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Chapter 18. Lingo and Audio Elements > Understanding digital audio

Understanding digital audio

A number of new parameters are involved in Director-based audio, each of which can have a significant impact on the quality or performance of your presentation—so take your fingers off the keyboard and take some time to get clear on the following concepts.

File formats

For the budding multimedia developer, the best way to make sure a sound will work with Director is to save it in one of two formats: as an Audio Interchange File Format (AIFF) file on the Macintosh or as a waveform (WAV) file under Windows. The difference has more to do with your ability to edit sound files on the two platforms that with Director's ability to play them. You'll find that sound editors on the Macintosh handle AIFF files best, and sound editors under Windows work best with WAV files. If your sounds aren't in the correct format, a sound editing program such as Sound Forge or Peak can probably convert it. Director can also work with other formats, such as Shockwave audio, AU, MP3, and Macintosh sounds, but I suggest that you stick with AIFF and WAV files until you get a firm grip on the art of using sounds. After you are up and running with these formats, you can add other types (and QuickTime sounds, too). That way, if something starts breaking, you will have a better idea of where the problem may lie.


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