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How Much Power Is Needed to Get Good Bass from a Subwoofer?

Learn how much power it takes to get good bass from a subwoofer in this Howcast car stereo video with expert Movin' On.


Hi my name is Movin On, and I've been working in the field of car audio and mobile electronics for 8 over years. I've installed everything from navigation systems to full car stereo systems, remote starters, alarms, and beyond. To learn more, visit our web site at

Often times we get asked how much power you need to get decent bass from your subwoofer, and the answer is, depends on the subwoofer and depends on how many subwoofers. A good place to start is to look at the specifications of the subwoofer that you plan on powering. An easy way to check is to check the RMS rating of the subwoofer that you plan on powering. If the RMS of the subwoofer is 300 watts, it means that that subwoofer can take 300 watts continuously. In order to find an amplifier that's gonna power the subwoofer properly, the best thing to do is to find an amplifier that's either 300 watts RMS or higher. If you're using a 500 watt amplifier to power a 300 watt subwoofer, you're gonna have plenty of headroom and the amplifier is not going to have to work very hard to push that subwoofer. But you have to be careful not to turn the gain on an amplifier too high because you could blow the subwoofer. If you under-power your subwoofer, that is using an amplifier that's not as powerful as the RMS of the subwoofer, the amplifier may overheat, or play distorted. Typically, we recommend going with an amplifier that's the same RMS rating as your subwoofer or higher. The power of amplifiers is also rated in RMS and really what it stands for is the amount of power that that amplifier can produce continuously without overheating. If you go with a more powerful amplifier than the subwoofer, you're gonna have plenty of head room, you're gonna have a happy amplifier that's running cool.

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