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First Time Setup - Step 2 - Select and Test Audio Gear - Windows

Last Updated: Jun 22, 2014 02:12PM CDT
In step 2 of the first time setup process, you select the audio gear you want to use with JamKazam, and then let JamKazam run a test on your gear to make sure its performance is good enough to support online music sessions.

On Windows:
  • If you are using the built-in microphone and headphone jack on your computer for audio, it is highly likely that your computer's audio system will be using a technology called Windows kernel streaming.
  • If you are using an external audio interface that you connect to your computer, ideally the company that produced your audio interface also built an ASIO driver for your interface. If they did, you should definitely use this driver as it will give you the best performance and reliability. But if not, you'll use Windows kernel streaming with your audio interface.
  • There is also a driver for Windows called ASIO4ALL, but we do not recommend it for use with JamKazam, both because it's very complicated to configure and use, and because we've observed that latency often builds up during sessions when using this driver.

If you are using a built-in or external audio interface with Windows kernel streaming, following is a video that shows how to use select and test your interface in step 2 of the first time setup process:

Select and Test Audio Gear - Windows Kernel Streaming

If you are using an external audio interface with an ASIO driver, following is a video that shows how to use select and test your interface in step 2 of the first time setup process:

Select and Test Audio Gear - Windows ASIO

Configuring your ASIO driver is pretty straightforward. Leave your sample rate set to 48kHz, and set something that is usually called "sample size" or "buffer size" or "frame size" down as low as it will go. We haven't encountered an ASIO driver that cannot easily pass the latency test threshold to play on JamKazam, with the exception of a couple of very flaky interfaces.

Configuring your kernel streaming settings is unfortunately much more of an experimental, try-it-and-see-what-works process, and it's hard for us to tell you definitively what to do. We can say that when using an external audio interface with kernel streaming, we haven't seen any such interface work with a frame size set lower than 10 milliseconds. And we've seen them work with buffer sizes both set to zero, or sometimes both set to 1, and even sometimes with the input buffer set to 6 and the output buffer set to 5. When using the built-in audio system on your computer with kernel streaming, we sometimes see these systems work with the frame size set all the way down to 2.5 milliseconds, and the input and output buffers set to 1 millisecond. This can delivery very low latency when it works. The bottom line is that you'll need to wear headphones while experimenting with these settings, and after you make any change to the settings, click the Resync button, and then talk and/or play into the mic, and listen to the audio. If your audio sounds bad, then you know the settings you're trying are not working, so try something else until you find a combination that sounds clear. Once you reach this point, we'd also advise letting the audio run for a minute or so to make sure it stays clear reliably.

If you are struggling and can't get this step to work, please using the "Post a Public Question" in the right column of this page to submit a support request, and we'll be happy to see if we can help you get things working properly.

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