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Mono subwoofer amplifier — 500 watts RMS x 1 at 2 ohms

49 Reviews | 10 questions - 43 answers

Item # 236THND5K1

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Our take on the MTX THUNDER500.1

You'll get some serious MTX bass mojo when you put the MTX THUNDER500.1 mono amp in your car. This compact amp will drive your subwoofer setup with up to 500 watts RMS. Hook this amp up to a nice set of subs, and you'll hear sounds you've never heard before, even in your favorite songs. And this little bruiser wil truly fit in places where amps don't usually go.

Upgrade your power for better sound

You'll get some serious MTX bass mojo when you put the MTX THUNDER500.1 mono amp in your car. This compact amp will drive your subwoofer setup with up to 500 watts RMS. Hook this amp up to a nice set of subs, and you'll hear sounds you've never heard before, even in your favorite songs. And this little bruiser wil truly fit in places where amps don't usually go.

MTX THUNDER 500.1 control panel

MTX THUNDER 500.1 control panel

Advanced tone control

You can adjust the low-pass filter and subsonic filter to get the best possible sound from your sub and enclosure. In the unlikely event you want to bump up the bass a little, you also have access to a selectable bass boost.

Confused about impedance? Check out our article on matching subs and amps.

Nice amp small size, powers 2 10' kicker dual vc great

James, Albuquerque, NM

What's in the Box:

  • Mono subwoofer amplifier
  • 4mm Allen wrench
  • 2mm Allen wrench
  • Four 1/2" Self-tapping screws
  • Owner's manual (English/ Spanish/ Portuguese/ French)

Product Highlights:

  • mono subwoofer amplifier
  • 300 watts RMS x 1 at 4 ohms (500 watts RMS x 1 at 2 ohms)
  • variable low-pass filter (40-220 Hz, 12 dB/octave)
  • selectable bass boost (0, 6, 12 dB at 50 Hz)
  • variable subsonic filter (20-50 Hz, 12 dB/octave)
  • Class-D amplifier design
  • frequency response: 20-220 Hz
  • preamp inputs
  • 4-gauge power and ground leads and a 60-amp fuse recommended — wiring and hardware not included with amplifier
  • no onboard fuses — when installing multiple amps in a system, an additional 60-amp in-line fuse between the distribution block and the amplifier is recommended
  • 9-1/2"W x 2-1/4"H x 6-5/16"D
  • warranty: 2 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

MTX THUNDER500.1 Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(49 Reviews)
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Hands-on research

Product Research



Overview: The MTX Thunder500.1 is a mono Class D subwoofer amplifier. It has aluminum heatsinks to dissipate heat generated by the amplifier. The amp produces 300 watts RMS x 1 at 4Ω and 500 watts RMS x 1 at 2Ω.

Gain: The amp's rotary gain control is continuously variable from 200mV to 5V to match the output of the source unit.

Protection Circuits: The Thunder500.1 provides protection against overheating, under voltage, and electrical short circuits.

Crossovers: The amp features a built-in low-pass crossover, with a continuously variable cutoff frequency of 40-220Hz; the crossover cannot be bypassed. Additionally, the amp has a subsonic filter to remove ultra-low frequencies, thus minimizing wasted power and protecting speakers not capable of reproducing those frequencies. It has a variable crossover frequency of 20-50Hz.

Bass Boost: The Thunder500.1's bass boost circuit is centered at 50 Hz. It can be set to 0dB, +6dB, or +12dB.

Electronic Bass Control (EBC): An Electronic Bass Control (EBC) module is available directly from MTX that allows you to adjust the bass output of the amplifier from the front of the vehicle.


Power Terminals: The Thunder500.1 features set screw terminals for power, ground and remote turn-on. The power and ground terminals will accommodate up to 4 AWG wire, while the remote turn-on terminal will accept up to 10 AWG wire. The set screws are loosened/tightened with the supplied Allen wrenches. MTX recommends the use of 4 AWG power and ground wires.

Note: The Amplifier is not equipped with an internal fuse. An external 60-amp fuse (not included) must be installed on the power wire. If the system has only this amp and a wiring kit is used that includes a fuse with a value other than 60-amps, the original should be replaced with a 60-amp fuse.

Speaker Connections: The amplifier is equipped with two pair of set screw terminal speaker outputs. The outputs are internally wired in parallel, making it easy to connect two subwoofers. Each terminal will accommodate up to 10 AWG bare wire and is loosened/tightened with the supplied Allen wrench.

EBC Port: The amp has a 3.5mm mini-jack for plugging in an optional Electronic Bass Control (EBC) module, currently available directly from MTX.

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 verify what’s in the box, 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.

Q & A

Customer Q&A

Crutchfield asked  
Why did you buy this?

Running a DVC 4 ohm subwoofer at 500 RMS [ Joseph  May 12, 2017 ]
Positive reviews, good balance of feature and power for the price. [ Russell  Apr 07, 2017 ]
good price for the power. we will see how it works [ C  Dec 27, 2016 ]
Can't beat the price ! MTX makes good audio equipment and this was just what I needed to power my 10" sub ! [ Adrian  Dec 08, 2016 ]
Tech support was very helpful in my decision [ Michael  Dec 07, 2016 ]
I flat out love MTX amps. They don't break the bank, but they put out good, clean, consistent power. I've been using them for 20 years now and have never had a single problem. I picked the 500.1 to push one 10 in my work truck. It's my first 500.1, and my hopes are high. [ Matt  Dec 04, 2016 ]
Great price. Hooked up a basic system for my daughter in her vehicle. Have other MTX equipment and have never had any problems. [ PEDRO  Nov 25, 2016 ]
My other system components are all mtx [ keith  Nov 11, 2016 ]
Matched my price point for the power output and it has an infrasonic filter. [ Michael  Aug 26, 2016 ]
kevin was a lot of help Kevin's Bio: [ Jacob  Jul 09, 2016 ]
I needed a amp that can do at least 400w rms to run my MTX 5500s 10" [ Marc  Jul 04, 2016 ]
Good reviews [ Nathan  Jun 29, 2016 ]
Nice RMS power and compact [ DAVID  Apr 12, 2016 ]
After carful research this was recommended for the mtx sub box. [ sidekixx1  Dec 05, 2015 ]

10 questions already asked

Thanks for your question. For information on selecting the best amp for your subs I would recommend reaching out to an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to help determine the differences between the amp models and help you make the best choice for your system. [ Kenny  Mar 06, 2017 ]  Staff
Attention to details, as long as your focal speakers are below the RMS criteria in the description: 300 watts RMS x 1 at 4 ohms (500 watts RMS x 1 at 2 ohms). [ MICHAEL  Jun 01, 2016 ]
I have it pushing 2-10 inch MTX and it does great. This amp is amazing for its size. I would buy again. 5 star rating in my book. Good luck [ Jim  May 31, 2016 ]
Yes [ Kevin  May 30, 2016 ]
Not sure, but it works great with 2 -10 inch duel cone Polk speakers [ Geoffrey  May 30, 2016 ]
Easily. Have it set with 2 12" subs in custom box. Incredible push and bass [ STEPHEN B  May 30, 2016 ]
Yes, wire them up for 2ohm and it will push them good. [ Rob  Mar 12, 2016 ]
Yes my friend it does... [ Mike  Mar 12, 2016 ]
It'll definitely move them. Mine is hooked up to one 10" kicker cvr. Powered all the way up, with the bass boost down though. Depending how much cash you want to spend. This amp will work and isn't that much cash, the reason I bought it. If you have money to spend I'd go with a larger amp, since you have two kickers. It's a great amp though. Hooked it up last year and haven't had to do anything to it since. [ Matthew  Mar 11, 2016 ]
I am using the amp to push 2 JL AUDIO 8's. The amp gives the JL's all that they want. Amp is small easy to install in tight spaces I have never had the subs distort. I liked the amp because it does exactly what I want it to do at half the price of some. I have a single MTX amp running 2 JL Audo 10's ported box and they rock. [ JASON A  Feb 29, 2016 ]
Thanks for your question. For information on comparing two or more models I would recommend reaching out to an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to help determine the differences and help you make the best choice for your system and your budget. [ Krissy  Sep 01, 2015 ]  Staff
I had the same problem with a Kenwood stereo that was professionally installed and it came out to be a loose contact on one of my door speakers [ Geoffrey  May 30, 2016 ]
Chad check to see if u have a pinched wire somewhere [ BRUCE  Mar 17, 2015 ]
Had the exact same problem man, had to go crutch field and get mine exchanged. [ CHRISTIAN J  Mar 17, 2015 ]
Check your incoming power or the ground. This happen toe on both. The battery connection was there just not good. Also my ground did the same thing.. Good connections are usually your problem. Dan [ DAN  Mar 16, 2015 ]
Could be a bad ground [ CHRISTOPHER J  Mar 16, 2015 ]
Check you're ground and make sure no wires are touching [ REGINALD O  Mar 15, 2015 ]
Mine is doing same thing. Going to send it for warranty [ GREG  Mar 15, 2015 ]
If you purchased the product from Crutchfield, feel free to contact our Tech Support team. They can walk you through the settings on the product and see if there may be a fix. Our toll-free Tech Support number is printed on your invoice, and is also available under the "My Orders" tab in the "My Account" section of our website. If you did not purchase the unit from Crutchfield, then you may want to contact the manufacturer. You can also post your question in our forums: Or try our online support center: [ Krissy  Mar 15, 2015 ]  Staff
Mine seems to run quite cool. It lives in the dusty hot enviroment of the back of my cj7. So far so good. [ DAN  Nov 22, 2014 ]
it's an amp. YES it gets hot. YES it has thermal protection just for that. This is a class D amp. screw it down and rock on! IF it gets hot and clips...... Instead of mounting it directly to the floorpan (usual in a jeep) I would recommend mounting it to a piece of 1/4" or 1/2" thick piece of aluminum(to dissipate heat) WITH.... a 1/2" spacer to the floor so you can have air circulation. crank it loud!! [ GREG L  Nov 22, 2014 ]
I have found that his amp runs very cool. I'm running a two ohm load on it and I have had no troubles with it getting hot at all. [ SCOTT  Nov 22, 2014 ]
It runs cool I live in Texas and I've had no issues. [ REGINALD O  Nov 22, 2014 ]
I live in Texas and summers get 115 to 120 all the time I ride no ac and never has had an issue great amp for the size [ ELIZABETH E  Nov 22, 2014 ]
I purchased this amp to use in my boat. It is in the front ski locker and since I've had this amp I have never had a problem with it shutting down due to heat. We use this amp in hot weather and all day long while on the water. Now we don't have any issue with dust on the water. Hope this helps. [ Andrew  Nov 22, 2014 ]
A, you are getting it given to you. So who cares? B, a car trunk in the summer gets far hotter than the desert an it still works fine so i think you will be ok! [ BRANDON  Nov 22, 2014 ]
I live in new England where it gets hot & humid. had this amp in the trunk of my car & on 95 degree days with 90% humidity I never had any problems with it over heating seems like it was always cool. [ BRUCE  Nov 22, 2014 ]
Thanks everyone for the answers. I wired it at 8 and amp runs cool, sound is great and still haven't done tuning to the head unit. Also clipping even at max level before distortion is gone, I'm using a clarion cz-102 so 35-37 is prime max level. Going to be working on tuning the parametric eq, sub level and magna bass. Oh and the vehicle is a 02 Silverado ss, single cab. Sub is in a custom sealed truck box with a little under 1cubic ft(smaller then recommended but quality is great seeing as box was tuned for super low frequency). Currently running a small 10 awg wiring kit with fuse that came with the truck, next upgrade is a 4 gauge kit and a capacitor just to ensure the clipping at 2 ohms wasn't a power-related issue. As is the sound quality is outstanding and as usual MTX didn't disappoint, kicker components are working ideal and taking the risk trying out clarions new line of decks was not a bad idea. [ MTXaudioUser  Mar 04, 2014 ]
This amp can operate fine with a 8 ohm load, but I have no way of knowing the power output... I would guess that it would be in the 200 watt range.... [ GREG  Mar 03, 2014 ]
Yes it will run @ 8 ohm fine. I am curious about the amp clipping with the 2 ohm load. Have you measured the resistance of the speakers to verify the load is 2 ohms? This amp works fine @ 2 ohm provided the input signal is NOT LINE LEVEL. Typically if you are using line level the distortion causing the amp to clip is coming from your head unit's less than desirable amplifier sending it downstream. Output @ 8ohm = 160 RMS (rough estimate didn't do the math) [ GREG L  Mar 02, 2014 ]
No it will damage the amp. [ REGINALD O  Mar 02, 2014 ]
I have this amp pushing two rockford fosgate dual coil 12's that are wired in a 2 ohm circuit. The best way to wire this is solely going to depend on your subs. single or dual coil? system was installed by a professional shop and I went ahead and bought a pretty beefy wiring kit to make sure the components were going to last even if I decided to go up to about 1000W at 2 ohms. Right now it's only 500, but meh, I like the way it sounds and feels so it's all good. If you aren't sure what you are doing might could take it to a car pro shop and ask for advice or search around on forums? I looked at a bunch of forums before I decided to just spend the 150 bucks to have the amp&subs fully installed by the place(including the 80 dollar 4 gauge and 12 gauge wire compenent kit with a fuse and everything). [ PRESTON  Jan 18, 2014 ]
There are hook ups for the wires on the back of the amp itself. As far as placement, it's more of a question of personal preference. Some people like to wire the amp up in the trunk. I prefer mine under the passenger seat, that way I can adjust it without having to dig around in my trunk. [ Syrus  Dec 30, 2013 ]
If you're already on the internet all you have to do is look it up. In fact, Crutchfield has articles that can help you. ( Google "basic car audio electronics". It will link you to a site called bcae1. It is a very god resource. [ JUSTIN  Dec 30, 2013 ]
I'll try to awnser best I can. Which wires are you talking about? Power wires, signal wires form the radio to the amp, or speaker wires. I ran my power wire from the battery under the car, along the frame and up thru the floor where I mounted the amp. Using an inline fuse near the battery and one close to the amp because the amp is not fused. The blue wire to turn the amp on and the RCA cables I ran along the door sill. ( if you run the power beside the RCA cables you will get an annoying buzz or whine in the speakers. ) I hope this helps. There are also wiring diagrams with the amp if I remember correctly that will show you where the wires connect to the amp. And if all else fails the tech people at Crutchfield are awesome and can walk you thru it. I put that amp in my daughters jeep liberty and have been more than happy with it :-) [ GEORGE  Dec 29, 2013 ]
Umm no clue I did it a while ago... Haha sorry man! [ JORDAN M  Dec 29, 2013 ]
The correct way [ JEFF  Dec 28, 2013 ]
Well i used a 4ga for the bat 8ga for ground 16 ga for the remote signal and 12 ga for the subwoofer. Remember the bat cable have to go directly to the battery the remote goes to the blue lead to your head unit and the ground cable should go to a unpainted metal surface in your car. This amp does not have a built in fuse so you need to install a 60 Amp fuse. I recommend closest to the battery as posiible. If you need any more help or pics let me know. Have a good day! [ ERNIE J  Dec 28, 2013 ]
With the design of the terminals the best option is to simply strip the ends of your wire and insert them without any additional hardware or preparation. Very secure connection and protected against shorting as long as you strip the appropriate amount (1/2 inch or so) which gives proper insertion depth while also ensuring there is no bare wire extending beyond the housing. If your speaker wire is thin gage you may need to strip a bit more and fold it back over itself to ensure enough thickness for a secure clamp. Other than that, don't waste any $$ on additional connection accessories. [ TIMOTHY S  Dec 28, 2013 ]
Well, I'm using a MTX Terminator Series box, and the subs were already installed, all I had to do was buy a wiring kit. [ PETER D  Dec 28, 2013 ]
The amp has nothing to do with getting down to 28Hz. That will be limited to your subs, enclosure, and installation. [ JUSTIN  Dec 30, 2013 ]
Colton I installed this amp last April to a 8" type-r sub the amp works great, no problems,. Will hit hard if that's what you want. the amp can be adjusted and will do the complete range 28-200 but you need to adjust the sub to your vehicle and how it sounds to you. [ RANDY  Dec 29, 2013 ]
It should work fine. Although I'm not sure if your hearing will be able to distinguish it. That getting to the lower threshold oh the human hearing range. [ DAN  Dec 26, 2013 ]