Setting up a new home theater is a fun journey with an enjoyable outcome when it is well done. Hiding the wires and the correct location of the speakers take a huge part of the process, but we always wonder how to please our wife with the aesthetic of the final job. Right?
Well, the biggest speaker is the one that is in front of us at the floor`s level The subwoofer. ( Not wife friendly) I did some research and I found some cool ideas.
So, how can I hide my subwoofer? You can hide your subwoofer in the ceiling, under a coffee table, under the floor, in a specially made box, and inside your couch or other furniture. A subwoofer needs airflow to perform well and extends the life of your subwoofer so you’ll want to take this into consideration when hiding it.
The vibrations it makes can also cause some issues. Below, I’ll give you some ideas about each of the options.
So, read on to discover this and also the key technical considerations you need to plan for when hiding your subwoofer.
How Do I Hide My Subwoofer?
The key considerations when hiding your subwoofer, according to leading subwoofer manufacturers, is to give it enough airflow and be aware that it will heavily vibrate what’s around it, damaging it and causing rattles.
As long as you account for these two factors that the sky’s the limit. And you can use your creative juices to come up with any design you can think of. However, there is a specific position for a subwoofer that produces the best sound.
According to leading brands like Sonos and Sony, it should be placed in line with the other speakers and not close to a corner. When it’s in line with other speakers it blends in with the soundwaves produced by the other speakers and sounds better.
The reason you do NOT want to place it in a corner is that it creates what are called standing waves. These are where the same shaped sound waves overlap with each other and you only hear one of the sounds.
You may be wondering whether you can enclose a subwoofer in a wooden box or cabinet. I wrote an article about this question which you can read by clicking here, Can you put a subwoofer in a cabinet.
The key takeaways are that subwoofers can cause what’s called vibration fatigue in mechanical engineering terminology. This is where continuous vibration weakens a material and causes nails and screws to work their way loose, and glue to split.
This means you want to keep as much distance as you can between what you enclose your subwoofer in and the subwoofer, and also add some rubber stops on the base of your subwoofer if it doesn’t already have them.
With all that being said let’s get onto some creative ways to hide your subwoofer
- In the ceiling
- Under the floor
- In a specially made box that hides it
- Inside your couch or other furniture
1. In the ceiling
If you have easy access to your ceiling this is really easy to do. Just plop it up there, and use some wire holders to keep the cables out of the way.
Ceilings tend to have a good amount of airflow, and you’ll be able to hear it well enough. Much like when a subwoofer is placed in a car boot.
If you’re really good with your hands and carpentry you might want to consider cutting a hole in your ceiling and having it play down into the room. But, that’s an advanced strategy.
Walls generally don’t work
Most homes don’t have any space between the walls. But, it is possible to create a false wall, however, it takes up quite a bit of room in your house.
And unless you’re planning to store other items in there, then it’s a bit of a major to build one just for your subwoofer.
However under the right circumstances, it can make sense, just remember to give your subwoofer enough airflow, and make it extra strong to account for vibration fatigue.
2. Under the floor
If you have access underneath your floor or want to cut a hole in the floor, then it’s a great way to keep a subwoofer out of the way.
If you have wooden floorboards that will make a good trap door somewhere in your room, you can have a carpenter have a look at it, and take care of it for you. You can also hire a home improvement specialist.
When you have separate access to space under your floor through a door on the side of your house or similar, you can create a box to protect it from the elements, animals, and bugs, and drill a hole somewhere out of sight to feed the wires to your receiver.
3. In a specially made box that hides it
The next two ways of hiding your subwoofer involve hiding your subwoofer in something that doesn’t look like it houses a subwoofer – very sneaky. You can create a side table, chest, or coffee table, that is hollow on the inside, with a good amount of space and a sturdy design.
4. Inside your couch or other furniture
In a similar vein to building a box for it, you can place it in existing furniture you have, for example inside a couch, especially in a corner couch or a couch that sits up against the wall. You can usually keep it under there, and it’ll be out of sight enough that you’ll hardly ever see it.
If it’s in a bedroom, certain beds will have enough clearance underneath that you can fit a subwoofer. Bulky coffee tables also make a great place to hide them.
Does A Subwoofer Have To Be On The Gloor?
According to the user manual for leading subwoofer brands such as Sony and Sonos a subwoofer should be placed on the floor, and directly facing where you sit. But, each room has a unique geometry that affects how a subwoofer sounds, so you need to experiment to find the spot with the best sound.
Technically a subwoofer can be placed anywhere, but you want to consider whether it’ll be a trip hazard and whether it will vibrate your other decor. For example, if you put it in a bookcase, the vibrations will make your books slowly work their way off the shelf.
And if you put it under a coffee table, it can wobble your pavlova… or make your sodas/beers lose their bubbles.
Can You Put A Subwoofer Up High?
A subwoofer sounds the best when it’s placed in line with the other speakers according to the top subwoofer brands. For example, putting it at the front of the room in line with your other speakers, and facing you.
But, if it makes more sense to put your subwoofer up high because of the layout of your room it will still sound fine.
You’ll want to play around with the direction it faces, and exactly where it is to get the best sound. The easiest way is to sit where you’ll usually be watching your TV, or listening to music and have a friend adjust its position to find the best spot.
You can hide your subwoofer in the floor, walls, ceiling, in a specially made box, or in your furniture. The main things to watch out for are to make sure it gets enough airflow and isn’t going to damage anything as it vibrates.
For example, if you put it under the floor but close by where your feet are, it will vibrate the floor under your feet and can be uncomfortable. Also, loose items that sit around it or on top of it, can fall down from the vibrations.
But, as long as you’re aware of these main factors you can hide the subwoofer that still gives you a great sound experience.