paplay - Play back audio files on a PulseAudio sound server


paplay [options] FILE

paplay --help

paplay --version


paplay is a simple tool for playing back audio files on a PulseAudio sound server. It understands all audio file formats supported by libsndfile.


-h | --help
 Show help.
 Show version information.
-v | --verbose
 Enable verbose operation. Dumps the current playback time to STDERR during playback.
-s | --server=SERVER
 Choose the server to connect to.
-d | --device=SINK
 Specify the symbolic name of the sink to play this file on.
-n | --client-name=NAME
 Specify the client name paplay shall pass to the server when connecting.
 Specify the stream name paplay shall pass to the server when creating the stream.
 Specify the initial playback volume to use. Choose a value between 0 (silent) and 65536 (100% volume).
 Explicitly choose a channel map when playing back this stream. The argument should be a comma separated list of channel names: front-left, front-right, mono, front-center, rear-left, rear-right, rear-center, lfe, front-left-of-center, front-right-of-center, side-left, side-right, top-center, top-front-center, top-front-left, top-front-right, top-rear-left, top-rear-right, top-rear-center, or any of the 32 auxiliary channel names aux0 to aux31.


Due to a limitation in libsndfile paplay currently does not always set the correct channel mapping for playback of multichannel (i.e. surround) audio files, even if the channel mapping information is available in the audio file.


The PulseAudio Developers <mzchyfrnhqvb (at) 0pointer (dot) net>; PulseAudio is available from


pulseaudio(1), pacat(1)

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