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Alpine Type-S Review

Editor’s Note: This product has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it has been discontinued.

Our Verdict

The Alpine Type-S subwoofers have good power handling that provides big thumping bass to your commute, but the frequency response and sensitivity rating are below average.

For

  • It has a continuous power handling rating of 500 watts with a peak of 1,500 watts.

Against

  • The frequency response only reaches 26Hz, and the sensitivity is only 86.5dB.
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Alpine Type-S image: The sensitivity rating is 86.5dB.

Alpine Type-S image: The sensitivity rating is 86.5dB.
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Alpine Type-S image: The continuous power handling is 500 watts.

Alpine Type-S image: The continuous power handling is 500 watts.
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Alpine Type-S image: The mounting depth for the 12-inch subwoofer is 6.625 inches.

Alpine Type-S image: The mounting depth for the 12-inch subwoofer is 6.625 inches.
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Alpine Type-S image: You can get the model with an impedance of 2 or 4 ohms.

Alpine Type-S image: You can get the model with an impedance of 2 or 4 ohms.

Editor’s Note: This product has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it has been discontinued. You can still read our original review below, but Top Ten Reviews is no longer updating this product’s information.

It's difficult to find much wrong with the audio quality the Alpine Type-S car subwoofers produce. They're capable of producing punchy bass that still has a clear shape to it. Whether you're listening to punk rock or classical, the low end improves the overall audio quality of your car speakers. The only downside to the sound quality is the frequency response doesn't reach the basement of human hearing. At 26Hz, it can produce frequencies just below the lowest key of a piano, but can't reach some of the lower notes you hear in electronic music and hip-hop.

The best feature of the Alpine Type-S car subwoofers is the power-handling capabilities. The 12-inch subwoofer can handle 500 watts of power continuously with a peak rating of 1,500 watts, which is comparable to Pioneer Champion's 12-inch subwoofer. The peak power handling provides plenty of room for songs to crescendo without damaging your woofer. The 10-inch subwoofer has the same power-handling specifications, making this one of the best power-handling series of car subwoofers we reviewed.

The one downside to the power handling is the low sensitivity rating of 86.5dB, which makes it one of the least efficient speakers in our lineup. If the Type-S subwoofer requires 100 watts to produce a certain volume, a car subwoofer with an 89dB rating would only require about 50 watts to produce the same output volume. For comparison, the most efficient subwoofer we reviewed, Infinity Reference, has a 96dB sensitivity rating.

Despite having one of the largest mounting depths at 6.625 inches, the Alpine Type-S doesn't require large enclosures for optimal performance. The ideal sealed enclosure only requires .9 cubic feet, and the ported enclosure only requires 1.46 cubic feet. The type of enclosure you choose affects the type of bass you hear. If you want the most accurate bass possible, the sealed enclosure is the way to go. If you want thick, punchy bass, you want the ported enclosure.

The Alpine Type-S car subwoofers are a good addition to your car audio arsenal, despite their frequency response only extending to 26Hz. With their continuous power-handling rating of 500 watts and a peak of 1,500 watts, you can push these subs hard, which you'll need to because of the low sensitivity.