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The How To Play Audio in MS PowerPoint Automatically
Music makes everything better, and PowerPoint presentations – depending on the occasion and purpose, of course – are no exception.
If you’ve used PowerPoint before, you probably already know that you can insert songs, sound effects, and other audio files into your presentations. But did you know that you can schedule this audio to play automatically instead of having to start it manually?
Depending on your preference, you can choose to start the audio immediately with the first slide or delay it until a specific slide appears.
In this article, we’ll explain how to do both of these things.
How do I automatically play audio in PowerPoint?
AutoPlay audio in PowerPoint is quite easy to set up, and depending on your needs, you can customize it to better suit your presentation.
Below, we’ll see how to set it up to play audio from the start, only for specific slides, and across multiple slides.
Audio playback from the beginning
If you want to play an audio file right from the start of your presentation, the process is very straightforward.
Here is what you should do:
- Go to the first slide of your presentation and click the button Ring icon in normal view.
- Click on the Proofreading tab in the Audio tools section.
- Under Audio options, open the drop-down menu next to Start and select Automatically. If you are using a newer version of PowerPoint (2016 and newer), you can also choose the option titled In the sequence of clicks in the drop-down menu to achieve the same effect.
Once you’ve set this up, be sure to double check that everything is as it should be. To preview your presentation (and test your audio), click the Slideshow tab, then choose “From Beginning.”
Play audio from a specific slide
If you want your audio to play from a specific slide and / or with a preset delay, the process is a bit more complicated. Here is how to do it:
- As in the previous section, navigate to the slide where you want audio to start playing and click the button Ring icon in normal view.
- Click on the Animation tab then on Add animation.
- In the media section, choose To play, the first option on the left.
- Click on the Animation pane next to the Add animation button.
- In the Animation pane, rearrange the items so that the audio file is the first in the list.
- Click the down arrow next to the audio file and select Effect options … from the drop-down menu.
- On the Effect tab, select From the beginning under the Start playing option. In that same tab, under the Stop playing option, choose After the current slide.
- Now click on the Schedule tongue. Next to the word Start, you’ll see a drop-down menu. Click on it and select the labeled option With the previous ones.
- If you don’t want the audio to start as soon as the slide loads, you can set a custom delay in the designated field. Just add the number of seconds you want to pass before the audio starts. If you don’t want to delay the audio, leave the box blank and go to the next step.
- Finally, click on Okay to confirm your changes.
Once again, click on the Slideshow tab, then choose “From Beginning” to preview your presentation and see if the audio will start playing from the slide you chose.
Audio playback on multiple slides
If you’re giving a long lecture and just want to listen to some random, non-distracting music in the background, you can also integrate it into your presentation and set it up to play across multiple slides.
To do this, follow the following steps:
- To go to the Insert tab, click audio, then choose Audio on my PC. If you are using Office or an older version, the option will be labeled Audio from file.
- Find the file you want to play on your computer. Once you find it, double click on it or select it then click on Insert.
- Under Audio tools, click on the Reading tab and select the option Play in the background. In older versions of PowerPoint, you need to click the drop-down list next to the Start option and select Play on the slides from the list. In both versions, the file will automatically start playing as soon as you start the slideshow.
If the audio you chose is too short to cover the entire duration of your presentation, you can test the presentation, time it, and insert more audio files on other slides so that there is no no silent intervals.
You can also use free audio editing tools like Audacity or Free Audio Editor to combine two or more audio files into one, thus ensuring that the audio continues playing for as long as needed.
Recording audio files
If you save your presentation to a flash drive, be sure to keep the audio files and the presentation in the same folder. Otherwise, PowerPoint will not be able to locate the files you inserted, and your presentation will therefore be silent.
The only thing to do in such situations would be to change the path of each audio file in your presentation, which is time consuming and therefore best avoided.
Microsoft PowerPoint is incredibly flexible and allows you to customize your presentation with a variety of useful tools and features.
By following the steps outlined above, you can easily configure audio to play automatically in PowerPoint.
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