Originally Posted by FMW
I think it is a safe bet that, in this case, the 12" will outperform the 10". It is cheaper and easier for the manufacturer to move more air with the bigger driver, assuming a ported design in both cases. The larger sub will provide more gross profit.
Actually, the cost of a driver goes up fast with the size of the frame. The reason why we have so many small, large Xmax drivers is the cost savings with the same amount of bass.
It is cheaper and easier for the manufacturer to move more air with smaller driver if it can be done.
Ultimately, more air can be moved with the larger woofer, but that would be for SOTA drivers. If we are talking economy speakers, then cost effectiveness rules the day.
Modern SOTA 6.5 inch drivers move as much air as 12 incher SOTA drivers did back in the 1960s.
Some people remember when Electrovoice built a 30" woofer back in the 1960s. It only had 3 mm Xmax. That's a volume displacement of less than 105 cubic inches.
A modern subwoofer driver with a 12" cone and 20 mm Xmax has a volume displacement on the order of 113 cubic inches.
Guess which one is cheaper to build?
assuming a ported design in both cases.
Assuming everything else is equal, ported or sealed.