macOS does not ship with a built-in equalizer for global audio. If you use iTunes, you can find and use the equalizer which is buried deep within the menu options. If you’re willing to pay a bit of money, you can get Boom 3d which not only gives you an equalizer but also volume boost and surround sound. However, if you are looking for a free equalizer, you cannot go wrong with eqMac2 by Bitgapp.
eqMac2 is a free and open-source equalizer for macOS. The app sits in the menu bar and lets users select from a variety of default presets to modify any audio output on their Mac. The app sports 10-bands and 31-bands, allowing audiophiles to customize to their heart’s desire. eqMac2 also lets users apply different equalizers to different outputs, whether it’s 3.5mm line-out, USB, HDMI or wireless audio output over Bluetooth. I’ve personally tested eqMac2 with AirPods and they work wonderfully. At the time of writing this piece, there is an issue with loud wireless audio output so beware.
I also tested eqMac2 over HDMI output to my Samsung TV and the result was a noticeable improvement over the default audio. The equalizer changes had an impact over both movies and music playback and really improve my listening experience. A tip though: always use either the iTunes equalizer or eqMac2 but not both at the same time. Enabling both at the same time does not result in a good audio experience.
If I have to nitpick, it might be the fact that the app installs a driver during setup. The driver is important to the app’s functionality but, on Mac, you cannot easily manage drivers without diving into the Terminal. So it can be a bit of a concern if there’s an issue with the driver files. Always
If you are one of those folks who used to love tinkering with the equalizer in Winamp or are an audiophile who knows how audio best sounds like, eqMac2 is a must have. It’s free, open-source and works well whether you use a MacBook’s speakers, headphones, AirPods, or output audio over HDMI.