Windows Media Player 12 Equalizer: Presets and Custom Settings

The EQ tool customizes the sound of your digital music

What to Know

  • To enable equalizer, select Switch to Now Playing in lower-right corner of Windows Media Player 12.
  • Next, right-click anywhere in Now playing screen > hover over Enhancements > Graphic Equalizer > Turn on.
  • To use equalizer presets, select the Custom or Default down-arrow to view presets menu > select a preset.

This article explains how to enable the Windows Media Player 12 equalizer and use the presets. Additional information covers how to create custom equalizer profiles.

How to Enable the Windows Media Player 12 Equalizer

The graphic equalizer (EQ) tool is an option built into Windows Media Player 12. Use it when you want to enhance or reduce sound at a particular frequency. The 10-band graphic equalizer allows you to calibrate bass, mid-range, and treble frequencies to your liking, or to compensate for the sound system you're using.

By default, the equalizer feature is disabled. To activate it, open the Windows Media Player 12 app and follow these steps:

  1. Select Switch to Now Playing in the lower right corner of WMP 12.

    Screenshot pointing to WMP 12 Switch to Now Playing button
  2. Right-click anywhere on the Now Playing screen (except the menu) and hover over Enhancements.

    Selecting Enhancements in Windows Media Player 12.
  3. In the menu, select Graphic Equalizer.

    Selecting Graphic equalizer.
  4. The graphic equalizer opens in a separate window.

    Windows Medial Player 12 graphic equalizer
  5. Select Turn on in the upper-left corner of the window, if the equalizer is not already activated.

    Turning on the graphic equalizer.

How to Use Equalizer Presets in Windows Media Player 12

Windows Media Player 12 has a selection of built-in EQ presets. This may be all you need to enhance or adjust the playback of your music. Most of the presets are designed to go with a particular genre. You'll see presets for different types of music, including Acoustic, Jazz, Techno, Dance, and more.

To select a built-in EQ preset, do the following:

  1. Select the Custom or Default down-arrow to view a list of presets.

    Screenshot showing Windows Media Player 12 presets menu
  2. Choose any of the presets to adjust the equalizer settings. The 10-band graphic equalizer will instantly change once a preset is chosen. Try several until you find one that suits your tastes.

How to Create a Custom Equalizer Profile in Windows Media Player 12

If you can't seem to get the right sound with the built-in presets, tweak the settings to create a custom setting.

  1. Select the Custom down-arrow to view the presets menu.

    WMP 12 presets menu
  2. Select Custom at the bottom of the presets menu.

    Selecting the Custom preset in Windows Media Player.
  3. Press Ctrl+1 to switch to Library view.

  4. Play the song you want to enhance.

    Play button in Windows Media Player 12.
  5. Press Ctrl+3 to switch back to the Now Playing screen and the equalizer.

    Windows Media Player and the equalizer.
  6. Choose how you want the equalizer sliders to move. The options are:

    • Independent sliders: Each slider moves on its own and doesn't affect the other sliders.
    • Loose-linked sliders: As you move each slider, other sliders move with it, but loosely.
    • Tight-linked sliders: As you adjust a slider, others shift with it, but tighter than in a loose slider group.
    Screenshot of Windows Media Player 12 EQ slider settings
  7. Drag each slider up or down until you get the sound you want.

    The equalizer sliders in Windows Media Player 12.
  8. If you need to start again, select Reset to set all EQ sliders back to zero.

    Selecting Reset to reset equalizer sliders in Windows Media Player.
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