Mobile Phones iPhone & iOS 25 25 people found this article helpful How to Enable and Use Sound Check in iTunes Save your hearing with Sound Check By Sam Costello Writer Sam Costello has been writing about tech since 2000. His writing has appeared in publications such as CNN.com, PC World, InfoWord, and many others. our editorial process Facebook Twitter Sam Costello Updated March 06, 2020 iPhone & iOS Switching from Android Tweet Share Email Some songs in your iTunes library may be quieter than others. Modern recordings tend to be louder than songs recorded in the 1960s, for example, due to normal technological differences. Apple built a tool into iTunes called Sound Check that automatically adjusts the songs in your iTunes library to play at the same volume. The information in this article applies to Macs and PCs with iTunes 12 or iTunes 11 and to iOS devices with iOS 12, 11, or 10, as indicated. How Sound Check Works in iTunes Every digital music file includes ID3 tags that contain metadata attached to each song and provide additional information about it. These tags contain things such as the name of the song and artist, album art, star ratings, and certain audio data. The most important ID3 tag for the Sound Check feature is called normalization information. It controls the volume at which the song plays. This is a variable setting that allows the song to play quieter or louder than its default volume. Sound Check works by scanning the playback volume of all the songs in your iTunes library and determining the average playback volume of the songs. iTunes then automatically adjusts the normalization information ID3 tag for each song to adjust the volume to closely match the average of all the songs. Then, all songs play at close to the same volume. How to Enable Sound Check in iTunes Here's how to turn on Sound Check in iTunes on a computer: Launch iTunes on your Mac or PC. Open the Preferences window. On a Mac, click the iTunes menu, then click Preferences. On Windows, go to the Edit menu and select Preferences. In the window that appears, select the Playback tab. Select the Sound Check check box. Click OK to enable Sound Check. How to Use Sound Check With iPhone and iPod touch If you use a mobile device like the iPhone or iPod touch to listen to music, Sound Check works on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, although you don't set it up through iTunes. Open the Settings app on your iOS device. In the Settings screen, tap Music. Scroll to the Playback section and move the Sound Check toggle switch to the On/green position. Sound Check-Compatible File Types Not every digital music file is compatible with Sound Check. iTunes can play some file types that can't be controlled by Sound Check, which could lead to confusion. However, the most common music file types are compatible, so you can use the feature with your music. Sound Check works with the following digital music file types: AAC (the default format for the iTunes Store and Apple Music)AIFFMP3WAV As long as your songs are in these file types, Sound Check works with songs ripped from a CD, bought from online music stores, or streamed via Apple Music. Does Sound Check Change My Music Files? Sound Check doesn't change the volume of your audio files. Every song has a default volume—the volume at which the song was recorded and released. iTunes doesn't change that. Instead, the normalization information ID3 tag acts like a filter applied to the volume. The filter controls the volume temporarily during playback, but it doesn't change the underlying file. When you turn off Sound Check, your music returns to its original volume, with no permanent changes. Other Ways to Adjust Music Playback in iTunes Sound Check isn't the only way to adjust the playback of music in iTunes. You can adjust how all songs sound with the iTunes Equalizer or adjust individual songs by editing the ID3 tags. The Equalizer adjusts how songs sound when played by boosting the bass or changing the treble. This feature is best used by people who understand audio, but the tool offers some presets. These are designed to make specific genres of music—Hip Hop, Classical, and so on—sound better. To access the Equalizer, click the Window menu in the iTunes menu bar on a computer and then select Equalizer. You can also adjust the volume levels of individual songs. Just as with Sound Check, this changes the ID3 tag for the song's volume, not the file. If you prefer only a few changes, rather than changing your entire library, try this: Locate the song you want to alter in your iTunes Music Library. Click the song title and then click the ... (three dots) icon next to it. Click Song Info in the drop-down menu. Click the Options tab in the window that opens. Move the volume adjust slider to make the song louder or quieter. Click OK to save your change.