A subwoofer is an essential part of a quality sound system. Having a home theater system without a good subwoofer is just like waiting for a train at an airport.
Without a subwoofer, you can not listen to the music the way, it is meant to be. They are special things that enhance your listening experience without getting a distorted sound even on high volume at no matter of high or low frequencies.
If you have small speakers (we are not talking about underpowered speakers) that don’t reproduce that much satisfactory level of volume, a good subwoofer can work like an extension for such speakers.
A best powered subwoofer also helps you to get accurate bass on low frequencies that a speaker can’t produce even on its low frequency. This is because even some best powered speakers are designed for slightly higher bass, which usually starts at a minimum of 50Hz.
This helps you get clear vocal, instrumental sounds like guitar, piano, drum, to reproduce super quality sounds, which you are looking for.
Now, this is another debate, what type of music do you listen to, what is your purpose of listening Whether you are a gamer, or do you want to be an audiophile.
Whether you have just upgraded your home, or you might be looking for a clear and immerse streaming experience while watching Netflix. If you can improve your home decor, a flagship and high-end subwoofer is meant for you.
But, if you don’t want to spend that high on such things, due to a short budget, or you just want some sort of medium to high level of quality in your listening at an affordable cost, this guide is worth your time.
With so many best-powered subwoofers on the market, it is always a challenging thing for those who don’t want that stuff.
For this reason, we have crafted this ultimate buying guide for the 10 best-powered subwoofers under 200 to pick out the correct one for your home.
So, let’s discover what you are looking for!
Types of subwoofers
Best powered subwoofers under 200 are of different types, which are listed below:
When you are thinking of choosing a subwoofer, you may see many named as ported ones. It means that they have an extra hole or port that gives excess to the air to pass through a tube. It helps to enhance the bass to another level.
The reason to install an extra hole is to let the excess air escape that contains bass frequencies that often don’t have an escape route. Such speakers can be referred to as bass-reflex speakers as they give a thick and rich bass sound.
A unit without a hole or a passive radiator is known as the sealed cabinet. In this model, the bass has only one way to get out of the cabinet. What might be lost in depth is repay in more well-rounded sound quality, with more minor peaks and booms?
Some subwoofers take the idea from the ported speaker a step ahead with a passive radiator design. The manufacturers have replaced the port with two passive radiators that would not be wired up to the amp. Their movement allows sound to escape the speaker to a port having a much greater range of frequencies.
This design allows for a great, vast experience of sound in relatively small speaker sets. They are great for people who want their cars to have an audio system of high bass frequencies. Subwoofers having passive radiators are very common in Bluetooth speakers.
By adding in a passive radiator, you get a decent low-frequency range with small woofers, making it practical to design small cabinets that result in significant and better sound.
Horn Loaded Subwoofer
Horn-loaded speakers sound louder than their counterparts. Their sound is also directional in higher frequency bands. Manufacturers do this by focusing on a sound that would have leaked and spread in different directions.
For this reason, these subwoofers can be the best choice for large venues where sound needs to go further and precisely. They seem to often found in small compact sizes despite the sophistication required within.
These subwoofers are more complex designed and give natural bass output within given frequency ranges. They also allow you to specify the levels of bass with great precision through the speakers.
Bandpass speakers have two separated chambers. These subwoofers can provide a professional type of equipment such as line array systems in large areas. You can also use them as your car audio systems, and more likely, it can be your long drive partner.
Front and Down Firing Subwoofers
Front and down-firing refer to the placing of internal speakers in the subwoofer unit. Front-firing has the speaker pointing forward, and the sound radiates to the front and the sides of the team.
Whereas the downward-facing points the sound towards the front and the ground. These subwoofers are put on stands or even placed on the shelves.
1: Polk Audio PSW10 – Best 10″ Powered Subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
A beautiful subwoofer from the house of Polk Audio is on the top of our list of best powered subwoofers under 200. There are so many reasons people are buying this guy again and again. This is now the #1 best-seller, which has got thousands of positive feedback on Amazon alone.
PSW10 stands for a 10-inches Powered Subwoofer. This speaker is pretty big and heavy though, that takes some effort while unboxing this big thing from its box. Now, revealing this beauty, this is going to become your real audio setup, that will make you happy.
This is a wooden design, that has a black velvet grill on its front that Polk Audio calls it a titanium design. You will see a silver box inside it, that consists of a 10-inches driver, which is insulated by a rubber on its side to ensure its distortion-free sound.
You have a master volume controller on its back, with a low pass frequency knob, that will help you get a pure bass at pretty low frequency. This is a self-powered subwoofer, which means you don’t need any external power source to amplify your speakers.
For its price, its best bangs for your bucks. It has a deeper and tiger bass, that matches perfectly for a home theatre system. The sound is crystal clear even on low volume, with no hums in the receiver at all. You will not hear any kind of noise.
This may take a while to start to be able to play, so it’s better to set them up in the auto phase, so it will automatically be turned on when you turn on your amp. For the action movies, strategic games, and bass-rich music, it sounds like reality, especially when there’s any blast, rocket firing in the movie scene.
A best fit for small to medium-sized home movie theaters, if you have already set up one. If the volume is set at about 80%, it makes you feel tight. You can do it up, but it’s better to be professional.
2: OSD Nero Tubebass-10 – best powered subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
Alright, so the successor to the Polk Audio’s magnificent body now belongs to a slightly underrated speaker brand, known as OSD Audio. Usually, audiophiles don’t choose them, due to some technical issues. However, OSD has now covered all those rumors, and problems, to deliver one of the best engaging boys to you.
Your first look will imagine it’s brilliant build quality. It’s a modern, simple, and interesting design that owns a bit of metallic type of light finish under its driver that seems pretty awesome for the price, and for your room’s lucrative interior.
The entire body of it comes in a wooden grey that is a bit heavier though. Still, it doesn’t take a lot of corner space in your room. On the back, you have got a whole lot of powered input systems that help in receiving power at output.
To play some playback movies, good sound at a fair cost, this guy is extremely worth your time and investment. This machine is much more on the side of movie things, but it also works as a good guy for studio and audio setups.
Its controls, adjustments, and the volume knob are smooth, that you can operate with little to no effort at all, unlike other cheap ones. The crossover is here for some extra frequencies whether it is low or high yet the baseless signals. Along this, an RCA port provides the connection with the receiver point.
It creates a good deep bass even less than 30Hz which is fairly low for subwoofers and some powered speakers. The higher-end is almost at 120 or 125 Hertz, which is going to present really impressive movies and musical experience.
It is a powerful subwoofer for large rooms, that has a peak power of up to 400Watts, and the RMS is almost 200Watts, that is half of its peak. It is a down-firing speaker with a lot of sound to offer at whatever treble you want.
The impedance could go up to 08 ohms at some soundtracks, which makes the signal transmission a bit disturbing, but it is a rear case. You will mostly get less impedance, which makes the signal transmission stuff effective, and safe as well.
3: Sony SACS9 – budget subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
On the front, this bad guy comes along with a typical but attractive and lightweight grill, which is removable and easy to take it on and off. This is a full black subwoofer, that offers a modern look to your holy setup.
You will see a simple and shiny thing under this removable grill. It looks like some modern systems, often found at clubs. This has got a 10-inches subwoofer, that is surrounded by a piano black removable case.
The driver is using a soft velvet that ensures the bass unblocking on a heavy sound inside a soundtrack. A deep rubber is protecting the sides to make it free of distortion out of the box. It has also got an open ventilated back, to let the system cool down side by side.
Sony has put a durable engineering team, to make it long-lasting, that is reflectable from its strong foundation, but it is pretty heavy at the same time, which seems hefty while picking this giant up.
Sony is trying to dominate with its products in this price category which is a pretty good thing for you as a consumer. It is somehow successfully done by far with this subwoofer under $200. Most of the time, you will be getting some good vocal sounds.
The subwoofer has a bass reflex system inside its massive driver. It sounds very natural due to its structure. This subwoofer is using a 230W of peak power, which makes it some loud in your home theatre.
This is an active single piece subwoofer, which you can also use to power other subwoofers, as well as some speakers with high frequencies by using the IN and Out connections. Bass reproduction is optimal here, you might not feel any bumps or distortion in sound.
SACS9 is not an initial low-frequency subwoofer, which sounds better on low-frequency soundtracks, but for the price, you can still use it for your home theatre systems with no worries at all. You might be able to bring it lower with a receiver or an amplifier, but this is not an official feature from Sony.
4: Acoustic Audio PSW – 15 inch subwoofers for home
Design and Build Quality
A massive and heavy subwoofer, that feels like a heavyweight championship, if you don’t like these heavy things to pick. It is another powerful subwoofer which is brought to you by Acoustics Audio, a real competitor to Sony’s one.
They have put a whole series in their single product in terms of sizes, which is a good thing as per your needs. If you are an audiophile, who wants to play music in front of your neighbour, the 15-inches guy is more than enough.
They are super cheap in bucks, but worthy for design, build quality, and performance. It has got a complete wooden structure that makes it durable and heavy. The woody polished texture gives an extraordinary look to this.
It doesn’t come with any removable grill, that you were supposed to because this is not a front-firing subwoofer. This down-firing subwoofer is a part of the audiophile series, which you can also choose for your home theatre set.
This is a 15-inch subwoofer, with its driver being down that is not that sort of woolen/silky but a hard plastic one, so in case if its feet got damaged accidentally, you won’t need to worry about its driver condition. For the size, it is not that big, but again weight is.
This thing excels in delivering a deep bass which is slightly on low-end frequency sides as compared to Sony’s SACS-9. But, the bass is not that punchy sort, that you will be proud of at this price.
For the price, sound performance in bass, vocals, instrumental music, it is worth purchasing, but it lacks a little bit in terms of super detailed bass inside a big room with its 15-inches. It doesn’t sound more than a 12-inch driven subwoofer.
The bass is deep though, that keeps continuing most of the time for movies and soundtracks. Crispy sound is also at the middle-end as compared to other subwoofers on the list.
The bass frequency is slightly lower than some others, it can provide a range of 20Hz to 150Hz. It also used to be a crossover, you can use it to power other speakers if you want to do one.
I can’t openly recommend this guy for a long time inside your home theatre. But, if you want something urgent or for a short time, this guy is only worth buying in that case or you have decided to upgrade your subwoofer within the next couple of months.
5: Fluance DB10 – Low Frequency Powered Subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
To be honest, Fluance did not do a really good job, but for the price, you may have to compromise a little bit on some things, but still build quality is one of your main concerns, then stop scrolling right here, get back to Polk Audio PSW at the very first spot and check that out on Amazon.
But, if you are okay to compromise a bit, let’s keep going on. The design is way simple, just like its build quality with some cavity sounds in some areas, but it can look good in your contemporary home theatre. Some controls are cheap in quality, but this might be a specific unit issue that I had got.
The driver is again on the front sides (this is the front-firing subwoofer), completely using plastic or velvety type of material inside the drum or what we call it a driver cone. But it doesn’t look like a cheap one. The feet are something cool in terms of material and its durability.
The things get interesting here, in terms of its sound quality that would blow your mind while first playing. The bass is somehow detailed here, that never feels like a badass thing to listen to.
Sound level is decent in terms of both low level and at a high level, but controlling the knob is a bit tricky which requires patience and practice with time, if you are familiar with only step controller knobs with numbers, that we had in Polk’s case.
You can connect with power external speakers and some other subwoofers if you are not in your home theatre. The subwoofer overall sounds pretty good, there’s nothing wrong with its sound quality and range that is what you want at the price.
This works better with some of the best 7.1 home theatre systems that we had discussed.
6: S 808 SUB – small powered subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
A new subwoofer by a new brand named Jamo. A simple to use, install, and keepable subwoofer with a unique design. This is fully made up of wooden stuff known as MDF shortly, which also makes it durable, but there is still room for improvement in a couple of things.
It is a vertical standup subwoofer, that has a slightly good length and less width, unlike other cuboid boxes, which sometimes takes more space. The front is silky grey that gives a modern look to the whole thing.
This gorgeous grill is removable, and you will be seeing an eccentric driver that has a diameter of 8-inches, which seems to be attractive, but not that durable as it was supposed to be. The rubber pads are visible and do their job completely fine.
The subwoofer uses a 90degrees power adapter, that is some old now, but still justify the subwoofer price. It is one of the best entry-level subwoofers for some low budget audiophiles and low to medium-size home theatres with 3-4family members at most.
It sounds pretty awesome for the price in terms of bass, vocals, and instrumental songs especially at guitars and bass drums. The sound volume is not that loud, but you can use an amplifier to make it louder.
You have got auto On and Off phases in it, with 180-degree soundstages, that works pretty fine for it. The low pass frequency is also justifying your needs for deep bass. This will give the lowest frequency of 35Hz to 120Hz.
7: Monoprice Ssw – good cheap subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
SSW particularly represents a Slim subwoofer, which is suspected to be known. This is the name of their lineup, where this specific subwoofer belongs to. It is a very smart and slim body, that is meant to hide away, so you can put this down to the sofa, bed, or any other thing with low heights and turn it on right down there.
You can connect up to 03 subwoofers. This is an 08-inch subwoofer with 100W power that has a frequency response rate of 30Hz to 150Hz, which is interesting. It is a down-firing subwoofer that has really good feet.
It has almost everything that you may need. On the front (downside), you have got a 12-inches driver. You can also use it to mount on a wall that comes with a mounting bracket out of the box.
There’s a full panel, next to its heat sink, that consists of speaker connections, line links to connect other speakers. Both the volume and gain is at an optimistic location, so you will never find it hard to reach out.
You just need to have a receiver with a single subwoofer cable, to make it start work. Other connectivity options are still available. The subwoofer does play pretty good along with a decent bass, but the bass is not that super cool.
This still works with your home theatre, but don’t expect to perform well as an audiophile. Though the bass is not that responsive, at the start of a track on your movie, it is still worth listening to because it delivers slightly better vocals and instrumental things.
The sound is loud to play in a 12*9 feet theatre, but you will get some distortion in bass at some rocket launcher sound effects in your movies. For better bass, you should try putting it down to a chair, so this might reproduce some quality in bass.
8: Monoprice 60-Watt – 8 inch budget powered subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
Again we have got a heavy thing that takes some effort in unboxing and installation. This is the typical construction, with a lot of heavy foundation, that makes the overall thing pretty heavy but durable at the same time.
Heading straight toward design. Monoprice is following the same design language that we have already seen. The grill is removable again, that is covering the front face of this vertical subwoofer.
The whole speaker is using a matt black woody color, which adds some beauty to your room, however, quality is a little bit on average type at woofer especially. But again, it does not look like something crappy.
This could be your backup subwoofer, if your previous subwoofer is at its end, or you may have planned to upgrade your system next month. You can get this one, to override for the time. The volume is loud and sharp, but it sounds a little bit distorted.
You will be using an amplifier or a receiver in the back of it, to put the wires straight in here from your speakers. Next to it, you have got a volume control knob, along with a gain knob, that works pretty smoothly and easy. However, adjusting the volume at the right point could be challenging.
It also has a fuse, so if you exceed the power, it will pop the fuse, but will not let your drivers get damage if something goes wrong. Moreover, the subwoofer also has an auto on and half, so you will be just turning your receiver for quick play.
The frequency response rate varies from 50Hz to 150Hz, but it can’t fit to some types of music specifically. It is using a 120-150W of peak power that breaks into a 60W of RMS for this 8-inches subwoofer.
9: Solutions SUB8SM – good affordable subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
It has got the same design as we had in the case of MonoPrice. The design language is very practical in use, that doesn’t suck in any case, if you are not an audiophile type of guy.
The color that we get is Mahogany wood, which is pretty awesome and works like a charm in some standard rooms. The build quality is again durable, where you will never find any quality issue.
You can use it both as a front-firing and a down-firing subwoofer because it is mountable on the wall, peaceable at tables and down the bed. The hand feel is also pretty remotely designed and the overall weight is not that huge.
The down-firing woofer gives an edge in loudness over some low-end subwoofers, due to its construction. The controls are pretty the same as we had in its twin cousin, but you have some more space to connect external speakers.
It delivers slightly better and deep bass as compared to Monoprice, but it could be better for the price. The vocals here again are deep but sounds terrible on rock soundtracks. Distortion is no more issue with this guy.
The frequency response rate is nominal (35Hz to 150Hz), but you have got some more sensitivity in the case of crossover. It uses a power of 250W as a peak, that uses RCA inputs.
10: Rockville Rock Shaker – 10 INCHES SUBWOOFER
Lasting our list of Best Powered Subwoofers under $200, we have only subwoofers from Rockville. This one is standing right at the border of your budget’s highest limit, but it is absolutely worth buying, and listening in the end. However, other variants of it are slightly inexpensive than this, but it stands out in performance.
Rockville launched this model last year in 2020, and it has flooded the market with its extensive performance and deliverance. At the moment, this boy is ranking as the 32nd best Home Audio Subwoofers out there at Amazon.
Design and Build Quality
This is the slightly heavy subwoofer, that weighs around 25 pounds out of the box. Rockville features a simple rock design, that takes a bit more space as they are rear-firing subwoofers.
The grill is again removable, which is nicely designed, perfectly installed, and placed, and has a great touch of smoothness on its entire face. Its color is again grey sort of black, that feels like a charm in dark, and modern interiors.
Under the grill, you have got an immense 10-inches woofer, whose cone is made up of rubber and the color is again the body match out of the box. It has some rubber insulation around it, to ensure an isolation and distortion-free sound.
The rear side is the simplest, which makes it useful, and listener-friendly who doesn’t care a lot about the connections. Both the gain and volume switches are responsive and using them is not a big deal again.
This is an active subwoofer with a great peak power of 600 Watts, which makes it easy to hear, and loud for everyone out there in the room. The vocals that you got here are relatively sharp and do not sound muddy, or flush on any point again.
It holds a built-in crossover point, to make the listening pretty smooth, and safe at the same time. Though it works for both music and movies, the best is to use it with movies in your theatre due to its lucrative soundstage. It still gives a detailed, deep bass, but it is likely to deliver some distortion as well.
With these boys, you will surely feel confident and are likely to enjoy every moment of your life in front of your home theatre. This subwoofer supports a whole lot of input connections, that will take a lot of your time while discussing.
Overall, the bass, clarity, and others are enough at mixup to music. The sounds are still very pleasant. And, the bass is also tight, or you should say it a bit deep. Yes, it truly satisfies your ears out of the box.
11: BIC America F12 – Best 12 Powered Subwoofer
Design and Build Quality
Usually, people don’t use BIC systems, due to cheap build quality and other technical issues especially some upper-middle-class audiophiles who always hold the best home theatre system with a dedicated budget in their pocket for their musical stuff.
Your first look will define its build quality and the modern and interesting design that owns a chrome or aluminum type of light finish on its driver that gives it a distinct look in a simple but modern type of room.
The whole body comes in a wooden black that is quite heavy though which requires a lot more corner space if your room is not that finished. On the back, you have got powered input systems that help your receiver in power output.
If you want to play some playback movies, good sound at a fair cost, this is extremely worth your time and lookup. This subwoofer is more on the side of movie specific things, but it also works as a good guy for gaming and audio setups.
The volume knob is so smooth, that you can operate with your little finger, which is using ascending digits around it. Crossover is also here for sub to sub for some extra frequencies either low or high baseless signals. An RCA port is given next to it, that you will be using in connection with the receiver.
It creates a good deep bass even less than 30Hz which is fairly low for subwoofers and some powered speakers. This is going to impress in your movies and musical experience.
It is a powerful subwoofer for large rooms, that has a peak power of 450-475W and RMS that is half of it. A front-firing speaker with a lot of bass to offer at any level of volume.
The frequency could go down to 20Hz in some soundtracks, which becomes unhearable on this thing, but sound gets more impressive at this level of frequency.
12: Klipsch Reference R-10SW – Under budget 10 inch Subwoofer
Lasting our list of Best Powered Subwoofers under $200, we have only subwoofers from Klipsch. It is slightly exceeding the $200 budget, but worth buying. The budget criteria were our main concern in this guide and that’s why we had to avoid the Klipsch brand only in terms of Pricing.
Design and Build Quality
This is using the same simple rock and box design, which usually takes more space as compared to a down-firing subwoofer. The grill is removable, which is nicely designed and has a great touch of smoothness on it. Color is again black, that feels like a dark and deep blue from the sides.
Below the grill, you have a 10-inches woofer, whose cone is made up of rubber and the color is something peachy. It has some rubber insulation around it, that ensures its isolation and distortion-free sound.
The rear side is not that detailed, which makes it non-audiophile friendly who doesn’t care about connections. Both the gain and volume switches are responsive and using them is pretty easy due to proper backstage labelings.
For the price, I would say it does a really good job. It is an active subwoofer with 300W of peak power, which makes it easy to hear for everyone out there in the theatre room. The vocals that you got here are relatively sharp and does not sound terrible on almost any point.
It does support crossover and distortion-free sound, so you can imagine a clear listening at the spot. Although it works for both music and movies, I would recommend you to use it with movies in your theatre due to its medium soundstage. Otherwise, you will be missing a deep and loud sound without any distortion.
Overall bass reproduction with mixup to instrumentals music sounds very pleasant. The bass is pretty tight and a bit deep, not that much, but it is more than enough to satisfy your ears along with your family.
Best powered subwoofer – FAQ’s
What kind of subwoofer should a person opt for?
Always make sure to choose a subwoofer that has a high sensitivity rating. The sensitivity of the sub decides the amount of power that is consumed to output the required sound. While enclosure and control also play a vital role in getting the output sound, then you should go for the bigger-sized subwoofers.
Moreover, the safest bet is to go for the large sub with a lot of power. It is better to run a big sub at ‘4’ than a small one at ’10’. To get the best sound results, multiple subs in different locations in your room almost every time sounds better and realistic than a single subwoofer.
Can a sub be used without an amp?
Subwoofers can help to boost up the bass frequency, which results in a deep and thumping sound. Most times, they are paired up with an amplifier to enhance the sound.
If a person does not have enough funds to buy both the amp and the sub, he can still hook up a subwoofer without installing an amp. It would only require a little know-how.
Are 10 or 12 subs better?
The difference between 10 and 12 sub is that 12 subs can physically circulate more air than the ten subwoofers. What it means is that it can go louder provided the exact wattage and minor parameters. But there is usually a compensation in the sound quality when choosing between the both.
Generally speaking, when given adequate power, the two ten subs will sound cleaner and more demanding punch because of their cone surface area as it yields more sound pressure. The single 12 subs, however, sound deeper.
Are two subs louder than 1?
The answer to this question is typical; yes, as two subs will sound louder than one sub. Adding multiple subwoofers in your room will yield remarkably better, smoother, and more audible bass responses across a wide listening area due to modal averaging in almost all circumstances.
Does the size of the subwoofer matter?
When it comes to subwoofers, yes, the size matters greatly. If you have a couple of 8” drivers in a box which you are saying is a subwoofer, then you will get disappointed for sure. It is because you won’t get the results you want. Big is better as long as you don’t want it to get too high frequencies.
Does a giant box make subs louder?
Too large a box allows the driver to increase its mechanical limitations. Apart from this, if you believe that the sub will sound louder and better, it is not wise to do so. Buy a giant sub always. A bigger box makes it louder only at a note that is above the tuning frequency.
How to Setup Subwoofer in Home Theater
The Bottom Line: Best budget powered subwoofer
These budget powered subwoofers could be your true companions in your music journey. If you have a low budget to spend on subwoofers type of things to level up your audio systems, these subwoofers are a great step to start. Later you can keep upgrading your system by the time and your needs.
To start, don’t spend thousands of bucks on expensive devices, which you don’t know how to use properly. This way you can start building your experience, which is going to help you in your next setups.
Give these products a thorough look and ask in comments what do you want more.