How to connect a subwoofer to the receiver without subwoofer output?

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How to connect subwoofer to receiver without subwoofer output?

Subwoofers with no speaker-level inputs can be connected to a receiver with no sub out through a line-level converter via “Y” type or male-male RCA connectors. On the other hand, a subwoofer with speaker-level inputs can be directly connected to the receiver on its speaker outputs.

How to connect a subwoofer to a receiver without subwoofer output? Well, it is a tough one for those who are using a receiver without sub out for the first time.
But there is no need to worry.

By the end of this guide, you will find two ways to connect your subs to receivers with no built-in sub output.

Once I had a receiver with no sub output, but I made it work with my subwoofer because I didn’t want to enjoy the low-frequency, bass-heavy tracks of my playlist any lesser.
I have put up this guide for all those audiophiles like me who want to get an absolute stereo experience from their existing sound setup.

What You Will Need to Follow this Tutorial

We will discuss two methods here, and you don’t need a list of things to make them work. If you have these two accessories, you can connect your subwoofer with the receiver using either method.

· RCA “Y” adapter or male-male RCA connector
· Line-level RCA Converter

Step-by-Step Instructions

Let’s look at both these subwoofer-receiver connecting methods one by one.

Connecting Subwoofer and Receiver via Stereo RCA Connectors

Let’s break down the method in simpler steps.

1. Connect a Line-Level RCA Converter with the Sub

A sub with two RCA inputs       A male-male RCA connector   A line-level converter

Credit: New York Times            Credit:                 Credit:

First, connect the line-level RCA converter with the sub. If your subwoofer has a single RCA input jack, you will need an RCA “Y” adapter. For a sub with two RCA inputs, a regular male-male RCA cable will be needed.

2. Connect the RCA Line-Level Converter and Sub Assembly to the Receiver

A receiver with its multiple speaker outs

The RCA line-level converter has two ends. We have already connected with the sub IN. Next, we will connect the converter to the speaker leads of the receiver. In short, a line-level converter will act as a bridge between the subwoofer and the receiver with no sub-outs.

So, what line-level converter is doing here?

In this connection assembly, the line-level converter accepts and scales down the receiver-level signal to a low-level signal output that your subwoofer can accept.

Connecting Subwoofer and Receiver via Speaker-Level Inputs/Outputs

A subwoofer with speaker-level inputs

If your sub has speaker IN, you don’t need to buy a line-level converter and relay it between the sub and receiver. You can connect the sub directly to the speaker out of the receiver. The process is as simple as connecting speakers to the receiver/amp.

Just connect the sub’s speaker IN with the receiver’s main or vacant speaker outputs through a male-male RCA connector and bingo! You have connected your subwoofer to a receiver that doesn’t have a sub out.


As you can see, there is no rocket science involved in connecting subwoofers to a receiver without sub output. All you need is many RCA connectors and a line-level converter that you can buy within $20.

Also, it doesn’t take more than a minute or two to establish those connections. And just like that, you can make the most of your sub with all its low-reverb punch without breaking your bank and exhausting yourself in setting things up. Don’t forget to tell us what method you will use in the comment section and how it pans out.

Also, if you have found the guide helpful, don’t forget to share it with your fellow audiophiles who have receivers with no sub-outs.

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