On the laptop it's a one-touch mute button, nice and easy.

On my iPhone there is no mute button, so volume controls must be used instead, which is no problem. When I use the volume buttons when there are no media playing, it lowers my ringer volume.

The issue is that I have to wait at least until the video player loads, and depending on which video player I am using, the both volume slider is grayed out out until the video starts playing.

The combination leads to a nonzero period of time when I am exposed to the audio while I am lowering the volume.

Q: Is there a way to adjust the media volume when there is no media playing [yet]?

3 Answers 3


The control center works (swipe up from bottom of screen and slide volume slider as desired).

In iOS 9 at least, you can also go Settings -> Sounds and under the Ringer and Alerts section, turn off "Change with Buttons", then use the volume buttons on the side of the phone to adjust the media volume. You can leave this option off to always have media volume control with the hardware buttons if you are OK with the ringer volume being just off or on at a preset level using the silent toggle switch on the side of the phone.

  • This is fantastic. What a perfect way to make sure my ringer isn't on the lowest setting by accident -- the ringer is at the volume I designate, or silent/vibrate, depending on the hardware switch! Thanks!! Jan 9, 2016 at 0:40
  • 1
    In iOS 10, slide up from bottom to open control center, then slide left to get to the media volume slider.
    – Kzqai
    Jan 20, 2017 at 2:52
  • I am not sure if the fantastic comment was a genuine appreciation or a sarcasm. Why does something so simple has to be so convoluted. On android , the slider button, not only smartly adjusts the volume required.( media , ringer , notifications , system) , it also gives you an option right there to change the volume level of what you want. Plus on Samsung , the popup also shows an option to control media volume by default, similar to whats described in the answer. So all these controls in the same popup , while on ios the popup just shows the current ringer(or media) volume level.
    – Rpant
    May 6, 2019 at 14:01

If you are using IOS7 or 8 -- slide you finger up from the bottom of the screen to bring up the command centre. This should have the volume control on there so you can adjust the volume at any time.


to fix this go to settings then sounds and under the -ringer and alerts- section you want to turn the volume up and then unselect the option under it which is -change with buttons-

what this does is allows you to change volume with buttons without affecting ringer and alerts volume

  • A screenshot might help in making the procedure easier to understand here.
    – nohillside
    Sep 20, 2016 at 13:22

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