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Polk Audio PSW10 Subwoofer -Building an affordable home theater: (4.1)

I've reviewed Polk Audio speakers before and Polk Audio is a reputable long standing manufacturer of home audio.  Since the 70's they've had engineers developing their speakers, so they have some muscle in the industry as they've won several awards and is in fact one of the largest home audio companies around.

Polk Audio PSW10 - SubWoofer

This Subwoofer is built with one 10" Diameter (25.40cm) Dynamic Balance Polymer Composite cone.
Its maximum power output is 100W;  RMS or continuous power is 50W.
This sub is vented via "front panel flared port". subwoofer that is at the bottom of the PSW series that Polk Audio manufacturers.  Its enclosure is about 14"x14"x16" , and it weighs 26.00 lbs. (11.79kgs) so its just over a foot squared in size.


Because I really haven't discussed subwoofers in detail I'll explain what you see on the back panel of this subwoofer.

The first thing you see is volume.  Now If you own a receiver you'll find it has a subwoofer level as well.  Some may have different opinions on the matter but there is two ways to deal with this. You can set your sub volume to half volume on the volume level and adjust from the receiver when you want to turn it up or down, or set the receiver to 0 (depending on the receiver) and adjust from the sub.
To the right of the volume control you will see Lowpass. This allows the user to set which frequencies will be passed to the subwoofer and what point frequencies will be set to move on the main or satellite speakers. You'll notice, depending on the speakers that make up your system and the frequencies they can handle this will be adjusted for a complete range of sounds.
Moving right you will see the power switch. The Auto/On switch allows you to just leave it on and the sub will automatically activate when it senses a low frequency signal. Above the power switch is the power on indicator light. It will be green if the subwoofer is active.
To the right of the auto-on switch is the Phase switch. This enables the user to match the in/out motion of the subwoofer speaker to the in/out motion of the rest of the speakers.
At the farthest right of the photo, is where the standard RCA line level inputs are. These inputs is where you connect the subwoofer output on your home theater receiver to (usually just labeled Subwoofer Out or Subwoofer Pre-out on a Receiver) or a stereo preamp output.
Below the controls described in the above paragraphs are the Speaker Level Connections. These connections are used if a line level connection is not possible. Using these connections on the Polk PSW10, the user can connect the subwoofer to a set of main speakers. Using the lowpass adjustment, the user can determine what frequencies the Polk PSW10 will use and what frequencies it will pass onto the main speakers.

This is an excellent sub for a starter system.  While you can get better, I reviewed this because of the price.  Honestly at this price you cannot go wrong.  However, at 50 watts rms you should consider if you like to turn your system up loud this you should leave this product on the shelf.  Generally Subs like this will have accurate bass reproduction at low volume but once it goes past a certain level, the bass turns muddy and distorted.  We've all heard this sound before and its always some Sucka rolling by thinking his system is "Da Bomb".  As we all know, accurate bass reproduction requires power, and solid craftmanship by the manufacturer as well as proper placement in relation to the listening position.

In the end. I found this Subwoofer at $99 in a couple places.  Honestly if you need a sub and have limited resources.  This is an excellent purchase.