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Select an AirPlay device to stream audio from the menu bar System 10.8
To play your Mac's audio over an AirPlay device (like an Apple TV or AirPort Express), the standard way is to open System Preferences, then click on the Sound pane, then the Output tab, then select the device.

There's a much quicker way, however. If you have the Volume menu visible in the menubar, clicking on this icon displays a simple volume slider. But if you hold the Option key when you click on the icon, you can select audio inputs and outputs directly, including nearby devices compatible with AirPlay.

[kirkmc adds: This isn't new, at least the part about using an Option-click to choose input and output devices. It's worth pointing it out again, however, because you can now choose AirPlay devices as well from this menu. As noted in the comments below, it seems that this menu only displays the last selected AirPlay device.]
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Select an AirPlay device to stream audio from the menu bar
Authored by: gentux on Jul 27, '12 10:30:38AM

Actually I didn't know of it but very handy for my HTMac whose optical out is connected to a surround sound receiver when I just want to switch to HDMI out instead.



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Select an AirPlay device to stream audio from the menu bar
Authored by: j0nathan on Jul 27, '12 10:37:41AM

This is a really useful shortcut, though can anyone else with multiple AirPlay devices confirm that only one AirPlay device appears in the menu when all are available via the sound control panel.



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Select an AirPlay device to stream audio from the menu bar
Authored by: kirkmc on Jul 28, '12 01:27:35AM

It seems that it's the last used AirPlay device. I have several, and after switching to one then back to system audio, the previously selected AirPlay device shows up.

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Select an AirPlay device to stream audio from the menu bar
Authored by: otrfan on Jul 27, '12 11:40:21AM

I can see my Airplay speakers from the Sound Preferences but not from the option-click method. Is there some additional step needed to make this shortcut work?



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Select an AirPlay device to stream audio from the menu bar
Authored by: jsk on Jul 29, '12 02:37:54PM

Have you tried holding down the option key while you press one of the volume keys on the keyboard? Launches Preferences and opens up the Sound Output pane in Tiger (Don't have a Mac that can run Mountain Lion; so I can't test it there.).



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