A key concept that you need to understand to use JamKazam effectively is the personal mix vs. the master mix:
- Personal Mix - The personal mix is, as the name implies, your own personal mix, and the only thing the personal mix affects is what you personally hear. Each musician in the session has his or her own personal mix. You can change the personal mix to adjust the levels of the musicians in the session so that you are happy with the mix. Changes to your personal mix do not affect what other musicians in the session hear. So each musician has his/her own personal mix, which is great, because we've found each musician has different preferences about what mix works for him/her.
- Master Mix - There is only a single master mix for the session. When you change the input level of any musician/track in the session, it changes the level for everyone. The master mix is the mix that is used to set the levels for session recordings and live broadcasts. If you change the master mix, it will change the input levels for each track you change, and after you do this, musicians in the session may need to tweak their personal mix settings to get their personal mix back where they want it.
When you are in a session with one or more other musicians, your screen will look something like the one pictured below.
You can see your own tracks, and you can see the other musicians in the session. Your own tracks are displayed in the "my live tracks" left column of the screen. If you hover the mouse over the volume icon on any of your own tracks, a VU meter and fader control are displayed (pictured below).
If you either use your audio interface's input knob, or the displayed fader/slider above, to change your own track levels, this will affect both your personal mix and the master mix simultaneously. But generally once you have set your input levels on your audio interface to the right level, you won't need to change them. You'll tend to leave them where they are from one session to the next.
Other musicians are another story. You will find that you need to adjust other musicians' levels every time they enter your session, and sometimes more than once during a session. If you hover your mouse over another musician in the "other live tracks" middle column of the screen, the same kind of VU meter and fader are displayed (pictured below).
If you use this fader in the app to change another musician's level, it only affects your own personal mix. It does not affect the master mix, or what the other musician hears at all. You'll find that you need to use this control frequently, and you can do so without worrying about messing up the other musicians in your session.
If you want to make a recording in a session, or if you care what others are hearing via live broadcasts of your session, then you will need to check and adjust your master mix levels. To do this click the MIXER button in the toolbar at the top of the session screen (pictured below with arrow).
When you click this button, the master mix dialog box is displayed (pictured below).
While the master mix dialog box is open, the JamKazam application will play the master mix into your headphones (rather than your personal mix). So you can hover your mouse over the volume icons on any track in the dialog box, and change the level up or down. This changes the master input level for each track in the session, even though you can't physically turn the knob on the other musicians' audio interfaces. But this application feature lets you do essentially the same thing virtually in one place very quickly and easily.
If you're going to do this, make sure the other musicians in the session know you are about to do this, so that they aren't surprised when their own audio levels start changing.
One other quick note on mixers. If you open a backing track audio file into the session to play along with, it will be displayed in the right column of the screen titled "recorded audio" (pictured below).
If you are the one who opened the backing track audio file, then you can change the level of the audio file in the same way you'd change the level on any other audio track in the session. When you do this, it changes the backing track level in both the personal mix and the master mix for all musicians.
If someone else in your session opens and plays a backing track audio file, you will not be able to change the level of that backing track in your personal mix. The reason is that we are sending a single audio stream from the musician to you, and that stream includes both that musician's live audio and the backing track audio mixed together into a single stream. So you can adjust the musician's level up/down in your personal mix, but this will change both that musician's live performance and the backing track audio together.