How to use the iPhone’s inbuilt music equalizer

It may be limited, but it exists...and sounds lovely

by: - Last updated on: March 7th, 2020

Most people think that the iPhone music experience is a bit like the iPhone camera experience – impressive but a little too basic. In fact, for many, listening to music on the iPhone is as simple as playing the track. Simple. No complications, about wondering about settings and equalizers. Because most believe there aren’t any.

iphone equalizer

Well, they are wrong. The iPhone DOES have an equalizer for its music, And it has more than twenty preset options in it, ranging from the basic bass and treble boost to settings for dance, hip hop, and Jazz. There is a truckload of options out there, and most of them work just fine.

There are a few catches, though. The equalizer works just on Apple Music – it will not work with songs from Google Music, Spotify or any other service. That’s not all. You are pretty much stuck with Apple’s version of different preset options – so you cannot change Apple’s version of Bass or Treble Boost. What you see in that list is exactly what you get – nothing more, nothing less.

On the flip side, Apple’s presets are very carefully tuned and we found that they considerably enhanced the listening experience. Of course, those wanting more control can try some of the apps on the iTunes App Store (such as Equaliser Pro+ and Boom: Bass Boster), but that is another story (yes, we will write that one as well).

Steps to enable iPhone’s built-in equalizer

But as of now, if you want to tweak the equalizer on your iPhone without wanting to download an app for the purpose, all you need to do is follow these simple steps:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. In Settings, scroll down until you get the Music option.
  3. step 1

  4. Select Music and then scroll down until you get the EQ option (it will be in a section titled “Playback”).
  5. The EQ will be turned Off by default, tap on this option,
  6. step 2

  7. You will see a number of equalizer presets. Choose the one you like. A small tick will appear in front of the one you choose.
  8. The equalizer will stay at off if you do not pick an option.

That’s it. Enjoy.

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  1. Well no. These presets are, largely, terrible. There’s nothing subtle here for the most part, just way overhyped versions of eq presets with zero actual control. I found maybe 4 that were listenable. The others are simply terrible, and frankly this is a glaring error on Apple’s part, and continues to be an embarrassment. That users can get a frickin equalizer to adjust themselves in the year 2020 when I can do darn near any other thing that I want on an iPhone.
    This, along with Apple’s stupid insistence that I cannot put an app icon exactly where I want it onscreen remain problems. Problems that could be easily fixed.