Klipsch R-120SW Review (2023)
Assessing the Crowd Favorite Subwoofer

Is it really worth paying a premium for a Klipsch subwoofer? We are here to show you that not all subwoofers are the same and purchasing the right one will not only guarantee you a better experience but is also a more worthy investment that lasts longer. Our team has performed a Klipsch R-120SW review to help you discover the key to unlocking booming bass.

What We Like

What We Don’t Like


The Klipsch R-120SW subwoofer follows the brand’s aesthetics with the spun-copper injection-molded graphite (IMG) woofer. The grille is removable to reveal the copper-colored woofer beneath and the surface of the sub is scratch-resistant and fingerprint-proof. Not only is the Klipsch R-120SW subwoofer visually pleasing, but it’s also highly durable and can produce deep bass sound quality.

Our team members love units that have a low-key minimalistic design, which is what the Klipsch device has. It’s all-black with wood-grain texture and a matching grille that covers up a copper driver that’s the brand’s signature. There is nothing distinctly loud about the exterior, with nothing but the brand name etched into the cabinet. 

At 31 pounds, the unit has some weight to it, but nothing that can’t be handled. You can expect larger models to be heavier, but it’s not difficult to move it around the room. The rubber feet help sliding it a little easier without scuffing up your floors. As a sub is a more permanent fixture in your entertainment space, you won’t have to worry too much about the weight. 

Klipsch R-120SW Features

This part of the Klipsch R-120SW review is dedicated to each feature of the R-120SW speaker and what it can do to elevate your home theater.

Material and Durability

The subwoofer is a beautiful design that features an MDF cabinet that’s strong and sturdy with the textured black vinyl mimicking wood grain. The subwoofer was created to be long-lasting with high-grade materials to ensure its longevity.

On the bottom of the subwoofer you will find rubber feet that not only protect the bottom of your sub, but also your hardwood floors and tiles.


The 12-inch sub is considered to be on the larger end of the spectrum, with most subs coming in at 10 inches or the smaller and more compact 8. With the larger size you can expect more output, which is what our sound engineers promise the R-120SW will deliver.

The peak power is rated at 400 watts, which can fill the room with crystal clear music with improved bass. Not only is it good for improving the thump of your favorite tunes, the subwoofer is also helpful for movies and gaming audio.

Peak power is the height of what your subwoofer can handle in short bursts. Our audio team notes that the RMS rating [1] is what you should pay more attention to. The RMS rating is the level you can push your subwoofer to but still protect it from damage. The RMS rating for the Klipsch subwoofer is 200 watts.

Frequency Response

Unlike speakers, a  subwoofer only needs to provide a frequency response for the low end of the spectrum. Our audio engineers say the bass response of 29 hz to 120 hz is not bad at all, but it’s not overly impressive. You won’t find much demand for bass notes that are below the 29 limit, but if you do have low frequency notes beyond this subwoofer’s capability then you won’t hear them.

The brand seems to compensate for this with exceptionally clear sounds that will isolate every note and instrument that will deliver a more cohesive experience. 

Digital Amplifier

The R-120SW subs come with a built-in all-digital amp. This saves you a ton of time hooking the sub up to your system, since the brand did it all for you right out of the box. The amp is excellent for users who want full control over the power without affecting the sound quality and performance. 

Sound Quality and Bass

The sound quality and the bass really solidified the quality of the Klipsch R-120SW for our team of sound engineers. People purchase a subwoofer to enhance the bass of your speaker system and to create a better surround sound experience. This is why the sound quality is something you shouldn’t compromise on.

As we mentioned, this model is excellent for not only movies, but also music, gaming, news, sports, and anything else you love to watch on TV. The sounds are deep and not punchy, but provide a deep vibrating boom.


The Klipsch subwoofer model offers a lot of versatility in terms of setup and performance. It fits with a receiver that has compatible connections, so you won’t have to worry about spending too much time looking for the right receiver. 

The subwoofer works great with the Reference speakers, but will also work well with any other models from the brand.

Setup and Placement

The material, technology and performance could be ranked a 10 out of 10 on the scale, but the overall rating can decrease due to a difficult and very complicated setup. This is not the case with Klipsch’s range of devices, and especially not this one. 

Search for the low pass filter knob and the gain knob to turn them to the right position. All that’s left after that is to connect the cables into the corresponding inputs and you’re done. The setup is simple, which our testers really appreciated.

The subwoofer is front-firing, which opens up many options when it comes to placement flexibility. You won’t need to worry about putting the sub against a wall, but our experts recommend still leaving some leeway between the subwoofer and the surrounding furniture and structures to maximize sound and performance.


The connection options on any speaker or high-quality subwoofer dictate the compatibility with other devices. The Klipsch subwoofer has RCA LFE input connections that a lot of other speaker, amp and receiver models also have.


To customize your listening experience, the R-120SW has controls that help you adjust the sound to your liking. There are low pass, phase, and gain controls that are easy to adjust.

(Want more connectivity options? Here’s how you can connect a receiver to a subwoofer without using a sub output)

Price and Warranty

Many Klipsch R-120SW reviews including this one from our team members touch on the expensive price. Is it really worth the money? The high price tag is due to a number of reasons, one being the construction and design. The subwoofer is built from a sturdy material that is scratch-proof and smudge-resistant.

Klipsch R-120SW - side view

Some subs have the output of their sounds muffled due to the grille design, but this is not the case with the R-120SW. The cabinet is well-constructed but still provides adequate flexibility for the driver to produce loud volume and a wide range of low tones.

Our sound engineers feel that this subwoofer is more than worth the money, with many happy consumers among our staff and experts. 

The warranty for Klipsch products will vary, but for subwoofers like the Klipsch R-12SWi you are looking at a 5-year limited warranty for most. The limitations are outlined very clearly on their website, which will not cover your product if it’s damaged by the user. Our expert audio team always recommends going for products that are not only robust but also come with extensive warranty coverage. Klipsch offers reasonable warranties for their devices.

Klipsch R-120SW Review Conclusion

The Klipsch R-120SW review was a fruitful one and it is a product that our team members highly recommend. The bass is loud and the volume level will not distort your audio, plus there are plenty of input options to ensure compatibility with your system. Whether you want to improve your music or movies, the sub can propel rich bass around the room.


Willie Greer
Willie Greer
Willie Greer is the founder of The Product Analyst. A cinephile, he has made it a personal quest to achieve the awesomest home theater possible. He now shares what he has learned through the years on the site, and has enlisted the help of tech-savvy colleagues in providing more insight about today’s most sought-after gadgets.