How to make your headphones louder

Headphones for all your needs

Image credit: Photo by Наталья Хоменко from Pexels

Headphones have become a style statement in recent years. While most people choose them based on their music preferences, some try to match them with their clothing and lifestyle. 

Be it just for fashion or for some real music, headphones play a key role in our lives. And when they don’t meet the expectations we have of them, we’re disappointed!  

Just like any other electronic hardware device, headphones too can suffer a loss in performance, be it the sound quality, or volume. But I have some good news for you ー you can make your headphones louder and improve the sound quality to what they used to offer when new. 

The chances are good that you have headphones that no longer offer the sound quality they used to. The ways I’m going to list in this article will surely help you get the most out of your worn-out headphones. 

But before that, let’s take a quick look at the reasons why this happens. 


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Why are your headphones quiet?

There are many reasons that cause a lowered sound performance in the headphones. To mention a few, wear and tear, and sound settings on mobile or desktop are the most common reasons. 

Another factor that affects headphones sound quality is the impedance of the headphones. In simple terms, it is the resistance offered to the current transmitted by the amplifier. 

Let’s make it simpler! You need to pick headphones with lower impedance as they require lower power to function, thus making them ideal for smartphones and laptops. Typically, you should choose headphones with impedance of 16 Ω or 32 Ω. 

Higher impedance headphones need more power and an amplifier for them to function effectively. So make sure you get your impedance game right because it affects the loudness of the headphones. Check it on the headphones box or the user manual. 

Moving on, let’s try a few ways to make your headphones louder. 

Caution: A maximum of 60 to 85 decibels of sound exposure for eight hours a day is considered to be a safe limit. Anything beyond that can prove to be dangerous for you. So be cautious when using headphones at high volume. 

Ways to make your headphones louder

Here are a few simple tricks you can try to make your headphones louder:

1. Time to clean up

It happens more often than not that the solution to a problem is right in front of us while we look for it elsewhere. The first thing you should do to make your headphones louder is to clean up your headphones. 

If you are a frequent user of headphones, it’s highly likely that your headphones have built up dirt and ear wax. You can easily clean your headphones using ear swabs, rubbing alcohol, wiping cloth, blue tack, wax removal tool, water, and liquid soap. 

Add the liquid soap to the water and give it a mix. If your headphones have removable pads, take them off. Now, with an ear swab dripped in the soap-water mixture, clean the hard-to-reach places and folds. 

Now, clean the headphones with a dry cloth and let them air dry for around 30 minutes. Finally, put the removable pads back on and enjoy the music. You’ll notice a clear difference in the loudness your headphones offer.

Watch this video from Best Buy for more instructions on how to clean your headphones and wireless earbuds. 

2. Check volume settings on your music app

Depending on the music streaming app, the playback sound may vary. You can change the default sound preferences of the music apps in the app settings. 

For instance, you can change the audio quality on the Pandora app by following these steps. 

  1. In the Pandora app, go to your profile
  2. Tap Settings
  3. Select Advanced settings
  4. Select Audio quality and Downloads
  5. Toggle on the higher quality audio setting

Similarly, on Spotify, you can turn bass boost or surround sound experience under the Equalizer settings. By doing so, you can improve the sound quality of the headphones. 

3. Check the device sound settings 

If your headphones have an in-built amplifier or a sound setting, adjust it before we move ahead. 

Now, on your Windows computer,

1. Right click the volume icon on the taskbar with your headphones connected to the device. Now, click on “Open Volume mixer.”

headphones settings on windows

2. Under Device, click on the dropdown near the speakers and select your headphones. 

headphones settings on windows

3. Finally, move the volume slider up to increase the loudness of your headphones. 

headphones settings on windows

It was easy, wasn’t it?

Also read:

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4. Try a volume booster app

The Play Store is flooded with volume booster apps. These apps work in sync with the default system audio tools to give you the best sound experience. Following is a list of a few volume booster apps you can try right now:

Beware, loud sound can be dangerous for your sense of hearing.

5. Check equalization settings 

Equalization or EQ settings are set such that you get an ideal listening experience. You change the equalizer settings on your Android, follow these steps. 

  1. Go to the Settings app on your Android phone
  2. Select Sound & vibration
  3. Next, select Advanced sound settings or Sound effects depending on the option available on your phone model
  4. Now, tap Equalizer. You’ll see the sound levels at different frequencies preset to 0dB.
  5. Here, you can change the genre to Rock, Jazz, pop, Classical, Hip Hop, and more for which the sound levels will be preset. Adjust them according to your preferences. For the default sound, move the equalizer slider up.  

6. Disable volume limitations

Most Android phones offer a volume adjustment feature. This feature is by default set for a 30-year old’s auditory perception. 

You can check this and adjust the volume according to your preference by following these steps. 

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Select Sound & vibration
  3. Go to Sound effects
  4. Now, select Volume adjustment 
  5. Turn the Volume adjustment toggle on and choose the system preset as per your age group

Also, most Samsung Galaxy devices come with a Media volume limiter. To disable it, 

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Select Sounds and vibrations
  3. Select Volume
  4. FInally, select the Media volume limiter and turn the toggle off 

7. Why not give these headphones a shot!

If all the above methods are not fruitful, you should seriously consider buying a new pair of headphones. Choosing the right headphones might be overwhelming but there are quite a few guides you can refer to for the same. 

Depending on your preference, you can choose Bose or Sony headphones for noise cancellation, Sennheiser for excellent sound quality while still offering noise cancellation, or if you are tight on budget, boAt should be the ideal choice for you. 

Check out these stunning Bose headphones on Amazon!

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Suggested reads:

The 6 Best High-End Headphones For Audiophiles In 2020

10 Best Bluetooth Headphones with Reviews

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Winding up!

Headphones’ performance tends to deteriorate with time but there are workarounds to improve the loudness and sound quality of the headphones. The above methods mentioned in the article are effective ways to improve the loudness of your beloved headphones. 

If none of the tricks mentioned work for you, it’s high time you get a new pair of headphones based on your needs. 

I hope this article brought some value to your headphones usage and audio experience. Which headphones have you been using? Did these tricks work for your headphones? Let me know in the comments section below. Take care and stay safe! Cheers!

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