How To Fix iPhone Alarm Sound That is Too Low

Waking up to a barely audible iPhone alarm can be frustrating. A soft alarm may cause you to sleep through important morning appointments and events. Thankfully, there are several easy ways to boost your iPhone alarm volume so it is loud enough to wake you up.

Quick Answer:

Here are quick answers in bullet points for how to fix an iPhone alarm that is too quiet:

  • Pick an alarm ringtone or song with heavy bass frequencies to make the sound louder. Good options are rock, hip-hop, pop, or electronic music.
  • Go to Settings > Music > EQ and select the “Rock” or “Vocal Booster” equalizer preset to amplify bass and treble ranges.
  • Ensure the left/right audio balance in Settings > Accessibility > Audio/Visual is centered so volume from both iPhone speakers is optimized.
  • Reset all settings in Settings > General > Transfer or Reset iPhone to restore the default system and alarm volumes if the alarm is still too quiet.
  • Check that the alarm volume slider in the Clock app is set to the maximum level.
  • Make sure the iPhone is not in silent or vibrate mode which can restrict alarm volume.
  • Enable “Rise to Wake” so the alarm gradually increases in volume over 30 seconds.
  • Update iOS or reset settings after an update which may change default volumes.
  • Set separate alarm and ringer volumes in the Clock app and Settings.

Step 1: Pick a High Bass Song or Tone for Your Alarm Sound

The simplest way to increase your iPhone alarm volume is to select a song or tone with strong bass frequencies as the alarm sound. Here’s how:

  • Open the Clock app and tap the “+” icon to create a new alarm.
  • Tap “Sound” and then tap “Pick a Song” to browse your music library.
  • Choose a song with a heavy or prominent bassline, such as rock, hip-hop, pop, or electronic dance music. The stronger low frequencies will make the alarm louder.
  • Alternatively, you can tap the “Tone Store” at the bottom to browse and preview ringtones to find one with bass emphasis.
  • There are also built-in alarm tones optimized for loudness such as “Radar” and “Siri Voice“.

Selecting an alarm sound with dominant bass frequencies will make the iPhone speaker output louder and more audible for waking up.

Step 2: Change the iPhone’s Equalizer Settings to Boost Volume

The iPhone’s sound equalizer allows you to boost specific frequency ranges. Here’s how to use it:

  • Go to Settings > Music > EQ.
  • Select the “Rock” or “Vocal Booster” equalizer preset.
  • The Rock EQ emphasizes bass and treble ranges for louder volume. Vocal Booster does the same while making vocals crisper.
  • The boosted low and high frequencies will make your alarm audio more pronounced.

Adjusting the EQ is an effective way to increase the alarm volume coming from your iPhone’s speaker.

Step 3: Balance the Left/Right Speakers for Optimal Volume

If your iPhone’s alarm volume seems lower on one side, the left and right speakers may be unbalanced. Here’s how to fix this:

  • Go to Settings > Accessibility > Audio/Visual
  • Scroll down and make sure the slider below “Balance” is set to the middle or center position.
  • An off-center balance can restrict volume on one speaker. Centering optimizes output from both speakers.

Balancing the two speakers properly will prevent low alarm volume coming from just one side of your iPhone.

Step 4: Reset All Settings to Restore Default Volume Levels

If your iPhone’s overall system volume or alarm volume seems lower than usual, resetting all settings may help resolve this:

  • Go to Settings > General > Transfer or Reset iPhone
  • Tap “Reset All Settings”
  • This will restore the original default volume levels without erasing data.

Resetting to factory settings can eliminate any problematic volume settings causing abnormally low alarm volume.


Still, having issues with your iPhone alarm being too quiet? Here are answers to some common questions about fixing soft or low iPhone alarm sounds:

How do I make my iPhone alarm progressively louder?

You can set your iPhone alarm to gradually increase in volume by enabling the “Rise To Wake” option when creating or editing an alarm in the Clock app. This will make the alarm gentle at first but increasingly louder over 30 seconds to wake you up.

Why is my iPhone alarm quieter after updating to iOS?

Major iOS updates can sometimes inadvertently change default volume levels. Try resetting all settings to restore the proper alarm volume after an iOS update. Also, check that the alarm volume slider in the Clock app is set to max.

Can I set separate iPhone alarm volume vs ringer volume?

Yes, the volume for alarms can be adjusted independently from the ringer volume. In the Clock app, tap the “Alarm” tab and use the volume slider to set the alarm loudness.

Why is my iPhone alarm quiet on vibrate/silent mode?

To maintain proper loudness, the iPhone alarm sound requires the phone to be in normal ringer mode. Switching from vibrate or silent back to ringer mode can restore full alarm volume.

Can I increase hardware volume beyond the max software level?

Not easily. The iPhone hardware volume caps at the maximum software level. To physically amplify further requires a DIY headphone amplifier modification which Apple does not recommend.


Don’t let an overly quiet or soft iPhone alarm prevent you from waking up on time. With a few simple tweaks like choosing a bass-heavy alarm sound, boosting the EQ, balancing speaker levels, and resetting default settings, you can easily increase the volume for a louder, more reliable iPhone alarm. Test your alarm from across the room to ensure it is loud enough to wake you.

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