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Fluance DB12 $300 12" Ported Subwoofer Preview



  • Product Name: DB12 12-Inch Ported Powered Subwoofer
  • Manufacturer: Fluance
  • Review Date: March 24, 2017 07:00
  • MSRP: $300 (includes shipping)
  • First Impression: Gotta Have It!

  • SPEAKER CONFIGURATION: Front Firing Powered Subwoofer with Integrated Amplifier
  • LOW-FREQUENCY DRIVER: 12 Inch Polypropylene with Rubber Surround
  • AMPLIFIER POWER (RMS): Peak 400W / RMS 240W
  • LOW-PASS CROSSOVER: 45Hz – 180Hz
  • FREQUENCY RESPONSE: 38Hz – 180Hz (+/-3dB)
  • INPUT: Left and Right Speaker Level Inputs, Left and Right Line Level Inputs
  • OUTPUT: Left and Right Speaker Level Outputs, Left and Right Line Level Outputs
  • CABINET SPECIFICATIONS: Precision Crafted MDF Internally Braced
  • AUTO FUNCTION: Yes – (100Hz signal input reach 3mV, 1KHz input 5mV)
  • DIMENSIONS: 16.7 x 15 x 16.8 inches
  • SPEAKER WEIGHT: 37 pounds

01-Main.jpgHot on the heels of the recently released DB10, Fluance has announced a more powerful 12” model subwoofer with the DB12. But the DB12 isn’t merely a larger version of the DB10, it’s also a more feature-rich sub with a far more powerful amplifier. As with the DB10, the DB12 sports a gloss-black front baffle and three choices of wood veneers for the rest of the cabinet, but instead of a single port, the DB12 has two ports, thereby doubling the potential output capability of the port tuning frequencies.

While the DB12 has the pricing of an entry-level subwoofer, it has some features that aren’t normally seen in its price-bracket. The inclusion of not only speaker-level inputs but also speaker-level outputs are a type of connectivity that is often only seen on high-end subs intended for two-channel systems. Line-level outputs also go above and beyond the call of duty for this price point and allow the user to easily daisy-chain other subs in a multi-sub system. The gloss-black front baffle and wood veneers are also an uncommon feature found in a $300 subwoofer (shipping included).


The DB12 is an unusually compact subwoofer for a ported 12” design. Its polite size and refined finish allow it to fit in very aesthetically demanding situations. Its reasonable weight of 37 lbs. make it less of a chore to move around to find optimal placement as well. Smaller enclosure sizes do impact low extension, and with a 38 Hz to 180 Hz response with a +/- 3dB window, the DB12 does not defy physics. While normal room acoustics will lower that for most rooms, it isn’t the kind of extension that can be had with larger and usually more expensive subwoofers. However, that range is sufficient to cover nearly all bass over a vast range of recorded music. For home theater aficionados, the DB12 will catch most of the low-frequency energy in movie content as well, since most bass in film soundtracks lay above 40 Hz. Personally, we would rather give up some bass extension to have solid mid-bass performance rather than to compromise mid-bass performance for deeper extension with middling output ability over the whole subwoofer range. At this price point and this enclosure size, you don’t get to have everything, and I think Fluance decided wisely where to shift the strengths and weaknesses that are inevitable within these constraints.


Fluance DB12 Subwoofer

Don't Buy One, Buy Two!

Those looking to beef up the bass for their music in their bookshelf speaker system on a tight budget would do well to give the Fluance DB12 subwoofer a try. The DB12 can only be ordered direct from Fluance, but it is risk-free to try them out since they will give you a full refund with free return-shipping if you are not satisfied for any reason. At $300, this makes for a very affordable multi-sub solution for bassaholics looking to increase overall output and improve bass response across a wider listening area.

see: Benefits of Multi-Sub

After being impressed with their Signature Series floor-standing speakers in our review we at Audioholics are hoping to get a DB12 in our labs soon to see how punchy Fluance can make our drums kick for its modest asking price.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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James Larson is Audioholics' primary loudspeaker and subwoofer reviewer on account of his deep knowledge of loudspeaker functioning and performance and also his overall enthusiasm toward moving the state of audio science forward.

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