Pine Plywood For Subwoofer Box (All You Need To Know)

Pine plywood has always been controversial among the materials used to make subwoofer boxes; some people believe the material used in pine plywood is good.  

On the other hand, some people believe it isn’t as efficient or long-lasting as MDF, fiberglass, standard wood, and other materials used to make subwoofer boxes.

Despite the skeptics, people make subwoofer boxes out of pine plywood

So, if you want to learn how efficient and long-lasting plywood can be in the construction of subwoofer boxes, keep reading!!!

Can You Use Pine Plywood For Subwoofer Box?

birch subwoofer box

Pine plywood is an excellent beginner subwoofer box material. It’s the cheapest wood you’ll find, and it’s also the most simple to work with. Even an amateur carpenter can make functional pine sound enclosures if you have the right tools.

It’s available in a range of thicknesses. Still, it isn’t exactly the best solution for increasing resonance and tones so the sound quality will be compromised. That is why the majority of experts advise against using pine plywood.

The big issue is the quality of the pine plywood construction. Most “cheap” pine ply is very poor quality with lots of voids and unbonded layers. 

But if you don’t want to spend a lot of money or just making your first subwoofer box, then pine is the best option available.

As I said, It can be used to construct a subwoofer box, but it is advised that you use higher-quality plywood rather than the cheap stuff that looks like it was picked up on the side of the road.

Pine plywood sheets are lighter than standard wood and MDF, so the sub box will be lighter, but it compromises quality overweight. 

Remember to Ask your timber merchant to show you a sheet that has been cut through. It’s amazing how some of it stays together! 

I bought one for my project to build a tapped horn subwoofer, but unfortunately, I had to send 12 whole sheets back because the sheets fell apart when I cut into them. 

Types of Pine Plywood Used For Making Subwoofers

There are two types of Pine plywood used to make subwoofer boxes.

  1. Softwood
  2. Southern yellow pine


Softwoods are used to make this type of pine plywood. Redwood, cedar, and pine are among them. Because pine is used to make this plywood, it is also known as pine plywood.

You might think that this type of plywood isn’t as strong as others because of its name, but that isn’t the case. It is a robust and long-lasting wood that can make strong sub boxes.

In many construction projects, they are commonly used in the roof sheathing, exterior frame sheathing, and sub-flooring.

However, you’d be amazed at how well it works when used to construct a subwoofer enclosure.

Southern Yellow Pine

Southern Yellow Pine (also known as SYP) plywood is made from a specific group of four ‘Yellow Pine’ trees found in the southern United States.

Southern Yellow Pine plywood is known for its high density, strength, softness, and unique grain pattern.

It’s best for projects that require both durability and aesthetic appeal, and it could be a good fit for your new subwoofer project.

Is Pine Plywood Good For A Subwoofer Box?

Southern Yellow Pine

It can work well if the pine plywood is very dry (old/recycled) and, most importantly, if there are no wood knots.

Make plywood baffles for the front and back (screwed, not glued). Different materials act differently when wood is glued, causing the wood to crack. As a result, screws are recommended.

Depending on the type of pine and whether it’s dried out, pine plywood would be a better choice for your sub box.

Industry experts believe that the Southern Yellow Pine used to make sub boxes is so hard that it dulls cheap drill bits and necessitates pilot holes to drive nails in, so you’ll never have an issue with all the cabs you built.

The downside is that it’s difficult to find really straight ones because they tend to warp once they’re free of whatever they were attached to, so if you don’t have a power planer, you’ll want to get some that have been lying around loose for a while to choose from.

When using softer pines for ‘sub’ duty, you’ll need a lot of bracing, so depending on the size of your cab, the easiest way is to double up the panels if that’s what you have and, of course, no knots or signs of splitting, then you’re good to go.

How Thick Should Pine Plywood Be For A Sub Box?

Enclosures should be constructed out of dense, heavy wood. However, because pine plywood is not as dense as other sub-box building materials, the suggested plywood thickness is 3/4″ (19mm) through 1/2″ (12.5mm). Pine plywood is satisfactory for woofers 8″ and smaller.

Minimum 9mm in pine plywood if dampened with bitumen for low-power speakers, but we recommend at least 12mm or 18mm for big power subwoofers.

 Benefits of Using Pine Plywood For Sub Boxes

  • Pine plywood has a number of advantages when it comes to sub boxes. Pine plywood is finished off with a pine veneer (thin layer of pine) on one side in a B + C face. 
  • If you want to make a subwoofer box for a reasonable price, pine plywood allows you to make a piece that shows off wood grain for a fraction of the cost of making one out of wood.
  • It’s a softer plywood that’s shock-resistant, very stiff, and moderately heavy, making it ideal for any electrical short circuits in the subwoofer.
  • Pine Plywood is also very light, making it easy to transport your subwoofer from one location to another.
  • Less expensive than Baltic Birch and MDF, but it’s still pretty affordable – only slightly more expensive than plywood
  • It’s simple to cut and won’t wear out jigsaw blades as quickly as MDF.
  • With 1/2′′ pine board weighing about 25 lbs per 48 sheet, it is lightweight and easy to move around.
  • Rot- and decay-resistant
  • It’s more resistant to the sun and water.

 Drawbacks of Using Pine Plywood For Sub Boxes

  • Pine plywood has very different engineering properties than other types of plywood. Experts recommend MDF, Birch, and other durable materials for building subwoofer boxes because they are stronger and stiffer than pine plywood.
  • Pine plywood is not as durable as other materials and is thicker, whereas other plies are thinner, making it more anisotropic.
  • Pine plywood, as a softwood, is more easily damaged and has a higher tendency to move than other woods, for example, shrinking and swelling as seasons change due to higher and lower levels of moisture, which can cause paintwork problems.
  • When you turn up the volume on your subwoofer, pine plywood rattles, which degrades the sound quality.
  • Increased knots as a result
  • If you don’t have professional tools for cutting angles, don’t plan on making any curves out of pine plywood.
  • When screwing in screws, it is easily dented. 
  • It provides less performance.

Rather than using pine plywood, it is recommended to spend your money on MDF, fiberglass, or another durable material. You will not be disappointed. 

Is Pine Plywood Better Than MDF For Speaker Cabinets?

Pine Plywood is perfectly fine, but it is actually stiffer and stronger than pine plywood when compared with MDF. Pine plywood is made of softwood from pine trees, making it an easily damaged material.

As a result, you can construct a box out of MDF that is more durable and capable of withstanding the subwoofers’ deep bass and high volume pressure.

MDF is commonly used in pro sound speaker construction because of its lightweight and durability, which are both important for transportation and repeated setup/breakdown.

Pine plywood has an average density of 700 kilograms per cubic meter, but The density of MDF can reach 1,000 kilograms per cubic meter.

Although MDF is more durable, dents or marks on the material are more difficult to repair. On the other hand, Pine plywood is a natural wood product that is softer than MDF and more prone to marks.

In addition, compared to the higher-quality MDF available on the market, pine plywood is not as tough or water-resistant.

This means you’ll need to be careful when working with pine plywood. Unprimed pine plywood will provide less protection than primed pine plywood.

 Comparing Pine Plywood And MDF

  • One significant difference between Pine plywood and MDF is the grain: Pine plywood appears to be normal wood (which it is), whereas MDF has no grain at all.
  • Pine ply comes in sizes ranging from 69mm to 218mm. Unfortunately, in comparison to MDF, this limits it significantly.
  • When compared to the higher-quality MDF available on the market, pine plywood is not as tough or water-resistant. This means that you must be extremely careful when working with pine. Unprimed pine ply will not provide as much protection as primed pine ply.
  • Another issue is that, because pine plywood is natural, some boards may have issues with tree deformities, making them look unsightly and, in some cases, unusable.
  • Pine trees have a lot of knots. Although manufacturers try to avoid or treat them as much as possible, they are always present and can fall out, causing a hole in the skirting.

Grade And Description For All Types of Plywood

 This may help you a little bit. It is applicable to all types of plywood.

AFace and back veneers are virtually defect-free.
A/BFace veneers that are virtually defect-free. Only some small knots or slight discoloration on the opposite veneers.
A/BBFace is the same as A, but the reverse side allows for jointed veneers, big knots, plugs, and other embellishments.
BOnly a couple of tiny knots or slight discoloration on both sides of the veneers.
B/BB Only a couple of tiny knots or discolorations on the face veneers. Jointed veneers, big knots, plugs, and other decorative elements are permitted on the reverse side.
BBJointed veneers, large knots, plugs, and other decorative elements are permitted on both sides.

Do Subwoofer Boxes Material Make A Difference?

 Some people prefer sound quality to SPL, or “tighter,” more accurate bass, instead of rattling their car’s mirrors.

Although sealed enclosures aren’t as loud as ported enclosures, they still improve the listening experience by defining low-frequency passages like kick drums.

If you don’t want to spend lots of money and want to choose a wood, pine plywood is a good option because it’s softer and more sound-absorbing than other options.

To counteract the effects of the wood, you can always make a larger speaker box and pad the inside with sound-absorbing materials while still maintaining your desired natural wood aesthetic.


What Kind of Plywood Do You Choose For A Subwoofer Box?

The premium 7-ply American Birch plywood works well, is lightweight, and can be braced and doubled where necessary to create a very inert sub cabinet. 

 The 13-ply Baltic Birch is exceptional, weighing significantly more than the 7-ply Birch.

Can You Use A Plywood Speaker Box?

Regular plywood would be acceptable as long as it is at least 3/4″ thick finish cabinet-grade plywood. Baltic Birch plywood has 12 layers (roughly), which is the best. 

The second best option is standard cabinet-grade Birch, mahogany, or oak plywood, which has about eight layers.

What Kind of Wood Would You Choose For A Subwoofer Box?

For a variety of reasons, MDF is the most renowned and finest overall material for subwoofers. This engineered wood is extremely long-lasting.

It’s intense and thick rather than a slimmer board that would allow the sound to resonate and distort, which helps generate the best audio quality from your subwoofer.

What Are The Three Types of Plywood?

Although specialty plywood can have more than three plies, most plywood is classified as three-ply, five-ply, or multi-ply. 

One of the most widely known forms of plywood is 3-ply. It is 2 to 3 millimeters thick and is commonly used indoors because it is more decorative than wider plywood boards. 

Can Pine Plywood Get Wet?

It frequently has visible knots and blemishes, and the majority of it is made of inexpensive Douglas fir or southern pine. 

It is, however, far more durable and long-lasting. Its layers are glued together with a waterproof adhesive to prevent delamination in wet conditions.


Pine Plywood can be used for making a subwoofer box. Still, it is recommended by a majority of experts in the market that you better use other higher-quality plywood or other sub-box building materials like fiberglass, MDF, etc.

Pine plywood is a softwood, lightweight, and less expensive. Due to its lightweight, pine plywood is quite popular for bedroom furniture but not as good for sub boxes.

The big issue is the quality of the pine plywood construction. Most “cheap” pine ply is very poor quality with lots of voids and unbonded layers. 

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