How to Fix One Earbud Being Louder Than the Other – Musician Wave

Is one of your earbuds louder than the other? This is a common issue that many earbud users encounter at some point.

In many cases, fixing this problem can be quite simple and may just require a few software tweaks. however, it can be more complicated than this, especially if the problem is hardware related.

Reading: Why does one headphone sound louder

hardware problems and solutions

Some of the more common hardware issues that can cause one headset to sound louder than the other include:

the connector is not fully seated in the socket

If the headphone jack is not fully inserted into the socket, you will probably notice that one headphone is quieter or smoother than the other. therefore, before trying other troubleshooting steps, make sure the connector is fully seated in the socket by pushing it further in.

dirty connector or headset

Did you know that headphone jacks and headphones contain thousands of germs and dirt particles? That is why it is essential that you clean them regularly with a slightly damp, lint-free microfiber cloth. It will not only fix the unbalanced audio problem but also protect you from getting infections.

You can use water or 70% isopropyl alcohol to clean the earphones and connector, but of course alcohol is preferred for disinfection.

Clean the earbuds thoroughly, making sure to clean the mesh parts gently to remove dirt and trapped earwax.

physical damage/defect (wires, cable, plug, socket)

In the worst case, one of your headphones could be making more noise than the other simply due to physical damage to the cables, plug, or socket.

If you try another pair of headphones and they work fine, the problem is probably with the audio cable. however, if you connect multiple other headphones and none of them have balanced audio, then the plug or jack may be damaged.

however, it is recommended that you check for software-related issues first before assuming anything is broken.

audio signal loss

A problem with signal transmission may mean a problem with your headphone cable. cables that are too long require audio signals to travel a longer distance. Not to mention they add more resistance for audio signals to pass through.

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try to use headphones that have shorter cables, and if the cable is replaceable, feel free to buy a new shorter one.

In the case of portable music players, there may be a loss of signal from the line remote. try disconnecting the remote line and see if that fixes the audio balance issue.

earphone humidity

Moisture in the earpiece is likely to block sound waves from fully reaching your eardrums, causing it to sound quieter. Some headphones are sweat and water resistant, but if yours isn’t, you want to make sure they stay dry most of the time.

You can easily dry the headset with a microfiber cloth or cotton swab.

software problems and solutions

Your audio balance problem doesn’t always have to be due to hardware issues. Check out these software problems and learn how to fix them:

poor audio balance setting

Almost all desktop and mobile operating systems allow you to adjust the audio balance when listening to music. in other words, you can make one earphone louder than the other.

This can be quite helpful if you have trouble hearing in one of your ears. however, you can inadvertently change this setting and make one of your headphones louder.

Please check the audio balance setting on your device and make sure the volume is equally balanced on the 2 headphones.

problems with audio settings

Sometimes messing with your audio settings can cause one earbud to sound louder than the other. check if there are any special sound effect settings on the audio that may cause conflict.

If you can’t figure out what’s wrong, resetting your audio settings should do the trick.

bad output device

Not all output devices are designed for stereo output, leading to headphone audio imbalance issues. make sure the audio source is capable of reproducing stereo output. if it’s mono, you’ll experience various audio output issues, causing one of your headphones to sound quieter.

connectivity problems: wireless headset

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If your headphones are wireless, there is a chance that one of them ran out of charge before the other. in that case, the volume will go down until it disappears completely.

check if the headset is fully charged and reconnect the cordless headset and see if it fixes the problem.

You may also have problems with bluetooth connectivity. try resetting your wireless headphones and remove them from your device’s paired connections and start over.

It’s also worth noting that one of your earbuds may not be able to charge or hold a charge due to hardware damage. if you plug it in, but it doesn’t charge, you may need to replace it.

If under warranty, you can get a free replacement. other than that, you will have to exchange it for a fee.

problem with audio file

If your audio file is corrupted and incorrectly modified, it could make the sound from one side of your headphones softer. try listening to another song to make sure it’s not a problem with what you’re listening to.

some music producers intentionally make the sound on one side louder to make the beats more noticeable.


Alright, here are all the common issues that can cause one of your headphones to be louder than the other, and how to fix them.

It would be a good idea to check the audio jack first to make sure it’s inserted correctly. then you can walk through your audio settings.

if all else fails, we’re most likely dealing with a more complicated hardware problem here.

On a final note, try swapping the 2 earbuds and see if the issue persists on the same side or not. if it continues in the same ear, you may have a hearing problem that you are not aware of.

See also: How To Untangle Headphone Cords? Top Full Guide in 2022

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