Best Equalizer Settings For Car Audio Bass Mid Treble. Complete Guide

A good-sounding car stereo is essential to making your car fun to drive. I’ll dare to say that many of us prefer our music to sound different when driving than at home. However, you can’t just turn a knob and instantly have great sound.

A balanced sound setting is best for your car stereo. But, consider that different sound settings mean distinct volumes, and it’s easy to over-modulate or under-modulate it so that the highs sound harsh or muffled, or the lows aren’t crisp enough. Here we will see the best equalizer settings for car audio bass mid treble. Yes, we get that specific.

Best Equalizer Settings For Car Audio Bass Mid Treble

In most cars – at least the most modern ones – the configuration and settings menu can be controlled from the screen with buttons or through a joystick – a wheel control – even through the touch panels or touchpad that Mercedes, BMW, or Audi have incorporated. With these controls, we can access all functions like sound and audio, driving, GPS, etc.

In cases with no screen, we must look in the same head unit buttons indicated to access the menu. Sometimes there is no need to access any menu because each configurable section has a specific button.

So, you will have to invest a little time reading the instructions when we buy the car or the stereo. But, if you are more into touching and experimenting directly, instead of reading, you can venture and search until you find the submenus in charge of controlling and modifying the sound.

Normally, the software that controls all the musical functions is – usually – the same, and the order of adjustments is standardized. So if we can adjust one model, we will have no problem adjusting any other unit, even if it belongs to different cars.

If you’re looking for an option for the best sound settings for your car audio, choose the option you listen to the most, perhaps adjusting it slightly to suit your preferences.

We must understand that virtually all car stereos are listened to when the car is stationary. They operate in a fixed position inside the vehicle and have features to enhance the sound quality while listening. The three main options on most car stereos are Bass, Mid, and Treble.

Bass, Mid, And Treble

Bass, Mid, and Treble are the three sound bands. All these sound bands vary in frequency.

  • Bass means the sound of frequency between 16 Hz to 256 Hz. This is a low-frequency sound we call bass.
  • Treble is the highest frequency that the human ear can hear. The human ear can hear frequencies up to 20 kHz.
  • Mid is between Treble and Bass and has a frequency of 400 Hz to 2500 Hz.

Recommendations For Settings

When setting up your car stereo, getting the best possible sound is essential. However, getting the best sound quality has more to do with the right mix of settings and is not just a matter of turning specific options up or down.

  • Make sure your stereo is correctly configured for maximum sound quality. 
  • Use only certified, amplifier-compatible speakers with an RMS power rating of at least 50 watts per channel or higher. This gives you the best quality sound platform for each speaker channel.
  • More is always better for amplifier power, especially if you are driving large-diameter speakers with high-profile magnets.
  • Depending on the car stereo, the process of how to equalize your car stereo can be manual through an internal configuration. Or automatically, making the device adapt to the music you are listening to.

Now, let’s see the step-by-step settings of car audio.

  • Step 1: decrease the volume of the amplifier: once both the car stereo and the amplifier are turned on, decrease the volume of the amplifier.
  • Step 2: subtly increase the volume of the car stereo: place a reference music track on the stereo at ¾ of the maximum volume of the stereo to start equalizing your sound.
  • Step 3: place the bands at a central height: try to achieve a level or place all the bands at a central height. Remember that auto stereos include in their equalization level 3 bands for low, medium, and high frequencies.
  • Step 4: boost the low frequencies: reduce the car stereo volume. Then, in the equalizer, increase the low frequencies to the maximum. Gradually reduce them until you get an idea, undistorted sound.
  • Step 5: repeat the procedure: repeat the previous step with the mids and highs. In such a way, you get the desired configuration.

To make it easier for you to equalize your car stereo to a more pleasant sound, use the following values as a reference:

  • Sub-bass: between 20Hz – 80Hz.
  • Bass: from 80Hz – 250Hz
  • Mid: between 250Hz – 1.2Khz.
  • Mid treble: 1.2Khz – 5Khz.
  • Treble: between 5Khz – 20Khz.

What Is The Equalization Process?

The equalization process consists of – individually – increasing or reducing the power of the different frequency bands.

The purpose of this is to achieve greater control of the equipment and thus, achieve a linear response of the sound frequency. In this way, we eliminate peaks and distortions caused by the ship’s acoustics.

So the equalization of an auto stereo is to find a measure so that the melodies are differentiated and enhanced by combining the 3 tones (low, medium, and high). Simply put, it is about adjusting the way sounds are emitted according to the tone of the music of your preference.

To Be Considered: Sound Positioning Balance

The first thing to do is to check the balanced setting. But why is it so important? Well, the balance allows you to adjust the optimal position of the audio output. In addition, it takes care of leveling all the speakers on the right with those on the left.

So we can get the right side to sound more than the left or vice versa, or both sides to sound equal, or even one of them not to sound at all.

With only 2 speakers, one on each side, we could make balance. Similarly, the adjustments to be made are more of a preference and depend on the number of passengers. So, if you rarely have passengers in the rear, you can adjust the audio balance towards the front of the cabin.

On the other hand, on the driver’s side, you tend to hear more emissions from the front speakers – especially – the one on the left side, relative to the rears and the front right. For this reason, many programs and software that modify the sound parameters have included different equalizations depending on the zone we occupy in the car.

The Importance Of Speakers

The speakers in your car act as the arms and legs that deliver quality sound throughout your vehicle. Just as amplifiers are not all the same, speakers also have different characteristics.

So, what determines the type of speaker are the different components and drivers (the part of a speaker that transforms electrical energy into sound waves).

However, it is not necessary for all the speakers in your vehicle to be the same type as long as you have the right base unit or amplifier to make them work. There are two types of speakers in-car audio systems.

Types of speakers in-car audio systems:

  • Coaxial (full range) speakers: these are a popular type of speakers to install in a car, truck, or SUV, also because they cost less than component-type speakers and usually take up less space.

They include a tweeter (for reproducing treble-based sounds) and a woofer (capable of reproducing bass-based sounds) in the same unit.

  • Component speakers: component systems offer the highest quality sound reproduction in a vehicle. However, one drawback with component systems is the space they take up inside your vehicle.

In conclusion, you can easily tell the difference between a car that has a coaxial speaker system and a car with component speaker system in most cases.

Stand-alone Subwoofer

Sometimes people choose to mount a subwoofer-type speaker in their vehicle. If you choose to do this, chances are you are a person who is probably interested in music that requires you to have great low frequency, high-quality bass handling capability in one or more of your speakers.

When a car passes you and is vibrating because the music inside is too loud, chances are it has a separate subwoofer installed in its speaker system. If you combine the right speakers with the right head unit and amplifier, it can be an amazing listening experience while driving in your vehicle.

Final Words

Equalization helps you get the desired sound quality to enjoy music in your car. If you have no knowledge of equalization and sound systems in your car, you will never be able to enjoy music to the extreme. The best equalizer settings give you the desired bass, midrange, and treble.