A while back Microsoft introduced a feature called Windows Sonic spatial sound for Windows 10 and Xbox users. In this article, we will understand how you can activate the Windows Sonic spatial sound on your Windows desktop or laptop and what the feature is all about.
So, how to turn on Windows Sonic for headphones?
To switch on Windows Sonic for headphones in Windows 10:
- Click on Start and then open the Settings menu
- Navigate to System, then Sound and click on Related Settings
- You will see the Sound Control Panel window
- Click on any playback device (here it would be your headphones)
- Now click on Properties
- Once the new window opens up, select the option for Spatial Sound
- There will be an option to select the Spatial Sound Format
- Select Windows Sonic for Headphones and then click on Apply
- This should activate the Windows Sonic feature on your Windows 10 device
Do note that by default, the Windows Sonic spatial sound feature is usually disabled on the Windows system. You will need to follow the steps shown here to activate it.
How to turn on Windows Sonic for headphones Through Task Bar
Instead of following the long process listed above, you can also activate Windows Sonic spatial sound through the Windows Taskbar. Here is how you can do it.
- On the Windows Taskbar, right-click on the Sound icon
- In the menu that opens up, you should get an option called Spatial Sound. This would be Off by default
- Click on the Spatial Sound option, and you will get an option to switch it on for your headphones
- If due to any reason, you do not find the option through the Taskbar Sound icon, then follow the first process listed above for spatial sound
How To Turn off Windows Sonic spatial feature
If for some reason, you want to get rid of the spatial surround sound experience, then you can follow the steps below to de-activate it.
- On the Windows Taskbar, right-click on the Sound icon
- In the menu that opens up, you should see an option for Spatial Sound
- This should be On, indicating that the Spatial Sound feature is activated
- Click on Spatial Sound and then select Off
- This will de-activate the Windows Sonic feature
Now, if you do not have the Sound icon on the Windows Taskbar then you will need to follow these steps to de-activate Windows Sonic.
- Open the Control Panel through the Windows Start Menu
- Under Sound Control Panel, you will see an option for Audio or Sound. Click on it
- You might also get an option called System under which you will find either Audio or spatial sound options
- Once you are in the Sound window, select the Playback Device on which the feature is enabled
- This would be your headphones or speakers you are using
- Under Spatial Sound Format, there is a drop-down menu
- Click on it and now select Off
This completes the process of switching off the Windows Sonic feature.
How To Activate Windows Sonic on the Xbox One gaming console
Hardcore games will be happy to know that the Windows Sonic feature is now being offered on the Xbox One as well. This will surely alleviate your gaming experience to another level!
To activate the Sonic spatial sound technology on your headphones on the Xbox, follow the steps below.
- On the Xbox console, press the Xbox button
- This will open up the Xbox guide
- Navigate to the option for Setting and click on it
- Click on the All Settings option
- Now go to the Display and Audio tab
- Click on the Audio Output option
- Here you will see the Windows Sonic option
- Under the Headphone Format option, select Windows Sonic for Headphones
- If you are using wired headphones connected to the HDMI or audio port, you will need to select the checkbox for Using HDMI or optical audio headset
- However, if you are using wireless headphones or connected directly to the controller, or using a USB port, then you can skip Step 9
- Click on Apply and the windows sonic for headphones is enabled on the Xbox One
Frequently Asked Questions
How to test if the Windows Sonic feature works on your headphones or not?
So, what is spatial sound? It is an audio experience that involves the flow of surround sound around you, creating a three-dimensional audio experience. It basically enhances your audio and creates a more immersive experience especially when you watch movies or play games!
Once you know that your Win 10 laptop and your headphones support the Sonic spatial sound technology, it is always a good idea to test how it works. You can do this before you activate the Windows Sonic feature. Play any video to see how the audio experience is. Note the sounds and the direction it moves in.
Now activate the Windows Sonic spatial feature for your headphones using the steps shown above. Play the same video clip to see if there is any difference in the surround sound experience!
How does Windows Sonic help in creating a better audio experience?
Not everybody can invest in expensive or good-quality headphones. In fact, most of us tend to use the headphones that came with our mobile phones. These are made for basic use and are not designed to deliver high-grade audio experiences. Therefore, Microsoft launched a software to enhance the audio quality on any kind of headphones you hear it on.
Through the windows sonic for headphones, you should be able to get better output with even the most basic headphones. Spatial sounds thrive to create a better 3D audio experience. Think of it as your own surround sound system. The only difference is that it can happen through your headphones! Imagine watching an action movie or playing games with the Sonic enabled!
What devices are supported for the Windows Sonic feature?
You can use any brand of ordinary stereo headphones to enjoy the benefits of Sonic. The sounds feature doesn’t limit itself to a certain type of headphone so it doesn’t matter if you use corded, wireless, Bluetooth headphones, etc. However, the quality of the audio output will definitely depend on the quality of your headphones. That cannot be controlled by the Win Sonic feature.
Whether you are watching movies, YouTube videos, playing games, or looking at videos that you have created, an immersive surround sound experience enhances the audio-visual appeal of the content. One of the best ways of getting good output is to use high-quality computers, audio chipsets, and/or listening devices such as headphones and speakers.
But, what do you do if you can’t spend so much upgrading your hardware? This is where the software comes in. The main objective of Microsoft creating the Windows Sonic spatial feature is to free users from making expensive hardware investments. With a few tweaks of the surround sound settings, you should be able to get a much better output.
We hope you enjoyed our article about switching on the windows sonic for headphones. Follow all the steps mentioned in the article and you should be on your way to enjoying good quality surround sound experiences i.e. windows sonic for headphones.