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How to Connect Subwoofer to Receiver without Subwoofer Output

You’ve heard about the wonders of subwoofers and how they significantly improve the audio quality of your sound system. You’re eager to put them to the test. You’ve already made a significant stride in the direction of having access to high-quality audio. You’ll never hear low-frequency sound in the same way again, I promise it.

If you’ve previously bought and configured your subwoofer, you’ll know that your receiver lacks a dedicated subwoofer output. In fact, according to some online sources, if you don’t have a receiver with an output connection, you’ll need to acquire a new subwoofer. That’s a lie, end of story.

So, what’s going on? Let’s talk about how to Connect Subwoofer to Receiver without Subwoofer Output before you contact customer service. Believe me when I tell that not having a subwoofer output on a receiver is quite normal.

Even if your receiver doesn’t have a subwoofer output, you can still use your subwoofer with it. Not to be concerned. In the article, we’ll show you how to do it. Continue reading to learn more.

How a subwoofer generates bass

Because it is enclosed, the subwoofer will generate deep bass when just low-end bass sounds are predominant. A low-pass crossover allows only bass frequencies to pass, eliminating voices and other sounds that a subwoofer can’t generate.  Connecting a subwoofer directly to an audio signal will result in awful sound quality.

Only bass from stereo music creation or the “.1” subwoofer channel of a surround sound system may be delivered via a receiver’s subwoofer output port. If you have a powered subwoofer, here are the inputs and controls for it. Different brands and models provide different inputs and controls, so shop around before buying. The following is typical of what you’ll come across:

  • Input of power (AC outlet power)
  • Turn-on and turn-off switch
  • A pair of RCA jacks or an RCA input jack
  • Crossover adjustment for the subwoofer
  • Know how to alter the subwoofer’s volume level

Connecting the receiver’s mono output jack to the subwoofer’s input socket does this. This kind of mono RCA subwoofer output is common in home radios. One male to male RCA connection is all that you need for a powered subwoofer.

Because they have speaker level inputs, they can be used with any current or vintage home audio receiver that does not have a subwoofer output.  However, if yours does not have that function, you would normally have to spend more money on a separate subwoofer.

Stereo vs. Surround sound receiver subwoofer output differences

While stereo receivers share a common output, surround sound receivers get their signal directly from the surround sound movie or music source, unlike older or conventional stereo receivers. However, when used as stereo receivers, they behave just like any other.

Be aware that, unlike with surround sound receivers, a subwoofer connected to a receiver without a subwoofer output won’t provide a distinct “.1” bass channel.

However, it’s possible it won’t be a problem at all. A low-frequency output (LFE) on the surround sound receiver is optional, thus the “.1” suffix on the model number. Despite this, the bass channel may be a lot of fun in certain movies, particularly action ones.

You won’t get the same effect if you use a receiver without that output, but only in surround sound mode. The good news is that, when used in stereo mode, both new and old receivers behave quite similarly when connected to a subwoofer, as seen below.

Selecting the appropriate subwoofer type

To begin, we must identify the kind of subwoofer we are using before determining which connectors to employ. Stereo subwoofers come in two flavors: powered (also known as “active”) and unpowered (also known as “passive”):

The most popular form of subwoofer is an active one. An active subwoofer has an amplifier built right in. As it won’t need to be powered via that connection, you’ll have a lot more options for connecting it to your receiver.

Compared to active subwoofers, passive subwoofers are more like old-fashioned speakers. Either an external amplifier or your AV receiver’s power supply is required to run them. There aren’t as many passive subwoofers around these days as there once were.

In most cases, it’s simple to distinguish between the two. The size and power of an active subwoofer will be much greater.

Continue reading for more information on connecting a passive subwoofer without a subwoofer output.

Determining what connection to use as an alternate

Most people will have no problem figuring out how to connect their subwoofer to their receiver. The connector plainly labeled “Subwoofer,” “Subwoofer Out,” or “Sub Out” is where you plug it in.

According to certain websites and blogs, if your receiver does not have a ‘Subwoofer Output,’ you’ll have to go out and get a new one. All of the information is incorrect. To be honest, depending on your subwoofer and the outputs your receiver supports, you have a few of alternative choices to consider.

Now let’s find out the three methods to Connect Subwoofer to Receiver without Subwoofer Output.

Connecting by the use of stereo RCA connectors

If your receiver doesn’t have subwoofer outputs, you may still utilize it via preamplifier outputs instead. Start enjoying those lovely deep tones right now if your subwoofer has Left and Right stereo connections (L; R). Connectors for the subwoofer’s left and right channels

Follow these easy steps to get started:

Step: 1

Make sure you have a set of RCA plugs handy for this. An RCA Y-Adapter may be required if your subwoofer only has one RCA input.

Step: 2

Your subwoofer’s input should have the male connectors, and your receiver’s preamp output should have the female connectors.

Step: 3

The Y-Adapter turns a single RCA input into two, so you can access both channels if your subwoofer only has one.

As a result, your AV receiver won’t require a Subwoofer Output.

Using RCA cables for both the subwoofer line-in and receiver line-out is required for this procedure. If your subwoofer doesn’t have RCA inputs, you’ll have to use a conventional speaker cable to attach it to your Receiver.

Subwoofers with speaker level inputs

The preamp output is absent from certain amplifiers. If your subwoofer does not have this feature, you may still achieve decent sound quality by connecting it with a speaker cable. If your subwoofer uses spring clips or other speaker wire connections, this approach will work for you.

To connect it to an amp, use the speaker line output. To learn more about pre out vs line out, go no further than the sources listed above. What is the procedure for doing this? It’s a simple procedure. If you’ve ever connected a stereo speaker to a computer, you’ll find that the process is quite similar to that.

Here’s how it’s done:

Step: 1

Connect the subwoofer’s input to the amplifier’s line-out. The only thing left to do is connect the subwoofer’s provided cable to the amplifier’s line-out terminals. For those who don’t own a subwoofer cable, you may use an inexpensive RCA cable found at any electronics shop to connect your speakers. RCA cables may be learned more about by clicking on the following link.

Step: 2

Tie the speaker wires in place on each speakers. Step 2: Plug in your amplification system.

Step: 3

Hook up the subwoofer’s line-in jack using the wire you just connected. It’s important to keep in mind that if your subwoofer has speaker out and speaker in spring clips, additional speakers may be able to connect to it. As a result, the amplifier is linked to the subwoofer.

If your subwoofer arrives with just one pair of spring clips, this isn’t the case. Your subwoofer must share the amplifier connections with the speakers for your sound system to deliver high-quality music. For this, utilize banana clips that can connect into each other’s backs without any problem. Learn more about speaker connectors, such as banana clips.

How to Avoid “Out of Phase” Subwoofers

Remind yourself that line out uses the sub as the speaker, so attach it to it. Connect the amp’s speaker-positive (red) terminals to the amp’s speaker-positive (red) terminals for optimal results.

When connecting the negative terminals, use the same procedure as for the positive ones. Even though the color of the wires doesn’t important, as long as all of your terminals match, it’s best to stick to the instructions and prevent making a mistake.

The only way to ensure that your speakers and sub are “in phase” is to adhere to this fundamental concept and appropriately connect the amplifier and speakers.

Speakers “out of phase,” which means the connections are reversed, may cause serious sound quality issues, and you’ll likely attribute them to your sub-and-amp connection solution’s choice of speaker-level outputs.

Unfortunately, reversing connections may cause harm to audio equipment.

If you notice any of the following symptoms, your subwoofer may be “out of phase,” which necessitates checking the connections.

  • Lack of enthusiasm for the audio in general
  • Bass has a very thin tone to it.
  • Ineffectiveness of the Subwoofer

However, there are a few additional concerns that might lead to the same outcomes. The speaker-level outputs technique of connecting a subwoofer to an amplifier might be tricky the first time, so double-checking that you’ve done everything correctly can be helpful.

Set ‘LFE+MAIN’ on the Sub

If you wish to Connect Subwoofer to Receiver without Subwoofer Output, you may also configure the subwoofer to ‘LFE+MAIN.’ Look at your amp’s subwoofer settings to see what they are.

Crossover LFE+Main creates deep low frequency sounds below the crossover points for both the subwoofer and speakers and is often found in sound systems.

This setting’s advantage is that it can be altered. However, you should exercise caution while using this option, since it may result in audio difficulties.

If you’re apprehensive about making a change, just leave it as is. If not, continue reading.

Step: 1

If your amplifier has a ‘bass out’ capability, knowing how and when to use the subwoofer with or without the sub out can save you time and frustration.

Step: 2

Doing so will enable your subwoofer to play when your primary speakers are positioned on the right and left.

Step: 3

You may utilize features like separate slow up/down levels and crossover settings if your amp includes a two-channel bass control capability.

If you’re using two-channel audio sources, you may choose to use the subwoofer instead of the main speaker.

Summing Up

Nothing will stand in your way now that you’ve learned how to Connect Subwoofer to Receiver without Subwoofer Output. If your receiver doesn’t have a subwoofer output, don’t freak out. Fortunately, there are methods to get your new speaker set up and outputting great sound regardless of the kind of sub you possess and the connectors you have available:

An external amplifier be used to connect a passive subwoofer to your receiver.

Use the RCA output on your stereo or the Speaker Level Inputs on your speakers to connect an active subwoofer.

Having a subwoofer doesn’t mean you’re doomed to never experience its raw power. Save your money instead of going out and buying a new receiver with a subwoofer output. Then, to add a subwoofer to your speaker system, just repeat the steps outlined above.

With a subwoofer in your audio system, you’ll be able to hear music and movies better than before. Take a look at this article for the best competition subwoofers on the market today.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here’s where you’ll discover the answers, if you’re still perplexed about How to Connect Subwoofer to Receiver without Subwoofer Output. Take a look at the following inquiries.

Why aren’t all receivers equipped with a subwoofer output?

It’s not as if a few AV receivers, preamps, and amplifiers don’t have dedicated subwoofer output connections here and there. The majority of AV receivers don’t have one, and they don’t have any specific bass-management choices.

You’re not the only one seeking for innovative methods to connect your new subwoofer. Even if your AV receiver or pre-amp does not have a subwoofer output, subwoofers are still compatible. They are still recommended for the finest music or movie audio experience.

Is it safe to assume that without a Subwoofer Output connection, the quality would suffer?

The Sub Out connector on the back of your receiver, despite its name, is not always the best method to attach your subwoofer. Some say that using high-level inputs to connect a subwoofer will provide better sound quality than any other way. Here are some of the reasons behind this:

Your subwoofer will get the same signal as the rest of your speakers, so there will be no lag or timing issues. A more robust bass signal will be sent to your subwoofer. As a result, you’ll notice a notable difference in the emphasis and articulation of bass notes, especially while listening to music.

Is it possible to connect a subwoofer to a speaker wire?

Yes, it’s a subwoofer built around their custom-made wiring. They may also be used with standard speaker wire. However, it is probable that this strategy will be less successful than the first.

Is it possible to use a subwoofer without an amplifier?

Yes, but it won’t give you the deep sound and ranges you’re looking for. since it will function as a standard speaker without the high content This is understandable since a subwoofer was not designed to create a lot of sound.

Is it possible to utilize a subwoofer without any speakers?

Yes, if you use the right connection, you can receive the low-frequency levels of a subwoofer without utilizing a speaker-level setup. It would be ideal if you could do it with a powered subwoofer. Then utilize speaker level inputs or line-level stereo RCA connections. This, however, is not a good idea. It is, nonetheless, doable.