A common little annoyance faced by Windows desktop users is manually muting background music volume when starting a video on, say, YouTube or Facebook. We’ve discovered a handy little app which will automate this chore for good.
How many times has this happened to you? You’re enjoying upbeat music, but temptation has made you open a YouTube video. Ordinarily you would have to ALT + Tab to your music player, manually pause the music, play the video and resume music back once the video concludes.
Although it isn’t deal-breakingly bad, stopping music manually is indeed an annoying thing you have to do manually when one would expect Windows to smartly mute it when it sees you play another video or audio which obviously has greater priority.
Such an arduous process is unbecoming in the era of amazing technologies and software at our disposal, wouldn’t you agree?
Mute.Fm Automates Audio Volume Management In Windows
This is where Mute.Fm [Official Website] comes into play. A handy piece of software available for Windows, Mac AND Linux.
To better help you understand the purpose of the application. You can have your music playing in the background, and if you should decide to watch a YouTube video out of the blue, the application will automatically pause your music playback until the video ends or a certain period of silence (on the desktop) elapses.
The process works itself until you, of course, exit Mute.fm. This essentially saves you the trouble of micromanaging your music playback applications and your internet browsing experiences.
If you want to see it action, have a look at at the video below:
As you can see. Mute.Fm works in an amazing way to automatically manage background music volume when you start playing videos in another app or browser such as Chrome or Firefox.
Although the website mentions that it works best with Windows 7 and 8, I had a good amount of luck with Windows 10. I was successful in testing Mute.fm with the latest version of iTunes, though Windows Media Player just didn’t work for some odd reason even though it is claimed as being supported.
Mute.fm supports iTunes, foobar2000, Spotify, Zune, Windows Media Player, and Winamp.
On Windows at least, there are two variants of the app, the primary difference being on your usage level. If you are an average user who listens to music in one of the desktop music apps mentioned above and just want it to automatically pause music when you play videos, then the vanilla variant of the app is the best fit for you.
Mute.fm+ – the more advanced variant – brings support for web-based music players like Soundcloud, or 8Tracks but in order to do so, it bundles its own Chromium-based web browser which you have to use in order to make use of Mute.fm’s core functionality.
Settings Up Mute.fm
To make it work with my version of Windows 10 (10586.218), I used vanilla Mute.fm without any problems right out of the installer.
Although it took some time for trial and error to try and make it work with Windows Media Player, I eventually had first time success with iTunes in successfully fading out music when the video is playing and automatically fading music back in when the video ends.
If you’re like me and want your music to have a minimal gap of resuming to playback, then you simply have to open the application from your taskbar, and navigate to the Options menu on the toolbar.
In here you can click on Timeouts.
In here you will have one of the boxes give you the option of “Silence before music fade-in“. By default this value is at 7.00 (7 Seconds) you can set this video to 1.00 or 2.00 to quickly speed up the gap of silence to resume your music with speed.
All in all, this is an extremely satisfying audio management tool. Even though the developer hasn’t updated the application in a year, and the lack of VLC support is a bit disappointing, Mute.fm has MUCH to offer. I just wish Microsoft would now build this right into Windows so music is paused / faded out as I play something else.
If you are interested, the developer has made the source code and relevant material available on his GitHub profile!