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.
Energy products impress their users, and owners tend to be Energy users for a long time. The Energy ESW-C10 offers excellent build quality and decent sound quality as a budget home subwoofer.
The Energy ESW-C10's frequency-response range is between 32Hz and 140Hz, with a low-pass crossover of 40Hz to 120Hz that is controlled by a rotary dial on the rear panel. The amplifier pumps 150 watts of continuous power, but it can reach as high as 400 watts. At its max, the sub pushes 102dB, a good amount of sound considering its continuous power.
For music and movies, the Energy ESW-C10 delivers crisp sound when the frequencies are in its range. The LFE cinematic moments get muddy below 32Hz, and the sub begins to lose some of its power at the higher bass frequencies. In small to mid-sized rooms, you won't notice any sound issues, but in larger or open layouts, much of the power of the bass will be lost.
The Energy ESW-C10 home subwoofer's cabinet is available in a black ash finish with high-gloss black baffle trim. There is an LED power indicator light directly below the removable grill that covers the woofer. The most stunning aspect of the design is the color contrast created by the woofer's distinctive black cone and white elliptical that sets it apart from other subwoofer speakers.
Energy ESW-C10 home subwoofers have a number of inputs and controls in addition to the rotary-dial volume and low-pass crossover controls that we mentioned previously. This subwoofer has a signal-sensing automatic on-off function that puts the sub into standby mode in the absence of a signal. The LED power indicator light turns off when the home subwoofer is in standby mode. The phase is controlled by a switch that toggles it between zero and 180 degrees.
There are several ways to connect these audio subwoofers to your sound system. If your audio/video receiver has an LFE sub-out connector, you can run a single RCA cable between the receiver and the sub's left line-in terminal. You can also use a stereo RCA cable to connect both the left and right inputs on the sub to your AV receiver's stereo sub out. If your receiver does not have an RCA sub out, you can connect it to the sub's speaker-level inputs via the main speaker outputs on your receiver.
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The Energy ESW-C10 is only covered by a one-year warranty for parts and labor. The Energy website has a number of resources for technical support, including a FAQs page, user forum, online product manuals, and phone and email support. Energy's tech support team responded to our email quickly and answered most of our questions.
The Energy ESW-C10 has many great features and design elements. With Energy's reputation for excellence, it is a shame that this subwoofer does not offer better performance.