It is literally obvious that you need a subwoofer to get the best quality sound. But why you should go for a free air subwoofer when you have an infinite number of options to satisfy your thirst for accurate and crisp bass.
Then the answer is quite straightforward, a free air subwoofer is meant for those who want crystal clear bass without losing space and shedding a hefty amount.
The free air subwoofers are designed to work nicely in your car trunk where the trunk itself becomes the enclosure. Thus, they don’t need to have an enclosure which significantly reduces its weight as well as make the installation simpler. It leaves a lot of space in the trunk, with that you can easily take the things in and out from the trunk.
If you’re seriously on a lookout for a free air subwoofer, then have a glance at this list of top-rated free-air subwoofers.
Best Rated Free Air Subwoofers
1. Kicker Comp 10C104
Kicker has been one of the leading brands in-car audio industry since very long. And when it comes to free air subwoofer, its Kicker Comp 10C104 tops the list, surpassing the limits at all levels be it is performance, durability, or installation.
This is the subwoofer that can bring an excellent upgrade over your music system without requiring an expensive setup. The 10” size of it makes it compatible for most of the vehicles. And the sound output is also amazing. With power handling of 150 watts RMS and an extensive size woofer cone, this subwoofer is capable to add a ton of bass to the sound especially when you’re using it as a free air subwoofer.
However, this sub can be used in an enclosed or ported enclosure also but if you want more free space in the trunk along with high sound output then going the free air route is more appropriate.
The only flaw it has is its relatively weak sensitivity rating of 86 dB. The lower the sensitivity rating, the higher the amount of power needed to produce the same amount of sound as a sub with a higher sensitivity rating. Overall, this is a great sub.
- Subwoofer size: 10 ″
- RMS rating: 150 watts
- Peak power rating: 300 watts
- Frequency response: 30-500 Hz
- Small Impedance: 4 ohm
- Top-mount depth: 5 ″
- Sensitivity rating: 86.2 dB
- Features a flex-resistant polypropylene cone
- Quite versatile
- High sound output
- Trustworthy brand
- Lower sensitivity rating
2. Pioneer TS-SW2002D2
Pioneer is another brand that leads in the audio industry with its long list of incredible products. And Pioneer TS-SW2002D2 is the one that comes from the same list, delivering hard hitting Bass without compromising on quality.
With sophisticated engineering and an RMS rating of 150 watts and a peak power rating of 600 watts, it can produce the high pitched sound that will let your neighbors know that you’re coming. However, the price is slightly higher than its counterparts but when it comes to performance, the cost justifies it.
The clarity in sound is assured by its frequency range of 20-200Hz. With this range, you can expect to hear even the vaguest sound with great clarity, no matter whether you’re using it within an enclosure or as a free air sub.
- Subwoofer size: 8 ″
- RMS rating: 150 watts
- Peak power rating: 600 watts
- Frequency Response: 20-200 Hz
- Mounting depth: 2-5/8 ″
- Impedance: Dual 2 ohms
- Sensitivity rating: 86 dB
- Hard-hitting bass
- Powerful performance
- Durable construction
- Utmost clarity
- A little expensive compared to similar products
3. Infinity Kappa 800W
This great looking subwoofer comes with a unique selectable smart impedance design that lets you easily switch between 2 and 4 Ohms impedance and makes the overall set up a breeze. With plenty of power, it sounds great even if you’re going the free air route.
The extra depth it has in its design makes it ideal for free air subwoofer systems. And the frequency response goes as low as 30 Hz that you can feel the sound. This sub also features an acoustically damped glass-fiber cone that minimizes distortion. So, you can be assured of the utmost sound clarity.
The steel basket gives it a solid construction, while aero-cooling design keeps the temperature down of the voice coil. With this, the sub is able to handle plenty of power over an extended period. So, your music will keep rocking without any pause.
And if you look for upgrading the amplifier or adding a new sub, the reconfiguration is much easier.
- 8″ subwoofer with selectable 2- or 4-ohm impedance
- Coated glass-fiber cone with rubber surround
- Steel basket
- Frequency response: 30-200 Hz
- Power rating: 400 watts RMS (1600 watts peak power)
- Sensitivity rating: 89 dB
- Top-notch performance
- Minimal distortion
- Attractive design
- Might be too deep for certain free air installations
4. Pyle PLPW8D
If you want to add rich bass to your sound system within a shoestring budget, you won’t get anything better than this. And it is rated for 400 watts RMS that is enough to kick off some serious bass out of it. Just under $100, you can upgrade your sound system without sacrificing quality.
However, the build quality is not much appreciable, so you can’t expect high-end performance for many years to come. But it is certainly the best bang for your buck. It will sweetly deliver the bass from a moderate level to the extreme loudness with great sound clarity.
The shallow mounting depth makes it the best fit for free air use especially when space is a constraint. Due to the low cost, this sub is also a great deal for those who want to experiment with subwoofer’s wiring setup.
- Power rating: 400 watts RMS (800 watts peak power)
- Push-down speaker terminals for added consistency
- SPL adjusts sensitivity to ensure clarity
- 5″ 4-layer voice coil can resist corrosion and ensure a longer life span
- Dual 4 Ohm impedance
- Treated foam surround for durability
- Satisfactory performance
- Straightforward installation
- Reasonable price
- Compact design
- It lacks high-end finishes
- Durability can’t be committed
5. JBL CS1214 1000-watt, 12″ Car Audio Subwoofer
It’s scarcely seen that an audio product review doesn’t include a JBL product. This well known brand has provided an infinite number of premium sound products and JBL CS1214 is the one that comes in the top ten when it comes to subwoofers.
This package includes two of the CS1214 subwoofers, so with plenty of power, it will produce strong bass especially when you use both of them as free air subs. It has a lightweight, sleek design which also allows you to use it in a sealed or ported enclosure. The design makes the whole set up a breeze.
The bigger size, 12 inches for each, it is capable to leave a serious impact on your sound system. A single subwoofer may lack in clarity despite the perfect configuration. But this package of two produces a lot more movement, so you can hear the beats with utmost clarity.
However, they sound great as a free air sub but if you want to experience their true potential, get them installed in an enclosure.
- 12″ car audio subwoofer
- 250 Watts RMS per speaker; 1000 Watts peak power per speaker
- Big bass with the polypropylene woofer cone
- Rubber Surround
- Reliable brand
- Lightweight & sleek design
- Comes in a set of 2 subwoofers
- Delivers clean bass
- Makes up for some of the loss of bass
- You will need an enclosure to get the sound extremely louder
6. Infinity Reference REF1200S
This free air subs review would be incomplete without the inclusion of Infinity Reference REF1200S that is pretty light and has a mounting depth of only 3.5”. Don’t underestimate its power for its small size; this sub will leave you stunned when it puts a beat out.
This sub is not only for a bit of extra bass, if you provide it enough space for the movement of more air, but the bass can also be louder and sharper.
With a power RMS of 250 Watts and a max output of 1000 Watts, this small sub can shake up your car. The power rating and sensitivity go hand in hand, with 92dB of sensitivity rating, this sub gives you most out of the power it can handle.
This sub also takes on the low frequency with decency as its frequency response ranges in between 27 Hz all the way to 175 HZ. It also features switchable impedance allowing you to waltz between 2 and 4 Ohms at the flip of a switch.
This sub features switchable impedance allowing you to switch between 2 and 4Ohms just with the flip of a switch. And frequency response ranges from 27 Hz to 175 Hz that can be as low as it is required.
- Power rating: 250 watts RMS (1000 watts peak power)
- Sensitivity: 92 dB
- Frequency response: 27 Hz to 175 Hz
- Switchable impedance between 2 Ohms and 4 Ohms
- Mounting depth: 3.5”
- Easily upgradable
- Compact size
- Easy to set up in just about any vehicle
- Not as hard-hitting as other subs
Free Air Subwoofer Vs Enclosed Subwoofer
An infinite baffle or free air is almost the same thing. The configuration of this sub goes like a woofer placed onto a board or a baffle, extending it in all directions so the front wave and the rear wave can be isolated to avoid sound cancellation. It can also be installed in the rear deck without requiring the board and this is the real form of a free air sub.
The Free air sub is only recommended when you’re looking for more free space in the car trunk. Because it doesn’t require an enclosure, it takes up very less space in comparison to a sealed enclosure. But, generally, if you want some serious bass, the enclosed sub is a more viable option, produces a deeper and clear sound.
The efficiency of a free air sub depends on the configuration and the material used but, generally, it gives a lower output. But technically, it is more convenient to install as it doesn’t require the additional box. And the battery consumption is also lower than the sealed enclosure.
The key difference between the both is that a free air subwoofer gets its sparge from the car’s suspension while the sealed box depends on the air pressure available within the box.
In a simple term, a sealed subwoofer will produce a deeper and more responsive sound output than a free air subwoofer, but at the cost of trunk space.
Free Air Subwoofer Pros and Cons
As we stated earlier also, the main reason behind designing the free air subwoofer is that it saves a lot of space in the car trunk. And along with its space-saving configuration, it kicks off super audio performance without bearing the weight of a heavy enclosure. It also comes with great installation flexibility, allowing you to install it even in a very tight space.
But we can’t overlook the fact that the free air subwoofers may not produce the sound as loud as a sealed sub can. However, you can get a free air subwoofer installed in a sealed enclosure to improve its performance but only at the cost of trunk space and heavyweight of the enclosure.
When it comes to a free air subwoofer, you can’t expand the volume to the highest point. If you do so, there are chances of damaging the speakers.
- Consumes less power
- Ensures less distortion compared to other forms of enclosures
- Due to its infinite baffle design and setup, there are no resonances and no diffraction issues
- Separating the back waves from front waves is little impractical especially in a car
- For this sub, it is easier to reach the maximum excursion, so there is a high possibility of damaging the sub
However, if you lack the information provided in the article, buying the right sub can be tricky because choosing the right sub requires great knowledge about the product. If you lack the knowledge, you will probably end up purchasing a sub that may not be able to give you the quality you’re expecting.
However, it depends on how much time you devote to researching the products. But the good news is that we have already made you available with some top-rated free air subwoofers that are leading in the audio industry. So, you don’t need to do anything except reading the provided informative stuff. We hope this elaborative review guide helps you to get the best free air subwoofer for your car.
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