Prepare Sound Files for Flash Storybook App

Prepare Sound Files for Flash Storybook App
When deciding on the sound effects and background music you will be adding to your FlashR storybook app, you want to remember that the size of the file is very important. Mobile devices have a limited amount of CPU and memory. Each sound file that you use in your app will increase the size of the project file.

Most mobile devices can play .mp3 files easily, so if your stock of sound files is as old as mine and still in the .wav format, you will probably want to convert the .wav file to .mp3 format. This can be easily done in Adobe SoundboothR. While you have the file open in Soundbooth, you might want to adjust the length and volume. Ask yourself if you can remove any part of the sound and still have the same effect. It's easy to "crop" the ends off a sound file in Soundbooth. Secondly, evaluating the volume of the sound is especially important for background music and sound effects when you are also using a narration. You will want the narration to be loader than the sound effects and background music.

Our example will be a simple jingle sound file in the .wav format. We will trim the ends to shorten the length and then lower the volume. Then we will convert it to the .mp3 format.

  1. When the sound file opens in Soundbooth, you will see the Editor workspace. At the bottom you will find the Play and Stop buttons.

  2. Click the Play button and watch the Current-time Indicator move over the sound display. After determining the amount of the sound you wish to remove, drag the Time Selector tool to the right to cover the section you wish to cut. When you release your mouse, the gray area will disappear from the front end. You can repeat this with the back end of the file.

  3. Our second task is to reduce the volume of the sound file. At the top of the workspace you will see a small box called the Volume Control. Place your mouse over the 0.0 numbers and the cursor will change to a double arrow. Drag left to reduce the volume. The numbers will change to indicate the amount of reduction. You can also see the change in the waveform. The lighter color in the waveform will indicate the amount you have reduce the volume.

  4. Now that we have the sound file reduced in length and volume, we can save it in the .mp3 format. From the menu, click File - Save As. In the dialog box, change the file format from .wav to .mp3 in the drop-down list. This will open the MP3 Compression Options dialog box. To reduce the file size further, you can lower the Bitrate via the drop-down list. The lower the number of Kbps, the smaller the file size. You can preview the change by clicking the small Play button. Click the Save button to save the new sound as .mp3.

IMPORTANT: These app development tutorials are written with the Flash novice in mind. You will need to optimize your app beyond what is covered in these tutorials before finalizing your app for the app store.

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