Most Powerful
Sundown Audio SA-8 V.3 D4

A well built, high-performance subwoofer that packs a punch.

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Bass Output
JL Audio 8W3V3-4

Delivers an impressive low-end for an 8-inch subwoofer.

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Easy Installation
Sony XS-AW8

A plug-and-play subwoofer specifically designed for cars.

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Budget Pick
American Bass VFL

An inexpensive sub with good sound quality above 30.0 Hz.

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Rockford Fosgate P2D2-8

A durable 2.0-ohm subwoofer that packs a steady bass punch.

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Subwoofers come in several sizes and the larger the subwoofer, the more low-end bass tone you’ll be able to produce. The best 8-inch subwoofers are small and fit better in your car while also offering enviable sound quality. However, not all speakers are equal so it’s important to do the research before buying any old subwoofer for your car stereo system.

The right eight-inch subwoofers can output excellent sound quality. However, keep in mind that the size of the speaker does limit its ability to produce lower tones. If you aren’t able to get the bass you want from an eight-incher, you may want to look into 10-inch subwoofers and 12-inch alternatives.

5 Best 8-Inch Subwoofers

A close-up image of a technician installing a car speaker to a car door.

  1. Most Powerful: Sundown Audio SA-8 V.3 D4
  2. Best Bass Output: JL Audio 8W3V3-4
  3. Easy Installation: Sony XS-AW8
  4. Budget Pick: American Bass VFL
  5. Rockford Fosgate P2D2-8

Our Review Standards

To select the five 8-inch amplifiers in this review, our team searched Amazon for top products, looking at factors like customer ratings, prices, superlatives, and Prime shipping eligibility. We also scoured enthusiast message boards to learn the most popular and unpopular options. In choosing the products for this review, we selected subwoofers from a range of price points that have a positive reputation among customers and experts alike.

Why You Can Trust Us

Since 2020, we have published over 200 auto product reviews in an effort to make shopping for auto products easier. Our team of writers, editors, researchers, and product experts collaborates to thoroughly vet top products. We try to perform in-house testing on real vehicles whenever possible before making our recommendations.

When testing is not feasible, however, our aim is to make your life easier by doing all the online research for you and presenting that research in the form of easy-to-read product comparisons and buyers guides, rather than outright recommendations. For more information on our testing methodology and how we evaluate every product, check out our methodology page here.

Buyers Guide: Best 8-Inch Subwoofers

The most common subwoofer sizes for vehicles are 8, 10, and 12 inches. As a general rule, the bigger the subwoofer, the better it can achieve low-frequency sounds (bass). But bigger subwoofers take up more space. A well-designed 8-inch subwoofer can beat out a cheaply-made 12-inch subwoofer in sound quality and sound pressure level, so a bigger speaker won’t necessarily sound better.

Eight-inch subwoofers are a popular choice for cars or audio setups with limited space. Though smaller, a low-profile 8-inch car subwoofer can still provide high-quality audio and a lower cost than larger alternatives. Just don’t expect to vibrate the block or rattle your trunk with an 8-inch subwoofer. Even the best 8-inch subwoofers aren’t typically rated for frequencies below 30.0 hertz.

The best-sounding subwoofer is a matter of opinion depending on your personal preferences. However, most people prefer audio that is crisp and unmuddied. The subwoofer you choose should be based on your personal setup and you may need to test a couple of options before finding the subwoofer that works best for your car audio system.

Match Your Amp

One thing you’ll need to consider when buying a subwoofer is getting something that will work with your amplifier without getting damaged or overheating. You can buy an amplifier based on the subwoofer you choose or you can choose a subwoofer based on the amp that you already have. In either case, the power output of your amplifier needs to meet the combined power demand of your subwoofers.

Every subwoofer has a resistance rating (measured in ohms) and a maximum power handling capacity measured in watts RMS (root mean square). For example, the Sundown Audio SA-8 V.3 D4 is a 4.0-ohm subwoofer that handles up to 500.0 watts RMS. You’ll want an amp that does not put out more than 500.0 watts RMS power at a 4.0-ohm impedance load. You can use an amp that produces fewer than 500.0 watts RMS, but then you won’t be taking full advantage of the SA-8’s capabilities.

Figuring out the appropriate setup can be tricky, especially if you have multiple subwoofers. The max power capacity is easily found by adding all of the subwoofers together, but the ohm impedance load can vary depending on the wiring. Soundstream has a handy page to help you find the right amp specifications and wiring for your subwoofers and vice-versa.


A subwoofer may have a single voice coil (SVC) or a dual voice coil (DVC). Without diving too deep into the weeds, the difference can be explained simply: There is no intrinsic sound quality difference between SVC and DVC setups, but a DVC subwoofer offers more wiring options (because of the extra coil) when connecting your subwoofer and amplifier.


There are a variety of ways to box a car audio subwoofer. Each subwoofer enclosure method has various advantages and drawbacks. Two popular methods are sealed or ported boxes. As their names suggest, sealed boxes are entirely sealed and ported boxes have vents or “ports.”

Some subwoofers are more suited to sealed-box setups and others to ported-box setups, so which you prefer may impact your decision regarding the best 8-inch car subwoofer.

Sealed EnclosurePorted Enclosure
Provides tight, crisp-sounding bassBoomy, rattling bass
Requires more powerRequires less power
Not as loudLouder
Box can be smallerBox must be larger

#1 Most Powerful: Sundown Audio SA-8 V.3 D4

Pros High maximum wattage Dual 4.0-ohm voice coil Superior build quality
Cons Expensive Not for sealed boxes Heavy

This dual 4.0-ohm subwoofer runs a little pricey at over $200, but it packs quite the punch. Offering 500.0 watts peak power, there are many people who expressed surprise that an 8-inch subwoofer can perform as well as the SA-8 does. This small speaker is a hefty 27.0 pounds and it is not recommended that you put it in a sealed box (ported enclosure recommended).

Key Features

  • Cost: Around $250
  • Resistance: 4.0-ohm DVC
  • Maximum capacity: 500.0 watts RMS
  • Sealed box volume: Not recommended
  • Ported box volume: 0.5 to 0.75 cubic feet

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.6 out of 5 based on over 100 ratings

Positive reviewers say this subwoofer is stellar for its size. Though only eight inches, this is a heavy sub capable of an impressive low end. While expensive, there are many who say it sounds like a 10-inch or 12-inch subwoofer.

There are only two negative Amazon reviews for this subwoofer. One person complained about the Sundown customer service and another said their SA-8 sounded great for two months until some of the internal wiring malfunctioned and it stopped working properly.

#2 Best Bass Output: JL Audio 8W3V3-4

Pros Accurate Superior build quality Good bass output
Cons Expensive Single voice coil subwoofer

JL audio equipment has a stellar reputation among audiophiles and the 8W3V3 is a high-fidelity subwoofer. The superb build quality means a higher price tag but also better audio. No 8-inch subwoofer can compete with the best 10- and 12-inch options when it comes to a powerful low-end, but the 8W3V3 makes an admirable attempt.

Key Features

  • Cost: Around $330
  • Resistance: 4.0-ohm SVC
  • Maximum capacity: 250.0 watts RMS
  • Sealed box volume: 0.30 cubic feet
  • Ported box volume: 0.35 cubic feet

What Customers Are Saying

Online ratings see the 8W3V3 subwoofer as a great subwoofer option for cars because of its high audio accuracy and small size. Despite being an 8-inch sub, the 8W3V3 does a clean job of hitting low-frequency sounds. Though expensive, there are several comments about the excellent value provided by this subwoofer.

There are very few negative reviews. One person says that this sub doesn’t produce deep bass. Another person says they received a defective product from JL.

#3 Easy Installation: Sony XS-AW8

Pros Already boxed and easy to install Small and compact Includes wired remote Dual voice coil
Cons Low maximum wattage

If you’re not interested in building your own box for your new subwoofer, the Sony XS-AW8 is a good option. It comes in a pre-built box with a wired remote attached and easy-to-access line outputs. This great-sounding subwoofer is designed to be easily integrated into your existing car sound system with the least amount of work on your part. The dual 2.0-ohm voice coils offer more options for wiring.

Key Features

  • Cost: Around $300
  • Resistance: 2.0-ohm DVC
  • Maximum capacity: 75.0 watts RMS
  • Sealed box volume: N/A (already boxed)
  • Ported box volume: N/A (already boxed)

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.4 out of 5 based on over 40 ratings

Most are surprised by the rich bass tones given this is an 8-inch subwoofer. Users appreciate the included remote and the compact size of this subwoofer, which easily fits on the floorboards.

One negative Amazon review complains about sound quality and bass reproduction.

#4 Budget Pick: American Bass VFL

Pros High peak power rating Small Inexpensive Dual voice coil
Cons Fades out below 30.0 Hz

American Bass VFL 8-inch is a relatively inexpensive sub that can produce considerable volume. This DVC subwoofer is a popular option for those who build cabinets with multiple subwoofers. While loud, these aren’t the best speakers for hitting frequencies below 30.0 Hz. While most 8-inch subs will struggle with the lows, even for a subwoofer of this size this option lacks compared to others.

Key Features

  • Cost: Around $170
  • Resistance: 4.0-ohm DVC
  • Maximum capacity: 300.0 watts RMS
  • Sealed box volume: Not recommended
  • Ported box volume: 0.65 cubic feet

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.3 out of 5 based on over 95 ratings

Several reviewers built systems in their cars using two or more of these speakers and were satisfied by the volume and pressure they were able to achieve. These small speakers offer good sound for the cost and can rattle your ride.

These speakers do not hit the deepest lows and some complain about this. A few reviewers say they were shipped defective or broken products.

#5 Also Consider: Rockford Fosgate P2D2-8

Pros High sound quality with accurate bass Durable and reliable
Cons Low impedence

This punchy Rockford Fosgate 8-inch subwoofer is versatile and durable. The Kevlar fiber-reinforced paper cones let you turn up the bass. The high-temperature voice coil and PVC magnet cover help protect this unit, though it is also backed by a one-year warranty. This sub has a 2.0-ohm impedance rating, but a 4.0-ohm version is also available.

Key Features

  • Cost: Around $120
  • Resistance: 2.0-ohm DVC
  • Maximum capacity: 250.0 watts RMS
  • Sealed box volume: 0.23 cubic feet
  • Ported box volume: 0.65 cubic feet

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.5 out of 5 based on over 130 ratings

Reviewers on Amazon note that this woofer packs a nice punch. Most feel that Rockford Fosgate is a reliable brand. However, some think there are better options out there. Not many have anything overtly negative to comment about the brand.

Should You Get An 8-Inch Subwoofer?

8-inch subwoofers are popular options for starter stereo builds. The smaller size and price point (compared to 10- and 12-inch subwoofers) make them a good pick for car stereo systems. But there are some tradeoffs. A smaller subwoofer will not be able to produce as much power as larger subwoofers and can’t achieve the same booming rumbles.

You should pick an 8-inch subwoofer if:

  • You’re looking for a low-cost option
  • You don’t have a lot of space for your sound system
  • You want tight, crisp-sounding bass

Consider a larger subwoofer if:

  • You need a subwoofer with a lot of power handling
  • You want loud, booming bass tones
  • You have a lot of space for sound equipment in your vehicle

8-Inch Subwoofer: Bottom Line

A subwoofer is an important part of your car’s audio setup. But keep in mind, it is only one part. For the best car stereo sound, you need a subwoofer that is compatible with your amplifier. You’ll also need to build an enclosure for your subwoofer, so keep in mind your car’s space limitations.

The Sundown Audio SA-8 is a powerful 8-inch subwoofer that requires a ported box of less than one cubic foot and is one of our top recommendations. If you’re not interested in building a box for your subwoofer, the Sony XS-AW8 comes with a pre-built box for easy setup.

Those looking to spend less might consider the American Bass VFL, which is relatively inexpensive considering its high peak power and dual voice coil design.

8-Inch Subwoofers At A Glance

SubwooferApproximate CostMaximum Capacity (RMS)Resistance
Sundown Audio SA-8$245 500.0 watts4.0-ohm DVC
JL Audio 8W3V3-4$330 250.0 watts4.0-ohm SVC
Sony XS-AW8$300 75.0 watts2.0-ohm DVC
American Bass VFL$130 300.0 watts4.0-ohm DVC
Rockford Fosgate P2D2-8$120 250.0 watts2.0-ohm DVC

Best 8-Inch Subwoofer: FAQ

*Data accurate at time of publication.