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Subwoofer wiring diagrams

How to hook up your subs for powerful bass

In this article, we'll help you find the best way to connect your subs to your amp. We begin with some basic – and important – subwoofer and amplifier terms. But if you want, you can skip straight to the wiring diagrams.

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There are many ways to wire subwoofers and amplifiers together. The ideal setup is when subs and amps match their impedance and power capabilities to optimize performance.

Power with care

The diagrams show wiring configurations for amplifiers and subwoofers that have already been matched for power capabilities. You should never connect subs to an amp that could give them more than their total watts RMS power ratings — that could damage the subs or the amp. See How to match subs and amps for further guidance.

Here's an example diagram for connecting two 4-ohm DVC subs to a mono-channel amplifier:

2 DVC-4

Important subwoofer wiring terms

The diagrams are below, but first let's explain a few important terms.

SVC

A single voice coil sub with two wiring terminal posts, one marked positive and the other marked negative.

DVC

A dual voice coil sub with four wiring terminal posts, two positive terminals and two negative terminals. This gives you more options for wiring the sub in different situations.

Ohms

The impedance load, or resistance against the amplifier's output signal, of a subwoofer coil. Subwoofer voice coils usually come in 2-ohm, 4-ohm, or 8-ohm impedances. The value is often found printed on the magnet, if you're unsure of what you have.

Series and parallel wiring

These terms refer to two ways of routing the speaker wires to properly manage the overall impedance load. Whether you need to use a series wiring configuration, parallel wiring, or a mix of both, our diagrams will show you exactly the best way to wire your speakers, without using confusing technical terms.

When you wire dual voice coils and multiple subs together, the resulting total impedance is not always simple to figure out or practical to use. In the example diagram above, the voice coils of each sub are wired together in series, while the two subs themselves are wired together in parallel.

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Amplifier output

An amplifier will put out more power through a low-impedance sub than it will through a high-impedance sub. But a lower impedance also means more stress on the amp. Some amplifiers (marked “low-imp” in the links below) can even drive a 1-ohm load safely, and achieve maximum output. Refer to your amp manufacturer or owner's manual to determine whether or not yours can handle a low-impedance load.

Bridged mode

Bridging an amp combines two amplifier channels into one, to get more power. The disadvantage of bridging is that bridged channels can't drive impedance loads as low as they can when unbridged. The proper way to bridge the amp is usually indicated at the amp's speaker wire terminals. For more information, read our How to bridge an amplifier article.

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Wire

All the wires depicted in the Subwoofer Wiring Diagrams are speaker wires. For wiring subwoofers, we recommend using wires of 12- to 16-gauge in size.

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Woman installing a car amp

Find the right wiring diagram

Now, let's get those subs hooked up! All of our wiring diagrams are listed below. It's a long list. To make it easier to find the one you need, select which type of amplifier you have:

From there, select the diagram for the number and type of subs you have. Depending on your gear, there might be more than one way to safely wire the subs.

A note about multi-channel amplifiers

5-channel amplifiers are a popular way to get "full system" power in one box — four channels to drive your four speakers, plus a fifth, higher-powered channel for your subwoofer. 6- and 8-channel amps are similar and offer even more flexibility. When it comes to connecting subwoofers to these amps, keep it simple:

  • If you're connecting your sub(s) to the subwoofer channel, treat it like a mono-channel amplifier.
  • If you're bridging two channels of your amp, simply treat it as a bridged 4-channel amp.

Mono, 1-Channel Amplifier

One Subwoofer

1 SVC 2-ohm sub, mono amp: 2 ohms

1 SVC 4-ohm sub, mono amp: 4 ohms

1 SVC 8-ohm sub, mono amp: 8 ohms

1 DVC 2-ohm sub, mono amp: 4 ohms

1 DVC 2-ohm sub, mono low-imp amp: 1 ohm

1 DVC 4-ohm sub, mono amp: 2 ohms

Two Subwoofers

2 SVC 2-ohm subs, mono amp: 4 ohms

2 SVC 2-ohm subs, mono low-imp amp: 1 ohm

2 SVC 4-ohm subs, mono amp: 2 ohms

2 SVC 8-ohm subs, mono amp: 4 ohms

2 DVC 2-ohm subs, mono amp: 2 ohms

2 DVC 4-ohm subs, mono amp: 4 ohms

2 DVC 4-ohm subs, mono low-imp amp: 1 ohm

Three Subwoofers

3 SVC 2-ohm subs, mono amp: 6 ohms

3 SVC 4-ohm subs, mono low-imp amp: 1.3 ohms

3 SVC 8-ohm subs, mono amp: 2.7 ohms

3 DVC 2-ohm subs, mono amp: 3 ohms

3 DVC 2-ohm subs, mono low-imp amp: 1.3 ohms

3 DVC 4-ohm subs, mono amp: 2.7 ohms

Four Subwoofers

4 SVC 2-ohm subs, mono amp: 2 ohms

4 SVC 4-ohm subs, mono amp: 4 ohms

4 SVC 4-ohm subs, mono low-imp amp: 1 ohm

4 SVC 8-ohm subs, mono amp: 2 ohms

4 DVC 2-ohm subs, mono amp: 4 ohms

4 DVC 2-ohm subs, mono low-imp amp: 1 ohm

4 DVC 4-ohm subs, mono amp: 2 ohms

2-Channel Amplifier

One Subwoofer

1 SVC 2-ohm sub, 2ch low-imp amp: 2 ohms

1 SVC 4-ohm sub, 2ch amp: 4 ohms

1 SVC 8-ohm sub, 2ch amp: 8 ohms

1 DVC 2-ohm sub, 2ch amp: 4 ohms

1 DVC 4-ohm sub, 2ch amp: 8 ohms

1 DVC 4-ohm sub, 2ch low-imp amp: 2 ohms

Two Subwoofers

2 SVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 2 ohms

2 SVC 4-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

2 SVC 4-ohm subs, 2ch low-imp amp: 2 ohms

2 SVC 8-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 4 ohms

2 DVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

2 DVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch low-imp amp: 2 ohms

2 DVC 4-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 2 ohms

2 DVC 4-ohm subs, bridged 2ch amp: 4 ohms

Three Subwoofers

3 SVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 6 ohms

3 SVC 8-ohm subs, 2ch low-imp amp: 2.7 ohms

3 DVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch low-imp amp: 3 ohms

3 DVC 4-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 6 ohms

3 DVC 4-ohm subs, 2ch low-imp amp: 2.7 ohms

Four Subwoofers

4 SVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

4 SVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch low-imp amp: 2 ohms

4 SVC 4-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 2 ohms

4 SVC 8-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

4 DVC 2-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 2 ohms

4 DVC 4-ohm subs, 2ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

4-Channel Amplifier

Two Subwoofers

2 SVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

2 SVC 8-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 2 x 8 ohms

2 DVC 2-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

2 DVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 2 x 8 ohms

2 DVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch low-imp amp: 2 x 2 ohms

Three Subwoofers

3 SVC 2-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 3 x 2 ohms

3 SVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 3 x 4 ohms

3 DVC 2-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 3 x 4 ohms

3 DVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 3 x 2 ohms

Four Subwoofers

4 SVC 2-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 4 x 2 ohms

4 SVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 4 x 4 ohms

4 SVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch low-imp amp: 2 x 2 ohms

4 SVC 8-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 2 x 4 ohms

4 DVC 2-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 4 x 4 ohms

4 DVC 2-ohm subs, 4ch low-imp amp: 2 x 2 ohms

4 DVC 4-ohm subs, 4ch amp: 4 x 2 ohms

Start building your bass system today

Now that you've seen how to wire subwoofers and amplifiers together, you can knowledgeably shop Crutchfield's extensive selection of subwoofers and amplifiers. We also carry amp wiring kits, speaker wire, RCA cables, capacitors, and much more.

Contact us by phone, chat, or email and an Advisor will help you get what you need. If you want to learn more about amplifier systems, check out our Amplifier Installation Guide.

Last updated 5/19/2022
  • Christopher Clay from Griffin

    Posted on 4/14/2022

    I have 2 kicker comp r subs.. 1000 watt max and 500rms each. I have an 800 watt amp powering them right now. But wanting more power. Can't really find a reasonably priced 1000 watt amp. My question is could I use a 1200 watt amp?

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/14/2022

    Christopher, We do not recommend connecting a sub to an amplifier that could send it more power than it can handle. Often, the sub will blow because of being over-driven, and will not be covered by warranty. If your subs are the DVC 2-ohm models, a Kenwood KAC-9106D can send them 1000 watts RMS at 2-ohms. If you have the DVC 4-ohm subs, a Hertz Mille ML Power 1 can send out 1000 watts RMS at 1-ohm.
  • Nicholas from Bar Harbor, Maine

    Posted on 4/12/2022

    Hello! i recently acquired two old school JL audio subs and one is a 4 ohm and the other is a 6 ohm. They are 12w3v2-d4 and 12w3v2-d6 subs. Would i somehow be able to use these together? thanks in advance

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/12/2022

    Nicholas, You should never connect subs of different impedances together to the same amplifier - the lower impedance sub will get more power than the higher impedance sub, resulting in unbalanced sound levels and potentially blown subs. Get separate amps for your different subs.
  • Daniel

    Posted on 3/30/2022

    Hi There! I have an Targa TA 4100.4 amp and want to match it with a MBQ PB12 150W DVC-2 8" Active Subwoofer. Will it work? Kind regards

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/30/2022

    Daniel, That powered subwoofer will work in almost any system, even one with a 4-channel amp powering the speakers. You cannot power the sub with an amp, because the sub already has its own amp built in.
  • Jonathan Palomino from Manteca Ca

    Posted on 3/23/2022

    Love what you guys do here longtime customer! My question is could a Kicker 46CXA1200.1 power up two solo baric Kicker 44TL7S102 in their respective boxes? Of course the big three would be needed

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/25/2022

    Jonathan, It's almost as if those items were made for each other - (they were). The two DVC 2-ohm subs rated for 600 watts RMS each, 1200W together, will work great with the 1200 watts RMS at 2 ohms amp.
  • Rich S from Tacoma

    Posted on 3/22/2022

    Hello! Since I see others are asking about specific scenarios, I will too! What would be my best wiring option for my 2-2ohm dvc subs & monoblock amp combo... 2011 Mercedes c300 Sealed dual 12" box 2-Rockford Fosgate 12" P2D212 1- Memphis 16-PRD1000.1 Also what size inline fuse should be used with this setup? I have a 100A & a 200A & not sure which is appropriate.

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/23/2022

    Rich, That gear will work best together wired like this diagram. That amp's specs recommend 4-gauge power and ground leads with a 150-amp fuse, but a 100A fuse will work safely.
  • Chris from Lebanon

    Posted on 3/21/2022

    Hey Buck, Afternoon and hope you and yours are all safe. I have 2 Scar SVR-D4s and I have a few amps that I can wire to them. To you, for best, most crisp sound, would you wire them to an amp at 1200w RMS at 4 ohms and have them wired to match that impedance, or keep current configuration and have them wired at 1 ohm, connected to 600w at 1 ohm. 1200w is A/B and 600 is D. Thank you in advance.

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/21/2022

    Chris, I can find no reliable RMS power specifications for the subs you mention, so I can't tell you what power would make them sound good or blow up.
  • Nathan from Mukilteo

    Posted on 3/12/2022

    I have 2 mojo7 12" subs that can handle 1 and 2 ohms. 1500rms 3000peak. If I obtain a 1 ohm stable amp, but I want to wire the subs up as 2 ohms, how can I do that? Or is that possible. Specs say its a triple voice coil, but all i can find diagrams for are dvc. Heard 2 ohm loads are cleaner sound. So would i also need to look for a 4500w amp 1 ohm stable to fully power those two subs?

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/14/2022

    Nathan, You can wire those subs together like this diagram, with each sub set to its 2-ohm configuration. Switch each sub over to its 1-ohm configuration and the total impedance will then be 2-ohms. These two subs will work best with an amplifier that can put out up to 3000 watts RMS at 4-ohms or 2-ohms. Like a Memphis VIV3000.1. A subwoofer system's impedance has nothing to do with and won't affect the quality of the sound.
  • Mika from Telemark, Norway

    Posted on 3/9/2022

    I plan to buy 2 gas gpp250D1 i have a 3kw Stetsom monoblock 1ohm, how could i wire this?

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/11/2022

    Mika, That amplifier is powerful enough to blow those subs apart. I could show you a subwoofer diagram, but if yours were to blow after wiring them that way because the ratings don't match, then you'd be pretty unhappy.
  • nick from eau Claire

    Posted on 3/8/2022

    I have a phenix gold rx2 1000.1 amp and 3 4ohm svc kickers how would I run them at their full potential amp rated 1156watt at 1ohm

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/9/2022

    Nick, I could show you a subwoofer diagram for three 4-ohm subs, but if yours were to blow after wiring them that way because the ratings don't match, then you'd be pretty unhappy. Not knowing exactly which subwoofers you have make it impossible to give advice on how to wire them together safely. If you want a question answered about your system, you must identify your equipment by model number as well as brand name.
  • Greg from Bend OR

    Posted on 2/22/2022

    Thank you I really love the information appreciate the input.

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