The subwoofer's job is to produce the very low tones of your audio system's dynamic range. A true subwoofer will be able to reproduce a 20 Hz test tone, which will be rather felt than heard, but 30 Hz will do very well in most listening environments and for most music. Most subwoofers today contain a built-in amplifier and a crossover network that allows you to adjust the sub's upper frequency response so as to more effectively blend in with your main speakers.
Subwoofer performance is greatly affected by placement. So where you place the subwoofer and where you sit are critical to getting the most from it.
Most marine products are graded "marine" because of the exposure to the harsh environment and the elements, against which products for the boat ought to be protected. When it comes to subwoofers, "marine graded" goes both ways, with the unit being of utmost importance for your boat's sound system. That's because the background noise, from the motor, chatter, waves and splashing, all work against the system sound, which has an uphill battle to fight in overcoming this hiss. Marine subwoofers are the perfect armor for your marine sound system; they'll boost the bass and volume and overcome all the background noise.
In fact, the majority of subwoofers are built with the boat in mind. Aside for being constructed with the proper material to be shielding them from exposure to water and sunlight, they're also designed for free air mounting and baffle installations, which are very common in boats. Most marine subs come with waterproof rubber mounting gaskets to prevent deterioration, and are built with materials that are less susceptible to corrosion. The lead connections are usually insulated to guard against weather and water and electrical components are built with hard plastic-covering. Marine subs also tend to have plastic grills, whose purpose is to prevent weather damage. The majority of marine subwoofers would also be UV resistant to prevent the color from fading.
Typically, subwoofers in boats are installed without enclosures. Manufacturers are aware of this and will usually design them with extra power to make up for the potential loss due to the lack in box amplification. Something to keep in mind: try not to exceed 90% of the recommended RMS power rating, because driving up the power to the very maximum might over-power or blow your sub.
While the norm with boat subwoofers appears to be without enclosures, the market does offer an impressive selection of enclosed marine subs, either powered with no need for an external amp or unpowered, requiring an external amplifier. Included in this category are marine subs are bass tubes, which are water resistant enclosures. The cylindrical bass tube design saves space, and weather resistant mounting straps keeps your bass tube secure.
Have a look at our vast marine-subwoofer selection, where you'll find exactly what you need. As always and by all means, reach out to us with any questions and inquiries. We're here to help!