Elac SUB1010 vs. Polk Audio HTS 12

Elac SUB1010 120W 10” Powered Subwoofer Polk Audio HTS 12 Powered Subwoofer
$150 $550
Dimensions (H × W × D)
13.25” × 12.19” × 12.19”
337mm × 310mm × 310mm
18.50” × 17.13” × 18.11”
470mm × 435mm × 460mm
Power Type
Powered Powered
Frequency Response
37-200 Hz 22-180 Hz

Key Takeaways

TLDR Summary: The ELAC SUB1010 and Polk Audio HTS 12 are both formidable powered subwoofers in the budget audiophile market. The SUB1010, with its 120 watts and 10-inch driver, delivers solid performance, particularly suited for smaller rooms. It punches above its weight with tight, responsive bass. Meanwhile, the HTS 12 features a larger 12-inch driver with a more potent amplifier, offering deeper and more impactful low-end extension, excelling in medium to large spaces. Both units offer great value, but the HTS 12 may edge out for those seeking a more visceral bass experience and room-shaking power.

Speaker Comparison

When it comes to home theater and hi-fi systems, the low-end frequencies delivered by a subwoofer can make or break the listening experience. Today, we'll dive into the nuances that separate the Elac SUB1010 120W 10” Powered Subwoofer from the Polk Audio HTS 12 Powered Subwoofer. Both are respected names in the audio world, each carrying a legacy of quality and performance, yet they cater to slightly different auditory preferences and use cases.

The Heartbeat of Your Home Theater

The Elac SUB1010 enters the arena with a 10-inch bass driver, powered by a 120W amplifier. This subwoofer is designed for precision and subtlety, ideal for those who enjoy a more balanced and accurate bass response. It's particularly adept at integrating with bookshelf speakers, delivering a tight and focused low-end that complements music as well as movies. In contrast, the Polk Audio HTS 12 features a larger 12-inch driver and a peak power of 400W. This powerhouse is meant for those who desire a profound, room-filling bass that can rumble with cinematic explosions as well as resonate with the depth of a stand-up bass.

Elac SUB1010 120W 10” Powered Subwoofer
Elac SUB1010 arrow (at Amazon.com)

Design Philosophy

Visually, the Elac SUB1010 sports a clean, unassuming look with a traditional boxy shape. Its compact size allows it to blend seamlessly into a room without drawing too much attention. The Polk Audio HTS 12, on the other hand, has a bit more flair with its rounded edges and a sleek, more modern design aesthetic. It's larger and a bit more of a statement piece, making it something that may catch the eye of visitors and can serve as a focal point in a home entertainment setup.

Performance and User Experience

In use, the Elac's built-in 120W amplifier delivers a solid performance with sufficient headroom for most small to medium-sized rooms. It's quick to respond and excels in the precision of sound, which is especially noticeable in complex musical passages. The Polk HTS 12, with its more powerful amplifier, provides a different kind of experience. It's capable of delivering that visceral impact that you can feel in your chest, making action movies and electronic music come alive. The added power also means it can better fill larger spaces with its sonorous bass.

Polk Audio HTS 12 Powered Subwoofer
Polk Audio HTS 12 arrow (at Amazon.com)

On the topic of controls and connectivity, both subwoofers offer the standard suite of adjustments, such as volume control, low pass filter, and phase control. This allows users to tailor the bass response to their room and system. The Elac, with its simplicity, leans towards a plug-and-play mentality, which can be a boon for those who prefer a straightforward setup. Polk's HTS 12 includes additional features like a power-saving auto on/off circuit and a more versatile set of inputs, which may be more appealing to the tinkerer or audio enthusiast.

When it comes to integration with existing systems, the Elac SUB1010's smaller size and more conservative output make it a friendly match for modest audio setups and smaller rooms. It's less likely to overpower your main speakers, ensuring a cohesive soundstage. The Polk Audio HTS 12's larger driver and higher output play well with more ambitious systems, capable of supporting floor-standing speakers and delivering the scale of sound needed for a larger or more open listening environment.

In conclusion, the Elac SUB1010 and the Polk Audio HTS 12 each cater to different ends of the audio spectrum. The Elac is an excellent choice for those seeking a more restrained, accurate bass response that augments without overwhelming, while the Polk is suited for listeners and cinephiles craving that deep, dramatic impact that shakes the soul. The choice between the two will ultimately hinge on your personal preference, the size of your listening space, and the nature of the rest of your audio setup.

Check Current Prices:

Elac SUB1010 120W 10” Powered Subwoofer
Elac SUB1010 120W 10” Powered Subwoofer
Polk Audio HTS 12 Powered Subwoofer
Polk Audio HTS 12 Powered Subwoofer

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Disclaimer: the speaker data listed on this website are correct to the best of our knowledge, but we do not guarantee the accuracy of the data. Please double-check any measurements with the manufacturer before making a final purchasing decision.