Energy ESW-M8

Ultra-compact powered subwoofer

  • Energy ESW-M8


  • Energy ESW-M8

    Front with grille on

  • Energy ESW-M8

    Shown next to the smaller ESW-M6

  • Energy ESW-M8

    Shown with grille off

Item #: 732ESWM8

Review Summary

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Original price $299.99
We recommend this similar item, or shop all Powered Subwoofers

Our take on the Energy ESW-M8

by Kristen Schaub

Why add a powered subwoofer?

A powered subwoofer gives you bass you can feel as well as hear. Our customers love the depth and impact their subs add to music and movies. We hear comments like "it brings out sounds I didn't know existed in discs I've watched a million times." Powered subwoofers aren't just for big bass that rattles your picture frames; they can also deliver tight, accurate lows. If you haven't shopped for a powered sub in a while, you might be surprised at how small they get. Look for an ultra-compact model if you want to tuck your sub away under an end table or in a corner.

Energy's ESW-M8 is so small, you may not even notice it — until you crank it up! This ultra-compact subwoofer provides up to 1,200 watts of room-rocking bass from a cabinet that measures less than a cubic foot. You'll be impressed by the clean, accurate lows the 8" woofer and dual 8" passive radiators add to your favorite music, video games, and movies. Plus, the woofer cones use proprietary Ribbed Elliptical Surrounds™ to increase efficiency and fight sound-muddying distortion.

Controls on the back of the cabinet make it a cinch to add as little or as much bass as you like, and to seamlessly blend the sub in with the rest of your system. The high-gloss finish gives this sub a polished look that complements most flat-panel displays.

See more info on this item


  • 300-watt RMS amplifier (1,200 watts peak)
  • 8" front-firing woofer and dual 8" passive radiators
  • anodized aluminum cones with Ribbed Elliptical Surrounds™
  • frequency response 36-200 Hz (±3dB)
  • continuously variable 50-200 Hz crossover
  • adjustable phase control
  • line-level/subwoofer and speaker-level inputs
  • auto on/off mode
  • high gloss black finish
  • 9-1/16"W x 9-3/8"H x 11-13/16"D
  • weight: 16.7 lbs.
  • warranty: 5 years speaker, 3 years amp
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

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

Features and Specs
Enclosure Passive Radiator
Video Shielded No
Woofer Size (inches) 8
Woofer Composition Anodized aluminum
Firing Direction Front
Wireless No
Preamp-Level Inputs Yes
Speaker-Level Inputs No
Speaker-Level Outputs No
Low-Pass Crossover Freq 50-200Hz
High-Pass Crossover Freq None
Phase Switch Yes
Amplifier Output (watts) 300
Frequency Response 36-200 Hz
Height (inches) 9-1/16
Width (inches) 9-3/8
Depth (inches) 11-13/16
Weight 16.7 lbs
Speaker Parts Warranty 5 Years
Speaker Labor Warranty 5 Years
Amplifier Parts Warranty 3 Years
Amplifier Labor Warranty 3 Years
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • ESW-M8 powered subwoofer
  • 6' AC power cord (polarized C7 plug)
  • Cleaning cloth
  • Owner's Manual

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.



Single Active/Dual Passive Design: The Energy ESW-M8 has three 8" black anodized aluminum cones (one woofer and two passive radiators). The woofer is driven by an efficient 300 watt (1200 dynamic power) amplifier. Together, the woofer and passive radiators deliver pure, powerful, accurate bass for your music, movies, and games.

Surrounds: The front-firing woofer and side-firing passive radiators each have inverted Ribbed Elliptical Surrounds. This design eliminates surround distortion, causing the subwoofer to play lower with greater output and fidelity.

Finish: The furniture-grade enclosure is hand finished to a high-gloss piano black lacquer finish to ensure durability.


Volume Control: The rotary volume control lets you set the loudness of the subwoofer relative to the rest of the speaker system. After the volume is set, the subwoofer's volume can be controlled along with the other speakers by the master volume control on the receiver or preamplifier.

Low-pass Filter: The ESW-M8 has a built-in 50-200 Hz, continually-variable low-pass filter that allows perfect blending with your other speakers. If desired, you can bypass the low-pass filter so you can use the crossover built into your A/V receiver or surround processor.

Phase Control: The unit's rotary phase control lets you fine tune the subwoofer's phase from 0° to +360°. A mark is provided at 180°.

Power Modes: The subwoofer features three power modes: Off, On, and Auto. The main power switch turns the subwoofer on or off. When switched to On, the position of the power mode switch determines whether the subwoofer's power is on continually or turns on automatically when a signal is detected on the audio input. When no signal is detected, the sub's amp will automatically turn off after a few minutes.


Inputs: The ESW-M8 features a pair of gold-plated RCA line in/sub in jacks. If you are connecting the subwoofer to a receiver or processor with a LFE or Subwoofer preamp output, you should connect a single RCA cable to the LFE/left input.

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Energy ESW-M8 Reviews

Average Customer Review:

7 people say:

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4 out of 5

Energy ESW-M8

Written By Anonymous, Kirkland, WA on Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
The first one that I received from Crutchfield did not work. The unit would power on but no sound came through the woofer. I called customer service and they tried diagnosing the problem over the phone. The tech diagnosed the woofer as being defective. The exchange process was very straight forward and took less than a week. The second woofer worked like a charm. The size of this unit is very small and I'm hiding it behind my flat screen tv. I am using it in a very large room which is also open into our kitchen. If I had more space I would have gone for a larger woofer but for the size, this thing sounds really good.
Small size, good price, very nice cabinet
Not much considering its small size
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5 out of 5

Great woofers for satellite speakers

Written By Chamo, Lawrence, KS on Monday, May 13, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
I was looking for a sub-woofer that could blend with my cambridge Minx 10/21's crossover requirements (~160 Hz) and after doing some research i decided to give this one a try. Let me say that I first considered Crutchfield because they had the best price and their customer service is as good as anybody; also the CA woofers were not an option due to their high price.

Back on the sub-woofer. I still need to spend more time calibrating my system and improving woofer placement, but so far my experience regarding the quality of this 8" has been pretty good and it has lived to my expectations. It blends just nice with the high crossover freq required by the satellite speakers and it has been running for maybe 25 hrs. which means that it still needs some "break-in" time (according to manufacturer) to be up to full performance level. I don't play my system at very loud levels because I live in an apartment and I usually have to raise the woofer level when playing at low volume (hopefully better placement will help with this) and decrease it back at mid-higher volumes.

the quality is superb, the looks are amazing (blends perfect with the CA satellites), the crossover bypass allows for great woofer management (a must for me in this setup) and its small size helps when trying to place it in different places around the living room.

I definitely recommend it for satellite systems in small-medium rooms.
Quality, Crossover bypass, looks, price.
None so far
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5 out of 5

Suprise for the price!!!

Written By TCo, Houston, TX on Monday, May 06, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
Excellent little sub for the price. Well build quality, and the design is fitted perfectly in the cabinet with front active subwoofer and two sides radiant. We connect it to the sub-out of the Yamaha RXV-763. After let the receiver do the automatic calibration then just need to adjust the DB level from the receiver to the sub our taste then we are all set. Do not expect the sound quality of the high end and high price sub, but it is give us what we need for a family room entertainment.
Price to performance and size ratio
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3 out of 5

Quality concerns

Written By Mike, Chiago IL on Monday, March 11, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
This little sub worked great with a pair of PSB PS-1 powered desktop speakers for about a week, then started to distort badly before the volume went out, no output at all half way up. Aesthetically and sonically it's a great match for the PSB's both are gloss black. Have a replacement on the way, hope this one is better quality from Energy. As usual Crutchfield stands behind your purchase, replacing it with no problem. Crutchfield is great to buy from.
in my application with the PSB powered speakers connected to my iMac, playing music it's a great match. Gloss black matches the PSB's. Output from the sub is perfect for this set up.
first one volume failed, distorted badly, after a week of working fine. Quality control at Energy may be an issue. Hold on to that receipt and shipping box!
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5 out of 5

It's not the size that counts

Written By Andy, Los Angeles, CA on Monday, March 04, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
Huge subwoofers are so yesterday. I wanted a compact sub that was good for music and home theater. i found it. This has tight and punchy mid bass, and shakes the walls when watching a Blu-ray.
Beautiful finish, outstanding bass, and high quality build.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Good bang ffor the buck

Written By OZZY, MPLS MN on Saturday, January 05, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
I bought two of these on a whim vs. the super cube 2000 (7.2 system). I had my reservations due to the Hz and wattage rating, but I've been blown away by the punch!!! You can't go wrong for the money!
Bang for the $
None, very happy!
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

This little guy is amazing

Written By Manny, Bronx, NY on Monday, January 30, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
I've had a lot of subwoofers in my lifetime but never be like this. So small innovative, compact and powerful all in one unit. It's so small it doesn't even look like a subwoofer. Whoever decides to purchase this little guy will not be disappointed, take my word for it.
Small, compact, powerful and gorgeous
Piano black is beautiful, if your not into looks don't purchase this subwoofer because you could see fingerprints but if you don't mind cleaning a little the detail and shine is amazing
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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Add accessories for the Energy ESW-M8

Use a high-quality subwoofer cable for bass that draws you into your movies and music. A cable is not included with this sub. See all categories & accessories

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AudioQuest G2 Speaker Cable 16-gauge cable, connectors optional (50 feet, Gray)
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For a more in-depth review and enhanced detailed information on the Energy ESW-M8, please visit the Crutchfield website product page (/ISEO-rccbcspd/p_732ESWM8/Energy-ESW-M8.html ).