factor
  • Crisp and clear music
  • Provides many customization options

7. Rockford P3SD48

 (Outstanding Build Quality for Heavy-duty Use)

Rockford P3SD48 Shallow Mount 8-Inch Subwoofer
  • Excellent build construction for heavy-duty use
  • You can use thin wires for the installation
  • Very energy efficient subwoofer

1. Boss Audio CXX8 – Most Affordable Solution

Boss Audio CXX8 8-Inch Car Subwoofer

Photo: BOSS Audio Systems

  • Power Handling: 600 Watts
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 83 dB
  • Resonant Frequency: 49 Hz

Boss Audio CXX8 is the most affordable woofer solution for this review. Despite its small price, it is still a quality woofer that is well-built and can output a satisfying bass sound.

It has a little problem going down on the ultra-low frequencies below 49 Hz because of its high resonant frequency, but for general-purpose music playback, this is hardly a problem.

The installation for this woofer is quite easy even for beginners. Furthermore, this is a sealed enclosure woofer, so you will get a punchy bass that is excellent for almost every type of music.

Overall, we think this is a good purchase for everyone on a low budget and still requires a decent and performing woofer. Just don't expect it to be deafening because this subwoofer has a power handling of only 600 W.

Pros:

  • Highly affordable
  • Polypropylene cone for durability
  • Good overall performance
  • Easy to install

Cons:

  • Below average resonant frequency. Has difficulty reproducing very low frequencies.
  • Not the loudest subwoofer out there

2. JBL Stage 810 – Excellent Build Construction and Great Value

JBL Stage 810 8-Inch Car Audio Subwoofer

Photo: JBL

  • Power Handling: 800 Watts
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 88 dB
  • Resonant Frequency: 38 Hz

JBL Stage 810 is a popular subwoofer model as it has an excellent build construction with superb specs. It is also relatively affordable and offers a lot of value.

For one, it has a sensitivity of only 88 dB, which means that it requires less power to operate. Low-end amplifiers will have no problem powering this woofer up. The sound is also loud and clear, just as you would expect from a quality subwoofer.

You can even play it at medium volumes and not worry about damage or cone puncture as the cone is polypropylene. However, due to size and power handling limitations, this subwoofer should not be used for playing bass-heavy music for an extended period at very high volumes.

Furthermore, the cone surrounds are an elastic rubber that gives it better frequency responses. Thus, it can reproduce low frequencies with high-fidelity and without distortions. 

Pros:

  • High-quality build construction
  • Fairly affordable
  • Decent frequency responses
  • Loud and powerful speaker

Cons:

  • Requires break-in time to sound good
  • Not ideal for reproducing bass at very high volumes ​

3. Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8 – Can Be Installed with Thin Wires

Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8 8-Inch Shallow Mount Car Subwoofer

Photo: Rockford

  • Power Handling: 300 Watts
  • Impedance: 2 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 82 dB
  • Resonant Frequency: 38 Hz

The Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8 is one of the most interesting 8-inch subwoofers in this review. It has a low impedance of 2 Ohms that allows the user to use thin audio cables when making the connections. Something that most other subwoofers do not allow.

While this isn't the most powerful subwoofer we have in this review, its power handling of 300 Watts is still a respectable number, and this unit should be able to play loud and clear when necessary.

Moreover, it comes equipped with a dual voice coil (DVC) for better musical clarity. There are also more customization options and versatility with this subwoofer when compared to other models.

All in all, we can safely recommend the Rockford Fosgate P3SD2-8 to anyone who likes to tweak their music for a personalized sound stage, even if it is a bit expensive. 

Pros:

  • More connection output for tweaking
  • Low impedance allows for thin wire use
  • Shallow mounting depth of 2-11/16 inches

Cons:

  • A little expensive

4. Rockville RW8CA – Efficient and Highly Sensitive

Rockville RW8CA 8-Inch Low Profile Under-Seat Active Powered Car Subwoofer

Photo: Rockville

  • Power Handling: 600 Watts
  • Impedance: 2 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 100 dB
  • Resonant Frequency: 29 Hz

If we have to select one of the best 8-inch car subwoofers in this review, when it comes to overall efficiency, it would have to be the Rockville RW8CA. Rockville knows how to make a quality speaker, and this unit is grand proof of this.

But what makes it stand out is its high sensitivity of 100 dB and its compact form factor. With a higher sensitivity, the Rockville RW8CA can play loud music with less power, making it highly efficient. Also, its small size makes it sit flush under a seat, for example.

The high sensitivity is a good thing since it has an internal amp that is smaller than a dedicated unit. Therefore, it is much more power-efficient than other models and doesn't require a high-end amp to play loud.

It even has thermal and short circuit protection. This shows that Rockville made this unit as a heavy-duty subwoofer that can output a clear bass for an extended period. If you are the type to abuse your woofers at high volumes, this is a good woofer that will not disappoint. 

However, due to the power handling of 600 Watts of this Rockville subwoofer, it will not play extremely loud. Nevertheless, it still reproduces a clear and crisp bass for any type of music.

Pros:

  • Does not require an external amp
  • Very power efficient
  • Compact and low profile

Cons:

  • Bass could still be better

5. Planet Audio AC8D – Big Power and Affordable Price

Planet Audio AC8D 8-Inch Car Subwoofe

Photo: Planet Audio

  • Power Handling: 1,200 Watts
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 85 dB
  • Resonant Frequency: 39 Hz

Considering its high peak power of 1,200 Watts and its relatively affordable price, we say that the Planet Audio AC8D provides an excellent value for money.

The cone is polypropylene, and it sports a 2-inch voice coil for clarity and better midrange frequencies.

Moreover, it has a respectable sensitivity of 85 dB, making it work well with any amp, even with pre-amps in your DIN device. Its resonant frequency of 39 Hz makes this little puppy work at very low frequencies, which is ideal for listening to music like electronic or techno.

All in all, if you are looking for a standard woofer speaker, then the Planet Audio AC8D comes highly recommended! Just keep in mind that this model does not have the best build quality, but for the price, this is forgivable. Also, you get only the speaker so you will need an enclosure for it.

Pros:

  • Good price
  • Powerful and loud enough woofer 
  • Large 2-inches voice coil for clarity

Cons:

  • Not the best build quality
  • Requires an enclosure

6. Alpine PWE-S8 – Compact and Superior Sound Quality

Alpine PWE-S8 Restyle Compact Powered 8-Inch Subwoofer

Photo: Alpine

  • Power Handling: 240 Watts
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Resonant Frequency: 50 Hz

The Alpine PWE-S8 is a compact woofer solution that has unparalleled sound quality. After all, this is a woofer from one of the biggest names in the audio industry.

It contains a pre-built amplifier that can power the 240 Watts speakers like a champ. It produces a clean and loud bass that is excellent for any type of music. In terms of build quality, it is second to none. 

Due to its small and compact nature, it can be placed anywhere in the car. From the car boot to under the seat, this model will fit perfectly. Despite being so smaller, there is a good level of tweaking like bass gain or LP filter for music customization.

Pros:

  • Best build quality in a subwoofer so far
  • Excellent sound reproduction
  • Small and compact 
  • Easy to install
  • Customization options at the back

Cons:

  • High resonant frequency. Has difficulty with very low-frequency ranges
  • Expensive

7. Rockford P3SD48 – Outstanding Build Quality for Heavy-duty Use

Rockford P3SD48 Shallow Mount 8-Inch Subwoofer

Photo: Rockford

  • Power Handling: 300 Watts
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 82 dB
  • Resonant Frequency: 39 Hz

The Rockford P3SD48 wins our heart as it has an exceptional built quality and comes in such a way that you can use it as a heavy-duty subwoofer.

One of the good things about the Rockford P3SD48 is its versatility. It is a standard woofer delivered without an enclosure, but it offers a high level of convenience.

Even if it is has a 4 Ohms rating, it can use smaller 2 Ohms wires with no problem. Also, despite being only 300 Watts, it plays on par or louder than higher-rated woofers, mostly because it is so efficient.

We also like the fact that it is a flush mount woofer that does not require a deep hole. All in all, if you need the best 8-inch car subwoofer and do not mind a little DIY work, the Rockford P3SD48 is unbeatable both in terms of performance and value.

Pros:

  • Superb built quality
  • Can be used as a heavy-duty subwoofer
  • Thin wires can be used for the installation
  • Energy-efficient unit

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Requires an enclosure and may not fit a car factory enclosure without modification

How to Buy the Best 8-Inch Subwoofer

How to Buy an 8-Inch Subwoofer

1. Power Handling

There are two types of power mentions when buying subwoofers. These are the peak power and the RMS rating.

The RMS rating is the actual power that the subwoofer can use to produce a sound, while the peak power is the maximum power the woofer can handle at any given time.

Both values are important as they help you tell the power, and hence performance potential of the subwoofer you want to buy. Generally, when it comes to power handling, the higher the value, the better.

2. Amplifier

Some models of 8-inch woofers have a pre-build amplifier to make it sound clearer and louder. While this is very convenient, these models are not always very powerful and will not produce bass as powerful and deep as a dedicated amplifier.

You will need to choose based on your needs. If you require a more powerful sound and deep bass without distortions, it is always better to buy a standard subwoofer and connect it to an amplifier.

3. Resonant Frequency

The resonant frequency is the minimum frequency that the woofer can resonate to before it produces distortions.

As a rule, the lower the resonant frequency of your 8-inch subwoofer, the better. Low resonance means this subwoofer can produce deeper bass and cover a wider range in the low-end spectrum of musical frequencies.

4. Dual Voice Coils

Voice coils are responsible for reproducing the mid and higher range frequencies. While most woofers have a single-coil, a dual coil system, (DVC) is better as it produces clearer sounds and has more output connections for versatility.

If you are the type who likes to tweak your music to your liking, then a DVC subwoofer is the way to go. Otherwise, a single voice coil is enough.

5. Impedance

The impedance is the electrical resistance of the woofer. A higher impedance of 8 Ohms means that the woofer requires a thicker wire to produce sound at a particular frequency.

In general, 4 Ohms is an okay impedance, and most factories fitted audio wires in your car is more than enough for the connection wiring.

2 Ohms is even better, as this means that you can now use much smaller and more discreet wires to make the connections.

6. Enclosure Size

Despite all 8-inch car subwoofers having the same cone size of 8-inch, their enclosures may vary. Hence, you need to check the overall size of the woofer to make sure that it will fit your boot or under your seat.

Moreover, you can even purchase a standard subwoofer that does not come with an enclosure and make your own. A woofer enclosure is usually made from MDF and is not very hard to build for anyone who loves to DIY.

Conclusion

8-Inch car subwoofers are some of the smallest car subwoofers you can purchase. They will easily fit inside any car boot and still manage to deliver fantastic sound performance when connected to a matching amp.

Some models can be so slim and compact that you can even tuck them under your seat for some interesting bass effects.  

As we can see, this is a versatile subwoofer size for every budget and usage. If you are on the market for one, finding the best model is now all about picking one from our list above.

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