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Import a Sound Clip into Flash and Add It to a Flash Button

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Import A Sound Clip Into Flash And Add It To A Flash Button

Project Information-- * Skill level-Intermediate * MacromediaR FlashR MX 2004

In the last tutorial, you made the rollover buttons for the navigational menu of your site. Now we will import a sound clip into your Flash movie and have the sound play when the button is clicked. You can choose from the most common sound files such as WAV, AIF (AIFF), MP3 and QuickTimeR. However, sound files are large and download slowly. Therefore the size of the sound file or files you use in your Flash website will affect the time it takes the site to download to your readers browser. It is better to use simple and small sound clips such as the frog sound I used on the demo site. Another thing that you need to consider is the copyright, licensing and royalties of the sound file you plan to use. Sound files are works of art just as digital or traditional art and they are copyrighted and licensed by the artist. It is best to purchased copyright and royalty free sound files from a company you can trust. But let's get started on your Flash website. Open the .fla file into Flash.

Step 1. Import Your Sound Clip. To import your sound clip into your Flash library, click File > Import > Import to Library. When the Import to Library dialog box opens, double click on the sound file. You will see a new icon and your sound file in the Library Panel. To preview the sound clip, click on the Play button in the Library Panel. Now we are ready to add the sound clip to your button.

Library Panel

Step 2. Add Sound To Home Button. Double click on the Home button in the navigational menu of your website. Flash will change to the Symbol-Edit mode.

Insert Layer Button

Step 3. Sound Layer. Let's create a new layer in the Timeline for your sound clip. We want the sound layer to be directly above the Label layer and because Flash always places the new layer above the currently active layer, click on the Label layer in the Timeline. Click the Insert Layer button and name this new layer Sound.

Step 4. Choose a Frame. You can have the sound play for any of the three frames of the button (Up, Over, Down). But since we want the sound to be played when the button is clicked, we need to associate the sound clip with the Down frame. Still on the Sound layer, click on the Down frame.

For Flash to play the sound clip, we must add a Keyframe to the Down frame. Click Insert > Timeline > KeyFrame.

Step 5. Drag and Drop. Now add an instance of the sound clip to the Down frame. Go to the Library Panel and click on the icon for the sound file and drag it over to the Home button on the Stage. You should notice the WaveForm appear in the Down frame.

Sound Layer - WaveForm

Step 6. Test The Home Button. To test the sound for the Home button, click Control > Test Movie in the Menubar. A preview version of your website will open and you can click on the Home button to hear the sound. Close the preview to return to the Flash workspace and then click on Scene 1 to exit Symbol-Edit mode.

Step 7. Save Your Flash Movie. You can now save the new additions to your movie. Click File > Save.

Note--This tutorial shows you how to add a sound clip to an existing button. However, if you plan to make several buttons from one template, as we did in the last tutorial, you would add the sound clip to the template before you use the template to create the rest of the buttons

Working with sound overview

Macromedia Flash offers several ways to use sounds. You can make sounds that play continuously, independent of the Timeline, or you can synchronize animation to a sound track. You can add sounds to buttons to make them more interactive and make sounds fade in and out for a more polished sound track.

There are two types of sounds in Flash: event sounds and stream sounds.

An event sound must download completely before it begins playing, and it continues playing until explicitly stopped.

Stream sounds begin playing as soon as enough data for the first few frames has been downloaded; stream sounds are synchronized to the Timeline for playing on a website.

You select compression options to control the quality and size of sounds in exported SWF files. You can select compression options for individual sounds using the Sound Properties dialog box or define settings for all sounds in the document in the Publish Settings dialog box.

You can use sounds in shared libraries to link a sound from one library to multiple documents. You can also use the ActionScript onSoundComplete event to trigger an event based on the completion of a sound.

You can use behaviors that are prewritten ActionScript scripts to load and control the playback of sounds. As with behaviors, the media components contain prewritten ActionScript scripts to load and control sounds (MP3 sounds only) but also provide a controller for stop, pause, rewind, and so on.

Importing sounds

You place sound files into Flash by importing them into the library for the current document.

Note: When placing a sound on the Timeline, you place it on a separate layer.

You can import the following sound file formats into Flash:

WAV (Windows only)

AIFF (Macintosh only)

MP3 (Windows or Macintosh)

Flash stores sounds in the library along with bitmaps and symbols. As with graphic symbols, you need only one copy of a sound file to use that sound multiple ways in your document.

Sounds can use considerable amounts of disk space and RAM. However, MP3 sound data is compressed and smaller than WAV or AIFF sound data. Generally, when using WAV or AIFF files, it's best to use 16-bit 22 kHz mono sounds (stereo uses twice as much data as mono), but Flash can import either 8- or 16-bit sounds at sample rates of 11, 22, or 44 kHz. Flash can convert sounds to lower sample



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