I want to have an equalizer that lets me easily adjust sound for listening to music on my laptop with headphones. I'm trying to install ALSAEQUAL since it seems that this is the preferred tool for what I need. (If I'm wrong, please let me know). I'd like to be able to adjust equalizer levels to a preferred state and have my system remember this EQ state across various applications (including web browser, MPD, VLC), as well as across reboots.

When I run alsamixer -D equal, the ncurses equalizer interface appears, but it seems that my audio is not respondning---the sliders move, but the playback EQ levels don't seem to change at all when I adjust the sliders. (I've tried with audio playing in both VLC and MPD). How can I configure ALSAEQUAL to work properly?

My .asoundrc file is:

pcm.!default {
        type plug;
        slave.pcm "plugequal";
ctl.equal {
    type equal;
pcm.plugequal {
    type equal;
    slave.pcm "plug:dmix";

I am running Linux Mint 16 Cinnamon on a Lenovo Thinkpad e420.


I've had problems with plugequal too. Make sure you disabled pulseaudio before that, and that it stays disabled. I usually edit /etc/pulse/client.conf and add autospawn = no to the end. You can also edit /etc/pulse/daemon.conf and add daemonize = no. Try restarting and pulseaudio should be down.

You can start pulseaudio temporarily by running pulseaudio in a terminal; closing the terminal will also close pulseaudio. If you still use Linux Mint, look for the alsa mixer applet (but note that cinnamon's default applet for sound will disappear when pulseaudio is not running).

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