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Core Audio

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Core Audio
Developer(s)Apple Inc.
Initial release2003
Stable release
Operating systemmacOS, iOS
TypeDeveloper library

Core Audio is a low-level API for dealing with sound in Apple's macOS and iOS operating systems. It includes an implementation of the cross-platform OpenAL.[1]

Apple's Core Audio documentation states that "in creating this new architecture on Mac OS X, Apple's objective in the audio space has been twofold. The primary goal is to deliver a high-quality, superior audio experience for Macintosh users. The second objective reflects a shift in emphasis from developers having to establish their own audio and MIDI protocols in their applications to Apple moving ahead to assume responsibility for these services on the Macintosh platform."[2]


It was introduced in Mac OS X 10.0 (Cheetah).[3]


Core Audio supports plugins, which can generate, receive, or process audio streams; these plugins are packaged as a bundle with the extension .component.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Core Audio Overview: OpenAL (Open Audio Library)". Apple Inc. February 11, 2014. Retrieved January 28, 2015.
  2. ^ "Audio and MIDI on Mac OS X" (PDF). Apple Computer. May 29, 2001. p. 7. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 11, 2008. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  3. ^ "Apple Developer Documentation".
  4. ^ Singh 2006, p. 78.


  • Singh, Amit (June 19, 2006). Mac OS X Internals: A Systems Approach. Addison-Wesley Professional. ISBN 978-0-13-270226-3.

External links[edit]