2018 Top Picks of the Year Subwoofers



Top Pick of the Year: MartinLogan Dynamo 1100X subwoofer
(December/January) App-controlled subwoofers aren't a new thing, but MartinLogan manages to take the concept to the next level by incorporating its ARC room correction tech into its subwoofer setup and control app suite. The result, according to reviewer Michael Trei, was a “clean impact and dynamic wallop” that made him want to turn up the volume. $1,099.95, martinlogan.com

KEF Kube12b subwoofer
(June) The Kube12b (tested as part of a full 5.1.4 KEF system), which features three DSP EQ modes to tailor output for various placements, proved to be an overachiever during our test given its affordable price. $700, kef.com

SVS PC-4000 Subwoofer
(May) This sub's cylindrical form might not be to everyone's taste, but a useful app, onboard parametric EQ, and an ability to deliver powerful subterranean bass that's felt as much as heard left a strong impression on reviewer David Vaughn. $1,800. svsound.com

GoldenEar Technology SuperSubX subwoofer
(May) With a 1,400-watt class-D amp and a design that pits two active and two passive drivers against each other to cancel out vibrations, the SuperSubX managed to sound both powerful and musical when we tested it as part of a full GoldenEar in-wall speaker system. $1,250, goldenear.com

Monoprice Monolith 12” and 15” THX Ultra subwoofers
(June) Resident basshead David Vaughn clearly enjoyed the time he spent with this pair of big, powerful subwoofers, calling out their “clean and controlled bass response” and sheer visceral impact with action movies. $800/$1,300, monoprice.com

ELAC SUB3070 Subwoofer
(September) Listened to in a system with ELAC's AS-61 standmounted speakers, the app-controlled and optimized SUB3070 easily delivered “the low-frequency grunt” needed to fill reviewer Thomas J. Norton's large listening space and also managed to ace his suite of pipe organ and synth bass torture tracks. $2,500, elac.com

Tekton Design Brisance 12 Subwoofer
(October/November) Sporting the same no-frills look as the Tekton Impact surround speaker system it was paired with for our review, the Brisance 12 nonetheless managed to impress by providing a foundation of punchy, taut-sounding bass. $800, tektondesign.com