Playing MP3 files

Later in this chapter, we will discuss how to encode, upload, and broadcast MP3 files, but first let’s take a look at two of the most common playback software applications: Nullsoft’s Winamp[1] for Windows and SoundJam for Mac OS. Both are downloadable shareware or freeware applications with a familiar, CD player-like interface, and graphic equalizers. The Winamp interface is shown in Figure 8-1.

The Winamp interface is similar to standard CD player interfaces.

Figure 8-1. The Winamp interface is similar to standard CD player interfaces.

First, you need to download the Winamp ( or the SoundJam player ( and one or more MP3 files from the Internet (see Section 8.8 later in this chapter for a listing of good MP3 sites). Thus playing your files will be as easy as pulling down File Open in Word or dragging a file onto an application window.

Winamp consists of four separate modules: the player interface, a graphic equalizer, the playlist window, and a mini-browser. The first time you start Winamp, all four windows are grouped in a neat square, but you can grab any module and position it anywhere on your screen. You can also close or minimize the modules with the standard top-right-corner controls. To play back an MP3 file, just drag it from the desktop or Explorer into the Winamp window, or tap the L key to access a Windows file panel. You can also click the Open button on the Winamp interface. ...

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