100% Accurate Equalizer Settings for Your Car Stereo’s Bass, Mid, and Treble

If you’re not happy with the sound quality of your car stereo, it may be time to adjust the equalizer settings. The bass, mid, and treble controls can make a big difference in the way your music sounds. Many people don’t realize that there is such a thing as the “perfect” equalizer setting for their car audio system. In this article, we will show you how to find those settings by using a few simple tips!

Equalization in Music

If you are into music, you can easily differentiate between sharp audio output which has a kind of shrillness to them, and damp or hoarse audio output. The shrillness in the music is due to high-frequency components and the dampness or hoarseness is due to the low-frequency component in the same music file or a song that you like.

If you could control the amount of high frequency (and thus sharpness) and low frequency (thus dampness) you can manipulate the audio as per your taste. This particular technique of removing some frequencies (or range of frequencies) while boosting others in a sound is called Equalization in Music.

Equalization is possible because a sound or music (from instruments, vocals, and natural sounds) is rarely pure. It is a mixture of different individual sounds of different frequencies that come together to sound as they are. Thus they are much more sophisticated than we can imagine. Thus, it is quite possible to separate these constituent frequencies and manipulate them.

The spectrum of human hearing is roughly between the frequency range of 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz. Further, An equalizer (the device that performs equalization) divides this spectrum into discrete sections called bands. You can use these bands as a definitive range to cut or enhance certain parts of your sound or music.

Equalization defines your taste in music and is a deciding factor in your particular genre of music that you prefer over others. In simple words, it adds joy to the music you are listening to.

Bass, Mid, and Treble

As I mentioned above that the Equalizer divides the spectrum of sound that is perceived by humans into bands or categories. There are three categories in a broad sense that are accepted and followed all over the world.

  • Bass (Lower frequency end of the spectrum – 20 to 300 Hz)
  • Mid  (Middle-frequency range of the spectrum – 300 to 5000 Hz)
  • Treble (Higher Frequency range – 5000 Hz to 20000 Hz)

 Each of these bands can be divided further into sub-bands for more control over equalization. The table gives a detailed range of these sub-bands. The frequency range is approximate and is quite subjective.

Bass: Bands & Sub-bands | Frequency range

Bands & Sub-bandsFrequency range
Deep Bass20 to 40 Hz
Low Bass40 to 80 Hz
Mid Bass80 to 160 Hz
Upper Bass160 to 300 Hz

Mid-Range: Bands & Sub-bands | Frequency range

Bands & Sub-bandsFrequency range
Lower Midrange300 to 600 Hz
Middle Midrange500 to 1200 Hz
Upper Midrange1200 to 2400 Hz
Presence Range2400 to 5000 Hz

High End or Treble: Bands & Sub-bands | Frequency range

Bands & Sub-bandsFrequency range
High End5000 to 10000 Hz
Extremely High end10000 to 20000 Hz

Steps for Best Equalizer Settings for Bass, Treble, and Mid in Car Stereo

If you wish to configure the Equalizer settings in the best way possible in a Car Stereo System for Bass, Treble, and Mid bands of frequencies, you can follow the steps given. You will sail through the process.

Step – 1 – Make sure the car is parked and is not moving

Equalization is a job that requires your focus and attention for the best results. So, it is a bad and dangerous decision to tune the Equalizer while you are driving. Make sure the car is parked and the hand-brake is applied. Now, you can use all of your attention on extracting the best possible setting for your Car stereo without any accident hazard or risk.

Step – 2 – Assess and understand the stereo of your car

It is time to crank up the stereo in your car and play your favorite songs or music. Try playing the music of various tempos and frequencies. You can play different genres of music like Blues, hip-hop, and Jazz. It will allow you to grasp an idea about the kind of frequency that is suiting your taste and the kind of frequency that needs an adjustment. This is a critical step as your understanding will decide your level of mastery in equalization.

Step – 3 – Balance is the key

Balance the settings so that all the speakers in the stereo system of your car have the same configuration. You can further tune the Fade Control of your car’s stereo so that all the sound or music comes from the front speakers.

Step – 4 – Play with the Bass, Mid, and Treble

When you are listening to your favorite music, you should pay attention to details. This will help you separate the things you like and the things you don’t. For the parts or elements that you don’t find satisfactory, you can change the bass, mid, and treble one by one to find that sweet spot. The best way to do it change one of the bands while keeping the other two constants. For example, you can change the bass for a piece of particular music while keeping the mid and treble constant. Once you find the best bass level, you can adjust the treble while keeping the other two fixed.

The desired level of bass, mid, and treble is quite subjective and varies from person to person. They also vary from one song or music to another. But, once you get hold of the process, you will be able to adjust for any song in no time. So, you will need to decide for yourself for the level of bass, mid, and range. It is not that difficult. All you need to do is focus a little and get yourself immersed in the music.

Know Before Adjusting Car Stereo For Best Sound

If you are trying to adjust the equalizer to achieve the sweet spot of equalization for you, there are a few things you need to consider and check beforehand. Ignoring these factors may hinder you with the equalization process and it can be really frustrating. So let’s see these factors for more information.

1. Position of the stereo speakers in your car –

It is essential for the two stereo speakers in your car to be in phase for the best audio output and music quality. If they are not in phase, even a perfect equalization cannot produce great music output.

Phasing is an essential component when you are producing the same audio output from multiple sources (like a car’s stereo speakers). Since, a speaker is essentially vibrating back and forth to produce a sound, to be in phase means that both speakers move in the same direction. Hence, out of phase will be when one speaker is vibrating forward and the other is vibrating back. This will create a contradiction among the speakers.

There is a quite simple way to verify if the stereo speakers in your car are in phase or not. All you need to do is play a song with heavy bass and change the balance to either side of the speakers. Now, when you bring the balance back to the center, the bass will significantly increase which means the speakers are in phase.

2. Type of Music

The configuration of the equalizer changes with the change in the type of music. So, you cannot rely on a single setting for two completely different genres of music. You will learn eventually to adjust the equalizer for any kind of music after some practice.

3. Quality of speakers

If the speakers are not from a renowned or trusted brand, there is a chance that you won’t be able to get the sweet spot after hours of equalization. The quality of the hardware plays a major role in the quality of music. So, don’t cheap out on the speakers and purchase some genuine-quality speakers for your car.

4. The Quality of the Amplifiers and the head unit

A typical sound system in a car constitutes a head unit, an amplifier, and a pair of stereo speakers. The purpose of the head unit is to send the audio signals to the amplifier which will boost these signals before sending them to the speakers.

You need to have an Amplifier powerful enough so that the signals are boosted properly. So, all these components of the sound system of your car should be excellent in terms of quality.

5. Eliminate internal and external noise

To listen to the music clearly, you will need to get rid of all kinds of internal and external noise. They will create unwanted disturbance and you won’t be able to get the best equalizer settings. If you encounter such noise, simply crank up the bass and treble to the max. 

Best 13-Band Equalizer Settings For Pioneer Stereo for your Car

If you have installed a 13-band Pioneer Stereo in your car you can adjust the Equalizer in an interactive manner to get the best settings that you desire. Here are the steps to follow to adjust the equalizer on 13-band Pioneer brand Stereo –

1. Accessing the EQ Settings

  1. From the screen of the Pioneer receiver on your car, you can get to the EQ settings by touching on the EQ button in the top right corner (below the gear icon).
  2. Another way to access the EQ settings is by touching the gear icons and then the speaker icon on the next screen.
  3. From the list of options, you need to touch on the Graphics EQ option.

2. Adjusting the EQ

  • Once the EQ screen is open, you will see 5 different factory presets at the bottom of the screen.
    • Super bass
    • Powerful
    • Natural
    • Vocal
    • Flat
  • You can either choose any of these for your car or change them as much as you like for anything that sounds best to the music that you are listening to.
  • You can also make finer adjustments to the presets.
  • For example- select the powerful curve and then touch anywhere on the screen to go full screen and a “Custom” setting is created (lights up in the top right corner) for you to play and adjust with.
  • Now you can touch on the screen to bring down a particular frequency (say 80 Hz) and cut it. Or, you can raise another bar by touching and dragging to boost it.
  • Any adjustment made will be saved in a different custom setting and the presets won’t be altered at all.
  • This way you can achieve the best EQ settings on a Pioneer stereo system installed in your car.

Best Equalizer Settings for Bass – Sony Car Stereo

If you have installed a Sony car stereo (like Sony AX-100), and you want to change the EQ settings to make it sound go, you can follow the steps to get a general idea about how to go about it.

  • First, on the screen select a source of music (like USB, Bluetooth Audio, Phone, and tuner or radio).
  • Now press the home button and scroll on the screen to find the settings option.
  • In the settings menu, touch the music note icon.
  • From the list, you can select different options.
    • Extra Bass is the first option. You will get 3 options when you touch on it.
      1. You can either turn it off or select either 1 or 2 from the list.
      2. This is helpful if you have a sound system that has poor bass
      3. But, if sub-woofers are there, you can leave this at Off
    • EQ is the second option. It is called EQ-10 because it has 10-bands of frequencies that you can adjust.
    • You will also get a slider on the right side of the EQ screen to adjust the subwoofer output
    • There are different presets available for you to choose from.
      • ■ Country
      • ■ Soul
      • ■ Jazz
      • ■ Electronica
      • ■ Hip-hop
      • ■ Dance
      • ■ Pop
      • ■ Rock
      • ■ R&B
    • A Custom option is also available that you can adjust and save to meet your personal taste of music.
    • You can adjust the frequency bands by sliding the sliders using your finger.
    • You can boost the low frequency and cut the high frequency to get a deeper bass to meet your taste.

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