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How to use sound in Adobe Animate

  1. Adobe Animate User Guide
  2. Introduction to Animate
    1. What's New in Animate
    2. Visual Glossary
    3. Animate system requirements
    4. Animate keyboard shortcuts
    5. Work with Multiple File Types in Animate
  3. Animation
    1. Animation basics in Animate
    2. How to use frames and keyframes in Animate
    3. Frame-by-frame animation in Animate
    4. How to work with classic tween animation in Animate
    5. Brush Tool
    6. Motion Guide
    7. Motion tween and ActionScript 3.0
    8. About Motion Tween Animation
    9. Motion tween animations
    10. Creating a Motion tween animation
    11. Using property keyframes
    12. Animate position with a tween
    13. How to edit motion tweens using Motion Editor
    14. Editing the motion path of a tween animation
    15. Manipulating motion tweens
    16. Adding custom eases
    17. Creating and applying Motion presets
    18. Setting up animation tween spans
    19. Working with Motion tweens saved as XML files
    20. Motion tweens vs Classic tweens
    21. Shape tweening
    22. Using Bone tool animation in Animate
    23. Work with character rigging in Animate
    24. How to use mask layers in Adobe Animate
    25. How to work with scenes in Animate
  4. Interactivity
    1. How to create buttons with Animate
    2. Convert Animate projects to other document type formats
    3. Create and publish HTML5 Canvas documents in Animate
    4. Add interactivity with code snippets in Animate
    5. Creating custom HTML5 Components
    6. Using Components in HTML5 Canvas
    7. Creating custom Components: Examples
    8. Code Snippets for custom Components
    9. Best practices - Advertising with Animate
    10. Virtual Reality authoring and publishing
  5. Workspace and workflow
    1. Creating and managing Paint brushes
    2. Using Google fonts in HTML5 Canvas documents
    3. Using Creative Cloud Libraries and Adobe Animate
    4. Use the Stage and Tools panel for Animate
    5. Animate workflow and workspace
    6. Using web fonts in HTML5 Canvas documents
    7. Timelines and ActionScript
    8. Working with multiple timelines
    9. Set preferences
    10. Using Animate authoring panels
    11. Create timeline layers with Animate
    12. Export animations for mobile apps and game engines
    13. Moving and copying objects
    14. Templates
    15. Find and Replace in Animate
    16. Undo, redo, and the History panel
    17. Keyboard shortcuts
    18. How to use the timeline in Animate
    19. Creating HTML extensions
    20. Optimization options for Images and Animated GIFs
    21. Export settings for Images and GIFs
    22. Assets Panel in Animate
  6. Multimedia and Video
    1. Transforming and combining graphic objects in Animate
    2. Creating and working with symbol instances in Animate
    3. Image Trace
    4. How to use sound in Adobe Animate
    5. Exporting SVG files
    6. Create video files for use in Animate
    7. How to add a video in Animate
    8. Draw and create objects with Animate
    9. Reshape lines and shapes
    10. Strokes, fills, and gradients with Animate CC
    11. Working with Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects
    12. Color Panels in Animate CC
    13. Opening Flash CS6 files with Animate
    14. Work with classic text in Animate
    15. Placing artwork into Animate
    16. Imported bitmaps in Animate
    17. 3D graphics
    18. Working with symbols in Animate
    19. Draw lines & shapes with Adobe Animate
    20. Work with the libraries in Animate
    21. Exporting Sounds
    22. Selecting objects in Animate CC
    23. Working with Illustrator AI files in Animate
    24. Applying blend modes
    25. Arranging objects
    26. Automating tasks with the Commands menu
    27. Multilanguage text
    28. Using camera in Animate
    29. Graphic filters
    30. Sound and ActionScript
    31. Drawing preferences
    32. Drawing with the Pen tool
  7. Platforms
    1. Convert Animate projects to other document type formats
    2. Custom Platform Support
    3. Create and publish HTML5 Canvas documents in Animate
    4. Creating and publishing a WebGL document
    5. How to package applications for AIR for iOS
    6. Publishing AIR for Android applications
    7. Publishing for Adobe AIR for desktop
    8. ActionScript publish settings
    9. Best practices - Organizing ActionScript in an application
    10. How to use ActionScript with Animate
    11. Accessibility in the Animate workspace
    12. Writing and managing scripts
    13. Enabling Support for Custom Platforms
    14. Custom Platform Support Overview
    15. Working with Custom Platform Support Plug-in
    16. Debugging ActionScript 3.0
    17. Enabling Support for Custom Platforms
  8. Exporting and Publishing
    1. How to export files from Animate CC
    2. OAM publishing
    3. Exporting SVG files
    4. Export graphics and videos with Animate
    5. Publishing AS3 documents
    6. Export animations for mobile apps and game engines
    7. Exporting Sounds
    8. Best practices - Tips for creating content for mobile devices
    9. Best practices - Video conventions
    10. Best practices - SWF application authoring guidelines
    11. Best practices - Structuring FLA files
    12. Best Practices to optimize FLA files for Animate
    13. ActionScript publish settings
    14. Specify publish settings for Animate
    15. Exporting projector files
    16. Export Images and Animated GIFs
    17. HTML publishing templates
    18. Working with Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects
    19. Quick share and publish your animations
  9. Troubleshooting
    1. Fixed issues
    2. Known issues



Adobe Animate offers several ways to use sound. Make sounds that play continuously, independent of the Timeline, or use the Timeline to synchronize animation to a sound track. 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 Animate: 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.

If you are creating Animate content for mobile devices, Animate also lets you include device sounds in your published SWF file. Device sounds are encoded in the device’s natively supported audio format, such as MIDI, MFi, or SMAF.

You can use shared libraries to link a sound to multiple documents. You can also use the ActionScript® 2.0 onSoundComplete event or ActionScript® 3.0 soundComplete event to trigger an event based on the completion of a sound.

You can load sounds and control sound playback using prewritten behaviors or media components; the latter also provide a controller for stop, pause, rewind, and so on. You can also use ActionScript 2.0 or 3.0 to load sounds dynamically.

For more information, see attachSound (Sound.attachSound method) and loadSound (Sound.loadSound method)in ActionScript 2.0 Language Reference or Sound class in ActionScript 3.0 Language and Components Reference.

 ActionScript 2.0 and ActionScript 1.0 are not supported with Animate.

Importing sounds

You place sound files into Animate by importing them into the library or directly importing them to stage.

The File > Import > Import to Library menu option places the audio only in the library, and not on the timeline.

When you import an audio file using File > Import > Import to Stage menu option or by dragging and dropping the audio file directly to the timeline, the audio will be placed on active frame of the active layer. If you drag and drop multiple audio files, only one audio file will be imported because one frame can contain only one audio. 

To import audio, use one of the following methods:

  • To import an audio file to library, select File > Import > Import To Library and select the audio file that you want to import.
  • To import an audio file to stage, select File > Import > Import To Stage and select the audio file that you want to import. 
  • Drag-and-drop the audio file directly to the stage.

 You can also drag a sound from a common library into the library for the current document.

Animate stores sounds in the library along with bitmaps and symbols. You need only one copy of a sound file to use that sound multiple ways in your document.

If you want to share sounds among Animate documents, you can include the sounds in shared libraries.

Sounds can use large 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 16-22 kHz mono sounds (stereo uses twice as much data as mono), but Animate can import either 8- or 16-bit sounds at sample rates of 11, 22, or 44 kHz. Sounds recorded in formats that are not multiples of 11 kHz (such as 8, 32, or 96 kHz) are resampled when imported into Animate. Animate can convert sounds to lower sample rates on export.

If you want to add effects to sounds in Animate , it’s best to import 16-bit sounds. If you have limited RAM, keep your sound clips short or work with 8-bit sounds instead of 16‑bit sounds.

 To import or play sounds in Animate, pre-installing QuickTime or iTunes is not needed.

Supported sound file formats

You can import the following sound file formats into Animate:

  • Adobe Sound (.asnd). This is the native sound format of Adobe® Soundbooth™.

  • Wave (.wav)

  • AIFF (.aif, .aifc)

  • mp3

    You can import these additional sound file formats:

  • Sound Designer® II (.sd2)

  • Sun AU (.au, .snd)

  • FLAC (.flac)

  • Ogg Vorbis (.ogg, .oga)

 The ASND format is a non-destructive audio file format, native to Adobe Soundbooth. ASND files can contain audio data with effects that can be modified later, Soundbooth multitrack sessions, and snapshots that allow you to revert to a previous state of the ASND file. WebGL and HTML5 Canvas doctypes support only MP3 and WAV formats.

Adding sounds in Animate

Adding a sound directly from your computer to the Timeline

You can import audio directly from your computer over to the Timeline by using any of the following methods:

  • Select File > Import > Import to Stage and select the audio file that you want to import.
  • Drag and drop the audio file to the stage/timeline. 

Note that you can only add one audio file at a time. Dragging and dropping multipe audio files will import only one audio file to the timeline.

Adding a sound from the library to the Timeline

You can add a sound to a document using the library, or you can load a sound into a SWF file during runtime, using the loadSound method of the Sound object. For more information, see Sound Class in the ActionScript 3.0 Reference.

  1. Import the sound into the library if it has not already been imported.
  2. Select Insert > Timeline > Layer.

  3. With the new sound layer selected, drag the sound from the Library panel onto the Stage. The sound is added to the current layer.

    You can place multiple sounds on one layer or on layers containing other objects. However, it is recommended that each sound be placed on a separate layer. Each layer acts as a separate sound channel. The sounds on all layers are combined when you play the SWF file.

  4. In the Timeline, select the first frame that contains the sound file.
  5. Select Window > Properties, and click the arrow in the upper-right corner to expand the Property inspector.

  6. In the Property inspector, select the sound file from the Sound pop-up menu.
  7. Select an effect option from the Effects pop-up menu:


    Applies no effects to the sound file. Select this option to remove previously applied effects.

    Left Channel/Right Channel

    Plays sound in the left or right channel only.

    Fade Left To Right/Fade Right To Left

    Shifts the sound from one channel to the other.

    Fade In

    Gradually increases the volume of a sound over its duration.

    Fade Out

    Gradually decreases the volume of a sound over its duration.


    Lets you create custom in and out points of sound using the Edit Envelope.

     Effects are not supported on WebGL and HTML5 Canvas documents.

  8. Select a synchronization option from the Sync pop-up menu:


    Synchronizes the sound to the occurrence of an event. An event sound plays when its starting keyframe first appears and the plays in its entirety, independently of the playhead in the Timeline, even if the SWF file stops playing. Event sounds are mixed when you play your published SWF file.

    If an event sound is playing and the sound is instantiated again (for example, by the user clicking a button again, or the playhead passing the starting keyframe of the sound), the first instance of the sound continues to play and another instance of the same sound begins to play simultaneously. Keep this in mind when using longer sounds, as they can potentially overlap, causing unintended audio effects.


    The same as Event, except that if the sound is already playing, no new instance of the sound plays.


    Silences the specified sound.


    Synchronizes the sound for playing on a website. Animate forces animation to keep pace with stream sounds. If Animate can’t draw animation frames quickly enough, it skips frames. Unlike event sounds, stream sounds stop if the SWF file stops playing. Also, a stream sound can never play longer than the length of the frames it occupies. Stream sounds are mixed when you publish your SWF file.

    An example of a stream sound is the voice of a character in an animation that plays in multiple frames.

    Animate remembers the audio sync options in property inspector. If a sound is selected from the “Sound” section of the Properties Inspector, then on trying to set another sound on a new keyframe from the Properties Inspector, Animate remembers the sync options “Stream” or “Event” of the previous sound.

     If you use an mp3 sound as a stream sound, you must recompress the sound for export. You can export the sound as an mp3 file, with the same compression settings that it had on import. Stream setting is not supported in WebGL documents.

  9. Enter a value for Repeat to specify the number of times the sound should loop, or select Loop to repeat the sound continuously.

    For continuous play, enter a number large enough to play the sound for an extended duration. For example, to loop a 15-second sound for 15 minutes, enter 60. Looping stream sounds is not recommended. If a stream sound is set to loop, frames are added to the file and the file size is increased by the number of times the sound is looped.

  10. To test the sound, drag the playhead over the frames containing the sound or use commands in the Controller or the Control menu.

Removing a sound from the Timeline

  1. In the Timeline layer containing the sound, select a frame that also contains the sound.
  2. In the Property inspector, go to the Sound section and select None from the Name menu.

    Animate deletes the sound from the Timeline layer.

Adding a sound to a button

You can associate sounds with the different states of a button symbol. Because the sounds are stored with the symbol, they work for all instances of the symbol.

  1. Select the button in the Library panel.
  2. Select Edit from the Panel menu in the upper-right corner of the panel.
  3. In the button’s Timeline, add a layer for sound (Insert > Timeline > Layer).

  4. In the sound layer, create a regular or blank keyframe to correspond with the button state to which you want to add a sound.

    Click Insert > Timeline > Keyframe or Insert > Timeline > Blank Keyframe.

    For example, to add a sound that plays when you click the button, create a keyframe in the frame labeled Down.

  5. Click the keyframe you created.
  6. Select Window > Properties.

  7. In the Property inspector, select a sound file from the Sound pop-up menu.
  8. Select Event from the Sync pop-up menu.

    To associate a different sound with each of the button’s keyframes, create a blank keyframe and add another sound file for each keyframe. You can also use the same sound file and apply a different sound effect for each button keyframe.

Synchronize a sound with animation

To synchronize a sound with animation, you start and stop the sound at keyframes.

  1. Add a sound to the Timeline in its own layer (see above for instructions).
  2. To synchronize this sound with an event in the scene, create a beginning keyframe for the sound that corresponds to the keyframe of the event in the scene that you want to trigger the sound. You can select any of the synchronization options described above (see Add a sound to the Timeline).
  3. Create a keyframe in the sound layer’s Timeline at the frame where you want the sound to end. A representation of the sound file appears in the Timeline.
  4. Select Window > Properties, and click the arrow in the upper-right corner to expand the Property inspector.

  5. In the Property inspector, select the same sound from the Sound pop-up menu.
  6. Still in the Property inspector, select Stop from the Sync pop-up menu.

    When you play the SWF file, the sound stops playing when it reaches the ending keyframe.

  7. To play back the sound, drag the playhead in the Timeline.

Editing sounds

Editing a sound in Animate 

In Animate, you can define the starting point of a sound or control the volume of the sound as it plays. You can also change the point at which a sound starts and stops playing. This is useful for making sound files smaller by removing unused sections.

  1. Add a sound to a frame, or select a frame that already contains a sound.
  2. Select Window > Properties.

  3. Click the Edit button on the right side of the Property inspector.
  4. Do any of the following:
    • To change the start and end points of a sound, drag the Time In and Time Out controls in the Edit Envelope.

    • To change the sound envelope, drag the envelope handles to change levels at different points in the sound. Envelope lines show the volume of the sound as it plays. To create additional envelope handles (up to eight total), click the envelope lines. To remove an envelope handle, drag it out of the window.

    • To display more or less of the sound in the window, click the Zoom In or Out buttons.

    • To switch the time units between seconds and frames, click the Seconds and Frames buttons.

  5. To hear the edited sound, click the Play button.

Split or loop a sound on timeline

Splitting a sound on timeline

You can split the stream audio embedded on the timeline using the Split Audio context menu. Split Audio enables you to pause the audio when it is necessary and then resume the audio playback from where it was stopped at a later frame on the timeline. You can choose to split streamed audio into multiple parts by retaining its effects.

To split an audio clip on your timeline and retain its effects:

  1. Select File > Import > Import to library

  2. Select the audio clip and import it to library.

  3. Create a new layer on your timeline and add the audio clip to the layer. 

  4. Under Properties > Sound, select the Effect.

  5. Select the Sync type as Stream.

  6. Right-click on the frame at which you want to split the audio and click Split Audio

     Audio effects are retained even if the audio is moved or changed to a different timespan or frame span.

Loop sound on timeline

Audio looping means repeating a small section of sound continuously over a number of frames on your timeline. With the “loop” option turned on in the timeline, you can loop streaming audio within a range of frames along with other animations.

To create a loop, just turn on the loop option on your timeline as follows:

The Audio Looping button on the timeline


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