Apartment Subwoofer Tips (Condos, Townhouses, etc…Quieter Subwoofing)

Apartment Subwoofer Tips (Condos, Townhouses, etc…Quieter Subwoofing)

First and foremost, I should state that there are some situations where having subwoofers in an apartment at all is completely inappropriate….Vv Click SHOW MORE vV


That said, there are some things you can do to mitigate some of the problems with shared wall living. Vv Click “SHOW MORE” vV

One thing I didn’t emphasize enough in this video was turning the gain down on the subwoofer itself. I don’t mean that you just dial it down and call it good. I mean adjust the sub gain down, and then increase the AVR subwoofer level to where it sounds balanced to you again. This reduces the dynamics and the subwoofer’s max output, but still provides the depth when you have good subs. The bass will sound a little “softer” but still be just as deep. It just won’t “feel” as though the earthquake on screen is really happening, which neighbors will likely appreciate.

I put my microphone in the garage and measured the bass bleed-over on a single bass heavy track, Travis Scott’s “Antidote”. -20 db on the Denon, subwoofer trim at -6.5, and Dual PB-2000’s at 50% gain, which gave me 81+ db bleed over.

Then I dialed the subs to 15-20% gain, and turned up the AVR sub trim until it sounded “right” again with tracks from Norah Jones, my go to for dialing in subs. This happened to be at -0.5 on the AVR for me. I measured again at the same volume, and got just over 74 db playing “Antidote”.

That’s a 7 db reduction in bleed over to my garage at the same volume on the dial (-20). Pretty good result. Sound wise, the bass was softer with less impact, but the depth was still there. I prefer my bass stronger, but if I was in an apartment, I would find this totally livable.

The SVS Soundpath Subwoofer Isolation System is a good way to reduce the amount of energy transmitted into the floor. It’s also pretty hard to tell there is a system in place, it looks stock. The system is pretty flexible, I can wiggle the subwoofer cabinet around by hand, which to me demonstrates a pretty good level of decoupling from the floor. https://sub101.link/Isolation (affiliate link)

The Subdude is another isolation system, though I cannot comment on it’s effectiveness since I haven’t used them yet. http://amzn.to/2i0e6Co (affiliate link)

If you have other ideas that you think I should include in this description, comment below. I’m sure there are helpful things I didn’t think of. Placing the subs as close as possible is a good idea. Making your room quieter will mean you don’t have to turn it up as much. Communicate, etc…

***Gear and Links***

Subwoofers should reproduce quality sound with authority throughout the humanly audible bass spectrum (20-100 hertz). Most ported subwoofers do not.

Browse this channel and http://www.subwoofer101.com/ for layman’s tech advice, product reviews, content reviews, and tips. It’s OK to be new here, that’s the whole point!


I use affiliate links to support this channel and the website, but my opinions are 100% my own. You can support this channel by visiting my Amazon store for little stuff like movies and even big stuff like amps and TV’s: https://www.amazon.com/shop/subwoofer101

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Subwoofer 101 is the world’s first SVS affiliate, so if you mention Subwoofer 101, it can help support this channel. Please let them know what you think of the channel, good or bad.

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Here is the setup at the time of upload:

Amplifier Denon X6200W: http://amzn.to/2fbCbGx

Tried the Marantz, loved it except for the portal display, preferred the overall sound: http://amzn.to/2eKf9SI

This looks like a great power amp: http://amzn.to/2eKm525

Provided on a demo basis by SVS:

Towers: https://sub101.link/PrimeTower

Surrounds: https://sub101.link/Satellite

Atmos/DTS:X height speakers: https://sub101.link/Elevation

Center: https://sub101.link/PrimeCenter

Dual Ported Subwoofers: https://sub101.link/PB-2000

Dual Ported Cylinder Subwoofers; https://sub101.link/PC-2000

SVS Soundpath Subwoofer Isolation System: https://sub101.link/Isolation

Speaker wire: https://sub101.link/SP1SpeakerCable

Subwoofer cable: https://sub101.link/RCA

Measurement Mic for use with Room EQ Wizard:

Room EQ Wizard (free, donations encouraged for the guy that created it-not me, use earplugs!):

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  1. Don Lew on January 22, 2022 at 6:37 pm

    Was hoping to hear about sub size to diminish rattling and neighbor complaints.

  2. Total plonker on January 22, 2022 at 6:37 pm

    yes that’s what I called it! after trying several subwoofers out where I could play it at a satisfactory sound and it wouldn’t annoy my lovely neighbours!
    People underestimate the difference between a mediocre sub and a high-performance sub, ever since I purchased a high performance subwoofer I don’t get any complaints anymore
    If you enjoy your music just as much as movies but worry about your neighbours may I suggest looking into the RELL Ti series
    With the REL Ti series, the driver’s move so fast that rel recommends as well as the low-level input, you also so connect the high level input, which entails connecting a extra cable from the subwoofer to the stereo speaker binding posts! OMG I didn’t know music could sound this good especially coming through budget stereo speakers, the upgraded Sonic performance in the room is really astonishing and the best part about it, is even after asking my neighbours for feedback they say they can’t even hear it! Lol

  3. Nathan Bell on January 22, 2022 at 6:38 pm

    How about placing the sub as close to the listening position as possible, perhaps within an inch of touching the back of the chair or couch? It seems like one could keep the volume low enough that it won’t bleed thru walls but still give a seated listener the full impact. Has anyone tried this?

  4. Imissmy peep on January 22, 2022 at 6:40 pm

    I avoided the subwoofer complaints and invested in good headphones. I wear them every time I’m gaming or want to crank the sound up for my favorite movies. It’s it the same I know but it keeps everyone happy. Myself included! I love the idea of running two subs. My next surround sound setup I’ll go for it.

  5. Victor Muriel on January 22, 2022 at 6:40 pm

    What if I also use some of those surfacea like "gym flooring" to reduce te vibration on floor?

  6. fokus9000 on January 22, 2022 at 6:41 pm

    does base travel up walls? I have a wall splitting by living room and bedroom and thats where my system is. Its the 1989 Atlantic pattern speaker subwoofer combo with a built in amp.

  7. sweet and sour on January 22, 2022 at 6:41 pm

    tips on being a better neighbor dong get pissed to easy

  8. JgRaglan on January 22, 2022 at 6:42 pm

    Anyone who uses a sub woofer in an apartment should be shot.

  9. Byt Chrenova on January 22, 2022 at 6:43 pm

    Great stuff.Im easy going quiet guy:)),but apartment above me,theres elephant living there.He walks around and all i hear is bang ,bang ,like from bass speaker instead this is just from way he walks.I have asked him callmed it down a bit.Nothing changed.This is war now!
    How to attached subwoofer to the ceeling so i teach him a lesson?Obviously i do not want disturbe others just him.
    What way i get best bass sound and vibrations through the ceeling so he goes insane?
    Which way should the speaker be placed?I know its crazy,but still better than be arrested for kicking his arse.:))

  10. James Williams 777 on January 22, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    Thank You I have had neighbour’s knock and tell me buy 🎧 headphones 😭

  11. Francis Pacheco III on January 22, 2022 at 6:46 pm

    What does the low pass filter do

  12. Whiskey Weekly on January 22, 2022 at 6:46 pm

    Great video!
    I wanted to mention as well, the volume knob is not a gain knob. The gain controls how loud the input is and the volume controls how loud the output is. Similar concepts but different as well.

    I don’t mean to be a D either with the correction, I just wanted to add some clarity.

  13. Travis Gulley on January 22, 2022 at 6:50 pm

    On some home theater receivers like the rca rt2760 you can set the subwoofer level to soft subwoofers if your living in a apartment

  14. krankenheim13 on January 22, 2022 at 6:53 pm

    I was looking for something more along the lines of sound treatment tips.

  15. Miles Campbell on January 22, 2022 at 6:55 pm

    One of my party-walls always makes a banging noise when I turn it up, I guess my speakers aren’t very good… 🤣

  16. Art Eleanore on January 22, 2022 at 6:55 pm

    What do you do if you use the foam, the cones, and have the only option of changing bass and treble? I have them each on unit 1. Neighbors aren’t happy :/

  17. Waylander on January 22, 2022 at 6:57 pm

    I used a 24 muffin pan with 24 squash balls and set my Klipsch 12 inch subwoofer on top of the balls and it isolated the bass from the floor and sounds great.

  18. Travis Gulley on January 22, 2022 at 6:58 pm

    Have you heard of velodyne subwoofers and klipsch subwoofers

  19. Madison Sinclair on January 22, 2022 at 6:58 pm

    Great video, great info. But the bottom line reality is running subwoofers in an apartment is an unfathomably selfish thing to do. It really is.

    I would invest in high-quality headphones and possibly one of those shaker devices you connect to the sub out channels and attach to your chair. Maybe also one of those vests that video Gamers use. Not all neighbors will complain about the bass noise, but I guarantee you all neighbors hear it.

    No matter how well you isolate them, running Subs in an apartment is a lot like smoking weed out on your patio. You think you’re being a good neighbor, but your neighbors can still smell it, can still hear it. It’s just a really selfish thing to do.

  20. reneapps09 on January 22, 2022 at 6:59 pm

    In an apparent it’s a down firing sub just flip it upside down so the sub is on top and place a folded towel on the sub speaker to keep the dust away. I have sensitive neighbors and since I did that I’ve had no problems.

  21. Laura Brown on January 22, 2022 at 7:01 pm

    One of the Best Ideas of SoundProofing is "SoundProof Curtains" it actually Block outside Noise coming from Windows. Check Here: https://livesoundproof.com/best-soundproof-curtains/

  22. Alexey Andreev on January 22, 2022 at 7:01 pm

    Best trick is! Build freaking apartmen with Noise insulation!

  23. manonfireb4u2 on January 22, 2022 at 7:02 pm

    thanks for sharing. im in a trailer park and im in the middle of sound proofing my home. this will help until im done. apparently trailers are conduits and the bass travels in the ground. cant here it outside but if you walk into my neighbors trailer you can hear it like its playing in their home. nuts right?

  24. Jd Dm on January 22, 2022 at 7:02 pm

    Subwoofers in apartments are like nuclear weapons, in that once one person has one, everyone wants one, and once everybody has one, your all fucked.

  25. mapp47 on January 22, 2022 at 7:03 pm

    very good topic! can you recommend any subwoofers that would be suitable for condos/apartments? my 30 year old Axiom AX120A 80W seems to have packed it in!

  26. Travis Gulley on January 22, 2022 at 7:04 pm

    If you were living in a house and had no neighbors then you could have the subwoofers as loud as you want and even run as many subwoofers as you want and have the bass be as loud as you want and probably have the subwoofers at maximum power

  27. Kimmer Zambrano on January 22, 2022 at 7:04 pm

    Came here cause I got a Marantz andan definetly did eat the sub power so I had to turn that off. Now it sounds better but the sub volume is not even at 50% in music though is fine. On movies am lacking but not as much.

  28. Andrew Higdon on January 22, 2022 at 7:06 pm

    Sounds to me like your experience is a combination of luck and happenstance, where calculation is the solution. And for the record, the downfiring sub is in phase with the floor, thus transferring through it. Put it 180degrees out and it will diminish what transfers through the floor somewhat, but not enough to really truly notice. Your front firing subs are in phase with your vertical position, and 90 degrees out of phase with the floor, thus less transference to the neighbors below. Here’s how you use two subs to cancel in a certain direction, but of course this whole thing is based on an open room with no walls within say 40’ of the speakers. Is your apartment within those specs? Yeah. So shoot for the best. First determine which direction you want cancellation. Below, stack the subs, behind, side by side, to the side, side by side but turned 90 degrees. And the tow subs should be facing opposite directions. Measure the distance from one(front) driver cone to the other ( rear ) as the path that sound would have to travel. Some people measure driver to driver “as the crow flies” without consideration for the path of travel, and since no speaker is a perfect radiator, somewhere in between the two has proven to be what works, and the variables are too much to calculate, so modeling software has become the norm, and even that has limitations. So let’s say it’s the neighbors below. Stack the two subs. Measure from the center of one driver vertically to the center point of the other CABINET, not a circuitous route to the other driver. So if the subs measure from the floor say 12” to the dust cover, then theoretically the sub above should be the same distance. So delay the sub in the direction you want cancellation by that distance, plus, set the volume such that when each is played alone, the volume and eq(if possible) in the cancellation area are identical. Hello neighbors, just stopping in to play some loud pink noise to save your sanity in the near future. Match the two at that location. So then, you have the two matched in volume and eq in the cancellation area, plus delayed by the distance between the drivers, with the delay being applied to the speaker closer to the zone, then put that speaker out of phase, and voila, cancellation. Obviously it is no where near perfect, but the results can be quite stunning. For example, I live in a typical ranch house with a FROG where my sound system is. On the opposite end of the house, my wife would text me and tell me that the pictures on the wall in baby’s room were rattling. Then she would tell me that the kitchen appliances were also rattling, just on the other side of the wall from the FROG. Using my setup, I have cancelled sub frequencies by around 10-15 dB in that area. The results are both astounding and spooky. I can simply walk behind the subs to the top of the stairs and it seems tha the sub have been turned off. Science. Stay in school kids. The idea is to optimize sub frequencies in front of your subs and cancel as much as possible behind, but then there are variables such as walls and floors and ceiling to take into account t but experiment and you will get great results. That’s what we do in concert situations but a scaled down.

  29. SlyNine on January 22, 2022 at 7:07 pm

    Tip one, turn the volume down.. Lmao

  30. Lumify | Gil on January 22, 2022 at 7:09 pm

    My neighbors should be thankful, you don’t get cinema quality bass for free!

  31. Mike Dinno on January 22, 2022 at 7:09 pm

    I have vibration pads sitting under my sub in my condo. I also just got a second sub and because of space issues I bought the slim Dayton Audio 1000L sub laying flat down on the floor with my front firing stacked right on top of it. Both are 10′ 100 watts.

  32. agreedboarart on January 22, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    My subwoofer that came with my sound bar doesn’t even have any customization options, so I’m just not using it. :/

  33. Brian Bee on January 22, 2022 at 7:11 pm

    Not! Some advice buy a house asap! Not to be a d but you will thank me later.

  34. J Nagarya on January 22, 2022 at 7:14 pm

    If the sub is too loud, the reult is not "compression" — it is clipping.

  35. Ulf Larsson on January 22, 2022 at 7:16 pm

    I have my xtz cinema 3×12 sub on sonic design damping pads and on a home built platform with wheels on it.

  36. Bomma Reddy Brijendra Reddy on January 22, 2022 at 7:17 pm

    Please help me out! We have a new PB1000 Pro sub for our acoustically treated theater room having dimensions of 16x12x9 (in feet). Ours is a independent house and not an apartment.
    By default, on the svs app, the sub volume is at -10.
    I have to set +4.5 on our new Denon AVR-X2700 to get it to the level to work in tandem with the KEF T series speakers. Please advise if I am missing anything?

  37. Doc Johnson on January 22, 2022 at 7:19 pm

    I lucked out my neighbors are totally deaf and blind.

  38. VINNY5674 on January 22, 2022 at 7:20 pm

    My neighbor said stuff was rattling off her shelves from my bass 😁

  39. Ulf Larsson on January 22, 2022 at 7:20 pm

    Bad acoustics in apartments. There i live some doing some sorts of knock sound and that sounds really bad to me then.

  40. Mitch on January 22, 2022 at 7:20 pm

    Question i live in apartment i got klipsch subwoofer and its by the heater and it rattles what can i do so the heater not rattle

  41. Erik Britz on January 22, 2022 at 7:22 pm

    So i need a sound damping mat to put under my sub cause it has no feet etc. Also any ideo how to seal up your Bass in one room only cause my Bass leaks bad to other rooms 😐

  42. Undecided on January 22, 2022 at 7:23 pm

    I live next to the maintenance room. So I put my setup next to that wall.

  43. RanByMonkeys on January 22, 2022 at 7:24 pm

    anyone going to say it, it’s volume not gain

  44. Frankee Zee on January 22, 2022 at 7:24 pm

    This is what I got one time I bumped into the lady that lives above my unit…nice speakers! haha

  45. prettybaby80 on January 22, 2022 at 7:25 pm

    Don’t do this in shared housing. No matter how perfect the set up is . Buy/rent a house and set up your sub as you please

  46. FSXgta on January 22, 2022 at 7:29 pm

    I have a very old flagship reciver (pre HDMI era) and it has a Midnight mode, I don’t know if any newer reciveres have it. It seems to do a good job of compressing the dynamic range to make it better for midnight or when your neighbours are home

  47. Mike T on January 22, 2022 at 7:31 pm

    Im having a dilemma. I’ve connected a sony powered sub in my apartment and no humming. The next day, I wake up to a small faint humming noise coming from the subwoofer. The noise varies if i turn the gain up or down on the back of the sub. If i disconnect the sub signal wire at the speaker, no hummig. If i disconnect the sub wire at the reciever, different frquencies of sound start to emit from the sub. What is going on? any help would be appreciated.

  48. Anthony Vaughn on January 22, 2022 at 7:33 pm

    What works for me is

    Have Russian neighbors that don’t speak a lick of English

  49. poserwannabe on January 22, 2022 at 7:34 pm

    I’m an installer and always go the decoupling route in a townhouse or apt…I don’t turn down, never really had to…my normal install includes 2 concrete pavers of the correct dimensions ( to match the sub) stacked, then a 4" thick cork base on top of the concrete, then black cloth covering entire base, then the sub, rock on, no complaints. I’ve also had great results with high density memory foam.

  50. Chris Sanchez on January 22, 2022 at 7:34 pm

    Why would you care fuck those people watch your movies in peace and full bass