Series of tutorials to get the most out of your EarMaster software
- Creating and assigning EarMaster Courses
- Using a microphone for vocal input
- Importing and using MusicXML files
* Tutorial for teachers using EarMaster Cloud. Most of the content of the tutorial also apply to EarMaster Teacher Ed. and EarMaster Lab Packs.
Things you need:
1. A microphone. There are several options:
- A computer with a built-in microphone. All laptops with a webcam usually have a built-in microphone.
- a USB microphone
- a microphone plugged into an external USB soundcard
2. A pair of headphones
Make sure your microphone and headphones are connected properly to your computer, and that the input and output volumes are set correctly.
To do that, do that following:
Windows: Right-click on the speaker icon at the bottom of your screen and choose “Recording devices”. Make sure that your microphone is displayed with a check mark, and that the meter moves up and down when you speak into the mic.
Mac: Go to Preferences, click on “Sound”, make sure that your mic is selected as input device, and that the level meter moves when you speak into the mic.
- Start EarMaster
- Go to FILE-->USER PROPERTIES and make sure the appropriate vocal range is selected for your voice. If you are in doubt of your vocal range, please ask your teacher or find references in music theory reference books or on the web. The most common vocal ranges are soprano or mezzo-soprano (slightly deeper) for female and baritone or tenor (slightly higher pitched) for male.
- Select an activity that requires the use of a microphone, such as interval singing, sight-singing or melody imitation.
- If it is the first time you use those activities, a microphone setup tool should pop up. Follow the instructions carefully to make sure everything is set up properly.
- If the setup tool doesn't show up automatically, you can open it from the TOOLS menu, by clicking on “Microphone Calibration Tool”.
Notice: the precision of the pitch and beat detection you get in the setup tool is exactly the same as how EarMaster will interpret your answers. Therefore, be very careful not to leave the setup tool before your voice and clapping are recognized correctly by EarMaster.
In most activities, microphone is not turned on by default.
To activate the microphone as answering method, click on the microphone icon at the top right of the window.
If sound is registered by the software, a level meter right beside the mic icon will move up and down, and EarMaster is ready to detect the notes you sing or clap.
Notice: It is highly recommended to use headphones, so that the sounds played by the software, such as the metronome ticks for example, are not going into the mic and considered as part of your answers.
FAQ about microphone input:
Q: The tones I sing are visible on the staff, but then disappear. Why?
A: You need to hold the tones you sing for some time before they are considered a confirmed answer. You can define how long you are expected to hold the tone in TOOLS-->PREFERENCES-->Auto Insert. By default, it is set to 1600ms, but if you find it to be too much, you could set it to 600ms
Q: Should I invest in an expensive microphone for better results?
A: The pitch detection has been optimized to work great with any kind of microphone, so a simple webcam mic will actually do just great.
Q: I can’t get it to work. What can I do?
A: If you have followed the instructions of this guide, but couldn't get the mic input to work, please get in touch with our support staff. We'll do our best to assist you.
EarMaster can use MusicXML files in several activities.
MusicXML is a file format for music notation which makes it possible to exchange music scores across various music programs. Most notation programs, such as Finale, Sibelius, Notion, MuseScore or Pizzicato, can export music scores as MusicXML. These MusicXML files can be imported in EarMaster and used in several activities such as Melodic Dictation, Sight-singing, Melody Imitation, and most of the Rhythmic activities.
Notice however that EarMaster will only be able to import music made of melodic content on up to 4 staves. Chords notated on a single staff are not supported yet.