documentation and FAQ

Soundplant Documentation

Here is the complete Soundplant v.50.7 User Manual. Many of the answers to the FAQs below can be found in the Manual in more detail.

• For technical support, bug reports, and feature requests, send an email to soundplant [at] soundplant.org and note your operating system version & Soundplant version (though please check out the FAQ below first).

• Docs for older Soundplant versions are in the Legacy Documentation section.



Soundplant FAQ

General Usage Questions
Hardware Questions
Troubleshooting
Sales & License Terms
Upgrading
Registration Code Entry


General Usage Questions

How do I use Soundplant?
• To get started: 1) Find some sound files. 2) Drop them onto keys in Soundplant's onscreen keyboard. 3) Type on your keyboard to play the sounds. 4) Profit!

Where can I find free sound files to download for use with Soundplant?
Here are some keymap examples and links to free sound archive sites.

How do I get Soundplant to work while the program is minimized or not in the foreground?
• If you want Soundplant to receive global key input while its window is not in focus (i.e. while minimized, while hidden, while using other programs, etc.), activate the background key input function (toggle switch located at the top center of Soundplant's Global Function Toolbar).

How do I stop all playing sounds all at once?
• Hit the Escape key to instantly kill all sounds.

Is there a way to fade out all playing sounds, rather than cut them abruptly?
• Yes, by default Ctrl+Shift+Backspace (Windows)/Ctrl+Shift+Delete (Mac) fades out all sounds. However you can change it to just a plain hit to Backspace/Delete to fade out all via the Preferences➔miscellany➔Backspace function setting.

How can I set a sound to automatically stop as soon as another sound starts?
• If you set a key's channel priority to autokill, then it will be automatically killed on the next sound trigger of any key, or set it to autofade and it will automatically fade out on the next sound trigger. For further customization of which keys autokill other keys you can use autokill groups.

How can I change the settings of more than 1 key at a time?
• Select multiple keys for bulk editing by holding down Ctrl (Windows) or Command ⌘ (Mac) while clicking the desired keys. Select larger groups of keys by Shift+clicking to select all keys between the currently selected key and the clicked key.

How do I select all keys at once for making global changes?
• To select all keyboard keys, click the top left most key, F1, and then Shift+click the bottom right most key, numpad Enter, which will select all keys in between. But note that if what you really want to do is change the default settings for all keys permanently, see the next FAQ...

How can I permanently change the default settings for things like volume, fade times, and keymodes?
• By using the save key settings as default button in the Key Function Toolbar of the Key Configuration Panel. Select any key and change the settings to the desired default values, then click save key settings as default. Note that you can also save empty keymap file templates for more custom control over the default settings for smaller groups of keys and global settings like master volume.

How do I delete a sound from the keyboard?
• The reset key button in the Key Function Toolbar unloads the key's sound and reverts its settings back to its blank unassigned state with the default empty key configuration.

How can I crossfade 2 tracks with Soundplant?
• Using the fade keymode and autofade channel priority. Set the first sound's key to have channel priority autofade, and set its desired fade out time under fade time, then set the second sound's key to have keymode fade and set its desired fade in time. Press the first sound's key to start it playing, and when you are ready to initiate the crossfade, press the second sound's key. This will initiate a simultaneous fade out in the first sound and fade in for the second sound.

How can I set a sound to stop playing when I release a key?
• Set the keymode to kill/hold to make the key start playing on key press and stop playing on key release. Or for more synthesizer-like refinement, set the keymode to fade/hold to have the sound fade in on key press and/or fade out on key release.

How do I rename a key? I'd like to change the key's label to something other than its sound's filename.
• To set a custom key label, select the key and then click on the large filename text in the Key Configuration Panel.

How can I set Soundplant to use a bright color scheme like in earlier versions instead of v.50's default dark mode?
• Set Preferences➔interface➔color theme to 'light mode'.

How do I get Soundplant to start with a particular keymap automatically loaded?
• If you double click any .keymap file in File Explorer/Finder, it will launch Soundplant and load that keymap. So for example you can create on your desktop a shortcut/alias to your desired keymap file, and double clicking that shortcut will launch your keymap. You can also put a keymap file (or a shortcut to it) in your system's startup items.

I want to trigger Soundplant in the background while using another program, but the other program already has its own functions mapped to many keys. How can I get around this and send input only to Soundplant while avoiding sending commands to the foregrounded program?
• You can filter Soundplant's background key input with the Preferences➔background key input➔only trigger with key combo setting. This sets Soundplant to ignore key hits unless the specified key combo is used, for example Ctrl+Alt. In more complex scenarios you can also have multiple Soundplant instances running, each with a different key combo set, and access different sounds with the same key depending on which combo you use.

How do I use the function keys (F1-12) with Soundplant? On my computer they seem to all be mapped to system functions.
• The function keys are sometimes reserved for system functions by default, especially on laptops, and you typically have to combo hit the "Fn" key + the desired function key in order for Soundplant (or any other program) to receive the standard key input for F1-F12. But this can almost always be remedied by changing a system setting. On Mac it's very easy: under System Preferences➔Keyboard, check the box for "Use F1, F2 etc. keys as standard function keys", which reverses this behavior so that just hitting the key by itself sends its input directly to programs including Soundplant, and Fn+the function key accesses the associated system function (note that even with this option enabled, it is still possible for certain function keys to be assigned as special system operation shortcuts, usually F11 to show the desktop and F12 to show the dashboard; these shortcuts can be disabled under System Preferences➔Keyboard➔Shortcuts). On Windows it can be harder to locate the setting to change this because the configuration depends on the manufacturer. Often Windows laptops have a "Fn lock" capability that allows you to lock the Fn key in the on position by hitting Fn+Escape, and this tends to be the quickest and easiest solution. But for a more permanent solution, you'll have to locate the software setting, which may be in the Windows Control Panel, or in a manufacturer-branded dedicated program or system tray icon for input device settings, or in the system BIOS.

I have a MacBook Pro with a Touch Bar instead of the function key row; how do I set it to use the function keys with Soundplant?
• You can set the function keys to always display on the Touch Bar when Soundplant runs by going to System Preferences➔Keyboard➔Shortcuts and then selecting "Function Keys" in the left sidebar, and then clicking the "+" symbol and selecting Soundplant. Note that if you want to use background key input to trigger function key sounds while using another program, you would need to also add that other program in this menu. Alternatively, you can go into System Preferences➔Keyboard➔Keyboard and simply set "Touch Bar shows" to "F1, F2, etc." and the function keys will be available at all times from all apps system-wide. Independent of these settings, note that at any time you can hold down the Function (fn) key at the bottom-left of your keyboard to temporarily show the function keys in the Touch Bar.

Is there any way to seek/skip around in a track while it is playing?
• Yes; while a key is selected and its sound is playing, click anywhere along the waveform to advance the play position forward or backward to jump to a specific point. This also works in waveform zoom view.

How do I play a sound by touchscreen tap or mouse click instead of using the keyboard? Is there a way to simulate a key hit?
• There are several ways to play a sound without touching a keyboard. In the default Detailed View, double click or double tap any key to play it. While in Simple View or Info View, single click or tap any onscreen key to play its sound. Alternatively, in Detailed View, single click or tap the large letter label in the upper left corner of the Key Configuration Panel to play it.

How can I process Soundplant's output in realtime in another program? How can I record Soundplant's output in a DAW?
• You can feed Soundplant's output into a multitrack recording program or dedicated realtime processing program (like Max, GarageBand, Logic, Audition, etc.) with the help of utility software that allows you to route audio into a virtual audio input and output device. On Mac you have the system-built-in option of creating an "Aggregate Device" via Apple's Audio MIDI Setup utility or you can use BlackHole. There is also the free Jack for Mac & Windows, or on Windows other options are Virtual Audio Cable or VB-CABLE. You would need to set Soundplant to output to the virtual audio output device under Soundplant's Preferences➔audio➔output device, and then set your recording/processing software's input to the virtual input device. Keep in mind that the easiest and most efficient way to record Soundplant is to use Soundplant's own built-in record function (record Soundplant's output button at center of the Global Function Toolbar), but using these virtual audio device methods allows more flexibility when doing realtime processing or recording from many sources at once.

What can I do to optimize Soundplant performance in order to squeeze out the absolute fastest possible sound triggering?
• A decent, recent computer should have no problem triggering sounds instantaneously, but if you want to achieve the absolute lowest possible latency at the expense of some interface niceties (for latency freaks who want the best performance for the most demanding applications such as millisecond-accurate drum pad use):

Why do MP3s not loop well and have extra silence added?
• This is a limitation in the MP3 format (known as encoder delay/zero padding) and not a bug in Soundplant. MP3 was not designed to be a gapless format, and MP3 encoders add a few milliseconds of silence to the audio as part of the encoding process. Normally it's not noticeable but if you try to loop a short sound as an MP3 there will be an audible gap in the loop. To work around this, either use Soundplant's offset controls to trim out the silence, or use a different format to save sounds that require millisecond-perfect looping.

Can I save a Soundplant keymap file on a Mac and then open it in Windows? Can I save a keymap on Windows and then open it on a Mac?
• Yes, keymap files are cross-platform, just remember to keep the needed sound files with the .keymap as audio data is not saved in keymap files. Note that you can use the save with sounds function to conveniently package a keymap and all of its sounds into a single folder making it easier to transfer the keymap between different computers.

How do I play a playlist in Soundplant?
• Soundplant can play a predefined sequence of sounds using any single key. For example, select the A key and turn on playlist to enter playlist editing mode. Then drop the desired sounds into the playlist on the bottom where it says "drop keys or files here", and order the playlist as needed. You can now press the A key to trigger this playlist of sounds which by default will play one after the other.

Can I set a key to play a random sound?
• Yes, you can set a key to trigger a randomly chosen sound from a group of sound files using playlist in combination with single key step through queue mode and shuffle. For example, select the A key and turn on playlist to enter playlist editing mode. Set the queue mode to single key step through and turn on shuffle. Then drop the desired sounds into the playlist on the bottom where it says "drop keys or files here". You can now hit the A key to step through the sound list in a random order, starting a different random sound on each key press.

Can I use a single key to trigger more than 1 sound simultaneously?
• Yes. Select any unused key, for example the A key. Turn on playlist, and then set the playlist's queue mode to start all simultaneously. Drop the desired sounds into the playlist on the bottom. You can now hit the A key to play all tracks in the playlist at once.

Can I load more than 1 sound into a single key, but choose when I want to trigger each sound, like selecting from a bank of sounds on a keyboard?
• Yes. You can open an unlimited number of Soundplant windows with the launch another Soundplant button in the Global Function Toolbar, and each window can have a different keymap loaded. By using background key input in combination with the Preferences➔background key input➔only trigger with key combo setting and running multiple Soundplant windows, you can have up to 8 sounds assigned to a single key but independently triggerable. In each Soundplant instance, assign a different sound to the same key but triggerable using a different modifier key combo. You can selectively trigger different sounds with the same key by setting only trigger with key combo to a different mode in each Soundplant instance. For example, in this way you can set Ctrl+A to trigger one sound from Soundplant instance #1, and Ctrl+Alt+A to trigger a second sound from Soundplant instance #2, and just plain A to trigger a third sound from Soundplant instance #3, etc. The Preferences➔background key input➔save & load background key input settings in keymaps option is helpful for facilitating this kind of setup.

How do I hide/collapse a keyboard section (like the numpad) once it's been expanded?
• When you hover over a keyboard section, a little blue collapse button appears in the upper right corner, click that to minimize the section.

Can I set loop points of a sound separate from its regular start and end points, and set a fixed number of loops?
• Using playlists you can stitch together different segments of a sound and have them play in any order and loop as many times as you want. Playlists in the default play sequentially queue mode play gaplessly, enabling seamless transitions from different points in a sound. You can copy the same sound onto multiple keys and then set different start and end offset points on each key, and then place those keys in a playlist sequence and have different segments repeat as desired.

Does Soundplant work on Zoom calls? How can I allow Zoom meeting attendees hear the sounds I play?
• Yes, Zoom has the built-in capability to share your computer's audio during a meeting, and this works with Soundplant like any other app. To enable this in Zoom, see Zoom's own instructions.

Is there a Linux version of Soundplant?
• No, but it wouldn't be too hard to port if there is a demand for it and enough Linux users are willing to help test it. Users have reported that Soundplant works under Wine but with worse latency. Some have found older version 47 to work better under Wine than latest v.50; YMMV. If you're interested in sponsoring the development of a Linux version of Soundplant 50 get in touch!

Why would I ever want to use my computer keyboard as an instrument? Computer keyboards are for typing spreadsheets. Pshaw!
• I am so glad you asked, as there are actually some pretty good reasons. Because the computer keyboard is a most ancient and basic peripheral of the computer, it connects to the computer at a very low level, making it essentially the lowest latency input device there is (this is why hardcore gamers use keyboards over joysticks). Also, chances are you've already used a computer keyboard quite a bit in your lifetime for typing or gaming, and you'd be surprised how much this experience translates over to shredding with Soundplant. It would be pretty hard to find another input device offering the same combination of so many trigger buttons, portability, low latency, familiarity, and plug-and-play-ness - and best of all, you already have one so the hardware cost is nothing!


Hardware Questions

Can I use a MIDI device as input for Soundplant?
• Yes, via the MIDI assign function you can use any MIDI device that emits a noteon (virtually any MIDI keyboard, pad grid, or instrument) as a trigger for any Soundplant key. Select any key or multiple keys, click MIDI assign, then press and release any noteon trigger on your MIDI device to assign it. As for MIDI CC control over Soundplant knobs, latest version 50.7 includes an alpha preview of MIDI CC support which will be expanded on in the next version; for now you can read about how to activate the alpha mode for MIDI Control Change support.

I have multiple output devices, how do I make Soundplant play different sounds out of different devices at the same time?
• You can output to multiple devices simultaneously by running multiple instances of Soundplant. Soundplant is capable of running in an unlimited number of simultaneous instances, and each instance can be set to output to a separate device. Use the launch another Soundplant button in the Global Function Toolbar along the top of the screen to spawn a new Soundplant window. You can also use the Preferences➔audio➔save & load output device in keymaps setting to maintain keymaps with different sets of sounds intended for different output devices, and turn on background key input in conjunction with the Preferences➔background key input➔foreground window on sound trigger and only trigger with key combo settings to help manage multiple Soundplant windows.

On one computer I can press several keys at once in Soundplant to create a 'chord', but on another computer I can't always do this. WTF?
• This is entirely dependent on the keyboard hardware. Unfortunately, there are many low end computer keyboards out there that simply don't support holding down more than a few keys at once. Most cheap generic keyboards can only detect around 4 or 5 keys simultaneously due to keyboard hardware limitations; other keyboards support this only partially and will allow some keys to be pressed down simultaneously and not allow others, or will generate "phantom" key presses in certain combinations, depending on the layout of its internal circuitry. At worst, some Windows laptops have a really annoying "feature" where the computer emits a system beep when many keys are pressed at the same time (sometimes this "beep on keyboard error" setting can be turned off in the BIOS or under Device Manager➔Non-Plug And Play Drivers). Intensive Soundplant use can be hampered by these kinds of keyboard quirks, which vary widely among different keyboards. This is because on cheaper keyboards, multiple keys share the same sensor, and each sensor can only report a single key hit at any given time. Also, many older keyboards have better support for detecting multiple simultaneous keys if connected via a PS/2 port rather than USB. If you find that the behavior of your keyboard has a limiting affect on what you are trying to do in Soundplant, consider upgrading; for the best possible keyboard experience, look for a keyboard that is capable of "n-key rollover" or NKRO, which means that each key has its own dedicated sensor and guarantees that the keyboard supports detection of an unlimited number of keys simultaneously. Some excellent makers of high end n-key rollover keyboards are Das Keyboard and Keychron, and you can find many others, often marketed for gamers, such as those by Razer or ROCCAT. A high quality keyboard enhances all use of your computer, not only Soundplant! More info about keyboard hardware and common quirks of inputting simultaneous key presses can be found in this article.

Can I use a non-U.S. keyboard with Soundplant?
• Sure. Soundplant is optimized for use with a standard U.S.A. QWERTY keyboard, but has been found to work well on other common keyboards (like AZERTY, U.K. QWERTY, etc.) with occasional minor quirks. For example, some keys on certain non-U.S. keyboard may not exactly match their onscreen equivalent. You will have to do some testing with your non-U.S. keyboard to learn how it works with Soundplant. If you find that the operation of your non-U.S. keyboard hinders your use of Soundplant, consider buying a cheap U.S. keyboard for optimal Soundplant use (easily found for under $10). If you're interested in sponsoring Soundplant's support of your preferred keyboard layout, get in touch!

How can I use Soundplant on a tablet?
• When using Soundplant on a tablet, run Soundplant in Simple View or Info View so that you can tap the onscreen key icons within the Soundplant interface to trigger sounds, or you could use an external keyboard (e.g. Bluetooth or USB) to trigger sounds. Soundplant works well on Windows tablets as it runs on Windows natively. Alternatively, Soundplant can be operated on iOS/iPadOS devices via macOS's built-in Sidecar functionality in conjunction with a Mac host. Similar Soundplant "remote control" use on Android devices can be accomplished with a "desktop extender" app like iDisplay or Air Display which enables your phone/tablet to serve as a wireless touchscreen monitor for your computer.

How can I use Soundplant on a Chromebook?
• Soundplant doesn't run natively on ChromeOS (yet...), but there are some options for using Soundplant on a Chromebook. If you have an x86 Chromebook (AMD/Intel), you can run the Windows version of Soundplant as a Linux app via Wine. Otherwise, you can use Chrome's Remote Desktop feature to control a Windows or Mac computer running Soundplant from within your Chromebook. More details in this article. If you're interested in sponsoring the development of Soundplant for ChromeOS, get in touch!

Does Soundplant work with Apple Silicon M1/M2/M3 chips?
• Yes, since v.50.5 Soundplant is a universal binary optimized for both Apple Silicon and Intel processors.


Troubleshooting

'background key input' doesn't work while I am playing a game with Soundplant running in the background.
• Running Soundplant as administrator usually solves this. Some games and other intensive programs take control of input at a low level and won't pass key input to other apps unless they're run as admin. In most versions of Windows, you can right click on the Soundplant program icon and then in the menu that comes up click "Run as administrator". If you want it to always run as admin automatically, you can right click Soundplant➔Properties➔Compatibility tab➔check "run this program as administrator". Note that Windows will not allow you to drag and drop files from a non-administrator-spawned window into a program run as admin due to system security restrictions.

Soundplant has playback glitches and/or is sluggish.
• This means your hardware can not meet Soundplant's processing demands, and can usually be resolved by changing some settings:

Soundplant is not responding to any key presses on my Mac.
• Soundplant requires "Accessibility" permissions to be granted in your system settings due to macOS security restrictions, and prompts you to grant them the first time it launches. To grant these permissions manually, go to System Preferences➔Security & Privacy➔Privacy tab➔Accessibility and if you see Soundplant in the list, make sure its box is checked, or if it's not in the list you can either drag Soundplant into the list or click the plus sign and add Soundplant as a permitted program (see here for more detailed illustrated instructions on how to do this). If you deny these permissions, Soundplant can still run and play sounds by mouse click or MIDI input, but will ignore all keyboard presses unless this permission is granted.

My Mac won't allow me to grant Soundplant the required Accessibility permissions.
• If you are using a restricted or public Mac in an institutional setting such as a school which does not allow you to grant this permission, you'll need to ask your IT staff to enable it. Without these permissions in v.50, Soundplant can still run and play sounds by mouse click or MIDI input, but will ignore all keyboard presses. Alternatively, if you are running macOS 10.14 Mojave or earlier, you can use older Soundplant version 47 instead which does not require these permissions for normal use aside from background key input.

The 'pan' function is not working as expected - when a sound is panned all the way to one side, I still hear audio coming out of both speakers.
• If you are hearing audio coming out of both channels even with a sound 100% panned to one channel, the most likely culprit is that your computer's audio is set up to use some kind of "audio enhancement" software processing intended to make poor quality speakers sound better or to simulate surround sound. This is an annoying "feature" some computers come preinstalled with and turned on by default, especially on Windows laptops, and it is highly recommended to turn these off as they can negatively affect latency and sound quality. Some possible enhancer names to look out for are "MaxxSense", "SoundMax", or "SmartAudio"; others have a more generic name like "Acoustic Environment Modeling", "Loudness Equalization", "3D Immersion", or "Phantom Speakers". You will have to dig into your system audio settings to disable this, usually found in the Control Panel as its own item, or under Control Panel➔Sound. For example, on one particular Dell laptop the setting was found under Control Panel➔Hardware and Sound➔Dell Audio➔SpeakerHeadphone➔Preset➔MaxxSense.

I can't open a GarageBand-saved .band file in Soundplant; is there a way to load files into Soundplant that were recorded with GarageBand?
• Yes; the .band format that GarageBand saves is actually a special type of folder, not a single file. Your audio files are inside the .band package folder. In Finder, secondary click on the your GarageBand project (.band) then click Show Package Contents, which opens it as a folder. You should be able to find your source audio files under /Media/.

I've renamed or moved around my sound files to a different location on my computer and now when I try to load my keymap(s), Soundplant can't find the files.
• If your files have been scattered or renamed, generally the easiest way to fix your keymap is to use Soundplant's "locate file..." option in the "file not found" message dialog box. After you manually select the new location or name of the first missing file, Soundplant will remember the new location and search for all other missing files in the current keymap in that location. If using "locate file..." is not practical because many files are scattered in different locations, another option is to edit the .keymap file manually. .keymap files do not contain binary data and can therefore be edited in any text editor (Notepad, TextEdit, etc.). Sound files are stored as absolute paths in the .keymap file data. You can open your .keymap(s) in an editor and do a 'find and replace' to fix the paths, e.g. change all occurrences of the old path to the new one. Remember, Soundplant will always automatically find your keymap's sound files if they are in the same folder as the .keymap file, even if the keymap was saved on another computer/operating system, and the handy save with sounds makes it easy to save a unique copy of any keymap's sounds.

The 'record' button does not seem to record any audio from my mic - I always end up with a silent wav file.
• If you want to record from a mic, you are likely using the wrong record button. What you should be using is Soundplant's record from input button in the Key Function Toolbar. The record Soundplant's output button in the Global Function Toolbar is for recording the sounds that are playing in Soundplant, NOT for recording sounds from a microphone.

I have a sound file that Soundplant won't load or plays incorrectly.
• If you have a sound file that does not load properly in Soundplant, please report it to soundplant [at] soundplant.org (if possible please include the offending file in your email as a zipped attachment). If you need a quick fix, usually opening the file in an audio editor (like the free Audacity) and resaving it as an uncompressed .wav will solve the problem. Note that Soundplant can not play DRM-protected files like .M4P, see this article for more info.

I have another issue not listed here.
• For technical support or to report any bugs, send an email to soundplant [at] soundplant.org. Please note your operating system version, Soundplant version, and any other relevant specs of your computer.


Sales & License Terms

If I only buy one Single User license, can I use Soundplant on more than 1 computer?
• As long as you will be the only person using it, yes. Soundplant is licensed per-user, not per-computer. Soundplant's flexible Single User License allows one person to use Soundplant on Windows and Mac. You are permitted to install and unlock Soundplant on multiple computers, using the same license code, provided you are the only user. But groups such as businesses, organizations, or schools must buy a license for each person who will be using the software, purchasing either a discounted group license or user-unlimited site license.

I am in charge of purchasing software for my employer/company/organization. How many licenses do I need to purchase?
• You must purchase the appropriate tier multiuser group license according to the total number of people who will be using Soundplant at your organization. If the number of users is variable such as in the situation of a business that hires freelancers/temporary workers, your license must cover the total number of concurrently employed workers who will be using the software. When maximum flexibility is needed, we offer reasonably priced unlimited-user site licenses.

My organization only needs to install Soundplant on one device. Can we purchase a Single User License?
• Soundplant is licensed per human user, not per-device. Organizations are required to purchase a group license tier according to the total number of people who will be using the software. Please take this into consideration especially if you will be activating Soundplant on a public/shared device with multiple users. A Single User License activation is tied to the computer user account that it is registered to, and if that user signs out and a different user logs in and tries to run Soundplant it will revert to unregistered mode. If Soundplant will be used on a shared device with multiple users, please purchase the appropriate multiuser group license tier based on the total number of users.

My organization needs to purchase a specific number of licenses that falls in between the 3-User, 10-User, and Unlimited tiers listed for purchase. Is it possible to, for example, purchase a license for 5 users?
• Yes. We recommend rounding up to the nearest group license tier to maximize your bulk discount. But if needed you can use this order page to purchase a license for an exact number of users by setting a desired quantity. Discounts start at 3 users.

What does "free for non-commercial use" mean? What defines "non-commercial use"?
• It means that if you do not make money while using Soundplant, then you may continue to use the free version of Soundplant after the trial period expires without needing a license. Non-commercial users may include students, hobbyists, volunteers, unpaid musicians or performers, etc. If you use Soundplant at your job or while doing any activity that gets you paid, you must buy a license, even if you do not require the full functionality of the paid version.

Is a school considered a "non-commercial user"?
• "Commercial user" is defined very simply as anyone who gets paid while using Soundplant, or anyone who requires the use of the paid features of the program. Students who don't need the paid version's expanded features can be considered "non-commercial users", and do not require a license. But teachers who are paid employees are considered commercial users and therefore a license must be purchased for every instructor that will be using the software, regardless of whether they need the paid features (unpaid/volunteer instructors would be exempt from this requirement since they qualify as non-commercial users). We currently offer a generous educational discount unlimited site license that covers all staff and students at a school.

I am a commercial user but I don't need any of the paid features, so the free version works fine for me. Do I still need to buy a license?
• Yes, commercial use of Soundplant is only permitted if you have a license, regardless of which features you use.

I would like to use Soundplant in a public installation which will have an indeterminate number of users. How do purchase a license for this?
• If the installation is commercial in nature (for example, an installation that serves as an advertisement or vending machine), you must purchase a user-unlimited site license for commercial installation use. An exception is made for non-commercial public installation uses of Soundplant, for example in educational kiosks, art installations, museum/library/classroom displays, etc. In this case a license need only be purchased covering the producer(s) of the non-commercial installation, and only if the producer is being paid for their work and/or requires use of the paid features. The quantity of licenses that need to be purchased should reflect the number of staff producing the non-commercial installation who need to interact with Soundplant as part of the production of the installation.

What are the differences between the free and paid versions of Soundplant?
• The paid licensed version permits commercial use and unlocks the following features: expanded sound file format support for compressed files (.mp3, .mp4, .flac, etc.), sounds above 16-bit, and audio from video files; input & output recording; background key input; sound output device selection including ASIO on Windows; MIDI support; multiple instances; and output sampling rates above 48 kHz. The free version includes a 25-launch trial of the paid version's expanded features, has a nag screen every 5 launches, and may only be used for non-commercial or trial purposes.

I purchased Soundplant but all I got was a registration code; where do I download the registered version of the software?
• There is no special separate version to download, rather you must download and install the free version if you don't already have it, and then follow the instructions you were emailed to enter in your code and unlock the paid features.

Is Soundplant a subscription? Does the Soundplant license ever expire?
• No, it is not a time-limited license or a subscription. It permits you to use in perpetuity the Soundplant version you bought and any future versions that you are granted a free upgrade for.

How many free future upgrades does the Soundplant license include?
• Soundplant buyers are granted free upgrades to any future versions of the software released within 2 years of the original purchase. After that, those who purchased any older version of Soundplant are always eligible for a discount on upgrading to the latest version.

So doesn't that mean that buying Soundplant is like a 2 year subscription?
• Not really no. You will never be locked out of your purchased Soundplant version once the 2 year free upgrade period ends. And your license will not "auto renew" or charge you automatically for an upgrade. After 2 years you will have the option to purchase an upgrade if you want to use a newer version.

Is it still possible to purchase a license for older Soundplant versions? I need to use Soundplant on an older operating system not supported in latest v.50.7.
• Yes. If you purchase a v.50 license, your registration code can also be used to unlock older versions going back to v.41 (2013). If you require even older versions 39 or earlier, contact soundplant [at] soundplant.org.

Where can I read the full Soundplant End User License Agreement?
• A copy of the Soundplant EULA is included with the Soundplant download, but you can also view it here.

Where can I read the Soundplant privacy policy?
• The Soundplant.org Online Privacy Policy Agreement can be accessed here.

What is the Soundplant return policy?
• As Soundplant is publicly available to try before you buy as a fully functional, freely downloadable program, refunds are only granted in the case of mistakes such as typos, quantity errors, or wrong version purchased. Please ensure that Soundplant meets your needs before purchasing by downloading the trial.

I am having trouble completing my Soundplant purchase. The transaction fails to go through.
• Sorry about that, please send an email to soundplant [at] soundplant.org for assistance. Soundplant uses the payment processing company FastSpring, but you'll need to contact us directly to resolve any problem. We do not have access to messages sent to orders@fastspring.com. If you are outside of the USA, the most common reason for the transaction to fail is because your credit card is restricting purchases made outside of your home country; you might want to try again with a different card or use the bank transfer method or PayPal instead.


Upgrading

I purchased a previous version of Soundplant, am I eligible for a discounted or free upgrade to the latest version?
• If you purchased Soundplant in 2021 or later then you are granted a free upgrade to latest version 50.7 using the same registration code. If you purchased Soundplant in 2020 or earlier, you are eligible for a discounted upgrade to v.50.7. You can access the discount offer by entering in your previous version registration information into v.50.7 (or, check for a "buy upgrade" button in Soundplant's "about" dialog which appears if Soundplant detects an eligible older license on your system). If you lost your previous version registration code see here, or if you're otherwise unable to access your discount, contact soundplant [at] soundplant.org.

Do I have to remove/uninstall older versions of Soundplant before I install a new version? Will installing a new version interfere with older ones?
• For major versions no. Different major versions install as a separate program with each version storing its own separate preference settings, and you can have multiple versions installed on the same machine if desired. But "dot release" updates do replace any existing install of the same major version, for example installing v.50.7 will replace v.50.5. On Mac, if you want .keymap files to be associated with the most recently installed version so that double clicking them launches the latest Soundplant, in some cases you may have to either remove previously installed older versions or manually associate .keymap files to the new version via Get Info.

Does Soundplant auto update itself?
• No. We know that Soundplant is used in mission critical live production settings and would never force an update onto your system. You can sign up for the Soundplant News mailing list here to be notified when new versions are released. Also, at any time you can click the Soundplant web site / check for updates toolbar button to see whether you're running the latest version, and manually download any available update from this web site.

I already bought Soundplant 47, will I be able to use the paid features on latest release version 50?
• Version 50.7 is a free upgrade for customers who purchased v.47 in 2021. Enter your v.47 registration code in v.50 to unlock it. If you bought v.47 prior to 1/1/2021, enter your v.47 code into v.50 to access your upgrade discount offer.

I have many saved keymaps from a previous version of Soundplant. Will they open properly in latest version 50?
• V.50 can load keymaps saved in previous versions of Soundplant down to v.40. Once you save a keymap in v.50, the new keymap file will not be backward compatible with previous Soundplant versions earlier than v.50.

How can I use an old keymap created in Soundplant 39 (or earlier) in latest version 50?
• You can download legacy Soundplant version 47 and open and resave your ancient v.39-or-below keymap in that version, and then it can be opened in v.50 as a v.47-saved keymap. Note that v.47 is a 32-bit app; if you have a newer Mac that can't run old 32-bit apps, you can use CrossOver to temporarily run the Windows version of Soundplant 47 on your Mac to resave old keymaps.

I am hesitant to upgrade to the latest version because the older version that I have is already working perfectly for me and I don't want to disturb my system. I say if it ain't broke, don't fix it!
• Upgrading is optional of course, but it is highly recommended for the optimizations, fixes, and improvements, and better compatibility with the latest hardware and operating systems (unless you are forced to run the older version due to incompatibility if you are using an older computer). The complete list of new features in v.50 over the previous v.4x generation is here.

I already purchased a Soundplant license, but I would like to increase the number of licensed users.
• We are happy to apply your already paid license fee towards the purchase of a higher multiuser tier. If you would like to upgrade your license tier, please contact soundplant [at] soundplant.org for assistance.


Registration Code Entry

How/where do I enter my license?
• Check out this infographic.

When I try entering in my registration code to unlock my copy of Soundplant, I get an "invalid code" message.
• 99.999% of the time, this is due to you not entering in the code correctly, exactly as it appears in your registration email. Both the registration name and code are case sensitive and should have no trailing or preceding spaces. The easiest and most surefire way to enter them into Soundplant while preserving case is by using copy and paste directly from the email into Soundplant. On Windows copy/paste is Ctrl+c/Ctrl+v, and on Mac it's ⌘+c/⌘+v. If you can't access your email from the machine on which you want to activate a copy of Soundplant, it is recommended that you copy the registration email text onto your Soundplant machine (for example in a .txt file).

Can I use the same registration code in both the Windows and Mac version?
• Yes.

My organization purchased Soundplant for a large number of users and it is not practical to individually activate Soundplant on each computer. Is there any way to automate the installation and activation process?
• Yes, it is possible to automate installs and license entry/unlocking, please refer to your license email for bulk install instructions. Note that automated license entry is only available with an Unlimited Users Site License.

I activated my copy of Soundplant a while ago but now Soundplant is back to telling me it is running in unregistered mode.
• Sometimes making certain system changes (such as a major system upgrade) can inadvertently reset the registration of your Soundplant installation. Simply reenter your registration code into Soundplant if this happens. Also note that Soundplant is licensed per-user, so if you're on a computer with multiple user accounts, a Single User License activation can only apply to one of those accounts, and will revert to unregistered mode if a different user logs in.

I've lost my registration code, how can I retrieve it?
• Your license information was emailed to you when you purchased Soundplant. If you can't locate that email, it can be recovered, but please note that we can only resend license information to the originally registered email address.

Is there a way to "unregister" an installation of Soundplant to deactivate the license on a particular computer?
• Yes, use the Preferences➔miscellany➔remove license function to revert Soundplant back to unregistered mode and remove your license information from the computer.





Legacy Soundplant Documentation

Soundplant 50.5 User Manual

Soundplant 50.5 press release

Soundplant 50.3 User Manual

Soundplant 50.1 User Manual

Soundplant 47 User Manual

Soundplant 45 User Manual

Soundplant 45 press release

Soundplant 43 User Manual

Soundplant 42 User Manual

Soundplant 42 press release

Soundplant 39 User Guide

Soundplant 39 press release

Soundplant 26.1 Documentation