Bass boost songs for car audio!?

I want to bass boost my music so it sounds better in the car. I have watch several tutorials on Youtube but they are all different claiming to be the best method.

Is there a “best” way to do this?


Is there a “best” way to do this?

Yes. At the radio or player. Most music is already at the maximum of digital loudness and anything you do with the word “Boost” in the title is going to cause distortion. If you avoid distortion and boost the bass, the rest of the music is going to need to get quieter to make room. There is no more “up” available. Bass is trouble because it takes a lot of power to push those low tones out.

Even my stock truck system has loudness, bass and treble controls. If you do it at the radio, you’re much more likely to get better sound than if you try to mess with the sound files. If you have controls, but you just can’t do it at the radio, nothing you can do at the sound files is going to make any difference.


I’m talking about using Audacity to bass boost songs, not the controls in the car.

I’m using this method but I want to find out if there is any better.

  1. Drag the desired audio file to Audacity.
  2. Make one copy of the track so you have two tracks of the same song.
  3. Select the top track and use “Stereo to mono”.
  4. Select the top track again and use “Low pass filter” 48 dB and 80 Hz.
  5. Select the top track again and use “Amplify” without changing any settings.
  6. Select the bottom track and use “High pass filter” 48 dB and 100 Hz.
  7. Select the bottom track again and use “Normalize” without changing any settings (should say -1dB)
  8. Select both track and “Mix and render”.

Make a test track with increasing amounts of bass boost : +3db , +6dB , +9dB , etc

And while you’re doing that, make sure View > Show Clipping is selected. If the blue waves in your song timeline get too big, they will sprout red lines. That’s where the distortion goes up and the bass will start to sound clicky, ticky, poppy and crunchy.


Why not use the controls in the car? That would seem to be the obvious thing to do.

Adjusting the bass levels and bass boost is not the same thing. When you adjusting the bass levels, the audio will sound terrible, it will sound “boomy”.

When you bass boost a song it’s like you remaster it without remastering it. You know what I mean? You will seperate the high and lows. When you boost the lows by amplifying it, and when you mix and render the track together again the lows are much louder, richer, deeper and it still sounds crisp like the original recording. Not boomy.

Please read my answer above.

No there’s no “best” way. Do whatever sounds best to you.
For most users, the controls on their music player will probably be as good as any other method, and is by far the easiest.

There is one thing you can do that might help a little. Select a whole song by clicking just above MUTE. Analyze > Plot Spectrum, Size 8000 or higher. Pull the window as wide as it goes.

Look at the values to the left of 20.00Hz. You can’t hear those and if you put serious bass notes down there by accident, you won’t hear anything but the sound system may overload. Audacity will cheerfully make audio waves human’s can’t hear.

Past that, it’s between you and the car speakers. If you start pulling or modifying specific ranges of bass notes, you could get into trouble with having the car only sound good with some performers and not others.

Be sure and check it on a freeway or superhighway. Many sound systems work well in the driveway.

My lorry sound system bumps bass notes gently by itself and some announcers sound like they’re popping their P sounds when in real life, they’re not.