How to adjust bass response for your iPhone or iPad headphones

By , Aug 19, 2016

iPhone 6 With Apple EarPods

One of Apple’s premier services that come built into their mobile devices is Apple Music, and music is certainly a huge focus of owning Apple devices. With that being said, people use all kinds of audio accessories with their mobile devices, whether they’re speakers, headphones, or even the built-in speakers.

Everything has its own unique sound quality, but in this tutorial, we’ll show you how you can adjust the bass response on your iPhone or iPad to maximize the amount of bass you hear in your music no matter what kind of audio device you’re using with your handset.

Why to adjust the bass response

The stock music settings on your iOS device are set up for sound balance and music clarity, and most people just leave it that way because there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it.

On the other hand, some audiophiles want more out of what they’re hearing when using external headphones or speakers, and for this reason, Apple includes equalizer (EQ) settings on your iOS device that let you fine-tune what you hear when listening to music or watching videos.

There are a ton of sound settings you can choose from, but if more bass is what you’re looking for, then you’ll focus on the bass-related EQ settings so you can hear more boom and less treble.

How to do it

If you’re ready to add more bass to your music, you can follow these steps to change the EQ settings to be more bass-friendly:

Note: Before you get started, I suggest playing some music in the background so you can hear the sound changes in real-time.

1) Launch the Settings app and open the Music preferences pane.

Music Bass Booster EQ Settings

2) Next, open the EQ settings cell.

3) Lastly, tap on the Bass Booster option in the list of EQ settings.

And that’s all there is to it.

Now what?

If you had music playing in the background like we suggested, you should have heard the sound difference immediately.

This setting puts more emphasis on the bass in your music so you get more of the boom and less of the treble. It doesn’t make bass louder, it just makes it more noticeable by isolating it from the higher tones better. With that being said, don’t expect your headphones or speakers to magically sound like your high-end car audio system, as most of the sound comes from the headphones or speakers themselves.

You can feel free to experiment with your other EQ settings too just to hear the differences that they make. Depending on the different headphones and speakers you have, which may or may not have their own EQ settings built into them, tweaking iOS’ EQ settings could compliment their settings to give you the richer sound you’re looking for.

Keep in mind that some apps like Spotify actually have their own EQ settings built into their apps, so adjusting the sound from those apps is going to be a separate process.

Wrapping up

Now that you’ve changed the bass settings in your iOS device’s EQ settings, you should hear more of the bass in your music and less of the treble. There are a lot of people who enjoy more boom in their music, so it’s great to know that iOS harbors this kind of setting out of the box.

This process works not only for Apple’s EarPods, but also for third-party headphones and speakers, so keep this in mind.

Do you like having more bass in your music? Share in the comments below!

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  • Jerry

    Somebody please..

    • Max Delsid


  • Osiala

    Does the equalizer also apply for third party apps, like YouTube?

    • Chris Owen

      Unfortunately it only works for the Music app.

      • Osiala

        Okay. Thanks for replying.

    • :D

      If I remember right it worked for my third party music player

  • “Because you know I’m all about that bass, ‘Bout that bass, no treble.”

    • Bill

      Ironic song is ironic…contains tons of treble and relatively little bass. Also, just a crappy song.

      • JoJo

        Have you ever listened to the lyrics?? Bass and treble have nothing to do with music in this song… Its a body reference about thick girls. All about that bass = all about that big booty. No treble = no skinny b*tches.

      • Bill

        Well then it’s still just a crappy song. One would think that the music would tie into the lyrics better. It’s half-assed. (why did Tony reference bass and treble on a post about actual bass, then, if the song isn’t about bass and treble? …see, I’m not the only one who doesn’t “get it” about this stupid song)

        Also on a side note- maybe I’m not alone in the slight disgust at fat asses. I blame the blacks for this one, pushing this crap. Then the women get some idea that they should be held up as princesses for having a fat ass and also because their parents kept hammering into their heads as kids that they were princesses. It’s just horrible what everything has turned into in ‘western’ culture.

        And another thing…bass and treble have nothing to do with the body really, it’s a crappy attempt at correlation. One that, again, would have worked better had the music actually tied into it better.

        Whatever. I guess this is the kind of crap we get when children are raised by the internet. Sad stuff.

        Here’s to hoping an asteroid takes us out soon.

    • iByron

      And all this time I thought the words were “no cello.” But then, I’m an orchestral music fan.

  • Bill

    Using an EQ doesn’t make one an audiophile, in case anyone was wondering.

    • Good advice, Bill. Only higher-quality headphones will reach the deep and immersive sound audiophiles are looking for.

      • iByron

        Well, not *only* higher quality headphones.

        Using EQ settings doesn’t *make* one an audiophile, but an audiophile will tweak EQ settings as much as possible (and reasonable… when you’re on a clattering subway car, audiophilia doesn’t mean much). They’ll also buy higher-end listening equipment AND they’ll likely choose lossless file formats — and services that offer them, like Deezer — for their sound recordings.

  • sunfire7

    really?? change eq from music settings? must be a slow news day

  • Max Delsid

    Technically this article is incorrect. Bass response is something that depends entirely on the speakers or headphones, not on a software adjustment. Adjusting your EQ is merely boosting the volume of a specific set of frequencies. So it’s adjusting the bass level, not the bass response.

    Also, audiophiles will be the first to tell you never to use the preset EQ adjustments in your phone. Music is mastered to sound good as it is, especially through a nice set of speakers or headphones. The only time you should need to adjust EQ is when you have phones/speakers that are biased, like Beats, which are heavy on the bass side and should be EQ’d with a slight bass cut. The ultimate goal should always be to hear the music as close to how it was mastered to sound.

    • askep3

      What if I want some bass and boom

      • Max Delsid

        Then by all means, EQ to your heart’s content! My point was merely to correct a bit of misinformation.

      • askep3

        Yeah, I was just being dumb, I agree with you, I love the “fun” sound for rap and pop but I do have my audiophile headphones for proper listening.

  • iByron

    I find that for the types of music I listen to, — mostly large-scale orchestral from the late 19th century and forward — the “Late Night” setting offers the best, most enveloping sound. Many times balance is more important than bass.