3 Ways to Apply an Equalizer in macOS to Improve Your Music

Applying an equalizer in macOS allows you to take control of your audio playback. You can use an equalizer to fix problematic sound or enhance recorded music. This article shows three ways to apply an equalizer in macOS.

1. Audio Hijack

Audio Hijack is a professional-grade application that allows you to apply effects to your Mac’s system audio. It can target the audio from a single application or from the entire system. You can easily pop on a ten- or thirty-band equalizer and sculpt the sound precisely.

Unless you’re an audio pro, it may take a little bit to become familiar with the application’s full set of features. If you just want the basics, Boom makes it easy to just apply a simple equalization curve to your Mac.


Audio Hijack also enables a host of other audio effects beyond equalization, like compression and filtering. If you know how to use these tools, Audio Hijack gives you incredibly precise control over your system’s sound. Audio Hijack provides tools for recording audio streams as well, making it ideal for podcasters and streamers to record their tracks.

2. Boom

Boom is similar to Audio Hijack, interposing itself between your system’s audio stream and the speakers. By applying a series of effects to the audio stream, it can be adjusted to your liking.


Boom is a more consumer-focused app when compared with Audio Hijack. As a result, it’s easier to learn and use. You won’t need significant audio experience to understand what you’re doing to your sound. The app ships with plenty of presets and automated tools to sweeten your Mac’s sound without too much work.

3. Airfoil

From the makers of Audio Hijack, Airfoil is intended as a free application for routing sound to other devices wirelessly. However, it also comes with a simple ten-band EQ that can be applied to any sound source on the computer. You don’t need to route audio to take advantage of the equalizer, so you can apply a free equalizer to any macOS audio from an application or from the whole system.


Airfoil is extremely simple, so it’s outrageously simple to use. There are only a handful of buttons in the entire application. Select the audio source at the top, then adjust the equalizer as desired. That’s all there is to it.

Honorable Mention: iTunes Equalizer

If you listen to music or other audio from inside the iTunes app, you can use the built-in iTunes equalizer to sweeten your sound.

1. Select “Equalizer” from the “Window” menu bar menu in iTunes.


2. Adjust the equalizer as desired. Make sure to tick the checkbox next to “On” for the equalizer to take effect.


This will apply your selected equalizer curve to any audio coming out of iTunes. Unfortunately, the iTunes equalizer cannot be applied to any other audio output from your Mac.

Audio Hijack has been the go-to application for audiophiles and audio techs. It’s robust, well-known, and long-running. Their smaller application, Airfoil, is one of several applications they offer that contains a specific, small portion of Audio Hijack’s functionality. Boom is a user-friendly application that anyone can get the hang of, providing more ways to improve your sound than Airfoil, while not overwhelming novice users with technical information and details.

Did you know you can remove a password from a PDF using Mac? It’s true, and we can show you how. We can also help you fix an external display for Mac when it’s not working.

Alexander Fox Alexander Fox

Alexander Fox is a tech and science writer based in Philadelphia, PA with one cat, three Macs and more USB cables than he could ever use.


  1. Hi there Tech People;

    Very interesting topic, thank you very well,
    My question is,,, do you guys know something like this but for windows?
    I mean equalizer for windows to improve my sound.
    Here are my computer specs,,,

    Hp laptop 2560p, Elitebook.
    Icore 5, 8 GB Ram, Windows 7,,

    Another 1;

    Hp Laptop 2740p, Elitebook, touch screen
    Icore 7 (fast), 8 GB Ram, Windows 7,,

    Thank you kindly & keep up the good work,,,;)


    1. AirFoil is available for Mac and Windows. I’ve not tried it yet, but it might suit your needs.

    1. Came back to the article to leave just this comment. After about 5 minutes, Airfoil adds white noise at a decent volume to the audio stream unless you pay 30$ for it. That behavior alone caused me to uninstall it.

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