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Our take on the Alpine PWE-S8

Don't have the space for a big subwoofer enclosure, but still want the thrill of sub-bass? At only 3" deep, Alpine's PWE-S8 powered subwoofer fits in all kinds of tight spaces: in the trunk of your car, behind the seat in your pickup, or even under the seat in some cars. And it's made to stand up to life on the road, with its rugged cast metal enclosure that's built to take the hard knocks of a tight installation while protecting your equipment.

Alpine Authorized Online Dealer

Big sound from a small box

Don't have the space for a big subwoofer enclosure, but still want the thrill of sub-bass? At only 3" deep, Alpine's PWE-S8 powered subwoofer fits in all kinds of tight spaces: in the trunk of your car, behind the seat in your pickup, or even under the seat in some cars. And it's made to stand up to life on the road, with its rugged cast metal enclosure that's built to take the hard knocks of a tight installation while protecting your equipment.

In the box

Alpine PWE-S8 side view

At only 3" deep, the PWE-S8 can fit almost anywhere.

Alpines uses a Class D amplifier rated at 120 watts RMS to drive the PWE-S8's 8" shallow-mount, high-excursion subwoofer, so there's plenty of power for your bass. The amp features controls for phase, gain, and a low-pass crossover, so you''ll be able to match the bass up to the rest of your system.

You'll also find an input for a wired remote control that lets you dial in your sound from the driver's seat. Easy-access RCA line-level inputs and speaker-level inputs with automatic turn-on make it easy to integrate this sub into almost any system. The PWE-S8 has everything you need to bring bass to places where there was never the room for boom.

Note: Sorry, Crutchfield cannot ship Alpine products to Guam or Puerto Rico.

Product Highlights:

  • powered subwoofer with cast metal enclosure
  • 8" woofer high-excursion cone
  • built-in Class D amplifier (120 watts RMS/240 watts peak)
  • frequency response: 32-150 Hz
  • variable low-pass crossover (80-200 Hz)
  • variable phase control (0-180 degrees)
  • preamp- and speaker-level inputs
  • dimensions: 13-1/2"W x 9"H x 3"D
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Perfect for Sierra 1500 4dr. Fits perfect under the rear seat with plenty of room to spare. Just enough bass and separate volume control is a plus. I thought about getting the 10,but glad I didn't,this 8 has plenty of thump. 2 weeks jammin so far.

Anthony L, Houston, TX

What's in the Box:

  • Amplified enclosure with one 8" subwoofer installed
  • 12" Wiring harness (Power with in-line fuse holder/ Ground/ Remote turn-on/ Speaker level input)
  • Two 15 amp ATO fuses (one installed in the power wire fuse holder/ 1 spare)
  • Remote level control with 15' cable attached (3.5mm mini-plug on the end)
  • Adhesive backed hook and loop mounting fasteners (to mount the remote)
  • 4 Mounting brackets
  • Eight 5/8" Pan head self-tapping screws
  • Eight M4x7.5mm Machine screws
  • Owner's manual (English/ French/ Spanish)
  • Warranty information
  • On-line product registration information
  • System installation notice

Alpine PWE-S8 Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(25 Reviews)

Plenty of thump for a Sierra 1500

Anthony L from Houston, TX on 3/27/2017

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Perfect for Sierra 1500 4dr. Fits perfect under the rear seat with plenty of room to spare. Just enough bass and separate volume control is a plus. I thought about getting the 10,but glad I didn't,this 8 has plenty of thump. 2 weeks jammin so far.



Not Pleases

Scott from Kansas on 3/12/2017

Loved the sound I got out of this unit. For a week, that is. I wanted to test the sound a week after installing, so cranked up my volume. The unit cut out and never came back. Power lights are active, but no sound. Ordered a different brand to replace. Not pleased with Alpine, that's for sure.

Pros: Good sound

Cons: Bad quality

Nice Addition

Shayne from Louisville, KY on 2/25/2017

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Well made housing. Install was a chore but that's car electronics. Happy with the output once I had it all installed. It's a compact sub, so that is what your expectation should be prepared for, but I paired with a Pioneer 8200NEX and Alpine S series 6-3/4" speakers and it fills my large volume area van with some rocking, full sound. Pretty well satisfied.

Pros: Solid feel, nice effect, really enhances the listening experience


Awesome under seat solution

Scott from Bay Area, CA on 1/8/2017

I put this in a 2006 Tundra Access Cab. It fits under the front passenger seat - but I did have to reroute some of the factory power seat wiring. I removed both driver and passenger front seat, and console - it makes doing a clean install much easier, and you can plan your wire runs - my system has no engine noise issues. The factory system had an amp that was under the rear passenger side bench. I bypassed the factory amp using Crutchfield's awesome wiring diagram, eliminated need to re-wire all the door speakers. Helpful tip: use the all-in one wiring to do the bypass, so much easier and keeps it neat and clean. This sub is just what I wanted - some punch for Classic Rock, Grunge, 90's Rock, etc... not a "thumping system, but gives great sound.



Good, solid under-seat Sub. Fits where others might not.

James from LaGrange, NY on 12/28/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

A good solid under-seat sub. Won't rattle the windows, but its compact, well made and fleshes out the lower end quite well. I found adjusting the crossover to a roughly mid point setting seemed to work best in my application. Test different settings yourself. Better build quality and sound than a less expensive and bulkier Sound Ordnance, which never worked right using my speaker level inputs. Read the directions CAREFULLY. This unit prefers BOTH L and R signals for proper operation.

Pros: Good sound Compact fit Appears well made Good adjustments Independent remote volume control

Cons: Speaker input and power lines on the same multi-pin connector. Would have preferred the two be separate. Fuse a bit bulky

Alpine PWE-S8

Kenny from Audubon ia on 12/4/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Easy to install and set up but barely worth having shipped it back

Pros: Easy to install

Cons: Not worth what it put out

Alpine PWE-S8

Anonymous from Findlay, OH on 10/21/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I wanted to complete the sound in my Suburban however I did not want to shake the windows. When we first turned on the music without the bass and then kicked in the sub... WOW what a difference... This small SUB is really great... My Son has a monster SUB in his vehicle and is not considering downsizing because it takes up hardly no space and it does the job.... Great Choice...



Quality Sound & Construction With A Small Footprint

Douglas from Little Rock, AR on 8/16/2016

This powered subwoofer was EXACTLY what I was looking for; a compact option that easily fit under my passenger side front seat, built-in amplifier, and does an excellent job of filling in the lows that my 5.25" woofers cannot touch. As others have mentioned, if you are looking for annoying car shaking bass, this sub isn't for you. The first thing you notice about the Alpine is the weight and rugged construction. It delivers excellent, quality bass in a small package. It does an excellent job of filling in the low end I'm missing from my 5.25" woofers. It I like the Alpine has an in-line fuse, multiple connection options (RCA or tapping the speakers), and an inline volume remote. Admittedly, I didn't think I would use the remote much, but depending on the type of music (rock, R&B, etc) or my mood, I tinker with the volume much more than expected. I had no issues with this product but the only issue I could see for some would be the wiring harness. The wires for the power and ground are relatively short (around 8 inches), which is something you should consider when planning your installation.

Pros: Excellent Job Filling In Lows Compact Quality & Rugged Construction In-Line Fuse Multiple Connection Options (RCA or Speaker) Remote Volume Control

Cons: Wiring Harness (Wire Length ~8")

Alpine PWE-S8 review

David from Annandale NJ on 8/1/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Perfect for what I was looking for. Won't rattle the Windows but fills in the base I was missing before,even in my Tahoe. Installed under back seat.

Pros: Well made, quality enclosure.

Cons: None

Alpine PWE-S8

Stephen from Canton, MS on 5/30/2016

1996 Chevrolet C Series
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This is an awesome product. It produces surprisingly good bass for rounding out my sound. It's not "blow your windows out" bass, but it is excellent for what I was looking for. It went above and beyond my expectations. Alpine has done it once again.

Pros: Great sound, easy installation, reasonable price.

Cons: none

I have a alpine 9425 &6×9 Rs nothing but awsome,Now its time to upgrad

David B from Inkster, MI on 3/17/2016

1991 Jeep Wrangler

Very nice product, Nice compact size. And I know some time went into this product, I Bet It Rocks.

Pros: Quality, Compact And Solid.

Cons: I see no cons, The name stand's for it's self.

Better than expected!

Mark L from Columbus, OH on 2/27/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I was worried that I would not be happy with this purchase, but I was pleasantly surprised by how much of a difference this sub made in my system. My 2005 Accord Coupe has a CDE-124SXM receiver with the KPA-445 amplifier and upgraded Alpine 6x9's in the rear package shelf and the OEM component speakers for the fronts. I installed this sub under the driver's seat. The difference in bass response and depth is significant. This is my first sub and I couldn't be more pleased. I wasn't looking to wake the neighbors (but I am sure I could), so I didn't need any more than this sub delivers. I whole heartily recommend this powered subwoofer.

Pros: Great Sound. Easy Installation.

Cons: Did not completely fit under seat (I had some clearance issues that required that the sub needed to be installed with the long side front to back. Brackets for installation could have been thicker (mine bent/distorted when screwed in). Cable leads could have been longer.

Amazing sound

TomS from Missouri on 11/9/2015

I looked at a lot of powered subs, articles, reviews, and decided on this one based on some of the reviews and the Alpine reputation. What a great decision. I had it professionally installed in my 2013 Ford Supercrew and couldn't be happier. It fills the cab with clean bass and way more than enough volume. You won't be disappointed.

Pros: Size, quality construction, sound

Cons: I would have liked to hear it before buying. It would have made my choice much easier.

Great Sub for Tight Spaces

Daniel from California on 9/1/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This is a great high powered 8" unit. I installed one under the driver seat and one under the passenger seat in my '04 Double Cab Tacoma. They take up virtually no space and are complexly hidden under the seats. Two of these together makes for a solid sub combo.

Pros: Small. High powered. High quality unit enclosure.

Cons: Expensive.

Made a huge difference in my 2013 Audi S4

wohoho from Massachusetts on 8/20/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

When I bought my 2013 S4, it was at the end of the model year and I was unable to get one with the B&O sound system. Although the basic Concert system has 10 speakers, its deficiencies became clearer over time. The free air sub on the rear deck is by far the weakest link. I hate to add one with an enclosure in the trunk that would lose a good part of the luggage space. The PWE-S8 proves to be the perfect choice. The 8" sub may seem small, but the 120W amp and solid aluminum chassis are designed as an integrated unit. make it perform far better than what one might expect from an 8" driver. I can't see ever needing more for listening to music. I see some people who installed this sub and say that it's not doing much, but that could be a defective unit, improper adjustment or bad installation. There is simply no way that this sub would ever have little or no effect on the bass. There are other choices of compact powered subs. I chose this one because I decided on Alpine SPR-60C for the front and rear door replacement after listening and comparing to others under $500/pr. So it's an easy decision to get the Alpine sub. I placed it just behind the passenger's seat on the driver's side. Folding down the seat makes easy access to the adjustments and connections. Otherwise they are out of the way. The factory amp is 40Wx2 for the front pair and 20Wx2 for the rear. Having 120W for the sub is more than enough.



Alpine PWE-S8 Reviews

Anonymous from Virginia on 7/8/2015

The unit is small enough to tuck it away in a small car and not very obvious

Pros: small enough, quality workmanship

Cons: not powerful enough

Excellent sub!

Anonymous from Indianapolis, IN on 6/3/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great frequency response, plenty of punch for a "normal" system without being muddy. This is a much better package than the Sound Ordinance powered sub it replaces. Well worth the extra bucks!



Powered Sub

Brian from Westchester, New York on 5/11/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This fit perfectly behind the waterfall in a C5 convertible. What a great improvement to audio systems in small interiors.

Pros: Built like a tank.

Cons: None

Great Things Come in Little Packages

Colton from Oklahoma City on 2/25/2015

If you're looking for a great subwoofer that takes up little space, then this is just the ticket. Fits perfect under the driver or passenger seat and delivers exceptional sound. It completed my sound system without adding boxes in the back of my SUV.

Pros: Small and powerful

Cons: None

Quality sound

CmG from Washington on 1/27/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Installed 2, 1 under drivers and 1 under passengers seat in my 2007 extended cab Nissan Frontier and I'm happy with them. Using an Alpine receiver that already had a nice sound quality to start with and these units were a nice compliment. Best feature in my opinion is the small footprint which allowed for a discreet installation location. Sound quality exceeded my expectations, not extremely powerful but thats not what i was after anyway. I like the build quality as well, heavy construction with nice fit and finish throughout. Installation maybe took half an hour at most.

Pros: Great sounding, heavy construction, extremely simple installation

Cons: Id prefer if the power and ground leads weren't built into the speaker wire harness just to eliminate some wire clutter but could always clip some unused wires to clean things up

more than pleased

Butch from Texas on 12/30/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I've tried multiple powered subs like this and this one is the best so far. I'm an Alpine guy since the early 80's and I'm glad that Alpine has finally joined the compact sub group. I put this behind the back seat in a 2013 F-150 SuperCrew. It fills out the music nicely. It's not the slam your head into a wall subwoofer but rounds it out and has enough thump to let you know it's there. The higher volume setting will make the mirrors and the seat vibrate but not to the point of it becoming mind numbing. I couldn't be happier.

Pros: size, hookup, Alpine

Cons: none

Small subwoofer big sounds

Flys4u from Houston, TX on 11/30/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I installed this on my Porsche 944. Don't have much room so needed small sub without the big box. This creates so much better sounds than with just speakers.

Pros: Small size. Easy to install. Great sounds


Doesn't make much difference

Julio L. from Elk Grove, CA. on 10/29/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I didn't expect that this subwoofer would be loud, but I did expect that would improve the sound quality, but it didn't. I have a stock headunit connected to a 4-channel amp that feeds a pair of components and a pair of 2-ways, the adition of the sub didn't make much difference.

Pros: compact size and solid construction

Cons: doesn't kick enough.

PWE-S8 Subwoffer

Rod L. from Wisconsin on 9/29/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I would not buy this product again, nor recommend it, it lacks power output and clairity. There are a number of better quallity subs that pack more output.

Pros: Small in size, easy to mount

Cons: Poor amplification, way over priced! Lacks power

Quality product

Darren from Folsom, CA on 9/19/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Very pleased with this powered sub. I purchased this for my 2010 Ford F-150. It fit perfectly under the rear seat on the passenger side. Build quality of this sub is exceptional. This sub is not cheap, but it also will not disappoint. Install time in my truck was approx 2.5hrs. Sound quality is exceptional if you are looking for fidelity and not to rattle your doors. The sub does include the wired remote. The Crutchfield Overview states the wired remote is an optional assessory... Not the case....Very happy with this purchase

Pros: High quality build, excellent sound/fidelity, fits under the seat of a Ford F-150 ??

Cons: High side of the price range

Crutchfield response on 9/22/2014 We looked into it and Darren is correct: the wired remote is included in the box with the powered sub. We've updated our records and website accordingly.

Hands-on research

Features and Specs

Enclosure Type Sealed
Finish Material Cast Aluminum
Grille Steel
Connector Type RCA/Harness
Bi-amp Inputs No
Woofer Size (inches) 8
Woofer Material Poly/Aluminum
Passive Radiator ---
Width 13-7/16"
Height 2-7/8"
Depth 9-1/16"
Second Depth N/A
Parts Warranty 1 Year
Labor Warranty 1 Year
Frequency Response 25-152
Amplifier Power (RMS) 120 watts
Maximum Wattage 240 watts
Sensitivity N/A
Impedance N/A
Second Voice Coil Impedance N/A
Crossover Point 50-150

Product Research


Auto Turn-on: If using the speaker level input, an automatic circuit turns the amplifier on when it senses an input signal. When using the line level inputs you must also use a remote turn on lead.

Low Pass Filter: The amp has a built-in low-pass filter, variable from 50 to 150 Hz.

Speaker Level Input: A speaker level input harness is included, making it easier to add the amplifier to a factory radio or to a receiver with no preamp outputs.

Wired Remote: Using the included wired remote you can easily adjust the bass output level from the driver's seat (or wherever you mount the remote). The range is 0 to -20 dB, relative to the gain setting on the subwoofer chassis.


  • Gain: rotary control; 0.2-4.0 volts line level; 0.5-10 volts speaker level
  • Low Pass Filter: rotary control; 50-150 Hz
  • Phase: two position switch; 0° or 180°
  • Power Mode: two position switch; SP IN (speaker level input, auto sensing) or REM (wired remote turn-on)


  • Harness: the included 12" harness contains power (+12 volts), ground, remote turn-on, and speaker level inputs (left and right)
  • RCA: left and right line level inputs
  • Remote: 3.5mm mini-jack for use with the included wired remote


  • Width: 13.4"
  • Height: 2.875"
  • Depth: 9.062"

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?

I have always purchased Alpine components since the 1980's. I trust their quality. [ J  Jun 28, 2017 ]
Its small size and Alpine name in car audio, installed in my 18' R-POD with small 2-way speakers for a 5.1 system and it blended in very nice. Sounds like 18' headphones now. [ finis  Apr 09, 2017 ]
Just had Alpine deck and Alpine replacement speakers put in Sierra 1500,it needs a sub. This is a sub....subaadubdub [ TexasTony  Mar 11, 2017 ]
Lots of choices for a compact powered sub, but over time I've come to trust Alpine. Plus this should be a good fit under the passenger seat of my Toyota Matrix. [ Eric  May 15, 2016 ]
To augment bass in my BMW 228i. The stock onboard drivers are lacking, even with an aftermarket amp (Match pp82dsp). [ Mark  Feb 19, 2016 ]

10 questions already asked

I'm afraid we don't have the area under the seats listed in the research for your 2011 Mazda Miata. However, when flat the Alpine PWE-S8 measures 13-1/2"(depth) x 9"(width) x 3"(height)--if you find there's sufficient room under your seats for a box with those dimensions, the Alpine would be a great option. For more details or to discuss further, please feel free to contact an Advisor directly by phone (888.955.6000) or online chat. Thanks! [ Larry  Oct 11, 2017 ]  Staff
I don't know much about the Miatas, but the measurements of the subwoofer are the w 9.5 inches L 13.5 inches and the height 2.75 inches. If this measurements are under the seat it will be a fit. Performance wise I do recommend it. [ Ruben  Oct 09, 2017 ]
Installed mine in my gmc 2500 hd behind rear seat. I had to turn my sub settings on head unit to max for great results. I listen to all types of music. Also when I say great results, it's just a "comfortable" bass level. To really bring out low ends I would need two or something bigger. [ George  May 20, 2017 ]
If you are hooking it to stock radio you need a loc. I haven't heard about hooking it directly to and amp. [ Ruben  May 06, 2017 ]
It connects to the sub port on the head unit for signal and on-off, and to a 12-v source for power [ Chris  May 03, 2017 ]
You need to connect it directly to the head unit. It has a built in amp and connecting to an existing amp may damage the unit. [ Stephen  May 03, 2017 ]
Sorry, the speakers in my 99 Suburban would not support an amp. However the sound is awesome now. Really nice bass sub... [ JERRY  May 03, 2017 ]
I have connected this to a factory head unit using speaker level inputs: it has rca connections for line level, I plan on putting a 50 watt alpine amp on the system in order to keep factory head unit. This amp should pair nicely with the power of this alpine sub- all in a 2016 Prius. [ MICHAEL  May 03, 2017 ]
Sony what? and Kenwood what? [ JULIO  May 03, 2017 ]
It will connect directly to your head unit, provided you have the RED/WHITE output on your head unit. Since it is an amp, it won't connect to another amp. [ LYNN  May 03, 2017 ]
Not sure about two as I only installed one. I ran power down one side and speaker down the other side of vehicle. Speaker is located behind rear seat of crew cab. Good luck! [ David  Apr 22, 2017 ]
Thanks for your question. Unfortunately we do not have the harness separately. I have added the link below for the full package which includes everything you need and is plug n play as you describe. If you have any questions feel free to reach out to an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They should be able to help answer your question. [ Kenny  Feb 20, 2017 ]  Staff
I put mine under a 2005 Honda Accord Coupes seat. The only issue I had was in the length of the unit. I had a heating duct the pushed the unit back so that it extended past the bottom of the seat (just barely). I think the RAV's seat is a bit larger and sits up higher than the Accord's seat, so it should be fine. I would check under the passenger seat to see if there are any obstructions. I also had to place the unit inboard so that the seat adjuster cleared. I had plenty of clearance on the sides, so this was no problem. [ Mark  Jan 20, 2017 ]
I don't know. I don't have a RAV4. Try measuring the space under the seat and checking the dimensions. [ ROBERT S  Jan 19, 2017 ]
I would say most likely yes. I bought one and fit it behind my 2 seater 1985 Nissan 300zx behind the passenger seat and the seat still goes back all the way and reclines all the way back. Great little powered subwoofer. Not huge thump but very good bass sound. You won't be disappointed. Hope this helps you. Randy [ Randy  Jan 19, 2017 ]
I Have never looked under the seat of a canyon, it is very small and I put mine dead center under the rear seat in my 05 gmc 4 door half ton truck with all alpine system, I love it. Sounds incredible, [ dale  Sep 27, 2016 ]
This is for all of the available compact subs, I would recommend to contact an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to pull up your vehicle, compare the different subs available and give you the details on if they will fit and what you will need for an installation in your vehicle. [ Kenny  Jun 03, 2016 ]  Staff
Yes sir you can. I have mine mounted vertically behind the passengers seat in my 1985 300zx. It is a great little unit. You won't go hopping down the road from the bass but plenty of quality thump for its size. [ Randy  Dec 14, 2015 ]
I did not mount mine vertically but mechanically, there doesn't seem to be any reason that one couldn't do so. If it was my install, I'd just be sure to allow for adequate ventilation. [ Gerald  Dec 02, 2015 ]
For details on fit or installation please contact an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to pull up your vehicle and give you the details on if this will fit and what you will need for an installation in your vehicle. [ Krissy  Feb 06, 2015 ]  Staff