MDF vs Birch Sub Box (Key Differences!)

When it comes to choosing the optimum wood for your subwoofer box, you can sometimes be confused. For example, MDF and Baltic birch plywood both perform exceptionally well, are dense and are long-lasting.

The density of MDF varies between 700 and 800 kg/cu meters. On the other hand, Birch plywood has a thickness of 680 kg/cu meter. MDF is much heavier than birch because of this. On the other hand, Birch plywood is more durable and lighter than its rival.

Are you still unclear? We understand your uncertainty. That’s why we have an article just for you.

Continue reading to learn more!!

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: Comparison Table

subwoofer enclosures

Price Relatively cheapExpensive
Strength and durability Medium-strongStrong 
What they’re made ofWood fibers, wax, raisinsWood fibers, wax, raisins
Easy to work with Somewhat easy Easy 
Common usesFurniture, decorative items, cabinets, subwoofer enclosuresLaminate flooring, door skins, Subwoofer enclosures
Style and finishingConsistent structure and smooth finishingSmooth finishing and uniform structure 


When you’re looking for something, you just want the best option. It’s akin to wishing for the ideal wood for your subwoofer enclosures. To do so, you’ll need a thorough overview of various parameters.

That’s why we’ve prepared a detailed head-to-head comparison for you. Let’s find out

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: What They’re Made Of 

MDF is a type of engineered wood that is made by splitting hardwood or softwood royalties into wood fibers, blending them with wax and a resin binder, and shaping them into panels using high heat and pressure.

MDF is denser than plywood in general. It is made up of separated fibers and can be used in the same way as plywood as a building material. 

A birch is a deciduous hardwood tree with thin leaves that belongs to the Betulaceae family, which also contains alders, hazels, and hornbeams. It belongs to the Fagaceae family of beech-oak trees.

The tone and audio quality of the sound coming from the speaker is unaffected.

It features excellent audio quality and clarity.

The BBC stated birch plywood as the only wood that could be used in the cabinets of the long-lasting LS3/5A loudspeaker. The main disadvantage of this wood is its high cost. It is, in fact, the most expensive wood for speaker boxes. Its high price tag is due to its extremely high quality.

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: Durability And Strength 

On the low end, your subwoofer will be doing a ton of work and moving a lot of air. The box’s material will influence the sound and picking the wrong material can be disastrous.

MDF is a man-made material. It’s made with a great deal of heat and pressure. It has the appearance of particleboard, but it has a higher density.

MDF has a density of 600 to 800 kg/m3, which is higher than many hardwoods. In high-humidity climates, it resists warping and swelling.

It’s important to remember that birch plywood is a high-end product made with high-end materials.

Baltic birch plywood is stronger and more stable than standard plywood and most other types of wood, including MDF.

Unlike standard plywood, which is made up of lower-cost layers or plies sandwiched between two outer layers of birch, birch plywood is made up of only high-quality birch wood layers.

No less expensive secondary woods are used as filler In birch.

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: Cost

Birch plywood is more expensive than MDF. At the same time, the audio quality is better.

Their prices differ depending on their thickness. MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) is available in a variety of thicknesses ranging from 12mm to 20mm.

Due to the use of premium materials, birch ply has a cleaner appearance in higher grades and fewer internal defects than cheaper Plywood. As a result, a premium B/BB birch sheet can cost twice as much ($125+).

Let’s find out how much they cost!

MDF boards prices and availability: 

20 mm$5.8Highly available 
18 mm$10.86Highly available 
12 mm$12.25Highly available 


Prices and availability of Baltic Birch plywood boards:

Unlike other types of plywood made in the United States, birch plywood is not a domestic item and needs to be imported.

Transportation and import duties and taxes are obvious incremental charges for you, and these raise the price per sheet compared to more domestically made plywood types.

Approximate CostSquare Footage of SheetCost per Square FootAvailability
Birch Plywood

(4′ x 8′ Sheet):

$125$3.90Highly available 
Baltic Birch Plywood

(5′ x 5′ Sheet):

$90$3.60Highly available 

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: Sound Quality

You can get pure, unaltered sound by getting a speaker made of medium density sheets or building subwoofer boxes out of medium density fiberboard.

Vibrations are one of the leading causes of distortions, but you won’t have that problem with MDF.

Because birch plywood boards are dense, they are excellent for producing high-quality sound. It keeps the sounds and sensations at an ideal level while also keeping extra vibrations at bay, making it the preferred subwoofer box material.

Both kinds of wood produce excellent sound quality; however, we suggest going with the birch if you can afford it. If not, MDF is the way to go.

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: Tone And Resonance

The majority of users want their subwoofers to generate high-quality sound that is free of vibrations and distortions.

It’s an essential factor to consider when thinking about sub boxes, especially if you’ve spent a lot of money on them. You don’t want to muck up the clarity and tone of high-end audio equipment. Plywood is the best material for building your subwoofer box, and it will undoubtedly provide the best tone and quality over any other.

However, if birch plywood isn’t available and you need to find something else, MDF is the next best thing.

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: Warping

Wood warping occurs when moisture and temperature cause changes in the wood’s structure. Organic woods that are not uniform warp. As a result, when building a subwoofer, choose a less likely wood to warp.

The biggest problem with using various types of wood rather than MDF is warping. You can stain a beautiful natural wood enclosure to make it look even better.

Other types of wood require more attention to weather changes, especially if you live somewhere with hot summers and cold winters, because more significant temperature swings make the enclosure more susceptible to warping. The same is true of humid climates.

On the other hand, birch plywood is made from thin wood veneer sheets that are layered and glued together. If not stored or treated correctly, it can easily warp.

MDF vs Birch Sub Box: Which is better?

The birch Plywood is preferred to MDF for a subwoofer box. Birch is lighter in weight and more robust than MDF, making it easier to transport. Working on plywood is simple and does not compromise its structural integrity. However, quality plywood boards don’t come cheap. 

It would be a breeze if you were to use all of the cutting, drilling, drawing, and boring tools on a birch board. That is not something MDF does.

Instead, the weight of the manual tools causes its fragile structure to give way. Any cutting or drilling will encounter resistance, so proceed slowly to avoid wasting time.

Birch Plywood is the clear winner in a wide range of practical audio applications. It resists bending due to its strength-to-weight ratio.

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