How to install the PulseEffects audio Equalizer on Linux [Guide]

PulseEffects is an advanced equalizer program for the Pulse Audio sound system on Linux. It has lots of features, like an audio Input Limiter, a real-time audio compressor, reverberator and even automatic volume control! In this guide, we’ll demostrate how to install the PulseEffects audio Equalizer on Linux. In addition to covering the installation process, we will also go over how to configure and use PulseEffects for your audio equalizer needs!

Ubuntu installation instructions

PulseEffects is available for Ubuntu via a PPA. The trouble is, the PPA has yet to add support for Ubuntu 18.04, and Ubuntu 18.10. As a result, those that want to use this software need to download the old 16.04 package.

Usually, downloading an old package and installing it on a modern version of Ubuntu presents significant problems, such as unmet dependencies and uninstallable programs. With PulseEffects, this isn’t the case, and the 16.04 version installs just fine. To get it, open up a terminal and use the wget downloading tool.

wget -O pulse-effects-64bit.deb

Or, for the 32-bit version of PulseEffects, do:

wget -O pulse-effects-32-bit.deb

Once the wget downloading tool finishes getting the PulseEffects DEB package, install it to Ubuntu with the dpkg and apt commands.

sudo dpkg -i pulse-effects-64bit.deb sudo apt install -f


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sudo dpkg -i pulse-effects-32-bit.deb sudo apt install -f

Debian installation instructions

Debian Linux doesn’t have a DEB package available for PulseEffects, so users looking to install it will need to download and use the Ubuntu version.

Note: consider using the Flatpak version as an alternative, if the Ubuntu version of this software does not work.

To get PulseEffects installed on Debian, you must first download the package with wget.

wget -O pulse-effects-64bit.deb

Alternatively, grab the 32-bit version of the program with this command.

wget -O pulse-effects-32-bit.deb

Run the dpkg command and install PulseEffects to the system.

sudo dpkg -i pulse-effects-64bit.deb


sudo dpkg -i pulse-effects-32-bit.deb

Finally, install the PulseEffects dependencies to finish up the installation.

sudo apt-get install -f

Arch Linux installation instructions

Arch Linux is one of the few Linux operating systems that carry the PulseEffects audio Equalizer in their official software repositories. It’s in the “Community” software repository. Install it by opening up a terminal and following the steps below!

Step 1: Open up the Pacman.conf file with the Nano text editor.

sudo nano /etc/pacman.conf

Step 2: Scroll through Pacman.conf, locate “Community” and remove all instances of # from in front of it.

Step 3: Save the edits to the Pacman configuration file with the Ctrl + O button. Then, exit with Ctrl + X.

Step 4: Re-sync Arch Linux to the official servers.

sudo pacman -Syyuu

Step 5: Install PulseEffects on Arch Linux.

sudo pacman -S pulseeffects

Fedora installation instructions

Fedora users can easily install the PulseEffects audio Equalizer by enabling the RPM Sphere repository. To enable the RPM Sphere repository, launch a terminal and create a new repo configuration file. Then open up the configuration file in the Nano text editor.

sudo touch /etc/dnf.repos.d/rpm-sphere.repo
sudo nano /etc/dnf.repos.d/rpm-sphere.repo

Paste the code below into Nano:

name=RPM Sphere

Finally, install PulseEffects to Fedora with the DNF package manager.

sudo dnf install pulseffects -y

Flatpak installation instructions

PulseEffects has a Flatpak version. Installing it requires the Flatpak runtime. Don’t have the Flatpak runtime set up on your Linux machine? Follow our guide and learn how to get it up and running!

When you’ve got the Flatpak runtime working, getting the PulseEffects app working through it is a breeze. To install it, simply enter these two commands in a terminal below.

Note: do not use sudo. Flatpak will prompt for a user password during installation.

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub  flatpak install flathub com.github.wwmm.pulseeffects -y

Using PulseEffects audio equalizer

PulseEffects has a lot of advanced options. We won’t be covering them in this tutorial, as the average user doesn’t need to worry about them, and they won’t help you make your music sound that much better (unless you know what you’re doing.)

To enable equalization for a program on your Linux desktop, open up PulseEffects and look for the “Applications” section.

Note: on the Ubuntu and Debian version, there is no “Applications” section. Programs are shown on the opening page instead.

Look through PulseEffects and locate the program you’d like to use with the equalizer. Then, click the slider to the “ON” position.

Once PulseEffects has access to the program’s audio stream, locate the “Equalizer” section and select it. Then find the Equalizer slider button and set it to “ON.”

With the equalizer feature in PulseEffects enabled, it’s time to apply some audio effects to the equalizer. Find the “preset” button and select it to open the preset menu.

In the Equalizer preset menu, scroll through and click on an audio effect to instantly apply it to the system.

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