Do you want to use Zoom Conference Software for any of the following? Online music lessons; fitness classes; virtual choir; virtual ensemble, band or orchestra?
If so, then it is very important that you get the audio settings right. In this step-by-step guide you will learn exactly how to put Zoom in “Music Mode”. Perfectly optimised audio settings for streaming audio. This guide accompanies the video tutorial below.
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High Fidelity Music Mode in Zoom
This post has been newly updated to incorporate recent updates to the Zoom Desktop Client. Now you can enable High Fidelity Music Mode! More details in the video and step-by-step guide below.
If you are new to video conferencing, and the studio hardware you need, then you might want to read our detailed post on the best studio gear for online music lessons.
Zoom in Music Mode – Video Tutorial
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Use OBS (Open Broadcaster Software) with Zoom
Get a new super power! If you combine the sheer power of OBS with Zoom conference software – or any other platform such as Skype, Teams, Meet – you can really upscale your teaching.
Use multiple camera angles, overlays and more. The video below shows you how to do this step by step. And you can use the equipment you already have. No need to spend hundreds to give it a go.
Zoom in Music Mode – Step-by-Step
Time needed: 10 minutes.
These are the steps you need to follow to optimise the audio settings in Zoom Conference Software
- Install the Zoom Client For Meetings Software (or Mobile App)
If possible, use your desktop computer or laptop and install the Zoom software – available from the download section on zoom.us. Alternatively, or additionally, you can install the Zoom Mobile App on iOS or Android
- Internet Connection
Position yourself as close as possible to your router for best Wi-Fi, or even better, connect to your router with an ethernet cable
- Shut Down Background Apps
Shut down all other apps and disable notifications to avoid distractions. This will also allow Zoom to run as efficiently as possible
- Connect Up Your Microphone/Interface
If possible, use an external usb microphone or audio interface and mic for the best audio signal
- Access Zoom Settings
Start up the Zoom Client on your desktop, and then open up the settings by clicking the gear icon.
- Choose Audio
Click on the Audio Tab
- Select the correct Speaker and Microphone
The microphone is the device you will be speaking and playing into, the speaker is where you will hear the sound of your student or collaborator.
- Get Control of Your Volume
Uncheck the ‘Automatically adjust microphone volume’ so that you can control the volume of your microphone.
- Leave Suppress Background Noise on Auto
Although Zoom suggests setting this to Low, you will be going to the advanced settings and disabling it – so you can ignore this here
- Access Advanced Audio Settings
Click the ‘Advanced’ Button to access the additional audio settings.
- Enable Original Sound
Make sure you enable ‘Show in-meeting option to “Enable Original Sound” from microphone. This will turn off what Zoom calls ‘enhancements’ such as noise suppression and echo cancellation. These so-called enhancements are good for conference situations where you may have unwanted noise from air conditioning fans, chairs scraping etc, but when you are trying to play music, they make your audio signal chop in and out.
Tick the boxes below to disable echo cancellation and enable High Fidelity Audio Mode.
Leave the dropdown box next to the Echo Cancellation above on Auto.
- Use Computer Audio
When you begin a new meeting choose ‘Join with Computer Audio’
- Turn On Original Sound
You should see a message in top left that says “Turn On Original Sound”. Make sure you click this to enable the High Fidelity Music Mode.
- You Can Check Audio Settings From Within Meeting
At any point during your Meeting you can check out the audio settings by clicking the up arrow next to the mic. You can check which devices you are using, you can test the audio, and you can access the Audio Settings.
- Stereo Mode in Zoom – Web Portal Settings
You will need to log in to the Zoom Web Portal at www.zoom.us then navigate to account management -> account settings. Scroll down until you find the option to Allow Users To Select Stereo Audio and turn this on.
- Stereo Mode in Zoom – Desktop Client Settings
If you now navigate to the advanced audio settings, you will see there is a new option to Use Stereo Audio
- Zoom Mobile App Settings
If you are using a mobile device, Open up the Zoom app, click the Settings gear icon.
- Select Meetings
Select the Meetings … option from the Settings pop-up window
- Scroll Down to ‘Use Original Sound’
Scroll down through the Meeting Settings to the option to “Use Original Sound”, and slide on to activate. The mobile device will then turn off the noise cancellation settings that disrupt audio.
- Zoom Mobile App – Enable Original Sound in Meeting
Every time you begin a new meeting in Zoom on your mobile device, you will have to Enable Original Sound within the meeting. This is not the default setting!
- Tell Your Students/Collaborators
Make sure your students or music collaborators know about the audio set-up in Zoom too!
What About Live Online Collaboration?
While Zoom is a GREAT platform for online teaching and video conferencing, it is not suitable for live online collaborations. This excellent article looks at whether online band practice is possible, and some of the gear you need https://imp.i114863.net/live-jam.
And here are some links to Live Jamming Platforms. Each has its own guidance on set up and usage. Note setup and success can be tricky! Try Jamulus or Jamkazam or Ninjam.
In addition, I have created a new playlist on YouTube with a couple of extra resources on strategies for virtual choirs and music lessons. You cannot use Zoom for live collaboration or playing together, so you have to adapt your teaching strategies accordingly.
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Follow the instructions above, and your digital audio stream will be the best it can be. Enjoy.
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