Need ability to play multiple overlapping instances of sound files... ideas?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by zirzird, Apr 12, 2010.

  1. zirzird macrumors newbie

    Apr 12, 2010

    I'm a recent convert to Mac. I have a specific audio need that is rather peculiar. I need the ability to open multiple overlapping audio files, mp3's and WAV files, with the ability to control volumes independently. For years, I've handled this task on a PC using "Media Player Classic" which opens each file in a separate instance of the application. I can terminate each file by closing its instance, and can adjust volume between each sound file to taste. It's crude, but it works.

    (What I'm doing is creating mood music and SFX during elaborate storytelling sessions. Individual "scenes" might incorporate 10-15 separate SFX and score tracks at a time. I need to be able to fade between them, adjust volume on the fly, and launch new tracks at a whim.)

    Any ideas how I can achieve the same result on a Mac? I'm perfectly open to finding an application that can run multiple sound files simultaneously from the same instance, as long as the output sound can overlap the files and I can control volumes independently from within the program. This is even preferable, if such a program exists, since I could conceivably make "setlists" of SFX and musical compositions for each scene in advance and access the whole array more quickly. With Media Player Classic, I have to load each file separately-- very tedious.

    Any suggestions are most welcome!

    Thank you,
    A very recent Mac convert who left behind 7 dysfunctional PCs in effigy, but could use a little kick-start to get going on Mac.
  2. jackerin macrumors 6502a

    Jun 29, 2008
    Well, have you tried Quicktime Player? Opens many audio formats, each file in its own window, with volume setting for each window. Only thing I'm having problems with is the fade between tracks since you'd have to adjust the volume of two files at once...
  3. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California

    I think Garage band might work for you. You can create a few audio tracks and then inport MP3 or WAV files into those tracks. It has volume automation which allows you to program a bunch of volume sliders. The user interface emulates a mixer pannel wit volume. pan and so on for each channel.

    You can also buy a physical "control surface" if you like to use real sliders then you can place a finger on each track, with a mouse you can only adjust one volume at a time.
  4. JaZzMaN251 macrumors regular


    Nov 2, 2009
    Apple Order Status page
    Ableton Live 8 would be a great program for you.
    A bit expensive, but you can try it for 30 days (full).
    It's perfect for what you're doing.
  5. mesq macrumors member

    Jan 11, 2010
  6. jltnol macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2010

    you should check out Q-Lab

    There is a free version and it will do exactly what you want. The interface is a 'tad complicated, but I've used the free version of the software in a professional theater production, and it worked flawlessly for every show.

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