Windows has a handy feature called “ducking” that can automatically lower the volume of your music when a voip call comes into Lync. You can control how or whether the music is ducked by opening the Sound applet from the control panel or by right-clicking on the volume control in Windows’ system tray. It gives you four options:
- Mute all other sounds
- Reduce the volume of other sounds by 80%
- Reduce the volume of other sounds by 50%
- Do nothing
A fifth option would be really nice: Pause all other sounds. Microsoft already knows that some people would really like to have that ability, so they actually built it into Windows Media Player. If you are using WMP to play music or watch a video when a call comes in, it automatically pauses until you hang up the call. If you’re using iTunes or QuickTime, you’ll have to pause it manually or just make due with the lower volume. Until recently, if you were to manually pause iTunes or QuickTime or whatever is playing your media during the call, if it is still paused when the call ends, Windows wouldn’t restore it to normal volume. Fortunately Microsoft fixed this, making all of this a much more useful feature.
I’d be very interested in hearing from readers on how their favorite media player handles sound and video playback during incoming calls.