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Simple library for playing sounds and music in Java

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TinySound is a simple sound system that wraps the standard Java sound libraries. It is "tiny" in that it is intended to have a small, easy-to-use interface with everything that you need to play sounds and music, and nothing that you don't.


If you would just like to download the jar files, see the releases page:


TinySound is licensed under the BSD 2-Clause license. A copy of the license can be found in the header of every source file as well as in the LICENSE file included with the TinySound system.

Audio Formats

TinySound stores all audio as 16-bit, 44.1kHz, 2-channel, linear PCM data internally. It makes an effort to convert other formats, but will not be able to handle all formats. As for container formats, TinySound should be able to load any container types supported by your version of Java. This should include WAV at the very least. TinySound can also load Ogg files containing audio in the Vorbis format with the inclusion of the libraries found in the lib directory. If you intend to use Ogg Vorbis files with TinySound just include the jorbis, tritonus_share and vorbisspi jar files on your CLASSPATH along with TinySound.


You should only be concerned with the classes in the kuusisto.tinysound package.

Using TinySound

There are 3 classes that you need to know when using TinySound: TinySound, Music and Sound. TinySound is the main system class, Music is an abstraction for music, and Sound is an abstraction for a sound effect. Simple.


There are really only 2 steps you need to worry about with the TinySound class. 1. Initialization 2. Shutdown

  1. Initialization is accomplished via the init() function. It takes no arguments and sets up the system for you to play audio data. TinySound creates a daemon thread to automatically write audio data to the speakers. For those with special requirements and who are very familiar with the Java sound libraries, there is an alternative init() function which allows selection of how a line is opened to the speakers. See the Javadocs for more detail.

  2. Shutdown is accomplished via the shutdown() function. This shuts down the update thread and clears resources in use.


You load Music objects via the TinySound loadMusic() functions. Music objects can be started, stopped, paused, resumed, and looped from specified positions. If you are done using a particular Music object, you can also unload its sound data from the system via its unload() method. See the Javadocs for more detail.


You load Sound objects via the TinySound loadSound() functions. Sound objects work differently from Music objects as you can only play them (no pausing etc.). When a Sound is played it is queued to be played from the speakers once. Of course, you can play a Sound multiple times in an overlapping fashion so it is generally useful for sound effects. See the Javadocs for more detail.

Memory Usage

The basic loading functions for Music and Sound objects produce implementations that store all audio data in memory. This is good for maintaining low latency, but can also require a lot of heap space if you load many, or particularly long, audio resources. There are loading functions available that allow you to request that the audio data be streamed from a file. If this is requested, the audio data will first be converted as usual and then written to a temporary file from which it will be streamed. This will dramatically reduce the overall memory usage (after loading), but can potentially introduce occasional latency when reading from disk.


There is a very simple example provided in the example directory. You'll need sound resources with the specified names on the classpath if you want to try the example without modifying it. Note that the example does not demonstrate all of TinySound's features. See the Javadocs for more detail.