bass headphones

How To Increase The Bass In Your Headphones

You’ve just put on your headphones and are navigating through your playlists to find the perfect banger, but when you press play, you’re disappointed by the lack of driving bass. Perhaps you’ve heard the same song before on speakers, and you’re wondering why it sounds so much flatter on your headphones. The driving force behind the rhythm that makes you want to dance is missing. 

This is a common problem for headphones, and it all comes down to the model that you own. Many headphones, particularly in recent years, have toned down the bass and opted for a balanced sound. Other models fall flat in the low end or don’t cover those frequencies in their response range. We’ll skip straight to the point and show you how to increase the bass of your headphones, and towards the end of the article, we’ll discuss some important considerations to keep in mind when boosting your bass.

Ways To Increase The Bass In Your Headphones

There are limited ways to improve the bass in your headphones, and your options will depend on the model of the headphones. We’ll examine what each option does and how they will impact your bass levels. Let’s jump into it!


Equalization (EQ) is the easiest way to adjust the way your headphones sound. It lets you increase or decrease different frequencies, including bass, to make your headphones sound more to your liking. So how do you get started?

First, you should understand that not all EQ software is the same. Some allow for the adjustment of granular frequency ranges, while others only let you adjust a swath of frequencies. The options you have available to you will differ depending on if you’re using your headphones on a PC or phone. We have a guide that explains EQ in more detail if you want a broader understanding of the practice, but in short, it allows you to increase the volume/gain for a particular frequency range.

How To Add Bass On PC

If you’re using a computer, you’ll have the best control over your audio, as there are some outstanding third-party apps that give you refined control over the frequency adjustments. I use and recommend Peace APO as a free solution.

In the image above, you’ll see a default EQ in Peace. Each frequency range is set to a gain of 0, meaning the audio will sound precisely the same. 

bass boosted eq

In contrast, the image above shows what it looks like when adjusted to increase the bass, particularly low bass. The circled red area shows us that we’ve added gain to the frequencies ranging between 20Hz and 166Hz. Bass frequencies range between 20Hz and 250Hz and can be further separated into low-bass (20Hz – 80Hz), mid-bass (80-150Hz), and then upper bass (150-250Hz).

Play around with the gain for each frequency range to find the sound you enjoy the most. There are some best practices when adjusting the sound with EQ. However, whatever sounds best to you is the right approach.

How To Add Bass on Phones

Depending on your headphones’ model, the EQ process may change slightly. The fundamentals that were discussed above remain the same. However, some headphones have their own app and may only provide partial control over frequencies or only provide presets to toggle between. These presets can also increase your bass but give less control over which bass frequencies are elevated.

If you’re unhappy with your model’s mobile app or just want more control over your sound – consider downloading something like Equalizer+ on iPhone or Equalizer Music Player Booster on Android. Both these apps can help boost your bass.

Using a DAC To Increase Bass

A DAC (Digital to Analog Converter) is another tool to consider for increasing bass. While bass boosting isn’t necessarily what they’re made for, many models include a bass boost feature.

Every device you plug your headphones into has a DAC, but built-in DACs are often not very powerful or just not great quality. A low-quality built-in DAC may need help power headphones sufficiently (especially high-impedance headphones), which can also negatively impact audio quality.

If you’re serious about music and have a good pair of headphones, there’s something to be said about buying a DAC to improve your audio quality and increase your bass. The Fiio E10K is a popular and affordable DAC with a bass boost feature.

Built-In Bass Boost Features

Believe it or not, some headphone users haven’t explored everything their cans can do. Modern headphones, particularly wireless ones – come with more functionality than headphones of the past. A feature sometimes included is a built-in bass boost function that allows you to toggle between a bass-heavy sound and the stock sound. Before you invest in anything else to improve your bass, check to see if your headphones don’t offer such a feature.

Upgrade Your Headphones

Buying the appropriate headphones is the best way to improve your bass quality. A headphone built to have a strong bass presence will usually sound better than what is achievable through EQ, assuming the headphones are of the same quality.

EQ and bass boost revolve around adjusting the gain in the low frequencies; you can add some distortion. Headphones manufactured to have deep bass don’t typically do so by increasing the gain but are designed to improve the reproduction of those frequencies.

We’ve got a list of the best bass headphones on the market if you feel you may be due for an upgrade.

Additional Considerations

Before you adjust your EQ or order a new pair of headphones, there are a few additional things to keep in mind.

Bass boost is controversial, as too much bass can negatively impact the other frequencies. For instance, having your bass set too high in the upper bass can result in a loss of clarity in the midrange. Similarly, you may lose details in the upper frequencies as they struggle to compete against the dominant bass. Start subtle and work your way up to avoid sacrificing overall audio quality in exchange for your boosted bass.

Bass isn’t just a single frequency; it’s a range of frequencies that vary in their presentation between headphone models. Your headphones may excel in a punchy upper bass but lack depth. Others may have a deep extension with a good thump but lack a punchy upper bass.

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Written by
Bryn De Kocks

Bryn De Kocks is the lead editor for Audiostance, as well as one of our trusted reviewers. He has more than 15 years of experience in online publication and stands firm in being transparent with both the benefits and drawbacks of the products he reviews. Outside of editorial work, Bryn has been an avid online gamer and casual digital music producer since his teenage years, bringing his understanding of audio and especially headphones to the table. His daily driver is a humble pair of Fidelio X2HRs powered by a Fiio E10K. In his spare time he enjoys nature photography.

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