This is my review of the best shallow mount subwoofers in 2021.
There’s nothing more satisfying than jamming out to your favorite tunes while on a long drive. However, many car audio systems simply don’t have the audio capacity to project sound with even or properly balanced levels.
Unfortunately, for us bass heads, we often miss out on the low-end sound we crave while playing music in the car.
Luckily, there are such things as shallow mount subwoofers. These compact devices can be rigged to your car’s audio system so that you can enjoy true bass while driving.
Below, we’ll go over exactly what you should look for in a shallow mount subwoofer so that you can find the right pick for you. We’ll also compare 5 of our favorite options below.
Things To Look For In A Shallow Mount Subwoofer
If you’re ready to pick up one of these speaker-enhancing subwoofers, there are a couple of factors you’ll definitely want to take into consideration. Be sure to evaluate your subwoofer of choice carefully by the following factors.
You’ll want to make sure that your subwoofer can handle your sound output. While peak power and RMS are both important factors, the RMS rating is the most important. This rating will tell you how much power the subwoofer can take in without malfunctioning.
Make sure that you speak with your car technician or audio expert beforehand to make sure you’re getting the right equipment for the job.
If you truly want heart-throbbing bass, you’re going to need to find a subwoofer with high sensitivity levels. This way, your subwoofer is much more reactive and ready to perform/emphasize those feel-good low notes regardless of what genre of music you’re playing.
However, there is also the option to buy an amplifier on top of the subwoofer— In this case, you can get by with a low sensitivity subwoofer.
This factor tells you how easy or hard it is for the subwoofer to convert the incoming signal into sound output. Therefore, the lower the impedance, the better the sound quality is going to be. You’ll notice less distortion and a stronger connection overall.
When picking a subwoofer, you can go for a single coil or multiple coils. Multiple coils give you the flexibility to beef up your amplifier set up, producing a louder sound without having to invest in another subwoofer.
Don’t forget to consider where you want to install your subwoofer— Most people choose between mounting subwoofers underneath the seat or in the trunk. Keep in mind that the size of your subwoofer will affect this factor as well.
Shallow mount subwoofers are already made for fitting compactly in your car or space. However, there is still a good deal of variation when it comes to picking out the size of your shallow mount subwoofer. In general, there are 4 main sizes:
- 8-inch: These small subwoofers fit in all cars with ease and are great for anyone who likes a bit more emphasis on low-end parts, but not overwhelmingly so. While they are compact, they’re definitely not for bass lovers who truly want to feel the pounding pulse in their chest while jamming out to their favorite songs.
- 10-inch: These well-rounded subwoofers still fit in most cars with no trouble and provide a more enhanced bass experience than the smaller 8-inch model.
- 12-inch: If you want to start feeling the bass not only in your ears, but also your head and chest, you’ll want to settle for 12-inch models and above to be safe.
- 15-inch: These subwoofers are designed for large cargo trucks or anyone who wants an overwhelming amount of bass while cruising around town.
Best Shallow Mount Subwoofer 2021 Guide
Without further ado, here are some of our favorite subwoofer options currently available on the market.
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Best 8-inch Shallow Mount Subwoofer
Though this subwoofer is tiny, it is quite mighty. The 8-inch size makes the sub well-suited for compact spaces, though you won’t have to worry about losing valuable sound quality.
Most motorists had no trouble installing this subwoofer behind seats.
Notably, this subwoofer also has dual-voice coils so you can easily upgrade your sound without having to run out and purchase additional hardware.
It can handle both vented and sealed enclosures, adding to this subwoofer’s level of versatility.
The subwoofer has a great, sleek appearance that’s bound to fit in any car with ease.
It produces a clean, balanced sound that just might rattle your windows from time to time when installed and configured correctly.
The small sub is well-suited for a variety of genres of music, so it’s great for music lovers of any kind.
Many users found this subwoofer perfect for upgrading smaller stock subwoofers that come with the car. You’ll have no trouble installing this system with its simple, intuitive design.
The compact subwoofer can handle up to 300 watts of power with a 150 Watt RMS.
Plus, with a spider vented design, this subwoofer is designed to keep out dust making it a perfect piece for long term, regular use. This will also ensure that your subwoofer stays adequately cool while in use.
You’re also given a full 1-year warranty with your purchase, so in the event that this isn’t the subwoofer for you, you can still get your money back.
While the bass might feel a little light on this subwoofer, that’s to be expected with a speaker of this stature.
Overall, this subwoofer offers impressive sound quality in a compact, flexible design.
- Easily mounted
- Fights against distortion
- Compact size
- Might not be the best for heart-throbbing bass lovers
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Pioneer is long regarded as one of the most trusted brands in the business. That being said, this 10-inch subwoofer is no exception.
The 1-pound woofer is super easy to install and has an oversized cone structure to produce sound that exceeds your expectations.
Keep in mind that this subwoofer is a bit larger than most— It likely won’t fit a standard 10-inch subwoofer mount so you may have to invest in custom casing.
Also, if the embedded volume output isn’t up to your standards, you’ll need to add an amplifier or another subwoofer since these have a single-coil design.
This subwoofer provides you with plenty of sound without setting off the car alarm. You’ll be able to enjoy some of that heart-throbbing bass you crave with this model without a doubt.
This sub hits hard while still remaining compact.
With a 1200 Watt capacity, you can crank these babies to get the sound you crave. They have an RMS rating of 100-300 Watts, though many users feel that these speaker exceeds its description in terms of power capacity.
The speakers have an impressive frequency range of 20-125 Hz, so you’ll be able to fully enjoy your music, regardless of its genre. Overall, this is an excellent compact subwoofer for small to medium-sized cars.
Though it won’t send the outside of your car rattling, it certainly packs a notable punch to your existing sound system.
- Compact size
- Thumping bass without the bulk
- Single coil speaker needs additional equipment to boost sound output
Kenwood Excelon KFC-XW1200F: Check Price On Amazon
Best 12-inch Shallow Mount Subwoofer
This subwoofer may look simple, but it is strong and powerful. The 12-inch subwoofer has carbon-fiber construction and a whopping 91 dB sensitivity level.
The shallow mount subwoofer comes with everything you need to get the speaker up and running no time at all, including the mounting screws.
While they do have a single-coil design, they produce an impressive amount of sound output so you won’t necessarily need to buy another subwoofer.
With a max sound output power of 1400 watts, you’ll most likely be able to produce all the sound you could want with just one of these flexible speakers. The subs also have an impedance rating of about 4 ohms.
With a cast aluminum basket, these subs are super sturdy and built to last. Regardless, they come with an included 2-year warranty, so you can be sure that they’re a good fit for your needs.
You’ll want that these subwoofers certainly pack a bunch to any and all music, even if you’re in a large vehicle like a truck.
You’ll get heart-pounding bass with this subwoofer, while still getting a considerably clear amount of mid and high range frequencies.
While there is an obvious emphasis on the low-end, these subwoofers are super well-balanced for their class. Despite having such a high sound output, this sub won’t blow out your sound with intense distortion.
It’s said that these subwoofers get better with age. When paired with a powerful amplifier, these speakers are simply unstoppable.
Overall, this is an amazing subwoofer for the price. While you might have to buy more than one unit to satiate your bass needs, they give you a balanced sound experience with every use.
- Easy to install
- Excellent sound quality
Kicker 43CWRT102: Check Price On Amazon
Best 10-inch Shallow Mount Subwoofer
This 10-inch shallow mount subwoofer provides an impressive amount of sound at an affordable price.
It has sound impedance of 2 ohms and utilizes high-temperature voice coils to handle sound output in a variety of climatic conditions.
This subwoofer can put out a maximum of 250 Watts of sound output. With an injected molded propylene core, these sturdy subs are built to last.
The subs can easily be installed under seats but beware— You’ll definitely experience some hard-hitting vibrations with these powerful speakers.
The subwoofers are super easy to set up and are true to size when it comes to picking out a proper enclosure. Notably, these Kickers are pretty thin so they’re bound to fit in a variety of cars with ease.
The all-weather subwoofer is water-resistant as well, so you can still bump your tunes while off-roading.
Plus, with dual-voice coils, you can truly add power to these subwoofers without having to invest in unnecessary extra equipment.
These subwoofers have a sensitivity rating of about 84 decibels. You’ll love using these speakers to jam out to your favorite songs, regardless of the genre.
These subwoofers perform in a vented or sealed enclosure with ease. They also have a super sturdy design that you can depend on for years to come.
With 400 Watts of RMS power handling, you can crank these subwoofers to get the sound you need. Overall, it’s hard to find a subwoofer that performs quite as well as these ones within its price bracket.
- Thumping, powerful bass
- Sensitive sound output
- Water-resistant design
- User needs to be mindful of power capacities and compatibility to prevent a blow-out
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Don’t be fooled by this subwoofer’s notably low price— It still packs a punch and intense bass enhancement that far exceeds its asking price.
That being said, you’ll want to be a super bass head to take on one of these monsters: These subs are bound to rattle your windows, seat, and even the exterior of your car when used.
You can choose between 2 or 4-ohm impedance so that you can get the most out of your subwoofer setup. Plus, with a sensitivity of 92 decibels, these speakers will make sure that your favorite low-end frequencies are well pronounced.
These subwoofers have a frequency response range of 27-175 Hz making them well suited for listening to a variety of different music types.
The polypropylene cone has a rubber surround coating effectively amplifying your sound while keeping dust and debris out.
Plus, this subwoofer comes with a 1-year warranty for valuable peace of mind. With a maximum output power of 1000 Watts, this speaker is designed to fill larger cars and spaces with earth-shattering sound.
While you’ll get a great deal of bass with these subwoofers, they are still able to produce clean mid and high range frequencies with ease.
The shallow mount sub can fit perfectly in a variety of housings, though it’s true to its described size
You’ll want to check your car carefully beforehand although— This 12-inch woofer can be exceedingly large for smaller vehicles.
Overall, this shallow subwoofer provides a surprisingly crisp sound while still giving you bass sound that you can truly feel.
- Low-profile design
- Super sensitive
- Might have some low-grade distortion
CONCLUSION: Best Shallow Mount Subwoofer
It can be difficult to pick the best shallow mount subwoofer from this list— All are conveniently compact, produce great sound output, and are ready to enhance your listening experience.
I’ll have to go with the Kenwood Excelon KFC-XW1200F as my top subwoofer. I lean towards this subwoofer since it seems well adjusted for most vehicles.
Whether you have a sedan or an extra-large truck, this subwoofer is compact yet powerful enough to give you the sound experience you’ve always wanted.
At the same time, I don’t recommend this subwoofer for any audiophile that frequently likes to update their system. Since this subwoofer has a single-coil design, you can only add sound power by buying an additional unit.
As you can see, finding the best shallow mount subwoofer depends heavily on your individual needs. You’re bound to find the perfect sub for your car with any of these 5 great picks.
Enjoy jamming out to hard-hitting bass while on the go.