Polk Audio SWA500

Power amplifier for Polk CSW in-floor subwoofers

  • Polk Audio SWA500


  • Polk Audio SWA500



Our take on the Polk Audio SWA500

by Barry Montgomery
Polk Audio

This cool-running digital amplifier pumps out 250 watts of solid power to drive Polk's ingenious CSW100 or CSW200 in-floor subwoofers, or the or CSW155 in-wall sub. The SWA500 comes with custom sound-shaping circuit cards for each of the CSW subs. Plug the correct card into the amplifier to precisely tailor its output to your specific model. The resulting bass is deep, hard-hitting, and distortion-free.

The SWA500's standard chassis width lets you stack it neatly with your other audio/video components, or you can hide it away in a cabinet to reduce room clutter. This stable amplifier can also power a pair of either the CSW100s or CSW200s, for even bigger, stronger bass.

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  • 250 watts (mono) into 8 ohms, or 500 watts into 4 ohms
  • frequency response 15-200 Hz (-3 dB)
  • Class D digital amplifier design
  • continuously variable 40-120 Hz low-pass crossover
  • includes custom sound-shaping circuit cards for CSW100, CSW200 and CSW155 subwoofers
  • speaker-level and line-level inputs and outputs
  • unfiltered LFE (Low Frequency Effects) input for connection to a home theater receiver's subwoofer output
  • detachable AC power cord
  • 17"W x 4-1/16"H x 14-15/16"D
  • warranty: 3 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
Number of Channels 1
Power Output per Channel (8 ohms) 250
Power Output per Channel (6 ohms) ---
Power Output per Channel (4 ohms) 500
Frequency Response 15-200
THD 0%
Bridged Power per Channel N/A
Speaker Outputs 2
THX Certification No
Width (inches) 17
Height (inches) 4-1/16
Depth (inches) 15
Weight 17 pounds
Parts Warranty 3 Years
Labor Warranty 3 Years
Inputs & Outputs
Number of Inputs 1
Level Controls Yes
Speaker Connectors Binding posts
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • SWA500 Subwoofer amplifier
  • CSW100 SPEX card
  • CSW155 SPEX card
  • CSW200 SPEX card
  • 2 Rack mount brackets
  • 4 Machine screws
  • 7.75' AC power cord
  • Manual
  • Online product registration sheet

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.



Overview: The SWA500 amplifier is designed to be used with the following Polk in-floor/in-ceiling subwoofers: CSW100, CSW155 and CSW200. One SWA500 amplifier can power up to two subwoofers at the same time.

Note: The SWA500 cannot be used to power any other subwoofers.

Class D Amplifier: The SWA500 has a hybrid Class D amplifier that produces 250 watts RMS into 8 ohms and 500 watts RMS into 4 ohms.

SPEX Cards: The SWA500 comes with three SPEX Cards, one for the CSW100, one for the CSW155 and one for the CSW200. Each SPEX Card configures the EQ, crossover, and power control circuitry to match the appropriate subwoofer.

Variable Crossover: The amplifier has a built-in variable crossover that makes it easy to achieve a seamless blend with the main speakers, while the 24dB/octave low-pass filter prevents the subwoofer from being easily localized by the ear, increasing placement flexibility. The crossover point may be adjusted from 40-120 Hz.

Protection Circuitry: The SWA500 offers thermal, short circuit, and over-current protection.

Auto On/Off Sensing: In Auto mode, the amplifier automatically turns on when it senses a signal and turns off when a signal is not present.


Front Panel Controls:

  • Low-pass Knob: allows you to adjust the low-pass crossover point from 40-120 Hz
  • Volume Knob: allows you to adjust the volume level up or down until the bass level of your subwoofer matches the bass level of your speakers

Rear Panel Controls

  • Phase Switch: switches the polarity of the two speaker outputs; the correct setting is that which yields the fullest bass
  • Power Switch: allows you to choose one of the following power modes: Standby, Auto, or On


Rear Panel Connections:

  • Speaker Out (1 and 2): gold-plated binding posts; the binding posts are not 5-way because a plastic collar prevents their use with spade lugs. Both speaker outputs are wired in parallel and allow you to connect one or two subwoofers to the amplifier
  • Speaker In: gold-plated binding posts; the binding posts are not 5-way because a plastic collar prevents their use with spade lugs
  • Line In (filtered): left and right RCA audio jacks; use this configuration if you wish to set the subwoofer crossover point using the SWA500's low-pass control knob on the front panel
  • LFE In (unfiltered): single RCA audio jack; in this configuration, the SWA500's internal low-pass filter and front panel low-pass control knob will be bypassed
  • Line Out: left and right RCA audio jacks
  • SPEX Card: slot for the supplied SPEX Cards; a 7-pin connector plugs into the card and the card bolts into the back panel of the amplifier
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Polk Audio SWA500 Reviews

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5 out of 5


Written By Fred, St Augustine fl on Monday, April 08, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
Works perfect w/csw100
Adjust col at receiver, will run 2 subs
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Add accessories for the Polk Audio SWA500

You'll need speaker wire to get the signal from your new receiver to your speakers. UL-listed wire is specifically designed for in-wall installation. See all categories & accessories

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AudioQuest FLX-16/4 16-Gauge 4-Conductor In-Wall Speaker Cable UL-approved for in-wall use; direct-burial rated (125 feet)
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AudioQuest NRG-2 High-quality replacement AC power cable (6 ft.)
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