Poor audio quality can distract attention from the movie you are watching or the game you are playing. Instead of settling for mono and outdated sound quality, you might want to consider upgrading your headphones to something better. The problem is, if your settings are wrong, you still won’t get the quality you want.
To fix this problem, you can take advantage of a new Windows feature called Windows Sonic for Headphones, which immediately improves the audio output quality. It doesn’t matter if you have new headphones or old ones, because Windows Sonic for Headphones in Windows 10 might fix the problem.
What is Windows Sonic for Headphones in Windows 10?
There are a significant number of cheap, low-quality headphones on the market today. They can upset you as their metallic sound, crackling sound and low bass sound impressive.
While you cannot improve on the actual hardware components of the headphones in this way, you can work on software. This is exactly what Microsoft provides with Windows Sonic for Headphones, a spatial audio solution introduced in Windows with the 2017 Creators Update.
Spatial sound is an attempt to create a three-dimensional sound experience that is independent of the location of the speakers or headphones. Instead of 2D front and back audio, Windows Sonic supports a surround sound solution that will mix audio to simulate where that sound might come from.
For example, if you are playing a game and there is an explosion over your character, then the sound will be blended to make it sound as realistic as if you heard it from above. Windows Sonic simulates 7.1 surround sound audio channels in your headphones.
Rather than losing some of these audio channels (and, as a result, certain noises and sounds), they are downmixed into the two channels (left and right) that you get in your headphones.
Windows Sonic for Headphones is available in Windows 10 but is disabled by default, so you need to enable it first. It can also be turned on for Xbox users in the Xbox Settings menu.
Windows Sonic vs Dolby Atmos: Which is the Best Spatial Audio Provider?
While Windows Sonic is a useful tool for general audio, it also has a competitor: Dolby Atmos. If you have a Dolby Atmos-enabled audio receiver, you can use that instead. The battle between Windows Sonic and Dolby Atmos isn’t just a battle for sound quality. The choice between them will depend on the equipment available.
All headphones (regardless of quality) support Windows Sonic, whether they cost $ 10 or $ 1000. In contrast, Dolby Atmos is a proprietary system that requires Dolby Atmos-enabled hardware to operate.
There is not much difference between them. But given that Dolby is an internationally renowned audio company, you might prefer the level of enhancement and richness of sound available in Dolby Atmos over Windows Sonic.
Some software (including games) directly support Dolby Atmos. This means that if you play games like Call of Duty, you may find that the Dolby Atmos setting improves sound quality more noticeably than if you switched to Windows Sonic.
Most users will probably prefer to use Windows Sonic, which is completely free and supported by a large number of devices. If you have a Dolby Atmos-enabled device, it makes sense to try both systems to see which offers the best sound quality for your needs.
However, if you really want to try Dolby Atmos, you also need to purchase a license for it (called Dolby Access) for $ 14.99 from the Microsoft Store. A free trial is available to test the service on your PC or Xbox.
While Dolby Atmos and Windows Sonic are two strong options, you can try alternative surround sound providers instead. One of the recently released options is DTS Sound Unbound, which, like Windows Sonic, promises to improve sound quality with similar enhancements for a license cost of $ 19.99 (free trial available).
How to set up Windows Sonic in Windows 10
If you want to customize Windows Sonic in Windows 10, you need to enable it first as the system is disabled by default.
- To enable Windows Sonic, you need to open the Windows settings menu. To do this, right-click the Start menu and select the Settings option.
- From the Windows Settings menu, choose System Sound. In the Sound menu, select an output device from the drop-down menu, then select the Device Properties option below it.
- In the Device Properties menu, you will see the Spatial Sound category. Select the Windows Sonic headphone option from the drop-down menu.
- This will automatically apply the spatial audio provider to your audio output device. After enabling the setting, you can quickly turn it on and off using the Sound icon on the taskbar in the lower right corner. To do this, right-click the icon to start.
- On the menu, hover over Spatial Sound (Windows Sonic for Headphones). This will show you the different surround sound options. If you want to disable Windows Sonic, select the Off option.
If you want to switch between Windows Sonic and Dolby Atmos, select Dolby Access
, but you need a license to do so. You can also opt for DTS Sound Unbound, which is another paid alternative surround sound provider with a free trial available.
Changes to the surround sound settings will be applied immediately. Switching between Windows Sonic, Dolby Atmos, or DTS Sound Unbound will let you determine which option provides the best sound quality enhancement for your audio system.
Better Windows 10 Sound Quality
By turning on Windows Sonic for Headphones in Windows 10, you can take advantage of surround sound technology to improve sound quality, whether you’re playing intense PC gaming or watching Netflix with friends.
If you don’t have the funds to replace your headphones, Windows Sonic can help you get the most out of your earbuds. You might be able to improve the situation with Windows 10 audio software, from equalizers for sound balancing to free and paid surround sound software that can give you world-class sound.