How to Connect a Powered Subwoofer to a Powered Mixer?

If you plan on building a home theater system, you will require a pair of speakers first. However, this is only the beginning of the journey. Whether your intent to set up the system is for movies, music, games or all of the mentioned stuff, a powered subwoofer is one of the key components of a full-fledged audio system.

A subwoofer is a speaker that generates lower frequencies. The frequency range between 20 – 200 Hz is considered a lower range and subwoofers are excellent components to deliver the immense kick of your favorite drum beats.

But how do you connect a powered subwoofer to a powered mixer? In this article, I am going to walk you through a step-by-step process of connecting a subwoofer to your mixer using an ordinary audio cable. So, let’s get started!

Techniques you can Apply for Connecting a Powered Subwoofer to a Powered Mixer

How to connect a powered subwoofer to a powered mixer

There are various ways you can connect your powered subwoofer to your powered mixer. You can use audio cables, speaker wires, or even wireless methods like Bluetooth to connect the two devices.

Make sure to turn off the power of the mixer before establishing a connection. Now, I am going to show you three simple and easy methods of connecting your subwoofer to the mixer.

How To Use An Audio Cable To Connect The Subwoofers and The Mixer

The easiest and most convenient method of connecting a powered subwoofer to a powered mixer is by using an audio cable. The audio cable is a signal-carrying wire made of copper.

The cable has both a male and a female connector. The mixer is connected using the male connector and the subwoofers are connected using the female one. Here is a detailed guideline for consecutive tasks:

Step 1:

First, you will require good quality audio cables, power cables for the mixer, and XLR cables. Newer mixer models generally have XLR cable points. 

Step 2:

Start the process by connecting the male part of the audio cable to the output on the powered mixer. 

Step 3:

Now, connect the female end of the audio cable to the input section on the subwoofer. Connect the left cable to the “L” socket point of the mixer and the right cable to the “R” point of the mixer. 

Step 4:

Firmly insert the connectors into designated ports and make sure the connections are tight and secure.

Step 5: 

Once the connection is established, turn on the power on your mixer and you should be able to listen to sound from the mixer being delivered through the subwoofer.

How To Use Speaker Wires to Connect The Subwoofers and The Mixer

Another easy way of connecting a powered subwoofer to a powered mixer is through speaker wires. These cables are also made of copper wires, similar to an audio cable. However, these cables are twisted together.

Contrary to male and female connectors of an audio cable, speaker wires have a positive and a negative connector. The positive connector goes into the powered mixer and the negative connector plugs into the subwoofer. You can adhere to the following steps:

Step 1:

First, you will require good quality speaker wires. Otherwise, you will not be able to get good sound output from the powered subwoofers.

Step 2:

Your powered mixer has an output port on the device. Find it and plug the positive connector of the speaker wire into the port.

Step 3:

Your powered subwoofers have an input port. Find the port and use the negative end of the speaker wire to connect the mixer and the subwoofer. If you are using a monitor subwoofer, it will contain an “L+R” jack. Plug the cable into this port.

Step 4: 

Check if the connections are tight and secure.

Step 5:

After establishing a proper connection, turn on the power on your mixer and you can hear sound from the mixer coming through the subwoofer.

How To Use Wireless Connection Methods to Connect The Subwoofer and The Mixer

Why Would You Require A Powered Subwoofer

In today’s digital world, wires have become a great hassle for the majority of people. If you are one of them and don’t want the pain of reorganizing the cables, you can simply go wireless. Generally, wireless connection relies on Bluetooth technology for connecting devices.

However, some newer and upgraded devices rely on 2.4Ghz bandwidth for a more reliable and stronger connection method. You will require a transmitter and a receiver for this connection method. You can follow these guidelines for establishing a wireless connection:

Step 1:

First, you have to connect the transmitter device to the output section of the powered mixer. 

Step 2:

Use your receiver device on the input section of the subwoofer. 

Step 3:

Make sure the distance between the mixer and the subwoofer is under the recommended range for a strong connection.

Step 4:

After a successful connection, turn on the power on your mixer and you should be able to hear sound from the subwoofer.

Make sure to connect the power cable of the mixer and subwoofer to a wall outlet and switch the unit on for all of the discussed methods. However, it is a good practice to secure the connection while the power is switched off.

Regardless of the connection method, you can establish a secure connection between the mixer and subwoofer. It can provide you with enriched bass and a greater music listening experience. Subwoofers can also help to alleviate harsh sounds and deliver more impactful music for listeners.

Why Would You Require A Powered Subwoofer?

Various Techniques of Connecting a Powered Subwoofer to a Powered Mixer

A powered subwoofer is an excellent way to enhance your music listening experience. It adds the punchy bass feeling that every music lover wants.

A powered subwoofer has both an amplifier and a speaker. Hence, it can produce greater clarity in lower frequency sounds compared to other subwoofers. 

Among various reasons, here are some of the most substantial ones for getting a powered subwoofer:

  • If you listen to a lot of hip-hop, R&B, Rap, or music that utilizes low-end frequencies, a powered subwoofer can assist to reproduce those sounds accurately. 
  • If you are mixing music in a small space, a powered subwoofer can help to improve the overall bass response of your music system.
  • If you are a fan of watching action movies or playing action video games, connecting a powered subwoofer to your powered mixer can greatly enhance the oomph you require to fully experience these contents. 

What You Need to Be Aware of Before Connecting a Powered Mixer To a Powered Subwoofer

Volume Level: Turn down the volume dial all the way down before connecting the wire to your mixer. Otherwise, a loud pop sound will occur, which can frighten the people around.

Secured Connection: For a wired connection method, make sure all the connections are in the proper place. Otherwise, static noise can be introduced or low volume might occur. 

Wireless Connectivity: For a wireless connection, make sure both of the devices are in close proximity. Also, make sure there are no obstructions between the transmitter and receiver. Too much distance or obstructions can disrupt the radio waves. I can severely hamper your listening experience.

Placement of Subwoofer: Place the subwoofer in a solid platform where it won’t rattle. As the subwoofers will produce low-frequency sounds, the body of the device can vibrate. If the platform is not secure, it can cause it to vibrate as well and the sound experience will get hampered. 

Quality Cables: Always purchase branded good quality cables to connect your mixer and subwoofer. A faulty power cable can completely destroy the devices.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can you use a powered subwoofer with an amplifier?

A powered subwoofer contains a built-in amplifier. However, you can connect a powered subwoofer to an amplifier for data transmission only. To do this, you can connect the subwoofer and the amplifier with RCA cables and plug the powered subwoofer into the wall for its power source. 

Can a powered subwoofer be used as a passive subwoofer?

Any self-powered subwoofer can be connected to the connector that was intended for passive subwoofers. It doesn’t matter which of the two speaker level inputs (L or R) the passive subwoofer’s speaker wire was connected to if you purchase a powered subwoofer with speaker level inputs.

Wrapping Up!

By following the discussed methods, you can easily understand why you might require a powered subwoofer and how to connect these to a powered mixer without any problems. Just remember to take your time and double-check all the connections. Following this article can greatly help you to enhance your music listening experience. 

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