How are Woofers Rated for Power? CEA or IEC

This is an overview of power ratings of speakers and sub woofers. RMS, Peak, Program, Continuous, it’s all here. CEA and IEC standard tests are outlined. CEA rates the optimum amplifier wattage to be used on a woofer, NOT the RMS. Their test is based on short tone bursts until the woofer distorts. IEC actually measures Peak and RMS.
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Audio Power
What is RMS
Sub Woofer
IEC Standards
CEA 2031 Description
JBL Procedures
EAW Standards
Loudspeaker Power handling
CEA-2010 Synopsis
Keele CEA write up
Materials Source
CEA 2031
CEA 426-B

CEA test CD


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36 thoughts on “How are Woofers Rated for Power? CEA or IEC

  1. Forgot all off the ratings,Everyone knows what rms rating is so companies should stick with rms rating for there subs and not lie about it.

  2. Well, I love how BigD and Budget gem or budget bust call out manufacturers of amps with the amp dyno testing. I bought a cheap Pioneer amp GM-D8601 for about $120 (which also has the BS 1600 watts max power on the box, pfffft) But I saw a dyno test and know it does it's rated 300 @ 4, 500 @ 2 and 800 @ 1.
    I wish there was a speaker dyno… Steve Meade are you reading this???

  3. Just now they will find a new formula to double the peak and call it mega wattage or some craziness….rms worked fine for years, considering head room and amp efficiency, most of the time I would prefer doubling the rms of the amplifier to match the speaker……gives me piece of mind.

  4. The Big brand name Pro Audio speaker uses AES "Audio Engineering Society" power rating it's more legit than car audio ratings it's basically rms tested by a 2nd party.

  5. this is what people need to know Learn these then also make sure you know what type of wire the coil in your speaker is made of and the rest of the specs on that and then you'll have a good ballpark idea of what you have and are working with.

  6. You, Sundown Audio, EMF Audio, Williston BigDWiz, and HexiBase have all made me an even BIGGER Youtube junkie than before! I keep getting anxiety waiting for new videos (even though you all post weekly!). Then I get more anxiety looking for a quiet place to watch giving proper attention. I really need to bring earbuds.

  7. Its time for all the car audio manufacturers to step their game up. Some already have and they are reaping the rewards. Gotta expose the fakes. The only numbers I want on my subwoofers is the wattage number, nominal impedance and flat frequency response it can do indefinitely without any damage whatsoever.

  8. I don't understand what the muppets at Rockville don't understand about RMS power. All standards aside, a 500W RMS-rated woofer should take 500W RMS thermally at 100% duty cycle (continuous tone). If excursion can be controlled you can hit it with 1000W at 50% duty cycle, 2000W at 25% duty cycle and so forth.

  9. Been saying the same thing on all the live feeds. Lol. Be a great YouTube channel on just testing woofers. There are several who I love, that test amplifer. There are zero that I have found who are dedicated to only subwoofers. I'd subscribe to that for sure!!

  10. Great vid! Needs many many likes. You also deserve many more subscribers here – you're imparting decent learning material.

  11. Mmmmm yummy information. Sadly manufacturers care not for us to run this stuff properly, they are just super duper waiting for us to cook some coils. If you wanna keep bugs off your car, cook a voice coil. Mmmm Enamel

  12. Ed you should be the go to guy to set the standard for all audio companies and the ratings. (Benchmark)( birthsheet ) that way no company can post false ratings on their products .

  13. Dang! When will sub and amp manufacturers figure out how to ALL rate there stuff the same. I’m always trying to help people with there systems or help build one and most are stuck on what amps put out and subs handle. Then I start to explain about audio batteries and a possible Alternator upgrade as the price of the build goes up there motivation goes down cause they don’t realize that amazing sound comes at a price and a lot of knowledge. I’ll have to watch this vid w few dozen times to 100% underground but it’ll be worthwhile your good at explaining this. Thanks

  14. Klippel testing at rockrock acoustics has been a standard many companies use , Rockford , MTX , NVX , Dayton , Sundown and many others , some companies like pioneer have their own Klippel lab . Redrock has a USA lab and can test a wide range on drivers from TS specs to Power , basically anything you want to know about a driver , some companies only get certain testing done for certain drivers and not full testing due to cost . it would be awesome if everyone was on board with one place doing full 100% testing . Klippel seems to be very accurate when full tested . i personally trust a companies subwoofer when they can give me the klippel data , especially if they can provide the full test sheets/ docs . google around about it . i feel most would agree that drivers tested with this system are very well rated

  15. I recently purchased an ikea bluetooth speaker and what I like about it is….
    When you turn it up to max everything it does what it is supposed to do. Max all day with no distortion and no death. There is better out there but I like it because it is honest.
    Shame others can't be more like this.

  16. Some of you may also be fans of PC hardware. One can remove the aluminum slug from the top of their CPU and then be able to cool then be able to cool the chip slightly better. It is called 'delidding' and can boost an overclock up a very tiny amount. To the folks striving to top the overclock charts that is worth it…to others who just want a good computer, it has no merits at all.

    If you are concerned with topping SPL charts, you don't buy $130 subwoofers. (unless you have price limits, like in this recent $150 SPL challenge…and then 2 $75 Rockville woofers are going to smash the competition)

  17. The reality is that some guys are just going to play their subs as loud as they possibly can, no matter the financial costs of blowing subs and amplifiers. The thrill they seek is the actual destruction of speakers, as EXO has demonstrated repeatedly and garnered a great many fans for doing exactly that.

  18. ShowtimeSPL is absolutely right on track though. We surely could use a better way to test subwoofers. The issue is that an amplifier will go into protect mode (or blow a fuse) when it is forced to do more than it can….and a subwoofer will just burn up, having no such protection feature. It is conceivable that some sort of active circuitry could be added to speakers to limit how much power is passed through the leads but I doubt anybody would want that feature, or pay for it.

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