This section gives a quick overview of playing audio files on PC type computers (not just those based on Intel chips).
Most PCs have at least a speaker built in, so theoretically all you need is the right software. Unfortunately when this is used the sound quality suffers greatly. There are several DOS programs avaliable that allow you to play a certain sound files through it.
There is also an unsupported Microsoft Windows driver that allows all multimedia windows programs to play sound out of the speaker. The best way to get this driver is to goto Microsofts web site ( http://www.microsoft.com) and search for speaker.exe.
Most modern PC's come with a sound card and Microsoft Windows installed. There should be a program called "mediaplayer" that will allow you to play .wav files.
I currently do not have any information on programs to play audio on Atari platforms.
On a Tandy 1000 or 2500, sounds can be played and recorded with DeskMate Sound (SOUND.PDM), or if they are not stored in compressed format, they can also be played by a program called PLAYSND. Playsnd also plays ".voc", ".wav", ".iff", ".mod" samples, and headerless 8-bit PCM (signed or unsigned). The author, John Ball (firstname.lastname@example.org) has decided to place the program and source code in the public domain. Playsnd will also play on the PC speaker. Also, Tspak (see above) contains programs to record and play ".wav" files.
Players for Amiga's can be found at ftp://wuarchive.wustl.edu/systems/amiga/aminet/mus/play.
Malcolm Slaney from Apple writes:
[...] there are MANY tools for working with sound on the Macintosh. Three applications that come to mind immediately are SoundEdit (formerly by Farralon and now by MacroMind/Paracomp), Alchemy and Eric Keller's Signalyze. There are lots of other tools available for sound editing (including some of the QuickTime Movie tools.)"
Bill Houle sent the following lists:
Popular commercial apps are indicated with a [*]. All other programs mentioned are shareware/freeware available from SUMEX and the various mirror sites, or check archie for the nearest FTP location. MAC SOUND EDITORS Sample Editor [Garrick McFarlane, McFarlaneGA@Kirk.Vax.Aston.Ac.UK] Plays AIFF and 'snd' sounds. Can convert between AIFF and 'snd'. Can record from built-in mic. Can add effects such as fade, normalize, delay, etc. Wavicle [Lee Fyock] Plays SoundEdit files. Can convert to 'snd'. Can record from built-in mic. Can add effects such as fade, filter, reverb, etc. [*]SoundEdit/SoundEdit Pro [Farallon/MacroMind*Paracomp] Plays SoundEdit and 'snd' sounds. Can read/write SoundEdit files and 'snd' sounds. Can record from built-in mic. Can add effects such as echo, filter, reverb, etc. MAC SOUND PLAYERS Sound-Tracker [Frank Seide] Plays Amiga SoundTracker files in foreground or background. Macintosh Tracker [Thomas R. Lawrance, email@example.com] Plays Amiga SoundTracker files in foreground or background. A port of Marc Espie's Unix Tracker version with Frank Seide's core player thrown in for good measure. The Player [Antoine Rosset & Mike Venturi] Plays AIFF, SoundEdit, MOD, and 'snd' files. SoundMaster (aka [*]Kaboom!) [Bruce Tomlin] Associates SoundEdit files to MacOS events. SndControl [Riccardo Ettore, firstname.lastname@example.org] Associates 'snd' sounds to MacOS events. Canon 2 [Glenn Anderson, email@example.com; Jeff Home, firstname.lastname@example.org] Plays AIFF or 'snd' files in foreground or background. Another Mac play/convert program: "It's called SoundApp. I wrote it, (email@example.com) and it's FreeWare. It will play: SoundCap, SoundEdit, WAVE, VOC, MOD, Amiga IFF (8SVX), Sound Designer, AIFF, AU, Mac Resource, and DVI ADPCM. It can convert all the above to System 7 sound resources (except MOD where just the samples are extracted.) And it will double buffer."