Online Music Lessons: Tips and Tricks


Tips Before you Begin

  • We recommend using a laptop or desktop computer with an internal camera for your lessons.
  • Position the computer so that the camera can see the instrument you’re playing.
  • Shut down all other applications on your computer and make sure the wifi connection in your house is strong! You may have to ask others you live with to stop using the internet for the length of your lesson.
  • Internet connections of at least 20 mbps (download) and 10 mbps (upload) are best. If the connection is below 10 mbps (download) or 5 mbps (upload), an internet connection upgrade may be necessary for optimal transmission. Upload speeds below 5 mbps will produce poor quality video and audio. Speed quality can be tested here:
  • If you have a newer Mac laptop, these tend to have excellent internal microphones that do not require an external microphone.
  • We highly recommend the use an external microphone (must be a USB) or audio interface (which is more expensive but much better). See below for our recommendations!
  • For private one-to-one lessons, our instructors use a range of platforms including FaceTime (if you use an Apple product), Skype, and Zoom. For masterclasses, studio classes, and other group activities, Rocky Ridge uses an official Rocky Ridge  Zoom account. It is imperative that you manipulate your Zoom settings to optimize for music performance. See below for more information on this process.


Zoom Settings

1. Open Zoom

2. Find Zoom settings by clicking on the gear symbol on the top  right hand corner. 

3. Click on the “Audio” tab. 

4. Choose the correct speaker and microphone. These may be the computer’s own internal mic and speakers. 

5. You can manage the volume from here as well 

6. Uncheck the “automatic adjust” setting.

7. Next, head to “Advanced” to head to the advanced audio settings.

8. Check “Show in-meeting option to ‘Enable Original Sound’ from microphone” and disable both background noise options.  

9. Join the meeting. 

10. Make sure you see the message in the upper left hand corner that reads “turn off original sound.” That means you are using original sound. 

11. You can always check your audio settings from within a meeting by clicking on the up arrow next to the microphone icon on the lower left side of your screen.