How to Add Sound and Movies to Microsoft PowerPoint 2010

  • 6/29/2010
In this chapter from Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 Step by Step, you’ll insert a sound clip and a sound file and make various adjustments to their settings. You’ll also insert two video files, edit one of them, and format them both.

Chapter at a Glance


In this chapter, you will learn how to

  • Insert and play sounds.

  • Insert and play videos.

A Microsoft PowerPoint presentation is usually created to convey a lot of information in a short time. That information can be in the form of text, graphics, charts, and tables, but it might also consist of audio content. And sometimes the best way to ensure that your audience understands your message is to show a video. For example, if your company has developed a short advertising video, it makes more sense to include the video in a presentation about marketing plans than to try and describe it with bullet points or even pictures.

In this chapter, you’ll insert a sound clip and a sound file and make various adjustments to their settings. You’ll also insert two video files, edit one of them, and format them both.

Inserting and Playing Sounds

In Adding Transitions in Chapter 5, you added sound to a slide transition. You can also insert the following types of sounds:

  • Audio files. You can insert an audio file—for example, a speech or interview—by clicking the Audio button in the Media group on the Insert tab, and then selecting the file.

  • Sound clips. You can insert a sound clip by clicking the Audio arrow in the Media group on the Insert tab, and then clicking Clip Art Audio to display the Clip Art task pane, where you can search for and select the sound you want. Clicking Find More At at the bottom of the task pane takes you to the Web site, where you can search for additional sounds.

  • Recorded sounds. You can record a sound or narration and attach it to a slide, all from within PowerPoint.

After you add a sound object, it appears on the slide represented by an icon. When the sound object is selected, a play bar appears below its icon with controls for playing the sound, and PowerPoint adds Format and Playback contextual tabs to the ribbon. You can change the icon as follows:

  • Drag the object to locate it anywhere on the slide.

  • Drag its sizing handles to make it larger or smaller.

  • Use commands on the Format tab to change its appearance, in much the same way that you would format a picture.

  • Click the Change Picture button to replace the default icon with a picture.

You can modify the sound itself on the Playback tab, as follows:

  • Click the Trim Audio button in the Editing group to edit the sound so that only part of it plays.

  • Specify Fade In and Fade Out settings to have the sound gradually increase and decrease in volume.

  • Click the Volume button to adjust the volume to Low, Medium, or High, or to mute the sound.

  • Specify whether the sound plays:

    • Automatically when the slide appears.

    • Only if you click its icon.

    • Throughout the presentation.

  • Select the Hide During Show check box to make the sound object invisible while the presentation is displayed in Reading view or Slide Show view.

  • Select the Loop Until Stopped check box to have the sound play continuously until you stop it.

  • Select the Rewind After Playing check box to ensure that the sound starts from the beginning each time it is played.

To play a sound, you must have a sound card and speakers installed. In Normal view, you can test the sound associated with a slide by clicking its icon and then either clicking the Play/Pause button on its play bar or clicking the Play button in the Preview group on the Playback contextual tab.

In this exercise, you’ll insert a sound clip into a slide, adjust the position of the sound object, change its picture, and make various other adjustments to its settings. Then you’ll insert an audio file into another slide and make the file play continuously throughout a presentation.

  1. On the Insert tab, in the Media group, click the Audio arrow, and then click Clip Art Audio.


    The Clip Art task pane opens, displaying thumbnails of common sound clips.

  2. In the Search for box, type birds, and then click Go.

    The task pane now displays thumbnails of bird calls.

  3. Click any thumbnail, click the arrow that appears, and then click Preview/Properties.

    The Preview/Properties dialog box for the sound clip you selected opens.


    When you display this dialog box, PowerPoint downloads and plays the sound clip.

  4. Click Close to close the dialog box, and continue previewing sound clips.

  5. When you are ready, double-click a sound clip that you think is appropriate for the slide, and then close the Clip Art task pane.

    We chose Birds Singing. A small speaker icon representing the sound object appears in the middle of the slide, along with a play bar. It is hard to see the icon because it is on top of the picture.

  6. Drag the sound object to the upper-left corner of the slide.

    The play bar moves with the sound object.


    The handles around the sound object indicate that you can resize it, just like any other object.

  7. On the play bar, click the Play/Pause button to hear the sound.


    The sound plays. Now let’s change the picture associated with the object.

  8. With the sound object selected, on the Format contextual tab, in the Adjust group, click the Change Picture button. Then in the Insert Picture dialog box, double-click the Bird picture in your Chapter11 practice file folder.

  9. On the Playback contextual tab, in the Audio Options group, display the Start list, and click Automatically. Then select the Loop until Stopped check box.

  10. On the View Shortcuts toolbar, click the Reading View button.


    PowerPoint plays the sound clip.

  11. Move the pointer over the bird representing the sound object, and when the play bar appears, click the Play/Pause button. Then press the Esc key to return to Normal view.

  12. Display the AGKCottage presentation, and view it in Reading view, pressing Esc after a few slides.

    This presentation would benefit from a “sound track.”

  13. With slide 1 displayed, on the Insert tab, in the Media group, click the Audio button. Then in the Insert Audio dialog box, double-click the Amanda file in your Chapter11 practice file folder.

  14. On the Playback tab, In the Audio Options group, display the Start list, and then click Play across slides. Then select the Hide During Show and Loop until Stopped check boxes.

  15. Switch to Reading view.

    The audio file plays while PowerPoint moves from slide to slide.

  16. Press Esc to stop the presentation and return to Normal view.