OS X: Quick Mute Audio Feedback when Changing Your Mac’s Volume

| TMO Quick Tip

By default when you use the volume keys on your Mac’s keyboard to adjust its volume, a neat little “blip” sound is heard in order to give you a sense of how loud its speakers are. It’s definitely a handy feature, but sometimes you just don’t want to hear it.

A perfect example is when listening to music or watching a movie, especially when you’re hooked up to some loud, external speakers. You’re already getting feedback from the content playing, so that blip sound will just be loud and annoying.

Sound Preferences in Mavericks

To suppress the feedback sound when changing your Mac’s volume using the volume up/down keys on your keyboard, simply hold the Shift key as you press the volume keys. However, you can also invert this behavior and only hear feedback when holding shift. Simply open System Preferences, head to the Sound Preference Pane, and uncheck the box for “Play feedback when volume is changed.”

Now whenever you use the volume keys on your keyboard, you’ll no longer hear audio feedback unless you press the Shift key at the same time. Pretty cool, eh?

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Interestingly enough, when I saw the headline of this article in my news feed, I suspected it might be a modifier key, so before opening the article, I thought I’d try to figure it out myself. The first one I tried was Option. Guess what, holding down the Option key when pressing the volume button opens up the Sound control panel! How cool is that? wink

And thanks for this shortcut. It is definitely needed!


And, if one holds down the Shift and Option keys while adjusting the volume, the incremental changes are smaller so that you can fine tune the output volume.


Great tips!

Among the first things I do when setting up a new computer is uncheck the “interface sound effects” and then go to System Prefs/Accessibility/Audio and check “Flash the screen when an alert sound occurs”.

I often am on very loud sound systems and the last thing I want to hear is a 100+ dB “blip, blip”.

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