Nokia Audio gets a rare update, though changes remain a mystery

Nokia Audio EQ

Besides PhotoBeamer, Nokia is also pushing out an update out for Audio today with a minor version change. For those who aren’t familiar, Nokia Audio is a sound settings app that gives access to the 7-band equalizer with 20 presets in addition to Dolby Headphone, Audio Leveling and now Flip to Silence in Amber devices (for phone calls). In short, it’s a pretty serious app if you listen to music on your Lumia (and after the update for Nokia Music yesterday, who isn’t these days?).

Version is now live in the Store, which is a slight bump from the previous that was last updated in January (or at least that’s the last time we reported an update). That makes getting this update a bit of a rare thing these days and unfortunately, we can’t share a changelog or notice anything new. We suppose it adds support for some new devices (maybe even forthcoming ones) or tweaks a few things here and there.

Nokia Audio can be found under Settings > Audio and works best when headphones are plugged in to activate the presets.

Regardless, there’s no harm in getting the update especially if you’re a music fan. Pick up Audio version here in the Nokia Collection. Thanks, Derek H., for the tip!

Notice anything new in Nokia Audio that we missed? Share with us in comments! [Edit: for those noting the Audio Levelling addition, that has actually been a feature in this app for quite some time and is not new at all]

QR: nokia audio


Reader comments

Nokia Audio gets a rare update, though changes remain a mystery


No, I'm not doing it. I'm not clicking the "Download app" button. I want it to pop up like a surprise on the store live tile.
Just absolutely not doing it...

I used to get the live tile update for the store around 7pm est, but it has recently moved over to around 9am est.

I hope Xbox Music gets a huge update with better playlists syncronization and PLAY COUNTS, again, PLAY COUNTS and I will not hesitate on giving up my boring iPhone to any Lumia device. PLEASE MICROSOFT. As a music freak, this one tiny detail can make a huge difference for me. PLEASE MICROSOFT. I'm begging you.

Technically it already exists. There's a last.fm updater app that looks at music playback history to update last.fm

With some creativity and programming skills, you can do it yourself.

I'm saying a way to get playcounts exists already, as demonstrated by an app for updating last.fm history.

Really? Because you are talking about something completely unrelated to Xbox Music, and in no way helps or adds to what the original poster was talking about.
Now try to come back with something a little less pedantic.

You're retarded because you can't parse a simple sentence, and anything I say on the subject will fly right over your head. Feel free to try and re-read what I've said. If you still can't see the connection between what I've said and the problem, well, the first step to solving a problem is realizing that you have a problem. Good luck.

Ok, buddy.
Tell me this, what is the correlation between play counts on last.fm and play counts in Xbox Music?
It's irrelevant, like telling him the jukebox at Waffle House keeps play counts.

*whoosh* - the sound ideas make as they pass right over your head. Did you actually re-read my posts or are you just harping on about your misinterpretation of what you think I typed?

I'm not sure why you're getting so agitated.
I read it, but how does the fact last.fm records play counts matter to making playlists - and syncing them - to Xbox Music?
Say you hack/make a program to read your play counts in Xbox Music (completely unreasonable), what then? You can't apply that to anything in Xbox Music.
Seriously pointing out that another app records play counts is meaningless when that info can't be applied to fix the original problem.

An app, not by last.fm can view your playback history as recorded natively by the system (and submit that to last.fm). That means any dev can implement an app that can sync history with a plugin or component for a popular music player, say foobar2000, to write playcount tags or to a database or whatever.

Or, a desktop program can generate playlists using last.fm data (this exists).

Or, any dev can create a music player app that generates playlists on the phone based on user specified attributes, one of them being "history" aka playcount. One such app exists actually, "zero to hero".

I'm not sure how far history extends but I think the native music app might record history as far back as a few hundred songs.

If you read my initial comment, you will see that I said "with programing skills and some creativity, you can do this yourself". I've come up with three solutions, one which doesn't even require programming knowledge. I'm sure others can think up more.

The fact that you find developing apps or being creative "completely unreasonable" is worrying. Also, if you think Microsoft will ever get around to implementing this *even if they do plan on it*, all I have to say is where's my fucking custom text ringtones?

It is completely unreasonable to have a separate app to do what the native music app should do. Not sure what's worrisome about that. Also, last.fm hasn't been updated since WP7, so does it even work with Xbox Music?
I don't see this as a solution at all really, but thanks for the idea.

Because it makes auto playlist nice..like a playlist that updates based on playcounts so you always have a playlist of what you are loving right now...are a playlist of songs you've never played..and it refreshes automaticly based on play counts

Phew - thought is was only me on playlist synchronization! I created a playlist of 25 tracks on the web version of xbox music. All tracks synchronized on xbox music on my surface but only 16 did on my phone. WTF is happening?!

You could just sign up for a last.fm account and get he app ScrobbleMe, it will give you play counts, but to last.fm, not Xbox Music.

The problem with last.fm is that it's not accurate although I have an account on last.fm, I still prefer the playcounts that I get from iTunes since they are pretty accurate. Last fm at times doubles my play counts or doesn't scrobble at all.

I hear ya, WP doesn't recognize many of the metadata categories that are essential to creating playlists... of course it doesn't support syncing playlists either so...
Once the songs are on WP, it only recognizes title, album, genre and artist - no play count, RATING, subgenre, release year, etc.
I wish everyone here would comment in this MS forum thread, it's months old and kinda long. Maybe if it got a surge in comments it would grab their attention.

I never really liked this EQ.
I try to raise the low frequencies, and the whole volume is turned down a bit, it looks like it lowers the other frequencies rather than boosting the ones I want to turn up.
And the volume itself is way tooooo low when using earphones, this is the only thing I hate of my Lumia 920 :/

@Daniel Turning on audio leveling actually lowers the volume :(
@Nakazul Yeah, I thought that, you're probably right. I wonder why a simple iPod mini has twice the audio power than a Lumia 920...

In the description it says: "

With this update you will get Audio leveling feature to set the same playback volume for all music and video tracks.".

No it doesnt. Sometimes it helps very little depending on app and source, but its still a problem with these phones. Was the same with Lumia 800.

Talk to Daniel Rubino then. I just said what he posted. I also posted "heard it helps"
Personally I'm comfortable with the sound level.

Are there any psychologists here? Can someone please explain to me what's with the "being first" to comment something somewhere? Thank you. Ontopic: it could be just my imagination, but the app (well, the audio settings, rather) opens slightly faster on my 620 and it resumes faster. Even if it's just a placebo it's still a welcome change. :)

Its just a stupid worn out internet meme. It's about the same as kids racing each other to the car when you leave the store.

That should be a freaking priority update!!! So stupid not to be able to adjust without plugging in headphones. Im not a programmer, so their may be some sort of issue making this not happen, but I hate it!

There is a fight going on with Nokia now.
I logged a ticket in Windows Phone -> Windows Phone 8 -> Music and Videos in MS WP discussions.
The reply I got from Nokia - 'We would like to inform you that initially, the equalizer settings were configurable when a bluetooth accessory is connected. However, please be advised that the said feature was disabled since it did not have any effect.'
I really wonder how did he say 'did not have any effect'?
Wish I get the excellent app EQu by elephantcandy for iOS available in WP store soon.

Ok, so it's Microsoft's fault, not a shortcoming of this app. The audio is most likely processed differently depending on it's route, so MS just didn't allow EQ post processing on the signal destine for the bluetooth connection. Oh well, here's hoping they get to it soon.

No I dont think so its MS's fault.
Most smartphone manufacturers disable the EQ setting when the music is played internally to avoid the damage to the speakers.
But there is a check missing in here. The app should check whether the Music is played internally or via Bluetooth and enable/disable the Eq accordingly.

It would be nice if the equalizer can be extended to work with BT headsets. My LG Tone+ are nice but any extra oomph is much appreciated.

It's not that big of a deal. I used it for a couple of months, but it does a pretty crappy job of figuring out what music I like. I often spent more time skipping tracks than listening to them because the bands chosen to go with the three I made the playlist out of were bands I didn't like. I never actually found one band I liked as a result of using the service, either.

Change region settings and download Nokia Music. Not worth it though. Laggy as hell and is not a very smart app

"and after the update for Nokia Music yesterday, who isn't these days?"

Oh. I dunno. The majority of users with bandwidth caps?

Which in turn requires you to either use your data plan to download sub par quality MP3s or have a readily available WiFi connection you can siphon from.

Then you're missing out on what is becoming an impressive music service. Not sure how else you get music on your device or how that's Nokia's problem--clearly they're working with carriers in India to reduce data costs. Also I disagree with the "sub par" MP3 jab--it's pretty good quality. But if you want 320kbps on your device and you don't have access to Wi-Fi, well, that's just life.

How do you get 320kbps or at least 128 kbps in nokia music, i only get low bitrate (i dont exactly know the quality but judging from the size of it, it could not be more than 96 kbps)

I dont use it as I just use my Xbox music pass, I went to use it today to play my own music to check it out and I couldnt find a play all music command so I gave up

Plus here's another thing. WHY can't we just pin things in the settings folder to our start screen? Is this just me or am I asking for something that should be common sense?

This thing is useless. Does it not support my 521? Really could care less about FTS incoming calls when I can just hit the volume button. Even my hd7 had preset EQ settings.

Does this enable the EQ on 520? Any users can confirm? I want to buy the 520 as a backup phone but want to use it as a music player as well, so having this would help.

AT&T 920 and other Lumia owners will have to wait an indeterminate period b/c AT&T stalled on Amber & GDR2. Prb WEEKS until update rolls. AT&T SILENT.

Random question for you all with Lumias...Have any of you gotten immediate headaches from listening to music on headphones when you enable Dolby in the audio settings? I always do even when volume isn't at max. Just something odd I noticed!

The Dolby feature gives the music a noticeable sound distortion, or how should I say, an "opera-ish" sound... And it's present at any volume. I can't stand it, the SRS on my Trophy was much better. 

+820 for the request to make these settings work over Bluetooth. So annoying it's for wired headsets only.

Wish they would have enabled the EQ to be available during Bluetooth playback once paired in the car. Wired only is still a big miss for me. Autodetecting the two(auto, wired) for preset EQ would be awesome.


Hopefully a bug fix. I've notices that after changing the EQ, the next time I use XBOX Music, I couldn't get audio without restarting my phone.

My L520 doesn't show any equaliser settings under audio options. Only a black screen. Apparently all the L520 seems to have this problem. Any fixes?

I personally feel Nokia music very slow compared to XBox music and sometimes its over-sensitive to my finger touches (Display sensitivity - Normal)..

It would be nice to see the features available for the built in speakers. I think the main thing my phones speakers lack is bass other than that they are pretty decent. Also Audio levelling would improve the volume of some of the music on the speakers as some songs are just quieter than others.

Well what it DIDNT fix which got broken BY GDR2 was the fact that some of my headphones the inline remote would partially work (everything but voume) since GDR2/Amber (lumia 920) the remotes stopped working completely :( Im not buying another pair of very average Monster headphones again!

Can anyone please tell me whether this equalizer setting works with wired Monster headphones on a Lumia 520 or is it permanently disabled on the device? And does Dolby headphones essentially mean Monster ones?

The Dolby only works with a wired connection, in most cases headphones. The brand of headphones is independent of the Dolby function.

Lumia 520 Owner - Update Doesnt enable Equaliser :( its sad i can understand no dolby but a basic equaliser isn't hard though equaliser in music app itself would be better

Seriously man equalizer's are there even in the cheapest of all phones!!!Its quite weird that after so many complaints and suggestions by 520 users there is no reply...

Since app is located Settings------->Audio, when opening it up, there is no about------>to see the version number?
How can I tell if I indeed have the updated version:   Or still have the older version:

I guess i'm a prude but as long as you have quality earbuds you should never change the equilizer.  It distorts the original sound.

yes. or on the jbl powerup speaker. no equalizer support for bluetooth? what are we in Junior Varsity? Get your sh%t together microsoft/nokia. This is appalling.

Whenever I get an update from Nokia for something in Settings, I always do a screen capture first to see the difference. The only visible difference is the description of the 'Audio leveling' feature.
Before it read "Set the same playback volume for all music and video tracks".
After it reads "Provides a more consistent playback volume for all music and video tracks".
Other than that, it looks the same.

My Bluetooth streaming audio in the car sounds better after the update. Not sure if the update has anything to do with it, but before update I had some sound distortion but after it sounds clear as day???

Mine too. Although, I completely reloaded my music on my phone (expecting the Xbox Music improvements - LOL, how foolish of me), so that might be it.

I really don't understand why this app has the HUGE limitation of only working with the wired headphones. How about headphones like the Nokia BH-505 or speakers like the Nokia JBL PlayUp? They are not even supported!!!

wish i had read your post before i spent $600+ on a new phone, jbl power up and all the addons.  What a total waste. the sound through my jbl powerup is total crap. its mushy, its full of too much bass, all of which is fixed with a simple equalizer. nokia and microsoft are totally inept. i am utterly disappointed.

I updated with this update on my 520 but cant see the equalizer in the audio settings tab! 

for Nokia/Microsoft to release a phone that uses bluetooth pairing for sound with a device (like the JBL powerup for example, that was built for Nokia in mind)  - but then does not allow you to use the built in equalizer is really poor. But for windows to not have an equalizer accessory on its app store, thats even worse.  
Why did i make the switch? i should have never left apple.