The 5 Best Under Seat Subwoofers – Reviews & Buying Guide
If you do not have a lot of space in your car, a hideaway car subwoofer is your best option. This is usually a compact woofer with a slim form factor that allows it to be easily tucked under a seat.
One of the best things about the under-seat car subwoofer is that it is very easy to install by almost anyone. Additionally, since it uses the space under the seat as an enclosure, it produces a deeper and even more powerful bass which compensates for its small size.
Even better, most models of under seat woofers already come with a pre-amp inside for even more convenience. In this review, we have handpicked some of the best under seat subwoofers on the market. Let's see how well they perform!
- 5 Best Underseat Subwoofers - Reviews
- How to Buy an Under Seat Car Subwoofer
5 Best Underseat Subwoofers - Reviews
Kenwood KSC-SW11 Compact Underseat Subwoofer
Rockford Fosgate PS-8 8" RMS Underseat Subwoofer
Rockville RW10CA 10" Car Underseat Subwoofer
Kicker 11HS8 8" Hideaway Car Underseat Subwoofer
JBL BassPros SL - JBL 8" RMS Underseat Subwoofer
#1. Kenwood KSC-SW11 Compact Powered Enclosed Subwoofer
Editor's Rating: (4.3 / 5)
The Kenwood KSC-SW11 is a popular solution for car owners on a budget. This model is an all-inclusive solution that packs a powerful 150 W pre-amp that powers an 8-inches cone. Since the cone is small, it vibrates more and produces a punchy bass that is harmonious.
Additionally, this under seat subwoofer can be remotely controlled for better convenience. On the downside, if you like tweaking your music then there is a limited number of customizations. It still sounds good at default setting for those who simply do not care about bass tuning.
As for the built quality, it is excellent. The whole unit is made of aluminum that does a good job absorbing heat and preventing the woofer from overheating during extended usage at loud volumes. Moreover, the front metal grille adds protection to the diaphragm and help to extend the life of the woofer.
Overall, this is a decent model, and even if it is not the best under seat powered subwoofer on the market, it does a pretty good job at an affordable price. We recommend it to all beginners who do not care about bass tuning.
#2. Rockford Fosgate PS-8 8" RMS Underseat Subwoofer
Editor's Rating: (4.1 / 5)
The Rockford Fosgate PS-8 is built for maximum efficiency. There are many circuits inside, like thermal control and reverse polarity that helps prevent accidents and make this under seat subwoofer safer to use.
Moreover, we note that the build quality in this model is also superior to other models we have seen in this price range. The whole front face of this woofer has a metal grille that protects it from external elements, and the enclosure is solidly made. In fact, the enclosure is made from a strong industrial vinyl covering for durability. It still remains a low-profile and compact subwoofer that will not consume a lot of space under a seat.
But best, if you like to customize your music then the Rockford Fosgate PS-8 has many outputs and tuning options that makes it a very versatile subwoofer. There is even a remotely controlled knob delivered with this purchase. This woofer has a quick connect system that easily allows you to connect and disconnect input cables. It makes it very easy to install and use by beginners.
All in all, this hideaway subwoofer from Rockford Fosgate is durable, offers many audio customizations and very easy to install.
#3. Rockville RW10CA 10" Powered Car Subwoofer
Editor's Rating: (4.4 / 5)
There are many likable features in this particular under seat subwoofer. For one, it has a massive 800 W power handling that shows that it can play loud when it has to.
Furthermore, this model has a 10-inches cone that is bigger than all other models in this under seat subwoofer review. This cone displaces a lot of air quickly and can produce a deeper and more powerful bass.
Additionally, there are many audio customizations that can be performed in this woofer. People who care how their bass sound will like this unit very much. As almost expected from a company like Rockville, it is equipped with advanced circuits that help protect and prolong its lifespan. Circuits like overheat protection or reverse polarity can come in handy for those who like to listen to their music loud.
To make it easier for the user, this model comes with an installation kit that includes all RCA audio cables necessary for the installation. All in all, this is an excellent and one of the best compact subwoofers for a car on the market.
#4. Kicker 11HS8 8" Hideaway Car Audio Powered Subwoofer
Editor's Rating: (4.1 / 5)
The 11HS8 from Kicker has been built specifically for tight spaces. Indeed, it is a compact and very low profile under seat car subwoofer that also happens to look amazing. And as expected from Kicker, the build quality in this woofer is exceptional. It is solidly built and is durable and long-lasting.
The only caveat we have is that this model is powered by a smaller 8 -inches cone. However, it has a powerful 150 W amplifier that powers this under seat car subwoofer and produces a clean bass without any distortions.
Moreover, this model has a spider design that is known for its high efficiency and performance. Therefore, even if the cone is a little smaller than in the Rockville RW10CA, we can still expect above average sound quality mostly because of this efficiency.
All in all, if you want an extremely compact under seat car subwoofer that sounds phenomenal then it is difficult to beat this model from kicker on a price to performance ratio.
#5. JBL BassPros SL - JBL 8" RMS Powered Under Seat Compact Subwoofer
Editor's Rating: (4.7 / 5)
While the JBL BassPros is not the most powerful in terms of power handling with only 125 W, it is one of the most efficient and well built and the seat car subwoofer in this review. Notwithstanding that it is an exceptionally good-looking subwoofer. A shame that it has to go under the seat.
To make it even more irresistible, the JBL BassPros has many outputs at the back that allows the user to customize the bass based on his or her music preference.
Furthermore, due to the efficient design, this woofer will remain cool to the touch even when it is played at high volumes. Therefore, this drastically reduces the risk of a fire and makes this model very safe to use.
It still has a regular 8-inches cone inside, and even if it is small, it is punchy and deep and better sounding than most models in this review. Indeed, if we had to crown one model as being the best under seat car subwoofer then it would definitely be the JBL BassPros.
How to Buy an Under Seat Car Subwoofer
Before you can get the best hideaway subwoofer for the money, there are some important factors to consider. Here they are:
If you want a deeper bass, a higher power handling by the under seat woofer is preferred. The subwoofer needs to have enough power to convert electrical energy to sound energy. The higher the power rating, the more sound energy it can potentially transform.
Almost all under seat subwoofers for cars come with a pre-built amplifier. Most class D amplifiers should be efficient and powerful enough to handle an under seat subwoofer. Additionally, take note of the power rating of the amplifier. The higher the better, of course as it will play louder.
The cone inside the subwoofer is the part that displaces air to produce the bass sound. The larger the cone, the more air it will displace. Therefore, choose a model with a bigger cone if you want a deeper and more powerful bass. As an example, a 12-inches model will always produce a more powerful bass than an 8-inches model, no matter how good the 8-inches sound.
A subwoofer that is more sensitive will require less electrical energy to move the cone and produce a sound. Therefore, such a woofer is considered to be more power efficient than other models. Moreover, since it consumes less, it will also last longer since the components will heat less and are more durable over time.
If you want a clean install and do not want audio wires to be visible, then you must use thin wires for the connections. However, only subwoofers with a low impedance will accept thin wires. For discreet installations, a 2 Ohms subwoofer is always better than a higher impedance model.
The resonant frequency is the minimum frequency the subwoofer can respond before it distorts. Lower is better in this case. Especially since an under seat subwoofer will be in a confined space where it is more prone to distortions. A lower resonant frequency should help massively in producing a clearer and cleaner sound.
We've discovered that there are several types of under seat car subwoofers that vary in size, shape, and price. If you have a small car and still require a decent bass, this type of subwoofer will definitely fit the bill. Don't let its low-profile and compact form factor fool you. They are quite powerful.
However, keep in mind that the best under-seat powered subwoofer does not have to be the most expensive one or have the biggest cone. Choose one based on your preference, budget, and need.