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Author Topic: Real-time on-line music sessions  (Read 1023 times)

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Dave Sawdon

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Real-time on-line music sessions
« on: March 17, 2020, 07:16:56 PM »

Not sure if this is the best pigeon hole to put this in, but hopefully the mods will move it if there's a better home.

In common with many here (I suspect) I run a local session, which I've had to cancel for the foreseeable future. As an ex-techie I'd like to explore whether any of the conference systems (the corporate ones as well as Whatsapp, Skype, AWS, etcetera) are suitable for using for an on-line session; the obvious problem being latency. Has anyone any experience, whether good or bad, that is relevant?
If all else fails I'll have to send-out recordings of me playing through the session tune list ..... and nobody deserves that to be inflicted on them!!

Edited to add: if some form of on-line session turns-out to be feasible I'd like to reserve the name "Folk in the Cloud"  ;)
Dave
« Last Edit: March 17, 2020, 07:22:03 PM by Dave Sawdon »
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Peadar

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2020, 07:45:59 PM »

Not sure if this is the best pigeon hole to put this in, but hopefully the mods will move it if there's a better home.

In common with many here (I suspect) I run a local session, which I've had to cancel for the foreseeable future. As an ex-techie I'd like to explore whether any of the conference systems (the corporate ones as well as Whatsapp, Skype, AWS, etcetera) are suitable for using for an on-line session; the obvious problem being latency. Has anyone any experience, whether good or bad, that is relevant?
If all else fails I'll have to send-out recordings of me playing through the session tune list ..... and nobody deserves that to be inflicted on them!!

Edited to add: if some form of on-line session turns-out to be feasible I'd like to reserve the name "Folk in the Cloud"  ;)
Dave

I was starting to think of something like that. But you got there first.
I was thinking of "Skype My Ceilidh / Skype Mo Cheilidh"  then it occurred to me that it might have to be a very slow and steady session. When I Skype in to meetings in Inverness from Port Righ the lag is such that I hear myself coming back through the mics at the other end abot a quarter second behind. Mind you that sort of lag can be heard between choir and congregation singing in a large church. So it may not be insurmountable. I like the idea.
Peadar
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Maggie

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2020, 08:16:13 AM »

I am also interested in finding a way of playing together with a couple friends - they are in Scotland and I am in France.  I have been given some suggestions but being fairly illiterate about computers, I don’t know how to test them out......

If anyone can advise, I would be very grateful.  The suggestions are:
JamKazam; jammr; Jamulus and Ninjam

Maggie  :|||:
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2020, 11:50:41 AM »

Our guitar player is recommending Zoom. Anyone tried it?
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baz parkes

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2020, 12:02:37 PM »

Our guitar player is recommending Zoom. Anyone tried it?

Not tried it but it does seem to be being used by a lot of the Face book folky community...if that can be said to be a recommendation...
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Gary Chapin

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2020, 01:01:07 PM »

My experience with Zoom and GoogleHangouts (if that's what it is still called), is that latency and delay issues make it awful to play in "real time". I am trying to find such a solution and am experimenting with Jamkazam this week. Will report back, soonest.

G
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BradInNL

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2020, 01:15:55 AM »

I haven’t used to zoom to play with other people but my daughter had her group music class (that usually takes place in person) on zoom yesterday morning and it was great for that purpose...I wonder if lagging might become an issue when 2 or more people are trying to play together, especially if 1 or more don’t have a great connection.
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Pat McInnis

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2020, 04:56:30 PM »

Our guitar player is recommending Zoom. Anyone tried it?

I tried Zoom the other day with a friend because it has a very short lag but it's still present and I think even slow tunes would sound muddled. It also highlights the individual speaking while quieting the rest of the group. Pretty sure quieting is a word. Long story short, it's a no-go for group playing.
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gmatkin

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2020, 09:01:34 PM »

The usual apps for videoconferencing also have dreadful sound.

Cleanfeed is nice and clear sounding, but audio only and suffers from latency delays.

In conjunction with, say, Skype, I guess it might be a good option for a playaround or singaround.

You can record, also.

G

IanD

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2020, 11:09:47 PM »

The usual apps for videoconferencing also have dreadful sound.

Cleanfeed is nice and clear sounding, but audio only and suffers from latency delays.

In conjunction with, say, Skype, I guess it might be a good option for a playaround or singaround.

You can record, also.

G

Zoom is much better for instruments if you turn off the voice codec (advanced options under audio settings, enable original sound) -- see here...

https://youtu.be/50NoWIiYECA

Doesn't fix the latency problem but makes you sound less like a dalek in a dustbin ;-)
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Dave Sawdon

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2020, 12:16:04 PM »

Has anyone tried Jamkazam yet? I'm dubious about it working across the web (rather than an intranet) because of all the server and transmission delays, but it would be great to have my doubts proved wrong. I won't hold my breath because Mr Google suggests that there hasn't been much discussion of it for several years and, if it worked, that would not be the case.

Dave
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« Last Edit: April 03, 2020, 01:16:26 PM by Dave Sawdon »
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2020, 12:50:43 PM »

Has anyone tried Jamkazam yet? I'm dubious about it working across the web (rather than an intranet) because of all the server and transmission delays, but it would be great to have my doubts proved wrong. I won't hold my breath because Mr Google suggests that there hasn't been much discussion of it for several years and, if it worked, that would not be the case.

Dave
"Ya can't argue with the laws of physics, Jim"

I know (knowledgeable) people who claim to have had success using it in the states and that it is the best available site for music sessions.
Support is very limited now, but it still functions. You need an ethernet connection for acceptable  latency (if you're not too fussy), not wireless. Easy to do. I am sorting out my own trial with a couple of friends.
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Dave Sawdon

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2020, 01:36:34 PM »

Thanks Greg, I look forward to hearing(!) the results. When do you think you can report back? FWIW the latest info on the Jamkazam website seems to date from 2014

I can report that (as expected) Zoom does not work for choirs, unless you count everyone collapsing into hysterical laughter as a success.
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Winston Smith

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #13 on: April 04, 2020, 10:38:47 AM »

"unless you count everyone collapsing into hysterical laughter as a success."

Seeing as this has been a recurring occurrence in my choir during the 50 odd years of my membership, I imagined that it was a quite normal feature.
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Rick Fitzsimmons

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2020, 09:11:06 PM »

We have been using Zoom for a couple of jams a week.  As noted by others, latency is a big problem when trying to play real-time.  What we are doing is the leader of the tune is unmuted and all others are muted.  It is not optimal but allows us to gather and play sort of together.  Some setting on Zoom help.  Use Original Sound, disable Suppress Persistent Background Noise and Suppress Intermittent Background Noise seems to be the best we can get.  Somehow, Zoom thinks that button accordions are background noise, can you imagine that?
Anyway, better than not getting together.
Cheers,
Rick
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Anahata

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #15 on: April 20, 2020, 11:19:13 PM »

What we are doing is the leader of the tune is unmuted and all others are muted.

Yes, I'm in a regular singaround and a tune session that work that way.
The latest improvement has been to pipe the audio output from the laptop into an external amplifier and  decent pair of speakers. For users who have enabled "original sound" and turned off background noise / echo cancellation, it's almost as if they were in the room.
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Gary Chapin

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Re: Real-time on-line music sessions
« Reply #16 on: April 21, 2020, 02:50:22 PM »

That "original sound" thing is really important.
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