Building your own subwoofer box comes with a bunch of hard decisions. One of the first decisions is choosing the material to construct the actual box for your car.
So, which one should you go for between fiberglass vs wood subwoofer box?
There are significant differences between fiberglass and wood subwoofer boxes. Fiberglass is lighter, more customizable and stylish compared to a wooden box. It also sounds better than the wooden box. Wood on the other hand is cheaper and easier to make but less customizable.
Need more details before you can make the decision? Well, we have a detailed comparison between fiberglass and wooden subwoofer box just for you.
You should take a glance at the detailed comparison before getting yourself some MDF or Fibreglass.
Fiberglass or Wood Subwoofer Box [Head to Head Comparison]
Fiberglass and wood are entirely different materials. When used to make subwoofers or speaker terminal box, the difference can have prominent effects.
We will look into the detailed comparison between fiberglass and wood. But before that let’s first look into some key differences.
|Weight||Light||Heavier than fiberglass|
|Ease of Making||Difficult||Easy|
|Design Variety||More variety||Less variety|
Now, we have an overview of the differences between fiberglass and wood. But what do these differences mean in terms of building a subwoofer box? Let’s find out.
In-depth Comparison Between Fiberglass and Wood
Just knowing the differences will not be enough before choosing the right material for a subwoofer box. How the differences will impact your experience with the subwoofer also needs to be thought through. Some differences give fiberglass the advantage, while others do the opposite.
But before diving into that here’s a visualization of the comparison between these two materials.
Now, that you can properly visualize it let’s get into the business part.
Sound quality might be the most important part of this comparison. We are making the subwoofer to get that exquisite listening experience. So, the audio quality will be the deal maker or breaker for many.
Many of us may not be that familiar with subwoofers made from fiberglass. So, do fiberglass sub boxes sound good?
Well. audiophiles all agree that subwoofers made using fiberglass offer a better listening experience. It gives less tremor and fewer expanding sounds while playing music with them.
However, still there are scopes to improve on top of that. You can always amplify the sound output you’re getting by adding an additional amp.
I’ve curated some of the best amps from Head-fi forum for your own convenience.
Wooden subwoofer boxes sound okay. There’s nothing special about it, but there’s not much to complain about either.
But if you are making subwoofers for cars, using wood might lessen the listening experience. Subwoofers made from wood might not fit in the car properly, hampering the audio quality.
But when there’s a will there’s a way! You can always enhance your audio performance by using some DACs. Here are a few portable DACs that’ll give you a soothing experience.
- Linsoul XDUOO Link2 Bal Portable USB DAC, it’s simply the best at this stage of 2022.
- MoonDrop MOONRIVER 2, has minimal cons but offers great value.
Winner: Fiberglass wins this sector. It offers a better listening experience everywhere.
Weight of the material will affect the portability of your subwoofer box. A subwoofer made using heavier materials will be pretty tough to carry around. Even moving it a short distance might be more troublesome than it needs to be.
Let’s how fiberglass and wood stack against each other in terms of weight.
Fiberglass is a light material because it’s made using a flexible resin. So any custom fiberglass subwoofer box will also be lightweight.
The lighter weight of fiberglass subwoofers makes them easy to carry around. Moving them from place to place is easier. Loading them up in vehicles will not add any significant extra weight.
The weight of wood varies from variety to variety. So the weight of your subwoofer will change based on which wood you use to build it.
There’s a dilemma you’ll face if you choose wood. The dilemma is choosing between Plywood or MDF for the box. Plywood is comparatively lighter while MDF is quite heavy.
But in general, wood weighs more than fiberglass. So subwoofers made of wood, regardless of the kind, will weigh more than a fiberglass box.
The extra weight takes away from the portability of the subwoofer box. Moving it around becomes much more difficult. Loading it in a car will add extra weight which may affect the fuel consumption of the car.
Winner: Fiberglass wins due to its lightweight. The lighter weight makes subwoofer boxes made of fiberglass much more convenient for daily use.
Ease of Making
We are writing all about DIY subwoofer boxes. So, the ease of making the subwoofer needs to be highlighted as well.
In this part, we will look into which is easier to work with, fiberglass or wood.
Fiberglass is a glass fiber that has been reinforced with plastic. This is not an easy material to work with. This makes the answer to how to make a fiberglass subwoofer box pretty complicated.
You can check this video on making a subwoofer box with fiberglass.
Working with fiberglass is not like normal work with a screwdriver and hammer. You will need to get crafty and prior experience will be a huge help. Complex tools might also be needed for making the subwoofer box using fiberglass.
We are all familiar with the complexities of working with wood. Just gather the tools needed, be mindful of the dust and work carefully.
So naturally making a subwoofer box using wood is not very complicated. Anyone with the bare minimum of experience should be able to do it.
Winner: Wood wins this round. Because making a wooden subwoofer box will be much easier to work with.
The looks of the subwoofer box is also important. So, let’s discuss fiberglass and wood in terms of design.
Fiberglass subwoofer generally looks really good. On top of that, there are a lot of design options available for fiberglass subwoofers. Even the shape of the enclosure can be customized.
Subwoofers made from fiberglass blend seamlessly into vehicles. The shape of the subwoofer box can be easily customized with fiberglass.
So fiberglass subwoofers can be made to fit in perfectly. This also helps it sound better than anything that might be out of place, especially in cars.
Fiberglass subwoofers can be heavily customized to match your taste as well. Ported fiberglass subwoofer box can be installed and customized easily. So you will be able to fit the subwoofer perfectly into your room or car.
Wooden subwoofer boxes are very limited in size and shape. The enclosures are usually just shaped as a rectangle or square.
If you’re choosing wood then make sure it’s MDF board. The Bright Creations MDF Board is the best way I would say. The package is perfect to make a subwoofer and will have no leftovers.
Placing a wooden subwoofer in a car might be challenging because of its shape. Even if you put one in, it might look very out of place.
Coloring or customizing options are also limited to wooden subwoofer boxes.
Winner: Fiberglass wins in terms of design. Fiberglass can be customized and designed to match the taste of the maker. Wood is very limited in terms of customization options.
Building subwoofer boxes are not cheap. So minding the expense of every component is important. Saving some money here might help you get better audio components.
So let’s see which is more taxing for your pocket, fiberglass or wood.
Fiberglass is pretty expensive. The expense grows when you consider the cost of working with fiberglass as well.
Fiberglass sheets are much more expensive than wood. Working with fiberglass also requires expensive and complicated tools.
The cost of wood depends on the kind. For example, MDF is cheaper than plywood. But overall wood tends to be cheaper than fiberglass.
Working with wood is also cheaper. The tools needed are usually available in everyone’s house.
Winner: Wood wins this comparison. Wood is cheaper to buy and work on.
Which One Fits Your Needs!
Fiberglass and wood, are excellent options for building subwoofer boxes. The choice between them depends on your priorities.
Use fiberglass if you want a stylish subwoofer that will offer you the best listening experience.
Use wood if you are less concerned about portability and style. Choosing wood is also recommended if you are on a lower budget. If you’re lucky enough you’ll feel this amount of bass from your sub.
There are many types of wood to choose from as well.
That’s it. Hope you can confidently make your decision now.
Are Wooden Subwoofers Best For Cars?
No, there are better options for cars. Subwoofers made using wood can not be customized to properly fit in a car. They might be oddly out of shape in your car. They also weigh a lot. The extra weight might affect your car’s fuel consumption and performance.
Does Powerful Audio Systems Affect Fiberglass?
Yes, powerful audio systems can strain fiberglass. A powerful subwoofer creates a mass from the metal magnet and basket. This strains the particles of the fiber of fiberglass. Even 20.000-watt subwoofers can strain the fiberglass. So it is not recommended to use fiberglass on powerful sound systems.
What Types Of Wood Can Be Used For Building Subwoofer Boxes?
MDF (medium density fiber) is the most popular wood used for making subwoofer boxes. It offers good quality audio, is cheap, and is easy to work with. Pine and oak can also be used for subwoofers. But plywood is a better choice than pine and oak. Baltic Birch plywood is especially good.
So that was all the knowledge we could impart to you before choosing fiberglass vs wood subwoofer box.
There are significant differences between fiberglass and wood. Which one you want to use depends solely on your priorities. If you can identify your priorities, making the decision won’t be hard now that you know their differences.
See you next time!