No car ride is complete without the right music. Whether you’re enjoying a road trip with your friends or braving the traffic on your daily commute, turning on some music can change the whole experience. Cranking the bass might even make you feel more powerful when you get to work.
However, car speaker systems can only do so much. If you’ve ever turned up your favorite song and become disappointed with the sound quality, you need a subwoofer.
Subwoofers are a must-have to give your music selection some justice, as they limit the distortion and bring a whole new experience to the bass.
Before you say that the typical 12-inch or 15-inch subwoofers are too big for your vehicle, consider a 10-inch subwoofer. Even though they are smaller, they can still give you incredible power and a booming bass. Plus, they may fit better in your vehicle or easily travel in your luggage!
You’ll find numerous 10 inch subwoofers available on the market, but we’ve done the heavy lifting for you and prepared a list of the top eight.
Whether you’re looking for a budget option or a 10 inch sub that you can easily install, the following list has it all. Plus, we’ve included a few tips on what to look for and how to enclose your sub for optimal quality.
Get ready to take your jams to the next level with a 10 inch subwoofer.
The Best 10″ Subwoofers in 2022
Below you will find a list of the best 10-inch subwoofers, each with its unique characteristics. Let’s get started!
1. Rockford Fosgate P300-10 – Best Sealed Enclosure Subwoofer
This device is the top of the cream for the best 10-inch subwoofers in the market that offers more outstanding bass than what you expect.
Rockford Fosgate P300-10 is an excellent subwoofer that will force you to lower the volume nearing estate or restricted areas.
Since this subwoofer comes with everything included in the packaging box, it saves you more money than buying the wiring kit. The subwoofer has an amp rated at 300W RMS.
Besides, the subwoofer comes with all details assembled; hence you will only plug it in and enjoy your fantastic music as you traverse different parts of the city.
The sound produced by this subwoofer is impressive. Compared to its size, the sound has no distortion and is well-priced so that you don’t dig deep in your pocket.
2. Rockville RWS10CA – Best Amplified Powered Car Subwoofer Enclosure
Currently, the Rockville RWS10CA subwoofer is the talk of the town. The users cannot stop talking about it. Rockville has a 10-inch profile with RMS (root mean squared) rated at 300 watts of power – it’s slim but packs a punch.
The subwoofer presents quality, well-balanced and soft bass on low volume. However, notwithstanding the top-quality sound that the subwoofer delivers, the bass disappears as you move a few blocks down – it’s just not that loud. The engineering within the Rockville unit is balanced; hence it hits perfectly on lows, thumping the passenger seats.
It also comes with an in-built amp, streamlining installation and ensuring you have an optimized system when it comes to power.
The subwoofer comes in a complete package, guaranteeing easy and fast installation for first-time users. Compared to its peers, Rockville delivers quality bass and perfect sound on lows, allowing you to enjoy good music at a much more affordable price.
The subwoofer is slim designed; hence will save you a lot of boot space, especially for family vehicles.
3. Alpine SWT-S10 – The Most Compatible for Many Vehicles
Alpine subwoofers stand out for their uniqueness and design. This 10-inch subwoofer has an RMS rating of 250 watts. Initially, Alpine was designed for trucks but is gaining popularity with smaller cars. The engineers designed the system for easy installation among new users, and notably, the system can also be easily detached to create room for your shopping or luggage.
The system delivers deep bass that is not overpowering compared to its peers, Alpine subwoofers top many lists of the best subwoofers due to top-notch sound that is well balanced.
The plug-and-play makes it easy for the new buyers to install the Alpine subwoofer. In addition, you will not have to take your car to a wiring engineer to fit the new subwoofer since you can comfortably do it yourself.
The pricing of Alpine is affordable compared to the quality of the sound you get. It is the best option to get great bass without breaking the bank. According to research, the tube-like shape of Alpine gives it an upper edge over the conventional shallow mounts.
The subwoofer does not have grille protection; hence observe keenly while loading your boot space or you could damage the sub, but you can purchase an aftermarket grille separately at an additional cost.
4. Skar Audio SDR-10 D4 – Best Priced
While installing the Skar Audio SDR 10 inch subwoofer, be mindful of where you will be listening to it at. This subwoofer is the loudest and with quality bass sound compared to its peers. In addition, the system is beautifully designed and comfortably fits in most boot spaces.
The RMS is rated at 600 watts hence delivering enough power for punchy feeling, especially at the passenger seats. Nonetheless, prepare to get an additional 320 amperes alternator. The system further requires the installation of a capacitor to reduce overstraining the car battery, that’s how powerful it is!
Skar’s SDR-10 subwoofer is well priced to save you money. The system comes as a full package, and you will not require additional purchases before installation – that’s great for anyone shopping on a budget, or simply looking for an easy install to get the bass rolling.
Despite being a 10-inch, the subwoofer delivers quality sound than other 12-inch subwoofers, but perhaps because of that the system consumes a significant amount of power; hence, installing a capacitor ensures that the headlights do not flicker while driving at night.
5. Rockville RW10CA – Best 10″ For DIY Installation
This 10 inch subwoofer is a slim and low-profile sub, similar to Rockville’s 12-inch model. Because the entire enclosure is just 2.7-inches deep, this subwoofer and amp combo device will fit beneath your seat.
The RW10CA isn’t as powerful as other subwoofers or even other 10 inch subwoofers on the market. The maximum power output is 800 watts peak and 200 watts RMS.
Even with its low power, you’ll get the most out of this sub. The power rating is CEA-2006 compliant – meaning there’s third party testing that validates the RW10CA’s power rating, so not a single watt gets wasted when you turn it up. And the in-built MOSFET power supply has high efficiency.
The sealed enclosure saves space while producing a tight, pure bass ideal for EDM, rap, and hip hop. On the other hand, a sealed design tends to demand more power for high volumes, so you could be disappointed when you turn it up. However, Rockville has included several options, like a subsonic filter, and a low pass crossover filter, that allow you to tweak the sound.
For an in-depth look, check out our review!
6. Pioneer TS-SW2502S4 – Best Unenclosed Subwoofer
Pioneer offers a 10-inch subwoofer that is streamlined and powerful for your small vehicle. In addition, it has a robust build that guarantees you excellent audio quality.
Pioneer offers an RMS of 300 watts. The flexibility of the sub allows you to pair it with any mid-range amplifier that does not surpass 1,200 watts of power. The subwoofer boasts a wide range of frequencies starting from 20 Hz (hertz) to 200 Hz giving you a chance to enjoy a wide range of music without sound distortion.
The engineering offers a compact design that allows you to enjoy crystal clear sound despite low boot volume. In addition, the sleek design allows easy installation since no extra wires are required, as seen in complex subwoofers.
Moreover, the subwoofer has a MICA injection connected to the cone. These materials increase the durability of the subwoofer and allow it to handle more power and rumbling. The dual spider results in a clean and tight sound even on extended play.
One drawback that this sub has is the lack of an inbuilt amplifier. Hence, if you want deeper bass, you will have to purchase a separate amplifier as well as build an enclosure. That adds to the overall cost, but gives you greater control of the finished product.
7. Kicker 44DCWC102 – Best for Midsize Vehicles
Are you looking for a great subwoofer that will save you a fortune? Well, Kicker 44DCWC102 is a quality machine for your station wagon or midsize sport utility vehicle.
This 10-inch subwoofer is rated at 300-watts RMS, making you enjoy quality music as you travel to different parts of the country on weekends. In addition, it is the perfect equipment to rattle windows and disturb the community’s silence (not that we would condone that sort of thing).
It is spring-loaded with heavy MDF (medium-density fibreboard) construction. It also has a thick carpet and a custom port design that gives it extra protection. It is also tiny; hence it can fit in the trunk of a small vehicle.
The quality of the bass allows you to rattle and disturb the peace in the estate effortlessly. In addition, the subwoofer offers well-balanced mids and lows, increasing the richness of the sound produced.
The subwoofer is in a hard shell that ensures durability and allows the production of soft sound.
The subwoofer has no grilles in the packaging; hence, you must select from the limited aftermarket options available to protect your sub.
8. Skar Audio SDR-1X10D2 – Best Design and Attractive Appearance
This loaded subwoofer enclosure features one of the most potent SDR-10 D2 1,200-watt max power. These 10-inch subwoofers arrive pre-loaded and wired up in the custom single 10″ vented enclosure.
The enclosure has a one-of-a-kind kerf port design that allows for exceptional bass production and audio accuracy. In addition, the chamber has a superior-grade black carpet coating for a sleek design, and the Skar Audio logo is white, and you can see it on the top surface.
The subwoofer is pre-wired and put into the enclosure, making installation simple and painless. Inside the section, the twin 2-ohm subwoofers connect to set the ultimate impedance load to 1-ohm at the terminals.
Every subwoofer is unique, and it’s vital to make sure the subwoofer and enclosure are a perfect match when purchasing a loaded shell; otherwise, you’ll lose audio quality and output.
All of those issues are gone with this loaded subwoofer enclosure style, making it easier than ever to add strong premium bass to your vehicle.
What to Consider When Choosing the Best 10-Inch Subwoofer
When shopping for a 10-inch subwoofer, don’t just pick the first option you see. There are numerous factors to weigh, such as the installation process, power, and various performance features.
Before buying your new subwoofer, consider the following points.
Any 10-inch subwoofer’s quality is rated based on the power or quality of the bass that it delivers. So besides minding the size of a subwoofer, pay attention to the power to gauge the quality of sound and bass it produces.
All subwoofers feature two power ratings: RMS and peak power. RMS, or root mean squared, is a measure of the continuous power output the subwoofer can sustain, while peak power is the maximum power it can handle in a short burst.
For loudness, RMS power is all-important. When comparing two subwoofers, consider RMS power the better indicator of power.
Ease of Installation
Different 10-inch subwoofers require varying levels of knowledge to install them correctly. Modern of them have a plug-and-play design that reduces the cost of installing the system. However, other systems require configuration with alternator and capacitor, requiring a wiring engineer to install.
Powered subwoofers come with an in-built amplifier, further simplifying installation and ensuring your sub and amp are a match made in bass heaven.
The Size of the Subwoofer or the Space Available
Of course, 10-inch subwoofers are on the smaller end, so you are probably already considering the available boot space.
However, 10-inch subwoofers come in various types, so make sure the style works for you. Whether you want to travel with it or have limited boot space, make sure to compare measurements before investing in the product.
But for smaller vehicles, a 10-inch sub is often the best compromise on power and size. Consider one of the best shallow mount subwoofers if space is a premium.
You should consider the pricing of different subwoofers and juxtapose it with other factors like power and ease of installation to make an informed decision.
An excellent 10-inch subwoofer should not only be affordable but also contain quality sound. Beginners usually opt for entry-level subwoofers that are affordable but still deliver quality music.
What Performance Features Should You Check While Shopping for 10 Inch Subwoofers?
If you are looking for quality 10-inch subwoofers, ensure you assess the available options based on the performance characteristics.
- Impedance: Impedance, measured in ohms, refers to the ability of the electric circuit to resist the flow of current. Most 10-inch subwoofers are rated 2 ohms or 4 ohms. On rare occasions, you will find 2 and 8 ohms. However, the rating of an amplifier and the subwoofer must be independent for better performance.
- Single Voice Coil System: Conventionally, most 10-inch subwoofers have a single voice coil.
- Dual Voice Coil System: Subwoofers with a dual-voice-coil system use two voice coils. The coils have a separate connection mounted on a cylinder and channel to one core. Dual-voice-coil is a popular option among audiophiles with wiring flexibility.
- Cone Design: The presence of foam or rubber at the end of the cones allows the subwoofer to handle heavy power output.
- Amplifier Integration: This feature is critical in determining which subwoofer performs best. Subwoofers that come with inbuilt amplifiers are the best since they have all the recommended parts fixed together for easy installation and quality sound delivery.
- Sensitivity: Sensitivity in subwoofers refers to how loud a 10-inch subwoofer can reach regarding the provided power. High sensitivity means that a subwoofer can increase volume with relatively less power consumption. All subwoofers with 90dB and more have outstanding quality.
What Are the Benefits You Will Get for Using 10 inch Subwoofers?
The 10-inch subwoofers offer a variety of benefits, especially for their smaller size. Let’s explore some top benefits.
The conventional car stereo offers precise frequencies. However, the small size limits the production of low frequencies without distorting the sound.
The integration of 10-inch subwoofers allows you to enjoy both high frequency and listen to low frequencies without interfering with the quality of the sound produced. Most 10-inch subwoofers reproduce an average of 80 Hertz frequencies hence delivering a blend of low and high frequencies. Bass boost is found on all of the top rated deep bass subwoofers and lets you bump the volume of the lowest frequencies. Boom!
Enhance Performance of Higher Frequencies
As indicated above, 10-inch subwoofers play a critical role in producing quality music of different frequencies.
Just like other sizes, 10-inch subwoofers get power from the amplifier independently, allowing you to adjust the frequencies freely. As a result, the sub receives low notes from the amplifier while the tweeters and the woofer receive higher frequencies.
The 10-inch subwoofers deliver well-balanced, rich, and clear sound notes through the subs, tweeters, and woofers. Even distribution of frequencies results in balanced bass music that is deep and of top quality.
Many Installation Options
A subwoofer has a larger speaker compartment to enhance the resonance of the bass. The modification allows you to configure the size of the compartment to the size of space in your car.
In addition, generating non-directional sound makes subwoofers viable for all vehicles. You can also find various styles of 10-inch subwoofers, so you can find one that works best for your vehicle – even if you only have a small space available.
How Do You Configure the 10-Inch Subwoofer to Hit Harder?
Having a good subwoofer is one thing but setting it to produce its best sound is another. To get the best sound from your subwoofer and possible prolong its durability, ensure that you take good care of it through the following ways:
- First, ensure that it receives adequate and stable power. A steady power supply in your car allows the subwoofer to function without stopping unless necessary optimally.
- Secondly, if your subwoofer does not have an inbuilt amplifier, install a suitable amplifier that matches the RMS power of the subwoofer. That ensures an equal flow of energy and distribution of frequencies into the subwoofer, woofer, and tweeters.
- To experience the best performance from your subwoofer, install the subwoofer inside a bandpass box to enhance the resonance and production of low-frequency notes.
- Lastly, tune the amplifier to appropriate settings to balance and distribute the frequencies accordingly.
What Are the Available Enclosures for Your 10 Inch Subwoofer?
All subwoofers require a top rated enclosure to provide an optimized sound. The following are the common ways to improve the performance of your 10-inch subwoofer through enclosures.
For optimal production of sound, use a sealed enclosure for your 10-inch subwoofer. The sealed enclosure is free from air, thus creating a sealed and perfect condition for subwoofer performance.
The sound quality of a 10-inch subwoofer with a sealed enclosure has a tight bass and a crisp, lively sound.
However, this enclosure utilizes considerable power to produce a corresponding sound quality.
Vented aka Ported Enclosure
Unlike the previous option, this enclosure is not airtight. Instead, it has vents (ports) that facilitate airflow.
If you are looking for an enclosure for your 10-inch sub that preserves energy while delivering the best bass, then you might enjoy the ported enclosure.
Nonetheless, they require a bigger space to create adequate airflow in and around the sub that acts as a coolant for your subwoofer. It reduces the chances of overheating, which extends the system’s lifespan in the long run.
Currently, most people are opting for hybrid enclosures called bandpasses for their 10-inch subs. The popularity results from the system’s efficiency in terms of greater bass and space conservation.
In a bandpass enclosure, you mount the system in a semi-sealed chamber. The dual-chamber enclosure ensures that you enjoy quality music with low frequencies like reggae and rap.
Free-air enclosure means that the subwoofer has no enclosure whatsoever. Instead of installing an additional enclosure, the framework of the car serves as the enclosure. Therefore, the most appropriate place to install your 10-inch subwoofer in a free-air enclosure is the truck of your vehicle.
Keep in mind that free-air enclosure subwoofers are easy to install but serve poor sound quality due to undermined frequencies.
Subwoofer shopping is a critical process that can make or break your car rides. However, with the information provided above, you should be ready to make an informed decision!
As you consider which 10-inch subwoofer to purchase, remember that enclosures also play a critical role in the overall performance and production of quality sound. Bandpass enclosures are currently popular due to uniqueness and less space demand without compromise to the quality and level of performance.
If you are looking for a 10-inch subwoofer that releases a deep base to rattle and shake windows, consider the Rockford Fosgate 10″. This subwoofer is among the top-performing subwoofers and is relatively affordable.
Another great option is the Alpine SWT, since it works for many vehicle types, produces an enviable bass, and won’t break the bank.
No matter which one you choose from the list above, a 10-inch subwoofer can revolutionize your music and makes every drive, from your daily commutes to your summer road trips, much more enjoyable.