Support » Adding songs

In this guide you'll learn a few ways to play other songs in Synthesia: those you created yourself or found elsewhere. Several methods are covered.

First, it's important to understand which types of music Synthesia can use: MIDI or MusicXML files. Those file formats contain the list of instructions that describe which notes to play using which instruments at which times. This is different than a WAV or MP3 file which only contain a squashed-down signal ready to send out to speakers.

So, be sure you've got a MIDI or MusicXML version of the song you'd like to play. Most sheet music editing software can export either kind of file.

Playing a Song Once


Often, the fastest way to jump right into a song is to use the Synthesia shortcuts built right into your operating system.

After locating the song file on your desktop or in a folder, try this:

On Windows: Right-click the song and choose "Play in Synthesia".

If you're a Mac user, the process is very similar. After locating the song file on your desktop or in a folder:

On a Mac: Right-click the song, hover "Open With", and select "Synthesia".

(If you've got a trackpad instead of a mouse, click the song with two fingers.)

Adding Songs to Synthesia's List

To make a song appear in the list inside Synthesia, it takes a few more steps. In the long term, the time spent setting this up is worth the extra convenience of having all your songs shown inside Synthesia.

Start by deciding where you'd like to store your songs on your computer. This can be in your user account's premade Music folder or some new folder you create yourself.

For this example, we'll create a "MIDI Songs" folder on the desktop.

Copy or move your song files into this folder.

(The rest of this example is a little contrived. Synthesia already scans all the folders on your desktop for songs. A more realistic example would be if your "MIDI Songs" folder was going to be stored on a USB flash drive, a secondary data drive, or a network location.)


Start Synthesia and select Settings from the title screen.

Choose the Songs tab from the list at the left.

Locate and click the large + button below the list of searched folders.


In the window that appears, use the large Desktop, Home, Documents, etc. shortcuts to help navigate to the folder that contains your songs.

Single click entries in the folder list to navigate.

Once you find and navigate inside your desired folder, it should show the number of songs found at the bottom of the window.

Click the Add button in the top-right corner.


That's it! From now on, when you start Synthesia, it will search your folder for your custom songs.

Be sure to check our list of Guides for more step-by-step instructions on getting the most out of Synthesia!