How To Make A Speaker or Subwoofer Louder Without An Amplifier
If you like loud music and loud speakers like we do, then more than likely on one or more occasions you may have considered improving your audio system. You want to make it louder, give it a heavier bass, and make it play more cleanly.
Of course, one easy way to make speakers louder is with an Amplifier. However, amplifiers tend to be expensive and you might not have the budget for that.
So, you may be asking the question – how to make a speaker louder without an amplifier?
Can you really increase the volume of speakers without an amplifier?
Yes, you can and in this article, we will illustrate how exactly you can go about making your speakers louder without using an amplifier.
What About Subwoofers?
When it comes to subwoofers, many people believe making a subwoofer louder requires a powerful Amplifier. While an amplifier can make a subwoofer louder, it is not the only way to do so.
There are several adjustments that you can make before considering a new or bigger amplifier. So, in addition, t speakers, we will look at how to make a subwoofer louder without an amplifier.
Ways to Make Your Speaker and Subwoofer Louder Without An Amplifier
Now there are a number of ways you can go about making your speaker louder without the need of an amplifier:
One of the reasons you may be experiencing audio issues with your speaker is due to vibrations from its enclosure. Vibrations can influence a speaker’s overall output by adding noise.
Damping is the process of adding insulating material to lessen the vibrations and noise. This is an especially good idea for car speakers.
If you want to make car speakers louder without an amplifier, then one good place to start is by damping and soundproofing the car. You do this by damping the door, engine, floor, etc which reduces road noise and improves speaker sound quality.
For subwoofers, this is also true. Subwoofer box design is incredibly important, especially for good bass. Without proper box design and good damping, the rattle form the box will simply add unwanted noise to your subwoofer’s output.
Speaker placement and Subwoofer placement are very important, especially for subwoofers.
We wont get into the acoustics of it all, except to say that placing a subwoofer in the corner of a room may increase the subwoofer’s output which will of course cause it to sound louder, cause the bass to sound stronger.
There is one problem with this approach, however, if you place the sub in a corner, it will be close to the wall which can often cause a harsh, rumbling, unpleasant sound.
This is even worse if the sub has a ported design (meaning the subwoofer has an opening to allow airflow). In such a case, ensure the sub is about 12 inches or so from the wall.
Additionally, as a general rule of thumb, you should avoid placing the subwoofer an equal distance from two walls.
In other words, don’t place it in the middle of a room. Place it farther from one wall and closer to another. This kind of asymmetrical placement will result in louder bass output and a general smoother response.
Just remember that when you are placing your speaker in a corner, place it somewhere that is is especially not likely to vibrate too much.
3. Get Fresh Cables and Connectors
If its not broken, don’t fix it they say. Well, that doesn’t apply to speaker cables and connectors.
Yes, they are just wires, however they should be checked regularly and replaced if needs be. Remember, wires are made of metal whether its copper or whatever and these material degrade as time rolls on.
As the wiring degrades, so does the electrical signals that travel through them and therefore the audio output degrades as well.
It is also important to remember to purchase good cable connectors. Too many people purchase expensive and excellent speaker cables such as the InstallGear 14 Gauge AWG Speaker WireInstallGear 14 Gauge AWG and connect them with poor connectors which defeats the entire purpose.
In other cases, many people use really good wires, but don’t splice them correctly. We have seen this soo many times. You need to get a good wire splice connector and learn how to properly splice wires.
Take a quick inspection of your speaker wires and connectors and replace them with fresh cables if they are clearly worn. Otherwise, get a professional to check your speaker wires and replace them if necessary.
4. Using Capacitors
If bass improvement is most important to you, then using a capacitor to improve the bass output of your subwoofer is an excellent idea. What is a capacitor and how does it work?
Well, a capacitor is an electric device that stores up electrical charge overtime and releases it in a powerful burst of energy.
The capacitor will help store up the power which is supposed to be dissipated if it wasn’t there, in other words, it stores up power that would otherwise be lost.
It will then release this energy at a later time when needed by the sub. So, if you had the question of how to make your subs hit harder? Then this is it!
5. Phase and Crossover Setting
Phase: Setting subwoofer phase and crossover frequency is critically important when it comes to sound quality and bass quality. You need to ensure your subwoofer is in phase with the rest of the system.
You will find that most subwoofers have a single phase switch or variable dial hat you can turn from 0 to 180 degrees. You can simply adjust the phase dial or switch until you achieve the heaviest bass.
Crossover: As mentioned before, phase and crossover are very important when it comes to speaker sound quality. Both phase and crossover work hand in hand to set the proper frequencies to give a smooth and clean audio response.
If your crossover settings are incorrect, then this will cause your main speakers and subwoofers to compete in the bass frequencies and cancel each other out. This will cause distortion and an overall muddy sound.
If you adjust your subwoofers crossover settings properly, then you will achieve a louder bass response and better sound at higher frequencies. In fact, its important to set your crossover to your subwoofer’s optimal instead of leaving it at the default factory settings.
We have a detailed guide on setting the subwoofer phase and frequency here.
6. Ported Enclosure
Placing your speaker inside a ported enclosure will help to improve the speakers overall loudness.
Ported boxes are generally great for higher output of both high and low frequencies. This is why ported box designs are often used to get a stronger bass response from subs.
7. Reduce Electrical Impedance
Without getting too technical, electrical impedance is a measure of a speaker’s resistance to turning electrical power into audio.
The greater the impedance, the less efficient the speaker is in converting electrical power into sound. As such, you will always want to lower your speakers impenitence to achieve greater efficiency.
However, we don’t mean you should try to change an 8 ohm speaker to a 4 ohm speaker. In fact, we think too many speaker buyers fret too much about impedance, especially when they’re considering smaller speakers.
What we mean is that you should ensure your speaker is in tip-top shape so that it wont have a high resistance. There are several ways to do this:
- Ensure the speaker coils and magnets are in good shape
- Ensure the speaker has good cables connected to it
- Ensure the circuity controlling the speaker is not damaged
8. Add A Speaker Horn
When it comes to speakers, efficiency is very important for loudness and sound quality. An excellent way to improve the efficiency of your speakers is by fitting a horn to it.
A horn is a flared tube that is attached to the speaker’s output. The horn helps to reduce audio impedance by reducing this impedance closer to that of open air.
By fitting a horn to your speaker, you will achieve better power transfer, power output, and power efficiency.
Their only limitation is the non-linear nature of air which causes them to distort when you put through too much power. In addition, wind noises often come through the horns which can cause distortions.
This is caused by air pushing against the surface of the horn. So, be careful and test thoroughly before you decide on this.
9. Modify The Speaker
So you really really want to know how to amplify speakers without an amplifier. You tried all else and nothing worked. Well, maybe something is worn with your speakers!
If you believe something is electrically wrong with the speaker, then you may need to modify it and replace the parts which are failing.
Of course, it will only make sense to do this on a large and powerful speaker. Replacing parts on a tine speaker may not make much more sense than just buying a new one.
Here are some important speaker maintenance options:
- changing the coil
- changing the magnet
- changing the cone.
Changing The Coil: If the speaker’s coils begin to wear away, then you may experience loss of power because the force on the cones that produce vibrations will be reduced.
Changing The Magnet: The force of the magnet produces the magnetic field that creates the electrical impulses that then create vibrations on the speaker cones. Old, worn magnets produce weak magnetic fields and therefore weak vibrations.
Changing The Cone: Sometimes speaker cones become old and worn out. They may be tattered and eaten by insects and so on. Such cones can’t produce powerful vibrations. In such cases its a good idea to change the cones.
It is important to realize that all these changes or any of these changes will cause the frequency response of the speaker to shift. It won’t sound the same when you place it back into your audio system.
As such, you should be sure to re-tune the system once you have made these changes. The truth is, you might be better off getting a professional to do this for you or you will risk ruining your audio system. In fact, in some cases, a new speaker may be cheaper.
We are confident that if you try all or even some of the methods mentioned above, you will see improvements in your speakers overall performance.
However, if these don’t work or if you intend to make your speakers extremely louder than they are, then you will need an amplifier.
In any case, we hope we have answered your question about how to increase volume of speakers without an amplifier.