Best Compact Powered Subwoofer of 2021

If you don’t have a lot of room in your car for the music system, you should consider investing in the best compact powered subwoofer under the seat. These are compact subwoofers with a slim profile that allows them to be placed under a seat.

One of the best things about the under-seat car subwoofer is that it is very easy for almost anyone to install. Furthermore, by using the space under the seat as an enclosure, it produces a deeper and even more powerful bass, which makes up for its small size.

Even better, most under-seat woofers are powered, which means they come with built-in amplifiers for added user comfort.

In this review, we’ve selected some of the best under-seat car subwoofers on the market to give you some good recommendations.

Best Compact Subwoofers of 2021

Image Product Details   Price
best-compact-powered-subwoofer-1 Pioneer TS-SWX2502 * The shallow-mount subwoofer that comes preloaded in the TS-SWX2502 utilizes an oversized cone struc.
* ture that provides greater cone and gasket surface without changing its standard external dimension.
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best-compact-powered-subwoofer1 Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 * 8-inch subwoofer and 120W amplifier, housed together in a cast aluminum enclosure.
* The compact size measures just 13.5” L x 9” W x 3” D so it can be installed under or behind a seat in a truck, in a sedan’s trunk or in an SUV’s hatch.
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best-compact-powered-subwoofer2 Rockville RW10CA * Rockville RW10CA 800 Watt 10″ Slim Car Subwoofer.
* 800 Watts Peak / 200 Watts RMS. PWM MOSFET Power Supply.
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51ITrZNq-bL._AC_  Kicker 11HS8 * RMS Power: 150 Watts.
* Ultra-compact powered subwoofer system designed for tight locations
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91DaOklO96L._AC_SL1500_ Planet Audio P8UAW * Planet Audio P8UAW 8 inch 800-watt Amplified Subwoofer System.
* Dimension: 13 7/8 x 9 3/8 x 3 1/8
* 8-inch internal subwoofer
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1. Pioneer TS-SWX2502

Pioneer TS-SWX2502 is one of the best compact 10 ”surface mount subwoofers on the market. It has a particularly compact design, measuring 8.4 x 18.5 x 14.4 inches. As such, it can also fit in tight and tight spaces, such as under the seat of cars and trucks.

Despite being so small, it has an oversized 10 “cone made of molded resin injected with mica. This material is ideal for facilitating airflow, thus minimizing distortion and improving bass response. This subwoofer also has a dual spider design that can simultaneously stabilize the cone and support linear movement, which is crucial for pumping out high volumes of sound and bass.

This subwoofer comes with two metal L-brackets and eight mounting screws. You should use them to mount the subwoofer on your car, wall or anywhere you see fit. This is a shallow mount compact subwoofer so it can’t stand independently, you need to mount it somewhere. While this makes it even more compact, it also makes it a bit more difficult to install than most standalone compact subwoofers. It has a 6-inch mounting depth, so it won’t protrude too far from the wall.

Despite being a compact subwoofer, it has a powerful frequency range of 20Hz to 200Hz. You may experience a thud at the lower ends of that frequency range, but that’s natural. However, you should note that this subwoofer is passive and does not come with a built-in amplifier. As such, you will also have to buy a separate amp to power it.

  • Extremely compact in size.
  • Has a narrow 6” mount depth.
  • Can fit into tight spaces.
  • Low distortions.
  • Wide frequency range.
  • You need separate amplifiers.
  • There is some rumble and distortion in the lower frequency ends.
  • Cannot stand on its own and must be mounted.

2. Alpine Electronics PWE-S8-Best Compact Powered Subwoofer

At just 3 inches deep, the Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 is one of the most compact subwoofers on the market. Its overall dimensions are 13.4 x 9.1 x 2.8 inches and it weighs just 10 pounds. As such, it can be installed in the tightest and narrowest spaces. It can also be installed in subcompact cars, whether it is in trunks, passenger seats, or any other narrow place.

This compact subwoofer is made from a tough cast metal frame and has been designed to withstand considerable shock and abuse. It resembles a small tank in appearance and is as durable as it is weather resistant. Like the compact subwoofers mentioned above, the Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 is also a surface-mount subwoofer, so it can’t stand on its own. There are 4 mounting brackets available so you can use them to mount it to your car or any other electrical device.

Installation of this compact subwoofer takes less than an hour and the instructions in the manual are easy to follow. If you already have RCA connections in your electrical system, installation can be made even easier. The subwoofer is equipped with bass buttons so that you can also control the bass. If you combine two subwoofers in a series, you can also control both basses with a single knob.

In terms of safety features, this compact subwoofer comes with a 15 amp in-line fuse. However, the fuse can only protect the interior amplifier. If you want to protect the entire subwoofer, you will need to add an additional 20 amp fuse to the power cord.

Alpine Electronics PWE-S8 has a decent-sized 8 ”subwoofer. Its bass is impressive for its tiny size, but it is not overpowering and does not create any rumble. It has a frequency range of 35 Hz to 150 Hz. However, the bass begins to shake and distort at the extremes of the lower frequencies. It’s powerful enough for small, tight spaces like car interiors or small rooms, but not much else.

  • Extremely small and lightweight.
  • Can fit in extremely small spaces.
  • Extremely durable.
  • Comes with 4 mounting brackets.
  • Has inbuilt amplifiers.
  • Simple installation.
  • Not a freestanding subwoofer.
  • Limited frequency range.
  • Bass distorts in the lower ends of the frequency.
  • The inline 15amp fuse is only powerful enough to protect the inbuilt amplifier.
  • You’ll need additional RCA connectors for installation.

3. Rockville RW10CA

With a maximum output of 800 watts, the Rockville RW10CA 10-inch is as powerful as it is for these little powered subwoofers. And being the most powerful on our list, it also makes him our best overall.

The powered subwoofer uses high-level inputs to install a breeze and allows automatic on and off. With the inlets and outlets on one side, you also get a neater installation.

There is a wired remote control for the bass to ensure you have full control of the bass output. With the other amazing controls, you can also adjust the sound to your liking.

At just 2.7 inches thick, this subwoofer is designed to fit perfectly under a car seat, making installation even neater. Also, keep in mind that the company also has an 8-inch option for those who prefer something even more compact.

Some motorists may not like the mounting feet provided as they don’t look very sturdy, but they still do an amazing job. In some cases, you won’t even need to use them.

  • More powerful subwoofer
  • Easy and neat installation
  • Comes with some amazing controls
  • Easily adjustable bass
  • Thinner for perfect under seat fit
  • Not the best mounting feet

4. Kicker 11HS8

The Kicker 11HS8 has been built specifically for tight spaces. At just over 3 inches thick and only 14 inches long, it’s pretty compact. So if you want something that you can easily hide under a car seat, this will be an unbeatable option.

It’s rated one of the best under-seat car subwoofers with a built-in amplifier for good reason, as its 150-watt amp will do a fantastic job of improving overall sound quality.

There is also a foreign bass control which will make it easy to fine-tune your bass. And with the high and low-level inputs, this subwoofer will integrate with almost any head unit, be it factory or aftermarket.

Installation is straightforward as this subwoofer will include a quick-connect plug and also velcro straps to ensure secure installation and easy removal.

Even if the cone is slightly smaller than most of the others on our list, you can still expect above-average sound quality, as it is still very efficient.

  • Perfect tight spaces
  • Easy and precise base fine-tuning
  • Powerful built-in amplifier
  • Simple and secure installation
  • Works with most head units
  • Smaller cone

5. Planet Audio P8UAW

Planet Audio P8UAW is a compact 8 ” low-profile subwoofer with a built-in 800-watt amplifier. At just 3 ”tall, it is the perfect size for tight, compact spaces. Weighing just 11.8 pounds, its overall dimensions are 13.9 x 9.9 x 3 inches. Since it has a built-in amplifier, it does not require an external amplifier. Additionally, its high-level inputs accept speaker output, and low-level inputs accept preamp output signals.

This subwoofer is also equipped with metal oxide semiconductor field-effect transistors that allow it to make an immediate transition from full to non-conductive, allowing for high-efficiency output. The presence of class A / B amplifiers can also improve sound quality and efficiency while eliminating distortion.

This compact subwoofer also has a variable low-pass and subsonic filter. The variable low-pass filter can provide greater control over the frequencies that pass through the subwoofer. And the subsonic filter can restrict low frequencies to protect the subwoofer and minimize distortion. You also get a wired remote with this subwoofer so you can control the bass level so you can listen to music exactly how you want.

In terms of safety, this subwoofer has an auto-shutdown function that can protect the amplifier if there is a short circuit or if the amplifier gets too hot. They also have phase controls with which you can change the phase of the speaker when speakers or subwoofers are connected “out of phase”.

The worst aspect of this compact subwoofer is the lack of a mounting or installation kit. You only get the main subwoofer, you don’t get mounting brackets, cables, or other extra tools you need for installation. As such, you will have to refer to the instruction manual or get professional help to install it. Most compact subwoofers come with all, or at least most, of the tools required for installation. This one comes with nothing, which is a huge oversight.

All things considered, however, Planet Audio P8UAW is an extremely compact subwoofer with decent bass and frequency range. It’s just not great value for money because it’s expensive and you have to get a ton of extra tools.

  • Compact size.
  • Lightweight design.
  • Inbuilt amplifiers.
  • Minimal distortions.
  • Equipped with various safety features.
  • Comes with a wired remote control.
  • Phase controls available.
  • Poor value for money.
  • Installation tools not provided with the subwoofer.

What factors should be considered when buying compact subwoofers?

When buying compact subwoofers, you should consider the following factors.


Since you are looking for compact subwoofers, the most important factor is size. This completely depends on the space of the location where you are installing the subwoofers. For example, if you are installing the subwoofers in a car, you will need them to be only a few inches deep. Generally speaking, compact subwoofers should be less than 10 ”deep.

However, you need to measure your space and get subwoofers accordingly. You should also be aware of the fact that subwoofers will need to be installed at least a few inches from televisions to avoid the possibility of distortion.


The power of the subwoofer, represented by watts, determines the amount of sound that can be produced and the area that it can cover. Compact subwoofers generally don’t have a lot of wattages, but you should still try to find one with as much power as possible. When looking for compact subwoofers, you should try to get one that can store maximum power in the smallest frame.


Bass is one of the most important factors for people in terms of sound quality. Bass is generated when a subwoofer can reach lower frequency registers and accounts for the booming sensation that subwoofers produce. A good compact subwoofer will be able to produce strong bass without it being so overwhelming that it distracts the primary sounds.

Low distortion

You should aim for a subwoofer that has design elements and features to reduce distortion. In general, the higher the bass and the lower the frequency, the higher the distortions. As such, subwoofers must use a variety of features to minimize those distortions so that heavy bass sound can be experienced with perfect clarity and precision. Good compact subwoofers should normally have less than 10% distortion.


I hope this article helped you select the best compact subwoofer for your specific needs. As you can see, there are many options to choose from. But you should get a subwoofer that can fit into small spaces in your room or car and still offer you a great experience.

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