Audio inputs and playing music in chat rooms

Audio test Playing audio files or MP3's
Audio Inputs Playing CD's
Sound Card tests Playing sound from a TV card
  Playing a feed from another source

Paltalk is a multimedia chat environment meaning that you can type, talk, hear, send files and video, view SIX (or more) video windows, all at the same time.  Paltalk works on both broadband and dialup connections so anyone can share in the fun!

Audio Inputs:

You can use any sound source to 'broadcast' audio into the chat rooms.  The default is the microphone input, but at times you may want to play recordings, MP3's, or a live video feed with audio.

To do this we provide easy access to your audio input devices under the setup menu on the main pal list window.  Select 'setup preferences' from the 'file' menu on the main pal list window.  A window will pop up.  Now select 'Audio Tests' from the left hand pane of the setup and preferences window.

This area lets you set up and test your audio settings.

The 'Speaker Test' area lets you play a test sound and adjust your output volume from your WAV device.

You can also access your windows audio mixer here by clicking the blue 'Output Mixer Settings' link under the 'Play Sound' button.

note: all incoming sound is played thru your WAV device

The 'Microphone Test' area is where you can test your audio inputs and set their level. You can select any audio device here.

Your microphone is set as the default input for Paltalk but you can select any audio device by clicking on the blue 'Input Mixer Settings' link.

note: Be sure you select your microphone when you want to speak
if you have changed the input in order to play other sources

If you want to speak into a chat room select the 'Mic' or 'Microphone' input.
If you want to play a CD into a chat room select the CD input.
If you want to play a MP3 or other file into a room select the 'WAV' or 'Mixer' input.

Playing MP3's or other inputs into chat rooms is relatively easy once you learn how to select and adjust your input levels.

Sound card requirements:

In order to play an audio file or MP3 into a chat room you must have a 'full duplex' sound card.  This means your sound card needs to be able to play sounds and record sounds at the same time.  You should also have a 'multi-channel' sound card that is capable of playing more than one device at a time, including two separate WAV devices simultaneously.

DON'T PANIC! - Most modern computers have this type of sound card installed by default!  But in the rare instance that you don't have a compatible sound card we suggest you purchase one.  They are very inexpensive and easy to install.  If you are not comfortable installing your own sound card ask the computer store to install it for you when you buy it.

Testing for multi-channel
A quick test to see if your sound card is 'multi-channel' simply go into a chat room where lots of people are talking.  Start playing your MP3 or audio file with your favorite media player.  Windows Media Player is installed in your computer by default but you can use any player like MusicMatch, WinAmp, or RealPlayer.  If you can hear people talking in the chat room, and can also hear your MP3 playing, you have a multi-channel sound card.  More than likely if your sound card passed this test it will also be full duplex, meaning that it can play sounds and record sounds at the same time.

Testing for full duplex
Now let's test your sound card to be sure it is full duplex.  Using the 'Audio Test'  under Paltalk Setup, select the 'Input Mixer Settings' link.  Your windows Volume Mixer panel will pop up.  Your windows Volume Mixer panel will contain various sliders where you can adjust the level of the devices and applications when you are recording or 'broadcasting' music or speech into a chat room.

Start playing an audio file or MP3 with your favorite player and 'key up' in the room by pressing the CTRL key on your keyboard, or select 'Lock Microphone' from the 'Actions' menu in the room window.  Adjust your 'Mixer' slider on this panel if your audio is too loud or too soft.  You should see the little microphone modulation bar bouncing 3/4 of the way up for good quality.  You will find the microphone modulation bar to the right of the 'Push to talk' button in the room window.

If your friends could hear the audio and you didn't get any windows errors popping up, you should have no problems playing any kind of audio into Paltalk from any source.  If you DID get a windows error or popup window telling you 'audio device is already in use' then you do not have a full duplex sound card and will not be able to play audio files thru Paltalk.  You should however be able to play audio from CD's and external sources and TV tuner cards.

note:  If you use the 'Mixer' input, you are actually selecting the 'Playback Control panel' as your device!  Select the 'Output Mixer Settings' link under the 'Audio Test' tab of the Paltalk setup area in addition to the 'Record Panel'.  Anything selected on the 'Volume Control' panel will play thru the 'Mixer' input .  You may be able to select multiple devices on the 'Volume Mixer' panel and mix them together.  For example you could select BOTH your CD and Microphone inputs and sing along with your CD, perfectly mixed for the room to hear.  This is a favorite of people doing karaoke in the music rooms!

If you get feedback or squealing, turn your speakers down or use headphones instead of speakers.  The Microphone input is usually 'muted' or not selected on the 'Volume Control' panel to prevent this, but if you wish to mix your voice with another source you don't want to get squealing or 'feedback' while performing.

You can see that this mixer panel has various devices available.  Your microphone would be selected by default.

Don't forget to re-select the microphone again when you wish to speak into the chat room!

  Play a MP3 or other audio file into a chat room
  Play a CD into a chat room
  Play audio from TV tuner cards into a chat room
  Play audio from an external source into a chat room