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According to this comment it seems that VLC could boost the audio volume up to 800% in the past versions. Today I installed VLC multimedia player version 2.0.5 and it is capable only to boost up to 200%! This is not much, considering that some youtube videos are very quiet. This is what I need VLC for - to boost up volume for quiet youtube videos.

So, where's the problem? Was it actually 800% in the past? Did VLC really limit this from former 800% to current 200%? Is it possible to somehow achieve more boost with VLC? Or with other software? I am using Windows 7.

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

You may adjust volume manually via commandline parameter:

vlc.exe [file] --volume [value]

The manual claims that the maximum volume value is 1024, yet actually you can put any value. The 256 corresponds to 100%, 512 to 200% and so on. Tried up to 4096 and it worked :)


vlc.exe %HOMEDIR%\Desktop\movie.flv --volume 2048
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...of course, the quality won't be any good. But if you have a really quiet file, you may try :D – Michał Sacharewicz Apr 4 '13 at 20:55
+1 This works, great!! I changed it directly on the Desktop shortcut to "C:\Program Files (x86)\VideoLAN\VLC\vlc.exe" --volume 1024 – Tomas Apr 5 '13 at 8:06
@MichałSacharewicz,,, Doesn't work on the current version! – John Smith Mar 2 '14 at 23:50
I have ver. 2.0.4 and the above settings do not work. – Technext Sep 6 '14 at 16:49
This does not work. I get Warning: option --volume no longer exists. VLC version 2.1.5 here. – John Smith Optional Jan 21 '15 at 23:45

You can set maximum volume up to 300% in preferences.

  1. Tools -> Preferences (Show settings = All) -> Interface -> Main interfaces -> Qt

  2. Then at the very bottom of the right panel set the Maximum Volume option.

  3. Save, exit and restart VLC.

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Thanks. This option must be new - I have VLC 2.0.6 and it's not present there: – Tomas Mar 28 '14 at 12:01
It works, thanks! – Burkhard Oct 25 '14 at 18:05

The VideoLAN forum has a good quote:

If you put up the volume to 200%, vlc will not correctly amplify the sound but apparently cap some frequencies which leads to distortions. Maybe someone used a too small variable and a factor 2 leads to a overrun? Stuttering would not appear from something like that AFAIK.

Also look at the following VideoLAN Ticket #6198 - Audio over 150% with VLC 2.0 sounds bad and distorted. The commentaries provide some insight:

Report is about 150% on 2.0 sounding bad while 400% on previous version was good. (I know that 200% is the old 400%)

On videolan forum a user suggested that maybe vlc cap some frequencies which leads to distortions.

So in effect, raising the volume over a 100% will cap frequencies that go beyond a set decibel (dB) range, whilst the others are raised - causing a flattening of the sound.

By ramping up your volume, you are degrading your sound to the point distortion as your reach the extreme end. I would recommend buying a better pair of headphones or speakers.

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thank you, however is just an "excuse" for VLC, not a solution :-) Furthermore I don't get how this is any related to frequencies. Raising volume is about amplitude and is not even remotely related to frequency. – Tomas Apr 5 '13 at 8:02
Yes, I wanted to provide a graphical illustration of this, through a graphical equilizer - as to why the sound becomes distorted. Couldn't find any information on the internet, so I'll have to do some testing when I get chance. – wonea Apr 5 '13 at 8:17

The visual slider goes to 200%, but, I believe, if you use mouse wheel, you can go higher than that.

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please describe how to do that. – Tomas Apr 5 '13 at 8:07
@Tomas: You USED TO be able to put your mouse in the VLC window and scroll up/down, or press Ctrl+Up to increase the volume past 200%. However I'm unable to do this in the version I am using! (I have done it on other computers previously, and am equally confused.) – user156329 Jun 14 '13 at 16:34
Oh, saw other comment: "200% is the new 400%" -- meaning when you've moved it up that high it's already AT the old 400%... – user156329 Jun 14 '13 at 16:37

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