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July 7, 2012

Audio Troubleshooting: Subwoofers

EP500 Subwoofer in Maple With Natural StainA question on our Youtube channel this week inspired a little post to help you with audio troubleshooting subwoofers.  No sound?  No idea why?  Here are 5.1 (naturally) tests you can try at home to see what the culprit may be.

  1.  Is it the coaxial cable itself?  Test this by connecting your subwoofer in what’s called the  ’high level’ way:  use speaker wire to make the connection. If it makes sound, then it’s the coaxial cable that is at fault and you need to replace the cable.
  2. Have you been rocking?  Another common problem with subwoofer sound or lack thereof is that just from playing aggressively, or being knocked, or an earthquake, the lead could come off on the driver – either the positive or negative lead.  To test for this, pull the driver out of the subwoofer to double-check that the positive and negative lead are still connected.  If they are, continue your search.  If one has come off, carefully reconnect it and test your subwoofer again.
  3. Am I on?  Test 123, test 123 . . . Unplug the coaxial cable from the receiver, but leave the other end so it’s still hooked up on the sub.  Take the coaxial cable end that you just removed from the receiver and then tap it gently.  If you get a thumping noise then you know the sub is working and the problem is the receiver.  Which leads us to . . .
  4. A little weather in your area?  Most commonly, if there is a power outage, receivers will go back to the manufacturer’s default settings, so you have to go back to the setup menu and reactivate the sub within the receiver.
  5. Straight from the source: You can take a source out of anything – such as a dvd player or cassette deck – that has a constant source, and plug it directly into your subwoofer.  If you can hear thumping, you know it is working and your audio troubleshooting subwoofer test needs to continue.  Thankfully, the last tip is a simple one:

.1 If there is no LED glow present, check your fuses!

There you have it – 5.1 common causes of home subwoofer sound problems.

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