How to Use the Equalizer in VLC Media Player

Enhance the sound of your digital music library

  • In VLC, go to Window > Audio Effects. In Equalizer tab, click the checkbox next to the Enable option.
  • Use the preset dropdown menu to select a preset, or adjust the frequency band sliders to adjust the sound manually.

VLC media player is a free, cross-platform media player. It is available for most desktop and mobile platforms, including Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

One of the most important features for enhancing audio in VLC is the equalizer. This is a tool that allows you to control the output level of specific frequency bands, which range from 60 hertz to 16 kilohertz. The program's 10-band graphic equalizer can be used to get exactly the audio you want.

Screenshot of VLC Media Player Equalizer

The VLC equalizer is disabled by default. Unless you've already tinkered with the interface, you may not have noticed it's there. This guide covers how to use EQ presets and manually configure the equalizer with your own settings.

Enabling the Equalizer and Using Presets

To activate the equalizer and use the built-in presets, do the following:

  1. From the menu bar, select the Window, then choose Audio Effects...

    In some versions of VLS, you may have to select the Tools menu tab and then choose Effects and Filters.

    Alternatively, press and hold down the CTRL+Shift+E to open the Audio Effects window.

    VLC EQ window audio effects
  2. On the Equalizer tab in the Audio Effects window, click the checkbox next to the Enable option.

    VLC EQ enable
  3. To use a preset, click the drop-down menu located on the right side of the equalizer screen. VLC Media Player has a solid selection of presets that mostly cover popular genres. There are also a few specific settings such as Full Bass, Headphones, and Large Hall.

    VLC EQ presets
  4. Now that you've chosen a preset, start playing a song so you can hear what it sounds like. Just play a song from one of your playlists or click Media > Open File and choose one.

  5. As the song plays, you can change presets on-the-fly to evaluate the effect each preset has on your music. 

  6. If you want to tweak a preset, you can do this with the slider bars on each frequency band. If, for example, you want to boost the bass, adjust the low-frequency bands on the left side of the interface screen. To change how high-frequency sounds sound, adjust the sliders on the right side of the EQ tool.

    VLC EQ sliders
  7. When you are happy with a preset, select the Close button.

    VLC EQ close button
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