Posts Tagged With: volume

Essential Free Software for Mac OS X: My Personal Top 10 Indispensables (plus a few handy extras)

I realised when I was getting my system back to normal (HD faliure – probably post on this at some point) that I have not written any posts about any of the really great freeware I use on my Mac.

scream

Crazy!!!

I realise that a lot of people do these top ten lists for interesting software or fun software for Macs.  And a lot of them list programs you have to pay for.

My list is for USEFUL SOFTWARE I USE ALL THE TIME. 

And of course all software listed here is 100% FREE SOFTWARE.  

There is NO payware or shareware included.

So here’s my up to date list of all the software I consider indispensable for my happy Mac life.  These are vaguely in order of how often I use them. Continue reading

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Categories: Essential OS X Freeware: Top Ten, Free Software, Mac & OS X | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Working Around the Regressions of iTunes 11

I decided I wanted to upgrade to the newest version iTunes as I had just bought an iPhone. I would have quite happily carried on using my old iTunes 10.2.1 which had never let me down but I wanted the iTunes setup option for the iPhone ready just in case of emergencies.  And it said I should get the latest one.  So I updated to the newest iTunes (at the time of this post 11.0.1).

I have to say, if you don’t have to update, don’t do it! The new iTunes is hideous and also really annoying in so many ways. It was probably marketed as “sleek and simplistic”, or some other rubbish, which just means it has less features, looks more boring, and is less user friendly.

Anyway.

There are several things you can do to make using the new and regressed iTunes more bearable.

Continue reading

Categories: Free Software, Mac & OS X, Macbook Pro | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Solution for Volume Problems in OS X

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For reference, I am using Snow Leopard, 10.6.8, on a Macbook Pro.  I don’t use external speakers, just the normal built in ones.

Recently, I had some problems with the volume in OS X. The symptoms were as follows: 

– the volume keys on the keyboard (F10, F11, F12) stopped working 

– if I pressed the volume keys they made the “plick” sound but the sound level did not increase or decrease or change in any way even when at full volume or muted

– although the volume indicator appeared on the screen showing that the buttons were working (as the volume bars increased or decreased), this had no effect on the actual sound volume itself

– the volume icon in the menu bar at the top had no effect on the volume

Strangely, I could control the volume perfectly using the System Preferences sound controls.  So clearly the volume was not broken. 

As far as I can tell this problem only occurs when use headphones or my graphics tablet.  I’m no expert but I think my poor Mac just gets confused about how it should allow the volume to be controlled.  For example, when I used my headphones to listen to music in iTunes I had all the above symptoms BUT for some reason I could still use iTunes to control the volume (as well  as being able to control the volume using System Preferences.  This is how I solve the problem when it occurs.  A lot of this may not be relevant but I’ll include it all as I’m not sure which bits are key to the solution. 

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Step 1.  Go to System Preferences > Sound


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Step 2.  On the Output Tab make sure your settings are correct for your system.  These are my settings:

I use my built-in speakers and use the audio port for Sound Output

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Step 3.  This step is not  technically necessary, but in case it affects anything these are my settings on my Sound Effects tab.

I always set my master volume quite high and and make sure the Play feedback when volume is changed is ticked.  This makes sure that when you reboot you can hear if your volume problem is fixed or not.  

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Step 4.  Remove any USBs or headphones you may have connected. 

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Step 5.  Restart your Mac. 

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Step 6.  Sign in as Admin and check your settings for Sound in System Preferences, and whether the volume controls (keys, menu bar etc.) are working properly.  If they are all OK then you should find that they are also working properly in all the other user accounts.

Categories: Mac & OS X | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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