Do you find Windows volume mixer challenging when controlling audio levels of different apps? If yes then it’s time to use EarTrumpet, a solid volume mixer alternative for Windows 10 that’s totally free and open-source.
Dave Amenta, a former Microsoft engineer, David Golden and Microsoft MVP Rafael Rivera worked together to develop EarTrumpet. Since its availability in 2015, this app solves various audio management issues on Windows 10. Although Microsoft has made a lot of improvements to sound settings in Windows 10 build 1803, EarTrumpet is still far better, read on.
EarTrumpet has better accessibility
Just like the volume mixer in Windows 10, EarTrumpet can control classic (win32) and modern (UWP) app volumes individually. Also, it lets you assign and quick switch between audio outputs for each app, as well as the ability to move apps between playback devices.
Additional enhancements such as being able to control volume via mouse wheel, a configurable keyboard hotkey to show the fly-out (saves a lot of clicks), multi-channel peak monitoring, and the ability to mute the audio by middle-clicking on the app’s icon (very nice). It works smoothly even if you have a lot of audio sources and output devices.
EarTrumpet adapts Fluent Design
Aside from those accessibility features, EarTrumpet adapts Fluent Design to make it look like a part of Windows 10. In the latest version 2.0, it adds support for light and dark mode. It’s no wonder considering the people behind it is a former Microsoft engineer and a Microsoft MVP.
Another nice feature is when you right-click on a certain app’s icon, it
brings the app into focus and blurs the others into the background. Then you can adjust the volume and choose the audio output you want the audio signal to go through.
If you are already satisfied with EarTrumpet, it’s good to hide your Windows speaker icon – you don’t need it anymore (otherwise you’ll get two speaker icons in the system tray). To do that, head to Settings > Personalization > Taskbar. Then scroll down and click the Turn system icons on or off link and flip the Volume switch off.
EarTrumpet, truly a solid volume mixer alternative for its great accessibility features. Additionally, due to its familiar Windows 10-like look and feel, most Windows 10 users can understand it quickly.
As far as the user feedback is concern, I’ve only seen a few negative reviews that talk about blue screen of death (BSOD) and bugs. I’ve tested EarTrumpet on my virtual machine and laptop, it works well as expected.
- Supports both UWP and Win32 apps.
- Allows easy switching between playback devices.
- Fluent Design.
- Able to control individual app volumes.
- Reliable (made by Microsoft developers).
- App crash according to some users.