No home theater is complete without the proper sound system. Surround sound used to require a complicated – and often space-eating – set up of speakers and wires. Today”s options are sleeker and simpler.

In general, surround sound is achieved through two types of equipment: a subwoofer and speakers. In this post we”ll cover some subwoofer basics. (Click if looking for information on soundbar speakers, HTIB systems or 5.1 Surround Sound systems.)

Let”s get started.

What is a subwoofer and why do you need it?

Remember when high-quality speakers were the size of an elementary school child? That”s because they covered high and low frequency sounds. Starting in the 1960″s, subwoofers were developed to amplify mobile casino that low frequency range. With the advent of subwoofers, bass sounds became clearer. And speaker quality improved, as well, since the speakers could specialize in higher frequency sounds. Separating high and low frequency sounds was the beginning of an evolution that led to today”s smaller speakers. What does that mean for you? Small speakers allow for a much more discreet, higher quality surround-sound set up in your home.

Are you still wondering if you can get away with speakers only?

Well, you could, but you”d be missing out on a lot of the sound experience. Consider this: In the 1990″s DVDs started to include surround-optimized soundtracks. Having a subwoofer helps amplify all of the low-frequency sounds in your film, called Low Frequency Effects (LFE). The rumble of an explosion or the sound of hoof beats on the ground will be more realistic with the use of a subwoofer.

Will a subwoofer take up a lot of space?

No. While you can get away with only one, ideally you should have two subwoofers to evenly distribute the bass throughout the room. Still, they won”t take up a lot of space. Subwoofers vary in size, but they are generally compact and can go anywhere in the room except for the center.