Re: javax.sound.sampled supported formats?

Knute Johnson <>
Mon, 05 Jan 2009 10:53:33 -0800
David Lee Lambert wrote:

I'm trying to add some mouse-over sound-effects to a small Java Swing
application. I've converted the audio-files to .au (8 Khz, ?-law)
format because I found a tip somewhere (
) that says that's the default format for applets, and to save space.
I put together the following code to actually play the file based on
an example I found somewhere else:

           AudioInputStream aIn
          = AudioSystem.getAudioInputStream(

           AudioFormat fmt = aIn.getFormat();
           System.err.println("Playing clip, format="+fmt);
           SourceDataLine aLine = (SourceDataLine) // (line 102)
          new DataLine.Info(SourceDataLine.class,fmt));

           int n;
           byte[] buf = new byte[8200];
           do {
          n =, 0, buf.length);
          if (n>0)
             aLine.write(buf, 0, n);
           } while (n>0);


However, on Linux with Sun JRE 1.5 (the only platform I care about
for this particular program), I get an exception when that code gets

java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: No line matching interface
SourceDataLine supporting format ULAW 8000.0 Hz, 8 bit, mono, 1 bytes/
frame, is supported.
        at javax.sound.sampled.AudioSystem.getLine(
        at com.lmert.kidmenu.Program$

Any clues on what I'm doing wrong? Is there an even simpler way to do
this, outside an applet?


Applets can play 8 bit 8khz u-law files in au format.

JavaSound has a lot more options but one of the problems is there are
thousands of audio formats and they can be in any number of file
formats. What formats can be played is very dependent on your sound
card and there are thousands of those too. My card for example, cannot
play 8 bit 8khz u-law audio.

One option that was mentioned was to convert the audio format that you
read from the file to an audio format that can be played. See my code
below, it converts the format to PCM_SIGNED that can be played by most
cards. Andrew's Clip idea is a good one too, see the second code
example. The AudioClip and Clip are two different classes.

import javax.sound.sampled.*;

public class Play {
     public static void main(String[] args) {
         class MyLineListener implements LineListener {
             public void update(LineEvent le) {
                 LineEvent.Type type = le.getType();

         try {
             AudioInputStream fis =
              AudioSystem.getAudioInputStream(new File(args[0]));
             System.out.println("File AudioFormat: " + fis.getFormat());
             AudioInputStream ais = AudioSystem.getAudioInputStream(
             AudioFormat af = ais.getFormat();
             System.out.println("AudioFormat: " + af.toString());

             int frameRate = (int)af.getFrameRate();
             System.out.println("Frame Rate: " + frameRate);
             int frameSize = af.getFrameSize();
             System.out.println("Frame Size: " + frameSize);

             SourceDataLine line = AudioSystem.getSourceDataLine(af);
             line.addLineListener(new MyLineListener());

             int bufSize = line.getBufferSize();
             System.out.println("Buffer Size: " + bufSize);


             byte[] data = new byte[bufSize];
             int bytesRead;

             while ((bytesRead =,0,data.length)) != -1)

         } catch (Exception e) {

import javax.sound.sampled.*;

public class PlayClip {
     public static void main(String[] args) {
         try {
             AudioInputStream ais =
              AudioSystem.getAudioInputStream(new File(args[0]));
             AudioFormat af = ais.getFormat();
             Clip line = AudioSystem.getClip();
         } catch (Exception e) {


Knute Johnson
email s/nospam/knute2009/

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