Chat Room Tips

Install Zoom Software

You will only need the free version of Zoom chat software to attend group classes and private lessons. If you are planning to use a laptop or desktop computer for our video chat lessons, please download and install "Zoom Client for Meetings". If you're planning to use a tablet or other mobile device for lessons, please install "Zoom Mobile Apps" listed lower on the page. Though it is possible to access our chat room from a browser, using Zoom's software will make available all features and allow for greater flexibility.

Seeing Clearly

To be able to see demonstrations clearly, please use the largest screen you have available, tablet and above are recommended. When present in the chat room, in the upper right corner of the Zoom window will be a small icon that will allow you to go to full screen. Another feature, also in the upper right, is the toggle for Gallery view (see everyone in the chat), and Active Speaker view (see only who is speaking or playing.)

Use External Speakers

Boosting the audio output of your computer system will help you in hearing examples and playing along; if available, please use external speakers. Headphones may also work, but please keep in mind that you'll want to be able to hear your violin too. Please test first—you may wish to avoid using noise canceling earbuds, or headphones that do not allow you to hear your instrument.

Stand Back a Bit

To help the teacher help you, please stand away from the camera so that your entire violin and bow arm can be seen. If you are using music, please place your music stand back, and to the left, of your computer. It is best for the teacher when the violin lengthwise position is parallel to the computer screen, and the downward bow motion is in the direction of the camera.

Set Software Preferences

Within the preferences of Zoom video chat software, there are options as to the resolution of your video. High Definition (HD) is great if you have the bandwidth, however unchecking the HD option may help with having a smoother delivery of video. In the advanced audio settings of Zoom, and also once we are in a meeting together, there will be the option of selecting "Preserve Original Audio" which will disable automated sound adjustments that might be negatively impacting the sound of a violin. Please check that your video is working and audio is not clipping (too loud) or is too low.

Hotspot Connection Better?

Some students have noted that the hotspot connection via a phone is actually faster and more stable than a wired/wireless base station connection. Experiment with connecting your tablet or computer to a phone hotspot if you're having connectivity issues.

Using a Browser

If you are connecting to our lessons using a browser, it is recommended to use Chrome.

Optional: Provide an Additional Angle

If you have more than one tablet or computer, and a strong internet connection, consider logging in both into our chat session, to offer a wider view, or closer view for the teacher. If using two angles, please turn off the sound output on one of the devices, this step will prevent audio feedback.