Subwoofer Pops at High Volume

Norvan Martin
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If you hear a pop noise from your amplifier whenever you set the volume high, don’t ignore it. The noise can completely interfere with your listening experience. This article focuses on why your subwoofer pops at high volume, the best ways to fix it, and clear answers to frequently asked questions. 

If your subwoofer is popping or crackling at all volume levels, check out our guide on how to fix a subwoofer popping or crackling noise

If your subwoofer pops at high volume, here are possible reasons for that:

Bad Source Audio

The input sound could be horrible. The subwoofer’s sound output is always as good as the audio file itself.

If the microphone you are using to record your audio is in bad shape or the files have been poorly compressed, you are likely to be a victim.


Subwoofers are designed to handle excess power without any problems. However, some of them can develop technical problems and fail. Excess electricity can cause too much heat. This can melt and burn the sub’s coil and break your electrical connections.

The sub can pop at high volumes before the problem advances to unbearable levels.

Fix: Tone Down the Sub’s Volume.

This can be the fastest and most effective method to fix the issue, especially if you are a victim of underloading. After reducing the volume, your subwoofer’s demand for electricity will decrease. Once you reach the equilibrium point, you’ll not hear a popping sound again.

Reducing the volume will also reduce the amount of heat the subwoofer produces. This will prevent or reduce the likelihood of physical damage.


The intensity of sound that comes from your sub should be directly proportional to the electricity supplied. If you want a high-pitched sound, increase the volume. After that, the subwoofer will automatically increase the power supply.

Your amp should be able to provide adequate power. If that doesn’t happen, your sub will likely produce pop noise. 

Fix: Power Match Audio Equipment.

It would help if you bought quality subwoofers and amplifiers. The best strategy is to match the impedance and ensure the instruments are durable.

 Buying power-matched audio equipment is one of the top ways to ensure the durability of your subs and your entire audio system.

Physical Damage

If your subwoofer is a victim of overloading and underloading, it will likely experience permanent damage.

The heat associated with overloading is the most common cause of this. It can result in no sound at all or pop noise.

Fix: Store Your Sub in a Cool, Dry, and Safe Place.

You can also increase the lifespan of your subwoofer by storing it in a cool, dry, and safe place.

The heat from external sources can also cause the device severe physical damage. Water damage is another common cause of this type of problem.

Other than that, some chemicals, liquids, and more can destroy the sub. As already mentioned in the beginning, many forms of damage can interfere with the normal functioning of your sub.

In some cases, it won’t hear any sound. However, you can hear various annoying noises, including popping sounds, in others. In other words, you should store the subwoofer in the most secure place possible.

subwoofer pops at high volume


Why is my subwoofer popping at a low volume?

If your subwoofer is popping at low volume, you are likely a victim of overloading. When you reduce the volume, your amplifier should reduce the electricity supply to match the power demand. So, if your amp has a much lower impedance than the sub, it might fail to do this. 

If the amplifier has a much higher impedance, the opposite can also be true. When the subwoofer receives too much power than what it requires, it can produce a pop sound to warn you to take some action.

So, a bad amplifier is often the cause of this. However, if the sub is popping but not providing any signal, a burnt-out voice coil is the most potent cause of the issue.

How can I fix my home theater subwoofer popping noise?

A subwoofer is a critical component of your home theater system. It should produce clean bass. However, popping noises can interfere with your peace. 

To fix home theater subwoofer popping noise, switch the subwoofer power settings to on, fix power mismatch issues, fix wireless interference, and fix AC power issues. If that doesn’t work, you could be a victim of hardware issues. Please seek a professional to address it.

Why do subwoofers pop noise when off?

Subwoofers pop when turned off due to the energy stored in the sub (inductor) or the amp’s capacitors. When you turn off the subwoofer, you terminate the circuit. Consequently, the stored energy causes a back-EMF.

Back-EMF refers to an electronic force that opposes the electric energy that induced it. When you turn off the fluorescent light, you can see this force in action, and a spark appears at the switch.

Something similar can happen when you turn off your subwoofer. As transient power tries to make its way to the subwoofer, you hear a pop noise.

Why is my subwoofer popping every second?

Your subwoofer can keep popping every second due to squared waveforms, overpowered setups, or incorrect cone signals.

The noise indicates a mismatch between the output and input based on your subwoofer’s specifications. If you run multiple subs, there could be limited power to serve all of them. 

Why is my subwoofer popping when turned on?

 Your subwoofer could be popping because it is over-driven. If that’s not the case, it could be that your amp or receiver is sending a square wave signal. It should transmit a sine wave signal. This problem is largely caused by the audio source or receiver issues.

Connection issues can also cause your sub to produce a popping sound. If the wire connection between the subwoofer terminals and the amp has been removed, you could hear the sound as an indication that your audio system can’t transmit signals as required.


If your subwoofer pops at high or low volume, you could be a victim of a wide range of issues. The most common ones are damaged voice coil, mismatch of power, and connection issues. If you want to prevent it from interfering with your listening experience, follow the tips we’ve shared here.

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Norvan Martin is the founder of He is a professional Electronics Engineer and is passionate about home theater systems and AV electronics. BoomSpeaker was created as an online hub to share his knowledge and experiences as it relates to home theaters and home audio electronics. My email: [email protected]  Connect on Pinterest and Linkedin