Audio equipment is some of the most confusing technology on the market. They often don’t have displays, so you cannot see if you are setting them up correctly or even turned on. But do you know why some have left and right inputs?
The left and right inputs on your subwoofer are there to give you another level of control over the sound it creates. In the end, both the left and right sides come together in an LFE cable, allowing the subwoofer to evenly output, and have more precise control over the sound it emits.
Keep reading to learn more about the basics of subwoofers and how you should position yours depending on where you want to put it.
The Purpose of Left and Right Inputs On Subwoofers
Both inputs come together through an LFE cable, allowing the subwoofer to create an even sound that has more control than would be possible with a single input. However, these are usually on older subwoofer units. Modern subwoofers usually have only one input. Let’s talk more about them.
You are more than likely to buy a subwoofer that has a single LFE input cable. While it is nice that they are starting to bundle the cords into the LCE to start, it is still common to see subwoofers with separated left and right cables.
Correct Orientation For Your Subwoofer
Once you correctly set up your subwoofer with both left and right inputs, or the central LFE cable, the next issue is where you should place and orient it to optimize the sound it creates.
In your home and TV setups, you will most likely be using your subwoofer to amplify sounds from basic movies and TV shows. Assuming that you are creating this setup in a basic room, you should put the subwoofer at least against one or two walls facing outward.
This is because the walls can physically support and resonate with the sound it creates, as a subwoofer displaces air in front of itself.
Like the home setup, in a theater, you would most likely want multiple or a large subwoofer set up against a wall or strong surface for the same supporting reasons. Subwoofers work better when they can echo off a large surface.
Most people install subwoofers in the car to “feel” the bass of the music. For most cars with regular trunks, you will want to put your subwoofer in the trunk facing upwards as it needs area to create sound and displace air.
Many people may also want to install subwoofers into trucks that don’t have trunk space. For most truck setups, especially 2-door trucks, you will most likely have to put the subwoofers in the back seat facing forward. However, using it at a lower setting for your safety.
The Perfect Number of Subwoofers
After you finally pick out the correct subwoofer, set it up, and find a place to use it, you may also wonder, “Is one subwoofer enough?” This is a common question, especially as more and more people continue to purchase multiple subwoofers to use together.
Let’s now look at the factors you should consider when contemplating this question.
Cheaper Normally Is Better
In most cases, cheaper is always better. Many people on online forums say that to save money, one subwoofer does plenty, especially if they are using it in a small space such as a car. However, there are also other ways you can cut down on costs, such as buying used or renovated machines.
As I mentioned, more people are buying multiple subwoofers to use together, as they often buy multiple large subwoofers to use together. In the end, this can get really expensive, so if it works for you, great! However, most people will likely not be able to do this option, at least when you start using subwoofers.
Using multiple full-size subwoofers can be expensive, so many people now opt to purchase a few smaller subwoofers. Many of these people also say that in the end, these can have more power as you can choose to spread them apart in placement, maximizing the power of their sound waves.
What Is a Subwoofer?
A subwoofer is an audio device that is meant to assist your sound system to a specific range. It is made to produce the bass, which has ower-pitched frequencies, and sub-bass, which are lower frequencies, lower than a regular woofer can produce.
Reasons You May Want a Subwoofer
You might think, “Why do I even need a subwoofer in the first place?” This is a common thought, as they can be heavy, bulky, and expensive. According to most subwoofer brands, subwoofers have a few benefits that apply in some situations.
To start, they highly amplify the bass and make you actually feel it, making them great for listening to things like EDM or action movies.
In addition to this, many of these companies also credit subwoofers for taking the brunt of the bass energy, making your whole audio system more healthy and balanced.
Physics of Subwoofers
Subwoofers work to amplify and create the bass sound to whatever you are listening to. You can think of this like a normal speaker, where the sound comes out of the front, resonating in waves.
In this case, the bass can be so strong that it often displaces air in front of itself, which is why you can feel the pulses of music if you place your hand in front of a working subwoofer. While this can cause some hearing/safety hazards, you can also use this to your advantage.
To maximize the power of your subwoofer, you may want to position it against large solid surfaces, pointing to nearby solid surfaces to maximize the reflection and movement of soundwaves in the area.
In the end, while many subwoofers have left and right inputs, newer models are moving away from this, using one combined LCE cable instead. Either way, the separate cables initially were used for more control over sound quality/power, allowing the subwoofer to even receive and spread sound.