What Are Bass Restoration Processors in Car Audio? [EXPLAINED]

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What Is a Bass Processor?

A bass processor/ bass restoration processor/ bass reconstruction processor/ bass booster is essentially a digital signal processor. The processor picks up the low-frequency information of the incoming sound, recreates it, and injects it back into the signal before it moves to the sound drivers. This treatment of low-frequency signals gives the bass of the produced sound more impact. Bass processors are usually hooked right after the receiver unit before the crossover.

For most car audio enthusiasts, bass production is the single most important feature of a stereo system. The low-end frequencies reverberating through the vehicle make a stereo experience more immersive. If an adrenaline rush can occur while listening to music, it does when the beat drops and you get absorbed in the heart-pounding bass.

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This “bass high” is the reason why many people go to every extent to make sure they can optimize the low-frequency production of their stereo. While most people use subwoofers to fulfill their need for bass, some step up a notch and install a bass processor in their stereo systems.

Since many newbie bass aficionados are not familiar with bass processors, we will try to provide the most basic information regarding this bass-boosting device in this article.

Check out our review of the best bass restoration processors on the market!

What Does a Bass Processor Do?

As mentioned earlier, a bass processor primarily treats and fortifies low frequencies so that they remain dominant in the output sound. As a listener, we experience that dominance in terms of booming bass. In terms of user control and settings, a regular bass processor does various things that let you customize your bass experience.

Frequency Setting

This control allows you to pick the frequency that you want to “amplify” in your music. For instance, you can strengthen the 50Hz frequency of the audio output.

Width/Bandwidth Setting

This control lets you fine-tune your frequency adjustment. You can pick the bandwidth around the adjusted frequency that you want to boost through the width setting. You can either choose wide or narrow width options. For instance, setting narrow width at 50 Hz would only affect, say, 45-55 Hz bandwidth. Meanwhile, broad width adjustments might stretch that bandwidth to 40-60 Hz.

Boost Level

After setting the frequency and bandwidth settings, you can set the boost/manipulation level for that frequency in the music. The higher the level, the greater the bass reverb.

What a bass processor does hugely depends on the user’s knowledge about the low-frequency treatment of the sound. Otherwise, you can’t make the most of this bass boosting and processing device.

What Are the Types of Bass Processors?

There is no proper classification of bass processors. Most bass processors are different from each other based on their maximum output voltage. One other classification that you will find out is bass processors come with either auxiliary or non-auxiliary inputs.

How to Wire a Bass Processor

There are a couple of steps to wire a bass processor with your stereo unit.

For Power

The processor will be powered via the stereo unit. Therefore, connect the ground and power wires of the processor with the respective wires of the receiver unit.

For Signal

Connect an RCA cable to the pre-out of your subwoofer and hook it up to the input of your amp.

Take an RCA jumper and connect the amp’s input with the output of the bass processer.
After these steps, you will be able to use the bass processor for the sound produced by your aftermarket stereo setup.

Video explanation

Hey, there mobile audio lovers! My name is Vincent Talbot, founder and chief editor at 99carstereo.com. Ask any mobile audio fanatic, installer, or company rep what makes a good car speaker, sub, or amp, or, better yet, why he or she prefers a certain brand over another, and be prepared to endure a litany of opinions, viewpoints, and passion-fueled perspectives. To be honest, mobile audio shopping can be a daunting task without a guide, so I’ve assembled what I feel are the best products to consider to make things easier for you. More.

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Mobile audio is my passion, so before I put anything in front of you I exhaustively research a broad range of products, review all the available information on them and ultimately make a curated list of recommendations. As a result, I want this site to be a trusted resource that you can rely on and that is not rigged by brand sponsorship, so you can use this information when you are planning your new mobile audio upgrade.