How to Adjust Volume and Sounds in Windows 8

The Sound area in the Windows 8 Hardware and Sound category lets you adjust your PC’s volume, a handy commodity when trying to sneak in a computer game on a Windows tablet during a boring business meeting.

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Most Windows 8 tablets come with toggle-switch volume controls mounted along their left or right edge. The top button turns up the volume; the lower button decreases the volume. Experiment with them a bit before playing Angry Birds in the board room.

To turn down your PC’s volume from the desktop, click the little speaker by your clock and slide down the volume. No speaker on your taskbar? Restore it by right-clicking the taskbar’s clock, choosing Properties, and turning the Volume switch to On.

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To mute your PC, click the little speaker icon at the bottom of the sliding control. Clicking that icon again lets your computer blare music again.

Click the word Mixer at the bottom of the sliding volume bar to set different volumes for different desktop programs. You can quietly detonate explosives in your favorite game while still allowing your desktop’s e-mail program to loudly announce any new messages. (Note: The volume levels for Start screen apps won’t appear here, unfortunately.)

To adjust the sound quickly from the Start menu on a touchscreen, summon the Charms bar by sliding a finger inward from the screen’s right edge. When the Charms bar appears, tap the Settings icon and then tap the Sound icon. A sliding control appears, letting you slide it up or down to adjust the volume. (Slide the control to the bottom to mute the speakers.)

For more information about Windows 8 and its features, explore Windows 8 For Dummies, available online.

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