How to Disable Windows Audio Ducking in 2 Ways 🔉

Master Windows Audio Ducking in 2023: Learn the ins and outs of audio ducking for seamless sound control on your PC. Discover tips, tricks, and best practices in our comprehensive guide.

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Dawn Tang

Updated on Mar 29, 2024

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Welcome to the world of Windows audio ducking, where you can take full control of your computer's sound experience. Whether you're a content creator, a gamer, or just someone who loves to fine-tune their audio settings, understanding what is audio ducking is key to achieving a polished and professional sound.

In this guide, we'll walk you through everything you need to know about audio ducking on Windows in 2023. From the basics to advanced techniques, you'll soon have the power to effortlessly balance and manage audio sources, ensuring that your listening or recording sessions are nothing short of exceptional.

What Is Windows Audio Ducking

Windows audio ducking is a dynamic audio processing technique that enables the automatic adjustment of audio levels between different audio sources on a Windows-based computer or operating system.

The primary purpose of audio ducking is to ensure that certain audio signals are prioritized and heard clearly while reducing the volume of others when necessary.

This is typically achieved by lowering the volume of one audio source, known as the "ducked" or "background" audio, when another source, known as the "trigger" or "foreground" audio, becomes active or reaches a specified threshold.

Windows audio ducking is commonly used in various scenarios, such as live streaming, video conferencing, podcasting, and multimedia playback, to create a smoother and more balanced audio experience for users.

But this audio-ducking feature could be annoying, too. Receiving an incoming audio call on Signal's desktop client leads to a drastic reduction in system audio volume due to the auto audio ducking in Windows, which persists even after ending the call on a mobile device. Quitting the Signal client is the only way to restore normal system audio volume, causing frustration for users.

Or, When multiple audio sources are active, and their combined volume surpasses 100%, the operating system employs a limiter rather than clipping the audio.

Disable Audio Ducking in Windows 7/8/10/11

Basically, there are two commonplace ways to disable audio ducking in Windows. The following methods apply to Windows 7/8/10/11

1️⃣Disable Windows Audio Ducking from the System

Step 1. Press Windows + I or click the speaker icon at the bottom right of your screen and click the gear icon to open the system settings on your Windows desktop.

open the system settings on your Windows desktop

Step 2. Click the "Sound" tab and toggle down to find "More Sound Settings."

More Sound Settings

Step 3. Move to "Communications" and select "Mute all other sounds" > "Apply," then choose "Do nothing" > "OK."

Mute all other sounds


If you are running into the same coming call problem in Signal as described, you might want to disable calls in the first place.

Go to your profile and tap the contact name (in phone) or gear icon (desktop) to locate the "Calling" section and uncheck the "Enable incoming calls" option.

2️⃣Opt out of Ducking with IAudioSessionControl2 Interface

Step 1. Initialize the device enumerator to identify the device endpoint used by the media application for non-communication audio rendering.

Step 2. Activate the session manager associated with the device endpoint, obtaining a reference to the IAudioSessionManager2 interface.

Step 3. Utilize the IAudioSessionManager2 pointer to obtain a reference to the IAudioSessionControl interface within the session manager.

Step 4. Perform a query to access the IAudioSessionControl2 interface from the previously obtained IAudioSessionControl interface.

Step 5. Use the IAudioSessionControl2::SetDuckingPreference method, allowing you to set the ducking preference as TRUE or FALSE. Keep in mind that the preference can be adjusted dynamically during the session, but opting out won't take effect until the audio stream is stopped and restarted.

In this code snippet, an application can indicate its ducking preference. The function's caller needs to provide a TRUE or FALSE value in the DuckingOptOutChecked parameter. This value determines whether ducking is activated or deactivated using the IAudioSessionControl2::SetDuckingPreference method.

Audio ducking establishes volume thresholds for different audio elements. If you want to extract vocals and retain only the instrumental part in a finished song or recording, the EaseUS online vocal remover is the ideal solution.

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Wrapping up

In conclusion, Windows audio ducking is a valuable tool for managing audio levels on your computer. However, it is frustrating when it cannot resume the original sound, especially when you have a call.

This post gives two ways to fix this issue. Hopefully, it will help. And for anyone who is looking for an online vocal remover by accident, EaseUS online vocal remover definitely worth a try.

FAQs about Windows Audio Ducking

1. What does turning off audio ducking do?

The background sound will not be ducked or decreased anymore during a dialogue or description.

2. What is OBS audio ducking?

OBS audio ducking is a built-in feature to reduce background sound as the streamer speaks. It enhances audio clarity by using the compressor filter of OBS, namely, the audio ducking feature. Read more on audio ducking OBS.

3. What is the difference between ducker and gate?

A ducker and a gate are audio processing tools with distinct purposes. A ducker automatically reduces the volume of one audio signal when another signal reaches a threshold, often used for maintaining balance (e.g., lowering background music when a host speaks). A gate controls audio passage based on a threshold, primarily used to eliminate unwanted noise or background sounds (e.g., silencing background noise between vocal phrases). Both tools enhance audio quality and serve different functions in audio processing.

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