Definition of preset in US English:



[with object]usually as adjective preset
  • Set or adjust (a value that controls the operation of a device) in advance of its use.

    ‘the water is heated quickly to a preset temperature’
    • ‘The portability of the system also makes it practical for use in remote locations at larger manufacturing facilities away from tool presetting areas.’
    • ‘It may be better to keep the device's user interface simple by excluding a volume control and presetting the sound level.’
    • ‘Allowable values can be preset to a valid range or to specific values as desired.’
    • ‘Auto Preset enables users to preset the time, temperature, and water consumption of a shower.’
    • ‘But much of the tension that director John MacKenzie might have generated out of this story, even if its ending was already preset, seems rendered flat.’
    • ‘It is preset so it goes to your local Member, and can also be sent to your Senators as well (although you have to tick a box to add this option).’
    • ‘This enables users to preset a favourite water temperature.’
    • ‘Another tip is to preset an additional burner to the lowest heat setting for the simmering phase.’
    • ‘For decades, birdwatchers have surveyed the United States by recording species in breeding season at specified stops along thousands of preset routes.’
    • ‘You can print in 100 typefaces - even Japanese, if your computer is set up to handle that - and there are 36 preset phrases to click on for instant print.’
    • ‘A $20 programmable device lets you preset your heating and cooling systems when you're not home for as much as a 10 percent energy savings.’
    • ‘All functions or values must be preset prior to this point.’
    • ‘The Squid was a formidable weapon in the war against the U-boat, capable of being preset to explode at a pre-determined depth.’
    • ‘See, my radio is preset to hear the words of wisdom from the self proclaimed ‘King of All Media,’ Mr. Howard Stern.’
    • ‘Most people seemed to have preset notions of communism, simply that it was horrible, and they weren't interested in moving far beyond that.’
    prearranged, arranged in advance, established in advance, set, fixed, preset, pre-agreed, pre-established, pre-planned, pre-decided, agreed, settled
    View synonyms


  • A control on electronic equipment or on software that is set or adjusted beforehand to facilitate use.

    • ‘Included with the software are 50 instruments and over 1,000 presets.’
    • ‘These let you choose presets along a scale from ‘Performance’ to ‘Quality’.’
    • ‘As mentioned earlier there's nothing stopping you from monitoring whatever you like instead of the suggested presets.’
    • ‘Ultimately the truest test lies in an exclusive focus on the music, since even a single listen should clarify the extent to which artists can personalize their music in spite of the presence of presets.’
    • ‘It lets you set various presets - perhaps a slower setting for websurfing and email, then change to a faster setting for gaming.’
    • ‘The player also has a built-in FM radio function with 10 presets and twelve hours' playtime.’
    • ‘The earliest systems allowed the driver to control climate and radio presets by voice.’
    • ‘Were Painter limited to simple presets, I wouldn't want to use it.’
    • ‘There are 16 memory locations to store user presets.’
    • ‘It is possible that a few seconds of this might sound good, very loud, very late, in a club, but in this context it sounds like someone trying out all the presets on a home keyboard with a cheesy built-in drum machine.’
    • ‘It might be nice in the future to see the ability to assign keyboard shortcuts to these presets somehow.’
    • ‘Of course, you are able to create your own wonderful presets too.’
    • ‘Instead, there are four front panel push buttons for recalling four presets.’
    • ‘Heck, I seem to always tweak individual high-quality programming material even when custom presets are close to the mark anyway!’
    • ‘That includes no less than 14 scene/subject modes offering fast presets for specific subjects such as sunsets, landscape shots, portraits and even firework displays.’
    • ‘However, you can tweak to your heart's content, then save those settings to one of the three User presets - then never have to tweak again.’