Chapter 24. Making Music with Media Player

Using your computer to collect, manage, and play music is a lot of fun. You can build up a collection of all your favorite songs, make custom CDs from those songs, or copy them to a portable MP3 player. You can use your computer as a stereo to play any songs you like in any order you like. If your computer is part of a network, you can share songs and play them on any computer that's in the network.

Windows 7 comes with two programs for collecting and playing music. One is Windows Media Player, which we discuss in this chapter. The other is Media Center (not included with all editions of Windows 7). If you prefer to use Media Center, see Chapter 26.

Controlling Sound Volume

Before we get into Windows Media Player, you need to know a few things up front about music and video. In particular, you want to get your sound working and under control, so you can listen to whatever you like, without blasting your eardrums out!

Before you get started, make sure that you can control the volume of your speakers. At any given time, you're likely to have at least three volume controls available to you. Whichever control is set the lowest wins, in the sense that it puts an upper limit on the other volume controls.

If you have powered speakers, you need to make sure that the speakers are plugged in and turned ...

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