7 Ways to change the volume on Windows devices and PCs

Have you ever asked yourself what's the fastest way to change the sound volume on a Windows computer or device? I did, and I realized I could not answer this question. Therefore I've done my best to identify all the methods that can be used to change the volume, without installing any third party apps. Here are seven ways to change the system volume on any Windows PC, laptop or tablet. Don't hesitate to experiment using this guide and choose the methods that work best for you.

NOTE: Our guide was created for all modern versions of Windows: Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10. Read the sections that apply to your version of Windows. They are highlighted accordingly.

1. Use the volume icon in the notification area (all versions of Windows)

The classic way of changing the volume is to use the Speakers icon on the desktop, found on the right side of the taskbar. As you can see below, the taskbar looks slightly different in Windows 10 (at the top of the image below) when compared to Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 ( at the bottom of the image below ) but the Speakers icon doesn’t. Anyway, just click or tap on it.

A slider is shown, which can be used to set the sound volume for the operating system and all applications that are running. Again, things look different between Windows versions. Here’s how it looks in Windows 7 (left) and Windows 8.1 (right):

And here’s how it looks in Windows 10:

Except for how they look , the principles involved in changing the volume are the same: move the slider to the volume level that you want to use.

2. Use the Volume Mixer that’s found in the Control Panel (all versions of Windows)

The second method involves opening the Volume Mixer that is accessible through the Control Panel , in all versions of Windows. Open the Control Panel , go to Hardware and Sound and look for the Sound section. There, click or tap on the link that says “Adjust system volume”.

This opens the Volume Mixer window, where you can change the volume for your speakers, as well as individual applications that are running in Windows.

You can move any of the available sliders to change the sound volume for the “thing” that interests you.

3. Use the Volume Mixer shortcut from our collection (all versions of Windows)

You can also create a shortcut for the Volume Mixer and place it on the desktop, the taskbar or the Start Menu or the Start screen, depending on the version of Windows that you are using.

If you want to download a shortcut we’ve already made for you, you'll find it in our collection of Windows shortcuts. You can also create a shortcut yourself and point it to "C:\Windows\System32\SndVol.exe". To learn how to create shortcuts in Windows, read this guide: How to create shortcuts for apps, files, folders and web pages in Windows.

4. Use the volume keys on your multimedia keyboard (all versions of Windows)

If you have a PC or laptop with a multimedia keyboard, chances are that you will find some keys for setting the volume in Windows. Below you can see how these keys look on a Microsoft keyboard.

If you have a gaming keyboard you might not have exactly these keys on it but you can configure any key so that it raises or lowers the sound volume in Windows. You can also use keyboard combinations or record macros for changing the volume as you see fit.

5. Use the volume slider on your speakers (all versions of Windows)

The most obvious way to change the volume is to use the appropriate volume button or slider on your speakers. If you have a desktop computer, this will be one of the fastest ways to change the system volume.

6. Use the volume buttons on your tablet (Windows 10 and Windows 8.1)

If you have a tablet with Windows 10 or Windows 8.1, like the Microsoft Surface, then you will find physical buttons for changing the volume on one of the sides of the device.

Use the available buttons to change the sound volume in Windows.

7. Use the volume slider in the settings charm (Windows 8.1 only)

This method is just for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. It works best for tablet users but PC users can use it too.

Open the charms and click or tap Settings. On the bottom of the Settings charm you will see several icons, including the Speakers. Click or tap on it.

The Speakers slider is shown. You can set the system volume by moving the slider upwards or downwards.

This slider changes the volume for the operating system and all running apps.


As you can see, there are many ways to change the sound volume in Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10. If you know others, don't hesitate to share them using the comments form below.