Are Large Magnets Good for Car Subwoofers?




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Are you looking to upgrade your car’s audio system with a subwoofer? If so, you may be wondering whether a subwoofer with a large magnet is a good choice. 

Large magnets are excellent for car subwoofers, as they can provide a better bass response. However, they are heavier and make the subwoofer more difficult to install. 

In this article, I will explore the pros and cons of using a car subwoofer with a large magnet, so you can decide which type of subwoofer is right for your needs.

Introduction: Are Large Magnets Good for Car Subs?

Welcome to the fascinating world of car audio. Today, we’re diving into a question that’s often asked, but seldom answered with clarity: “Are large magnets good for car subwoofers?” To answer that, we’ll need to understand some fundamentals, including what a subwoofer is, what role magnets play, and the differences between various types of magnets used in subwoofers. So, let’s get started!

What Is the Role of Magnets in a Car Subwoofer?

Magnets, particularly large magnets, play a crucial role in the functionality of a subwoofer. In layman’s terms, a subwoofer works when electrical energy is converted into mechanical energy (sound), and magnets are instrumental in this process.

are car subwoofers with large magnets good

The subwoofer is composed of several parts, but the key ones are the voice coil and the magnet. The voice coil is an electromagnet, so when the audio signal (which is electrical) passes through it, the coil generates a magnetic field.

This magnetic field interacts with the permanent magnet attached to the subwoofer, causing the coil and the cone attached to it to move. This movement pushes air, creating sound waves, which we perceive as that thumping bass.

Single Magnet vs Double Magnet Speaker: The Basic Differences

A single-magnet speaker uses one magnet in its structure, while a double-magnet speaker uses two.

The main reason for adding an additional magnet is to strengthen the magnetic field. Stronger fields can provide better control over the voice coil, potentially leading to more precise bass reproduction.

However, the use of a bigger magnet or a double magnet configuration does not necessarily mean you’ll get better sound.

Other factors, such as the quality of the materials used and the subwoofer’s overall design, can also significantly impact the audio output.

Common Types of Magnets Used in Subwoofers

Two common types of magnets you’ll come across in the world of car subwoofers are ferrite and neodymium.

Ferrite magnets, also known as ceramic magnets, are widely used because they are relatively inexpensive and provide a good magnetic field for their size.

On the other hand, neodymium magnets are stronger and lighter than ferrite, making them ideal for applications where weight and magnet size are considerations.

However, they are also more expensive. If you ever come across a subwoofer with a large magnet, there’s a good chance it was a ferrite magnet.

Does Bigger Magnet Mean Better Speaker?

In the realm of car audio, the notion that a bigger magnet equates to a better speaker is a common misconception.

While a larger magnet can influence certain aspects of a speaker’s performance, it’s not the sole determining factor of sound quality. Let’s dive deeper into this topic.

Exploring the Correlation between Magnet Size and Sound Quality

One would logically think that larger magnets, with their stronger magnetic fields, would result in louder, better sound.

However, when it comes to car subwoofers, the reality is more complex. Here’s why:

#1. Sound Quality: The quality of sound isn’t determined by the size of the magnet alone. It’s influenced by multiple factors, including the subwoofer design, the materials used, and even the type of music you listen to.

#2. Efficiency: Bigger magnets can enhance the efficiency of a subwoofer, providing more output for the same amount of input power. 

However, the increase in output isn’t linear, meaning doubling the magnet size won’t double your output.

#3. Control: Large magnets can provide better control over the speaker cone, potentially improving accuracy. But again, this is just one of many factors that contribute to overall sound quality.

Neodymium Magnets: A Common Choice for Smaller Magnet Speakers

When subwoofers boast about having large or even huge magnets, they’re often referring to neodymium magnets.

As mentioned earlier, neodymium magnets are lighter than ferrite, and they generate a stronger magnetic field for their size. This makes them a popular choice for high-performance subwoofers, particularly those aiming for maximum output in a compact package.

However, they’re pricier than ferrite magnets, which can make subwoofers using them more expensive.

For more information, check out my detailed guide about subwoofers with neodymium magnets.

The Extra Effect of Bigger Magnets on Speakers

While bigger magnets don’t automatically result in better sound, they do have certain extra effects on speakers.

For instance, they can increase the speaker’s thermal capacity, allowing it to handle more power and potentially play louder.

However, this also depends on the speaker’s design and materials, and too much power can still damage a speaker regardless of magnet size, so as you can see, there is no clear line between these two types.

Subwoofer with Bigger Magnet: Do Size and Strength Always Equate to Quality?

Finally, there is a key question: do size and strength always equate to quality in a big magnet subwoofer? The answer is: not necessarily.

While a bigger, stronger magnet can contribute to improved performance, it doesn’t guarantee a better sound.

Other factors, such as the subwoofer’s design, the materials used, and even your personal taste in music, play a vital role in determining the overall sound quality.

Pros and Cons of Using a Large Magnet in a Car Subwoofer

When weighing your options for the best car subwoofer, consider the benefits and potential drawbacks of using a subwoofer with a large magnet.

After all, understanding these factors will enable you to make the most informed decision for your car audio setup. Let’s dive into this.

Pros of Using a Subwoofer with a Large Magnet

#1. Efficiency: Large magnets can increase a subwoofer’s efficiency. This essentially means you get more bang for your buck in terms of output per input power.

#2. Control: As I’ve mentioned earlier, a bigger magnet can provide better control over the speaker cone, potentially enhancing the accuracy of sound reproduction.

#3. Power Handling: Large magnets can also increase a sub’s power handling capabilities.

This essentially means the subwoofer can handle more power without risking damage, potentially leading to louder sound levels.

Cons and Common Issues with a Car Subwoofer with a Large Magnet

As with most things in life, there’s always another side to the coin. Here are a few potential drawbacks of using a subwoofer with a large magnet:

#1. Weight: Large magnets, particularly if they’re ferrite, can add considerable weight to your subwoofer.

This might not be a huge issue in a stationary home audio setup, but in a car, every pound can affect fuel efficiency.

#2. Price: If the subwoofer uses large neodymium magnets, it could be more expensive due to the higher cost of these magnets. You’ll need to consider whether the potential audio benefits are worth the extra cost.

#3. Space Requirement: Bigger magnets can also mean a bulkier subwoofer. If you’re working with a compact car, fitting a large subwoofer might be a challenge, especially in terms of depth, and this is where shallow-mounted subwoofers come into place.

To learn more, check out my guide about shallow-mounted car subwoofers.

#4. Overkill: Depending on your musical preferences, a subwoofer with a large magnet could be overkill.

If you mostly listen to genres that aren’t heavy on bass, you might not reap the full benefits of a large magnet subwoofer.

The Influence of Music Genres and Enclosure Types on Car Subwoofers with Large Magnets

In the quest for the best car audio experience, it’s not just the subwoofer’s technical specifications that matter.

The type of music you typically listen to and the subwoofer enclosure you use can significantly influence your sound experience, especially when dealing with subs equipped with large magnets. Let’s delve into this.

What Types of Music are Best Suited for Car Subwoofers with Large Magnets?

While any type of music can benefit from a good subwoofer, certain genres really shine when played through a car subwoofer with a large magnet:

#1. Hip-Hop and Rap: These genres heavily feature bass, making them a perfect match for powerful subwoofers.

The strength of a large magnet can help reproduce the deep, resonating bass notes common in these genres with accuracy and depth.

#2. EDM and Techno: Electronic music, which often uses synthesized bass, can also greatly benefit from a subwoofer with a large magnet.

The quick, punchy bass notes found in these genres require excellent control, which a larger magnet can provide.

#3. Rock and Metal: While not as bass-heavy as the other genres, the kick drum and bass guitar in rock and metal music can sound fuller and more detailed with a robust subwoofer, especially regarding the mid-bass frequencies.

Remember that your personal preferences and listening habits are crucial to your satisfaction with your car audio setup.

For example, if you mainly listen to classical or folk music, a subwoofer with a large magnet might not make a significant difference in your listening experience.

Using a Car Subwoofer with a Large Magnet in a Sealed or Ported Enclosure

When it comes to choosing between a sealed or ported enclosure for your car subwoofer with a large magnet, the decision will largely depend on the kind of bass response you prefer:

#1. Sealed Enclosures: These provide a deep, accurate bass response. If you prefer precision and clarity over sheer power, a sealed enclosure might be the right fit for your large magnet subwoofer.

#2. Ported Enclosures: These are designed to emphasize low-end response and can deliver louder, more resonant bass.

If your music preference leans toward genres like rap, hip-hop, or EDM, a ported enclosure could maximize the performance of your large magnet subwoofer.

What Is the Ideal Magnet Size for a Car Subwoofer?

Determining the ideal magnet size for a car subwoofer is not as straightforward as it might seem.

It isn’t a one-size-fits-all scenario, as it greatly depends on a variety of factors including your car audio needs and preferences, the type of music you enjoy, and the specific characteristics of your vehicle. Let’s discuss these factors in more detail.

Assessing Your Car Audio Needs and Preferences

Choosing the ideal magnet size for a car subwoofer begins with a thorough understanding of your individual audio needs and preferences:

#1. Music Genres: If you’re a fan of music genres that emphasize deep, resonant bass notes like hip-hop, EDM, or heavy metal, a subwoofer with a larger magnet might be a good fit.

#2. Listening Preferences: Are you looking for loud, booming bass that can be felt as well as heard, or do you prefer clean, accurate bass reproduction?

A larger magnet might offer the power you’re looking for, while a smaller magnet could be adequate if you’re more interested in clarity and precision.

#3. Vehicle Characteristics: Consider the size and acoustics of your vehicle.

In larger vehicles or those with open cabin designs, a subwoofer with a larger magnet might be necessary to fill the space with sound, as it directly correlates to the cone size, whether it is 8″ or 15″.

Best Car Subwoofers with Large Magnets on the Market

If you’ve decided that a subwoofer with a large magnet is the right choice for your car audio system, here are a few options that are well-regarded in the car audio community):

  • Rockville Destroyer 12D2: Known for its massive, high-grade magnet, this subwoofer delivers incredible power and depth.
  • Skar Audio VXF-12 D2: This subwoofer features a large ferrite magnet and offers an excellent balance of power and sound quality.
  • Sundown Audio X-12 v3 D2: A popular choice for bass enthusiasts, this subwoofer has a large, high-quality magnet that delivers powerful, deep bass.


Are large magnets good for car subwoofers? The answer is not black and white, but rather lies in a complex grayscale of user preferences, vehicle specifications, and specific audio needs.

It’s important to reiterate that, while large magnets can enhance some aspects of your car audio experience, they aren’t the end-all solution for everyone. They are just one component of a much larger picture.

Their benefits, such as stronger magnetic fields leading to greater speaker cone control and thus potentially better sound, need to be weighed against factors like cost, size, and weight.

The “right” choice depends on your personal preferences, the type of music you often listen to, and the characteristics of your vehicle.

Large magnets have a significant role in the design and function of car subwoofers. They contribute to the subwoofer’s ability to produce deep, resonant bass, and their size and strength can directly affect the subwoofer’s power and sound quality.


What Is the Role of a Magnet in a Car Subwoofer?

A magnet in a car subwoofer plays a crucial role in producing sound. It creates a magnetic field that interacts with the voice coil, causing it to move and produce sound waves.

The size and strength of the magnet affect the subwoofer’s performance.

How Does the Size of the Magnet Affect a Subwoofer’s Performance?

A larger magnet produces a stronger magnetic field, which can lead to greater sound output and better bass response. However, a larger magnet also means a heavier subwoofer, which can impact portability and installation.

Do Larger Magnets in Subwoofers Produce Better Sound?

A larger magnet produces a stronger magnetic field, which leads to better bass response and greater sound output. However, other factors like the quality of the voice coil and cone material also impact sound quality.

What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Using a Large Magnet in a Car Subwoofer?

Using a large magnet in a car subwoofer can provide advantages like better bass response and higher sound output. However, it can also make the subwoofer heavier and more difficult to install.

Additionally, larger magnets can be more expensive and may not always result in better sound quality compared to smaller magnets.

What’s the Difference Between a Single Magnet Speaker and a Double Magnet Speaker?

Single magnet speakers have one magnet, while double magnet speakers have two. Double-magnet speakers often produce more power and better sound quality, but they can also be more expensive and heavier than single-magnet speakers.

How Does the Type of Magnet (Neodymium vs. Ferrite) Affect a Subwoofer’s Performance?

Neodymium magnets are smaller and lighter than ferrite magnets, which can make them easier to install and transport. However, ferrite magnets can produce a stronger magnetic field and may be more durable over time. 

What Types of Music Are Best Suited for Car Subwoofers With Large Magnets?

Car subwoofers with large magnets are best suited for music that emphasizes bass frequencies, such as hip-hop, EDM, and heavy metal. The larger magnet can provide a better bass response and higher sound output, which can enhance the listening experience for these genres. 

Does the Enclosure Type Matter When Using a Subwoofer With a Large Magnet?

Sealed enclosures can provide a tighter and more accurate bass response, while ported enclosures can produce louder and boomier bass. The choice between sealed and ported enclosures ultimately depends on personal preference and the specific characteristics of the subwoofer.

What Are the Common Issues With a Car Subwoofer With a Large Magnet?

Some common issues with car subwoofers with large magnets include heavier weight, increased power consumption, and difficulty fitting into smaller spaces.