Customizing your Mac’s audio output

5 min read

Whether you just got a brand new shiny MacBook or have been using yours for a while and feel like you could get more out of its sound, this post is for you. Browse the tools you can use to enhance your Mac audio experience — from boosting bass to customizing the sound with an equalizer, and even having a mini recording studio on your device.

Scroll on for details.

Try MacBook sound equalizer

If you’ve already explored Settings > Sound on your Mac for advanced sound settings, it’s time to discover immersive sound.

One of our favorite tools to customize the sound on Mac is Boom 3D.

The app allows you to easily adjust Mac volume for a quick boost and customize your Mac’s sound with a versatile equalizer. Pick the app’s default presets or set up your own.

Boom 3D can also give your audio a more realistic vibe with its surround sound effects. Make your listening more immersive with the app in just a few clicks.

Boom 3D

What’s more, you can browse equalizer options to get the sound you love. Try 60s sound, classical, dubstep, electronic, hip hop, house, rock, and much more. Pick the setting, customize it if needed, and enjoy a completely overhauled audio experience on your device.

Increase MacBook volume

To increase the volume on your Mac, simply press the volume up button on your keyboard (F12). You’ll see the volume overlay and adjust sound by pressing F12 to increase and F11 to decrease.

Note that listening to high volume audio can be harmful, especially for prolonged periods of time.

Mac volume overlay

You can also adjust your Mac sound in settings. Simply click on the Apple icon in the top left corner of your screen, select System Settings… and go to Sound.

sound settings

Want to play soothing sounds on your Mac? Noizio is a nifty Mac app that allows you to play nature and environment sounds in a snap. Explore presets like Morning Walk, Campus Cafe, Tropical Beach, and much more for instant soothing audio, or you can combine sounds into your own unique audio blend with the app’s built-in sound selection.


How to boost bass on MacBook

If you want to add more bass to the sound on your Mac, simply turn to Boom 3D yet again.

The app has a Bass Boost setting in its equalizer options that you can use to boost bass on your Mac in a click. Just open the app, go to Equalizer and find Bass Boost in the drop down menu. Give your bass-heavy music an extra punch with this setting (be careful with the volume as loud music can be harmful to your hearing, especially for prolonged periods of time).

Use this Mac sound enhancer to also adjust pitch, fidelity, ambience, and even customize how spatial your sound seems:

bass boost

Record audio on Mac

There are a few tools you can use to record audio on Mac. The most straightforward option is the built-in app Voice Memos.

To find the tool, open Finder and go to Applications.

To record audio on your Mac, open Voice Memos and simply click the red button at the bottom center of the app window. The recording will start immediately.

When it comes to the quality of the recorded audio, you can choose between two options — Lossless and Compressed — in the app’s Settings.

Voice Memos

While Voice Memos is perfect for a quick, well, voice memo, it might not work as great for recording and mixing a song.

To use more specialized sound recording software on Mac, try n-Track Studio. The app allows you to record and edit multi track audio on your Mac.

From on-screen synthesizer to advanced multi track mixing, n-Track Studio can be your mini sound recording studio. Mix, add effects, record live, and more with n-Track Studio.

n-Track Studio

Why is my Mac sound so quiet

When you are trying to play some audio or video on your Mac and it’s just too quiet, first try to increase the sound by pressing the F12 key (has the sound icon on it) on your keyboard. Press several times to see if the sound improves.

Playing a video in a browser but can’t hear the audio? Start by checking if the sound icon on the video is set to on — often videos are played mute in browsers by default.

If you can’t hear anything at all, you might need to go into System Settings… > Sound and change audio output on your Mac. If the only option you see is your MacBook speakers, it means no other output audio hardware is available and the sound should be going through your MacBook speakers. In that case, try adjusting the sound level toggle in the app or player you are using.

Should your Mac sound still remain inaudible, check for more troubleshooting options in this post.

If you are wondering how to improve Mac sound quality, you can customize the sound to your preference with a third-party app, like the app we used for other Mac sound customizations in the above sections of this post — Boom 3D. The app offers handy functionality to adjust Mac volume, use an equalizer to customize your sound, add spatial effects, change pitch and sound fidelity, and more.

adjust sound with Boost 3d

Final thoughts

To customize the sound on your Mac, you can use third-party apps like Boom 3D. The app allows you to easily adjust Mac volume, set up the signature sound with an equalizer, pick audio fidelity, change pitch, get a more immersive sound with the spatial setting in the app.

If you need to record audio on your Mac, you can use the built-in Voice Memos app. To record and mix a song, try n-Track Studio, an app that brings multi track editing functionality, a vast library of effects, and much more.

Finally, enjoy soothing nature and environment sounds with Noizio, a Mac app that plays environmental background sounds as you focus, work, or relax. You can also create your own mix of sounds for the app to play.

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