2015
09.03

Today, I decided to test an old in-ear headphones that has been gathering dust in my table to see if it’s still working. Unfortunately, I found that left speaker is not as loud as the right speaker. Using it to listen any music will give me a disorienting effect. I was half-way from throwing this headphones into the rubbish bin. Suddenly, I remember that we can actually adjust the volume balance in Windows.

Here’s how I did it in my Windows 10 Professional:

  1. Right click on the Volume Icon in the System Tray. It will pop up something like below.
    volume-tray

  2. Click Sounds. A new window will pop up like below

    volume-sounds

  3. Click Playback tab.

    volume-playback

    Once above window show up, select the active device, then click Properties.

  4. Now the Speaker’s window will pop like below.

    volume-speakers

    Click the Levels tab.

  5. In the Levels tab, click the Balance button, as shown below.

    volume-levels

  6. Now the Balance window will pop up.
    volume-balance
    With this we can now adjust the balance between left and right speaker. The best way to adjust is while listening to music. This way we know immediately the best balance setting for the headphones.

That’s all. I hope it helps.

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How To Adjust Audio Balance (Left - Right) In Windows 10, 4.7 out of 5 based on 103 ratings

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8 comments so far

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  1. Windows 10 Drivers overrode AMD drivers and erased both headphone jacks, rolled back and uninstalled and reinstalled and everything…still troubleshooting, but anyway, more importantly I had a quick and easy workaround using application-specific balance to play music out of one set of speakers while using the other set as an amp for my playing along…but we TOOK OUT application-specific balance in the volume mixer, you either balance everything or nothing…that’s like not putting a sleep feature on tv remotes anymore- this is a great feature, but this is the future! Let’s take out all the useful well thought-out helpful shit and dumb it down so it looks sleek but doesn’t do the cool useful shit it used to…progress? Hardly…oversight and ignorance, new tech pandering to the lowest common denominator. Doesn’t get any better than Windows XP and Office 2003…everything since just varying degrees of terrible.

  2. Bless you. You’re the only person out of the first 50 google results to actually state HOW to do this. All I got was “It’s in the control panel somewhere” or “I know you can change it” before you. I’ve been dealing with this for months and finally got fed up… turns out my sound was automatically making the right ear have less sound and it was making me slightly motion sick while playing games because the sound didn’t match where the enemy actually was. I won’t feel nauseous during game sessions now!

  3. Thanks, very useful as Im almost deaf on one year. The only google result to actually help

  4. Thanks man, I can only hear like 10% on my left ear right now so I turned down the right side to 10% while keeping the left at 100% to make it sound the same on both ears.

  5. All went well till I got to the last window, all I have is a volume slider, no balance sliders 🙁

    • there is a button that says balance on the window you were on

  6. This is almost a great solution. I’m really glad that it works for some of you.

    Unfortunately, it’s not a technically correct solution for panning ALL sounds to either the left or right. Adjusting the balance in the method shown here simply adjusts the volume balance for whatever would come out of the left or right channels.

    In other words, if sound is solely coming from the left channel, adjusting the left channel to ‘0’ does not redirect those sounds to the right channel.

    I think the correct solution might be using something like Voicemeeter Virtual Audio Mixer (link: https://www.vb-audio.com/Voicemeeter/index.htm ). I haven’t tried this one yet, but the idea is that you can take all your system sounds, override the native Windows audio mixer, and Pan Left/Right to your heart’s desire (depending on which ear is still good at hearin’). It seems with that specific software, you can hit a button to turn the output to Mono. I’m not sure without installing

    That is, of course, if the software (which is free!) works as it seems to after my cursory inspection. I’m sure there’s other applications out there that achieve the same result. I’m still looking for free solutions. If I find one that works and is easy to use I’ll update!

    TL;DR: This solution doesn’t actually pan all the audio to the other side. Need something else. =(

    • UPDATE: HERE IS A SOLUTION THAT REQUIRES NO ADDITIONAL SOFTWARE!

      1) Follow the solution listed in this guide! =)
      2) Press WindowsKey + U. (This opens up Ease of Access settings menu)
      3) Click “Other Options” from the Ease of Access menu
      4) Scroll down to Audio Options
      5) Turn “Mono audio” to “On”

      Voila! Now, all left and right sounds will be played in mono, so using the solution in this guide won’t mean those that are hard of hearing, deaf in one ear, etc. will miss anything intended to go into the other audio channel.

      TL;DR: The author’s original solution helps for one headphone/speaker performing at a different volume than the other, but didn’t address problems for people that are deaf in one ear, or otherwise want all their sound to come out of one stereo channel, whether left or right.

      Hope this helps any folks hard of hearing!

      p.s. It’s also a nifty solution for putting on one headphone and being able to hear everything else in your environment (colleagues at work, significant other at home, TV at home, whatever)