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10.7: Fine volume control System 10.7
In past versions of Mac OS X, you could hold down Shift+Option while pressing the volume up and down buttons to get finer controls than the usual (a quarter of a box would change instead of a full one). Unfortunately, it appears that this functionality has been removed in Lion.

You can use some simple AppleScript to finely change the volume (on a scale from 0 to 100). Here's a little script to increment the volume by 2% (roughly what the Shift+Opt adjustment did):
set currentVolume to output volume of (get volume settings)
set volume output volume (currentVolume + 2)
To decrement the volume by 2%, replace that plus sign near the end with a minus sign.

You can save these scripts as applications and put them in your dock/menu bar, paste it into Automator and make a service (which can be given a keyboard shortcut), put it in your menu bar with an app like FastScripts, or give it a keyboard shortcut with an app like Keyboard Maestro.

This is a solution, but it's certainly less convenient that the old way. I'm hoping that this feature's omission was an oversight that will be corrected in a future 10.7.x update.

[crarko adds: It does indeed seem to be gone. That's an odd thing to have removed. I ran the script from the AppleScript Editor and it does do the finer adjustment.]
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10.7: Fine volume control | 9 comments | Create New Account
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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: poenn on Aug 18, '11 02:26:48PM

Thatís one of the things I immediately noticed since I used this all the time. Itís not as convenient as it once was, but thanks for sharing!

Iím glad that they at least have kept the 'very low volume feature' which is triggered by

1) reduce volume to just 1 bar
2) press F11 to lower the volume to 0 bars
3) press the mute key (F10)

This was always even a little lower than going with Shift+Option to the last audible setting.



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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: SirPavlova on Oct 04, '11 01:35:36PM

This is a fantastic tip. Running Lion on my current-gen iMac, 1/16th is still loud. Thank you!



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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: schutt on Aug 18, '11 09:20:27PM

This one of the important missing features that are delaying my `upgrade' to Lion. I believe they also removed the sub-steps in the brightness control, which are also useful for those of us who use our Mac as our TV.



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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: Zettt on Aug 26, '11 03:26:36AM
I would like to add the following line to this script, which plays the volume changing sound after it has been altered. Just like with the normal volume controls.

-- play volume changing sound at new volume
do shell script "afplay /System/Library/LoginPlugins/BezelServices.loginPlugin/Contents/Resources/volume.aiff"


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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: Anonymous on Mar 03, '12 05:43:58AM
It's more convenient to use:

do shell script "afplay /System/Library/LoginPlugins/BezelServices.loginPlugin/Contents/Resources/volume.aiff > /dev/null 2>&1 &"

Then you can trigger the script faster in succesion. This way - when assigned to a key - you can change the volume as fast as you would with the default volume buttons.

I got this hint at http://apple.stackexchange.com/q/42347/13414

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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: teckno101 on Sep 11, '11 10:12:23PM
I added two lines to prompt for what value you want to set it to, this allows you to save it as an application.
set question to display dialog "Enter Volume:" default answer "5"
set inputedNum to text returned of question
set currentVolume to output volume of (get volume settings)
set volume output volume (inputedNum)
Thanks for the hint, it works great now!!!!

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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: Anonymous on Mar 03, '12 05:47:17AM

Does anybody know, how I can show the notification for the volume change? By notification I mean the usual grey picture when you press the volume buttons.



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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: Greg A on Apr 02, '12 05:59:08AM

I was annoyed by losing this functionality when upgrading to Lion, so I wrote this app:http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/bettervolume/id503126478?mt=12

Because of app store restrictions I couldn't override the actual media keys on the keyboard, but it allows you to pick the hotkeys. If you have a keyboard which has the media keys on F10, F11, and F12 you can switch to using those keys as function keys and assign those (I added a wizard in the app to assist with making that change).



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10.7: Fine volume control
Authored by: Greg A on Apr 02, '12 09:06:50AM