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How to play and record sounds

, 12 Mar 2001
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A simple application that shows how to play and record sounds under Windows


This is a simple application that shows you how to play and record sound under windows.
It uses the old multimedia API. A better solution may be to use DirectSound.

Quick Guide to the Code

Start with the two functions in CFisterDlg called OnPlay and OnRecord. Follow them down to the depth you need to use the classes.

Short description

CSoundIn is a wrapper class that will let you retreive sound from the soundcard. The main functions are Start() and Stop()

CSoundOut is a wrapper class that will let you play sound on the soundcard. The main functions are Start() and Stop()

CSoundFile is a wrapper class of a single wave file, it can either be a file reader or a file writer object. See the constructor.

CSoundBase is a very small class that encapsulates the wave format.

CBuffer is a very small class that encapsulates a simple one dimentional buffer.

The project has a number of different callback functions:

  • One callback function makes the Play button change it's label to stop when it has finished playing the file. CDialogDlg enherits CPipe and overloads a function that CPipe can call when it has finished playing the wave file.
  • Another callback function make it possible for CSoundIn to callback to CPipe when it has filled the input buffer. Thus CPipe can give CSoundIn a new buffer to fill.
  • A clone of the above principle is also used in CSoundOut, which enables it to callback to the owner when it is finished playing the sound in a given buffer.

Problems that I encountered

I have spent almost 2 days debugging the following stupid problem. When CSoundIn and CSoundOut inherit from CSoundBase and CWinThread the order in which they are listed must be as shown below. If not, the callback functions, which are started by the WinThread message handler, will not be able to access the member variables of the CSoundIn object.

class CSoundIn : public CWinThread, public CSoundBase

During these two days of fustration I also tried to implement the callback as regular callback functions called by the device driver. This is possible using ::waveInOpen(...). But since this callback function is not allowed to call any of the ::waveInXXX(...) functions it is not of much use.


This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

A list of licenses authors might use can be found here


About the Author

Thomas Holme
Web Developer
Denmark Denmark
No Biography provided

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Comments and Discussions

Questionaudioport Pin
faezeh sadat6-Apr-13 12:31
memberfaezeh sadat6-Apr-13 12:31 
GeneralMy vote of 5 Pin
Dr Bob12-Jan-12 10:24
memberDr Bob12-Jan-12 10:24 
QuestionThis sample is very portable, but has some wrong points. Pin
Yohei Murakami29-Dec-11 14:50
memberYohei Murakami29-Dec-11 14:50 
QuestionI can not record fix period time using winmm.lib!!!!! [modified] Pin
faird1-Aug-11 18:26
memberfaird1-Aug-11 18:26 
QuestionHow do I save my recorded sound using this application? Pin
gameBaaj19-Feb-11 2:08
membergameBaaj19-Feb-11 2:08 
Generalproblem with stalls due to waveoutreset Pin
leehartin27-Jan-10 5:12
memberleehartin27-Jan-10 5:12 
Questionwhat technique did u use Pin
Adnan Aman13-May-09 1:09
memberAdnan Aman13-May-09 1:09 
QuestionHelp On sondcard recording upon data arrival Pin
funboyhere16-Jun-08 4:30
memberfunboyhere16-Jun-08 4:30 
GeneralNeed Help in Looping Sound Pin
demxine25-Nov-07 21:14
memberdemxine25-Nov-07 21:14 
GeneralRe: Need Help in Looping Sound Pin
KarstenK12-Dec-07 21:48
memberKarstenK12-Dec-07 21:48 
GeneralWhy i can't even open the zip file?Help.......... Pin
D'nise1-Sep-07 0:09
memberD'nise1-Sep-07 0:09 
AnswerRe: Why i can't even open the zip file?Help.......... Pin
rajneshmalik1-Sep-07 0:55
memberrajneshmalik1-Sep-07 0:55 
Questionrecording blank sound file Pin
rakeshkumarsonu1-Aug-07 21:19
memberrakeshkumarsonu1-Aug-07 21:19 
GeneralErrors!! Pin
kaunreeves6-May-07 1:29
memberkaunreeves6-May-07 1:29 
GeneralRe: Errors!! Pin
arler29-Jan-08 17:30
memberarler29-Jan-08 17:30 
GeneralHelp Pin
kaunreeves5-May-07 16:59
memberkaunreeves5-May-07 16:59 
Generalunable to record the data from microphone Pin
pinto2212-Feb-07 3:43
memberpinto2212-Feb-07 3:43 
AnswerRe: unable to record the data from microphone Pin
Pehuenco25-Feb-07 23:07
memberPehuenco25-Feb-07 23:07 
GeneralRe: unable to record the data from microphone Pin
-=Seph=-25-Mar-07 21:04
member-=Seph=-25-Mar-07 21:04 
GeneralRe: unable to record the data from microphone Pin
Figu.Lin10-Feb-09 16:30
memberFigu.Lin10-Feb-09 16:30 
GeneralHelp me with default recording device!!! Pin
Hung In26-Jul-06 16:01
memberHung In26-Jul-06 16:01 
GeneralHi Pin
LuckyBoydtt13-Jul-06 8:05
memberLuckyBoydtt13-Jul-06 8:05 
GeneralRe: Hi Pin
Andy Byron22-Dec-06 3:47
memberAndy Byron22-Dec-06 3:47 
GeneralRe: Hi Pin
LuckyBoydtt22-Dec-06 4:05
memberLuckyBoydtt22-Dec-06 4:05 
Generalt Pin
angshu1201198415-Jun-06 23:54
memberangshu1201198415-Jun-06 23:54 
GeneralHelp me! Pin
trananh19-Jan-06 15:03
membertrananh19-Jan-06 15:03 
GeneralError Message: Still 3 buffers in waveIn queue Pin
srettig15-Nov-05 11:01
membersrettig15-Nov-05 11:01 
QuestionCan i do this in C# Pin
Kumar Muthu29-Oct-05 0:26
memberKumar Muthu29-Oct-05 0:26 
GeneralMore help in rectifying errors Pin
armimex200028-Oct-05 13:46
memberarmimex200028-Oct-05 13:46 
AnswerRe: More help in rectifying errors Pin
Gokcer Gokdal10-Nov-05 11:34
memberGokcer Gokdal10-Nov-05 11:34 
GeneralAudio and Video Pin
Kisi00719-Oct-05 7:33
memberKisi00719-Oct-05 7:33 
GeneralSave the Recorded Sound to a .Wav File, Pin
REU7-Oct-05 8:43
memberREU7-Oct-05 8:43 
GeneralRe: Save the Recorded Sound to a .Wav File, Pin
yasar7910-Jan-06 1:08
memberyasar7910-Jan-06 1:08 
Generalselecting two input sources Pin
rajeev_geom7-Oct-05 1:03
memberrajeev_geom7-Oct-05 1:03 
GeneralVery nice design Pin
Gokcer Gokdal24-Aug-05 13:13
memberGokcer Gokdal24-Aug-05 13:13 
QuestionHow can I record playback sound when Only Microphone is selected in Window Record Control Pin
jackshelingzhang6-Jun-05 2:31
memberjackshelingzhang6-Jun-05 2:31 
Generalhelp in rectifying the errors Pin
nagulmeera4-Dec-04 0:49
membernagulmeera4-Dec-04 0:49 
GeneralRe: help in rectifying the errors Pin
Jordan Walters29-Sep-05 2:10
memberJordan Walters29-Sep-05 2:10 
GeneralRecord and Play the Sound in two different machine. Pin
Josep Ignatius22-Nov-04 23:56
sussJosep Ignatius22-Nov-04 23:56 
Generalhelp me,plz Pin
chaitanya123215-Jul-04 22:14
susschaitanya123215-Jul-04 22:14 
GeneralA simple way to play sound... Pin
Mark Sparrow24-May-04 18:42
sussMark Sparrow24-May-04 18:42 
GeneralRe: A simple way to play sound... Pin
DavidCrow8-Jun-04 3:21
memberDavidCrow8-Jun-04 3:21 
GeneralRe: A simple way to play sound... ? Pin
mohsen nourian3-Jul-04 22:05
membermohsen nourian3-Jul-04 22:05 
GeneralRe: A simple way to play sound... ? Pin
wavefan3-Jul-04 23:33
susswavefan3-Jul-04 23:33 
General::PostQuitMessage(0)!!! Pin
Andrew Altham31-Jan-04 2:58
memberAndrew Altham31-Jan-04 2:58 
Generalplay more than one file at a moment Pin
Anonymous19-Jan-04 22:54
sussAnonymous19-Jan-04 22:54 
GeneralCSoundIn::Stop() change to avoid "still %d buffers in waveIn queue" Pin
filipverschueren@hotmail.com1-Jan-04 1:55
memberfilipverschueren@hotmail.com1-Jan-04 1:55 
situation: in the Close() function, 3 things are done:
1. waveInReset
2. m_brecording = False
3. waveInClose

order of events: waveInReset succeeds, then m_brecording is set. between these 2 actions, MM_WIM_DATA events are likely to still arrive and trigger OnMM_WIM_DATA.

OnMM_WIM_DATA will prepare the header again if m_brecording is still true, while waveInReset() is already processed.
result: assigned buffers even though we have performed reset (the assigned buffers will cause waveInClose() to fail).

solution: 2 options
1. set m_brecording = False before waveInReset(). (which is the quick solution)
2. put some checking in as follows (uncomment the ErrorMsg lines to see what is happening). See comments in the code.
void CSoundIn::Stop()
//ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - m_bRecording == False");
//ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - m_bRecording == True");
for(int j=0;(m_QueuedBuffers > 0) && (j < 3);j++)
//m_bRecording = FALSE;
mmReturn = ::waveInReset(m_hRecord);
waveInErrorMsg(mmReturn, "CSoundIn::Stop() - waveInReset != 0");
//ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - waveInReset; Resets = %d", j);
//ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - waveInReset == 0; Resets = %d", j);
m_bRecording = FALSE;
between the waveInReset and the m_bRecording = FALSE, onMM_WIM_DATA
may (probably will) have fired and reprepared header and assigned to the
queue. These re-assigned buffers will not be freed by the waveInReset
To make sure that all buffers are free, we need to redo the
waveInReset now, while the m_bRecording has been set to false to free any
possible buffers that were assigned between reset and m_bRecording = false.
We need to give the process some time to receive any onMM_WIM_DATA
messages to free the associated buffers.
In case any buffers are still not unprepared, the outer for() will
redo the reset and test again.
once all buffers are out of the queue, then it is safe to close the
the Wave device.
for(int i=0;(m_QueuedBuffers > 0) && (i < 3);i++)
//ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - ; Resets = %d;waiting %d", j, i);
mmReturn = ::waveInClose(m_hRecord);
waveInErrorMsg(mmReturn, "CSoundIn::Stop() - waveInClose != 0");
//ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - waveInClose == 0");
if(m_QueuedBuffers != 0)
ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - Still %d buffers in waveIn queue!", m_QueuedBuffers);
//ErrorMsg("CSoundIn::Stop() - m_QueuedBuffers == 0");
GeneralRe: CSoundIn::Stop() change to avoid &quot;still %d buffers in waveIn queue&quot; Pin
ze_seb25-Mar-05 6:39
sussze_seb25-Mar-05 6:39 
Generalplease help me to solve the link errors in the program of how to play and record Pin
elaine tan2-Dec-03 5:17
memberelaine tan2-Dec-03 5:17 
QuestionHow to support a sound input device in C# Pin
CNWORM22-Aug-03 20:39
memberCNWORM22-Aug-03 20:39 

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