Klipsch R-12SW Subwoofer Review

“Klipsch The One II” is a stylish Bluetooth speaker that aims to be a great addition to any room of the house. But can it deliver more than the looks and compete with popular choices such as Sonos and Marchall speakers? And can it really fill a room with a balanced and crisp sound? Find out in this review if the Klipsch speaker really is ‘The One’ for you.


The Klipsch R-12SW is a 12-inch subwoofer with 400 watts of dynamic power from an all-digital amplifier. Before adding it to your sound system, check out the rest of this Klipsch R-12SW review.

In Short: Our Verdict

Klipsch R-12SW

Dimensions: 16 x 14 x 18.5 inches || Weight: 33 lbs || Inputs: Line level/LFE RCA jacks ||Power: 200W / 400W || Maximum Output: 116dB || Frequency response: 29Hz-120Hz +/-3dB

Pros

» Clean bass. The clean and detailed bass makes it stand out within this price range.
»
Stylish design. Durable and good build quality.
» No distortion. Even at high volume, the sound does not become distorted.

Cons

» Attached power cable. Can not be replaced so an extension cord might be needed.
» No wireless connectivity. Does not come with Bluetooth or WiFi.

Design and Build

As with most subwoofers, the Klipsch R-12SW resembles a large cube. It measures about 14 x 18.5 x 16 inches and weighs a little over 30 pounds. The design is sleek and luxurious, but also a little bulky.

Due to its bulk, the Klipsch is not the most convenient subwoofer to reposition. However, it is well-built and solid.

The build quality of the Klipsch R-12SW is above par for this price. It also has a slightly smaller footprint compared to other subwoofers with the same power rating.

The cabinet is made with standard medium density fiber (MDF) wood and wrapped with a brushed black polymer veneer. The brushed veneer adds a little more texture compared to the standard flat black wrap, which gives the design a high-end look.

The front of the subwoofer has a removable cloth grille. The grille has minimal curves around the edges, allowing it to reach the corners of the front panel and maintain a sleek appearance. It also covers the LED indicator, helping to soften the glow when enjoying music in a dark room.

The Klipsch R-12SW is equipped with a 12-inch driver and an all-digital 400W amplifier. The driver is the highlight of the design due to its stylish copper diaphragm.

Most speakers are made with paper or plastic. Copper is less flexible, which minimizes distortion, especially at lower frequencies. It is also more durable compared to other materials.

Klipsch also chose to use a rubber surround for securing the driver to the cabinet. Unlike inexpensive foam, rubber surrounds can hold up for many years without deteriorating.

The controls and power cord are found on the back panel, which also includes a rear-firing port. The bottom of the subwoofer includes four, thick rubber feet to help keep floor vibrations and sound absorption to a minimum.

Features and Connectivity

The Klipsch R-12SW has a set of RCA audio inputs. The left input doubles as the low-frequency effects (LFE) input.

The back panel also has several knobs and switches, including an on/auto/off switch, a phase switch, a gain knob, and an adjustable low-pass filter.

The gain knob allows you to increase or decrease the volume of the audio signal sent from the receiver to the speakers. A gain of 0 produces audio at the same level as the other speakers connected to the receiver. If you need the subwoofer to stand out a little more, you increase the gain.

The phase switch is used to add an electrical delay to the audio signal. Setting it to 180-degrees reverses the polarity of the subwoofer, which may improve the frequency response when setting the subwoofer opposite the other speakers.

The low-pass filter knob lets you adjust the cutoff for the low bass frequencies passed through the subwoofer. The Klipsch R-12SW has a frequency response of 29Hz to 120Hz. With the low-pass filter, you can adjust the cutoff of the upper range from 120Hz down to 40Hz.

Turning the low-pass filter knob completely to the right sets the subwoofer to LFE mode. LFE is used for connecting the subwoofer to the dedicated subwoofer output on an amplifier/receiver. This allows the receiver to send only the low frequencies to the subwoofer instead of the entire audio signal, resulting in greater clarity.

Compared to other subwoofers in the same price range, you may expect the Klipsch R-12SW to include more features. Other options may come with built-in wireless connectivity or a detachable power cable. However, the lack of extra features may not matter to everyone and does not impact the quality of the sound.

If wireless connectivity is essential to your setup, Klipsch sells a wireless kit. The kit connects to a WA-2 port on the back panel, instantly adding wireless functionality.

Sound

The sound produced by the Klipsch R-12SW is where this product stands out the most for subwoofers in this price range. The bass is smooth and accurate.

Most other subwoofers in the same price range are more likely to produce a harsh rumble, especially when cranking the volume. The Klipsch R-12SW plays low frequencies without distortion. The clarity helps bring out every deep bass note.

The clarity of the sound is partially due to the copper diaphragm. The copper-spun driver provides less coloration and distortion compared to more flexible materials.

While copper tends to cause the audio signal to break up at higher frequencies, the subwoofer only plays low-frequency sounds. The audio comes through clear and bright.

The bright, crisp sound contains less warmth than you may expect from a subwoofer. However, the sound is exceptionally clear, which may help you detect sounds that you never heard before.

The Klipsch R-12SW also provides plenty of power. The all-digital amplifier is rated to deliver 200W RMS and 400W dynamic power, which is common for a 12-inch subwoofer. You get more than enough bass for any home audio setup.

Some customers have commented about hearing a hum, which is typically due to ground loop feedback. This occurs when multiple devices are plugged into separate outlets. However, hums can occur when using inexpensive audio cables, such as the ones provided with the Klipsch R-12SW. If you detect a hum, use quality cables in the shortest length possible.

Other than a potential risk of humming from inexpensive cables, the Klipsch R-12SW offers clear, unmuffled sound. From a low rumble to a thunderous roar, the subwoofer maintains clarity at any volume.

Conclusion

The Klipsch R-12SW features a durable design with a sophisticated look thanks to its brushed polymer exterior. It also has a removable grille, allowing you to show off the gorgeous 12-inch copper driver.

The quality of the sound surpasses other options in the same price range. You get clean, deep bass, especially when connecting the sub using the LFE input. However, it lacks wireless connectivity and includes an attached power cable.

In the end, the Klipsch R-12SW delivers robust bass with no distortion at a reasonable price. You will be hard-pressed to find other subwoofers with the same value for your money.

Buying Options

Klipsch R-12SW

Dimensions: 16 x 14 x 18.5 inches || Weight: 33 lbs || Inputs: Line level/LFE RCA jacks ||Power: 200W / 400W || Maximum Output: 116dB || Frequency response: 29Hz-120Hz +/-3dB

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