Definition of dial something up in US English:

dial something up

phrasal verb

  • 1Adjust the control on an electrical device so as to increase the level of sound, light, heat, etc. produced.

    ‘even with everything dialed up to full, the audio output level was only moderate at best’
    • ‘Andrew dialed up the music on the jukebox.’
    • ‘The music that plays over the menus, however, is dialed up to half again the volume of the feature itself, resulting in ear-shock when transitioning from one to the other.’
    • ‘The bass seems to have been dialled up a little.’
    • ‘I developed a cramp in my thumb dialing the volume up and down to compensate for the uneven audio levels.’
    • ‘Minute by minute, someone dialed up the music, 'til it was hard to hear each other, even from a foot or two away.’
    • ‘At one point her right lung stopped functioning, her left lung only partially worked, and a machine that provided oxygen had to be dialed up to 100 percent.’
    • ‘He could basically tune his guitar to the room, find out how the room responded to the amplifier, and dial it up so he could have maximum control of the feedback.’
    • ‘Nickolai reached over to the ancient metal desk where the professor who had worked here had kept his own collection and dialed up the heat.’
    • ‘Turning to the record player, he dialed up the volume as high as it would go.’
    • ‘The brightness and contrast controls operate on a 100-point scale, but the brightness control had no effect on the display's black level until we dialed it up past 65.’
    1. 1.1informal Increase the amount, intensity, or degree of a quality, factor, etc.
      ‘the Raiders really dialed up the pressure in the second half’
      • ‘Gateway dialed up spending to more than $50 million as it seeks more users in the business market.’
      • ‘I'm positive the F1 veteran will progress quite nicely throughout the month and will qualify easily, but will he be able to dial up the aggression if necessary?’
      • ‘Having made his intentions known, Nixon dialed up the charm.’
      • ‘Yes, the action has been dialed up to a whole new level.’
      • ‘The New York creatives were asked to work up a print/outdoor campaign that would ‘dial up the cool factor’.’
      • ‘On a recent red carpet she dialed up the drama with more hot makeup: intense eyeliner and a deep berry pout.’
      • ‘He's slipping in the polls and dialing up the heat on the campaign trail.’
      • ‘The president is now dialing up his rhetoric.’
      • ‘The troubled telco has hired a new president to dial up growth.’
      • ‘First up were alt-rockers Take the Day, a five-piece from Milwaukee who dialed up the energy level on their set.’
      • ‘"Welcome to the world of grizzly bears," he would say, sometimes employing an Aussie accent, which he typically dialed up for women and children.’