Jump to: ASIO4ALL | Windows Low-Latency In Depth
ASIO4ALL Quick Start
For the best FarPlay experience, a dedicated audio interface with manufacturer-provided ASIO audio drivers is recommended. However, the quickest way to get up and running with FarPlay is to use the microphone and headphone jack built-in to your PC! To do this, you will need an audio driver called ASIO4ALL.
While there is a newer beta version out, we recommend ASIO4ALL version 2.14 This is because newer versions dropped support for “Off-line Settings” which makes it significantly more difficult to configure. Download and install ASIO4ALL and be sure to check the box for Off-Line Settings:
Once ASIO4ALL is installed, launch the Off-line Settings panel from your Start Menu:
This will open the ASIO4ALL window. Select your computer’s internal soundcard. The name will vary from PC to PC but the most common brand by far is Realtek. Use the slider at the bottom to change your ASIO buffer size. 128 is a good place to start.
Finally, open your FarPlay preferences by launching FarPlay and navigating to Menu -> Preferences in the top left corner. Select ASIO4ALL as your audio device and match the rest of your settings to the screenshot below. Click “Apply” and have fun jamming!
Windows Low-Latency, In Depth
Windows tends to have more issues getting down to real-time latencies than Macs, especially on laptops.
The best guide we’ve found on the internet for optimizing Windows for real-time latencies can be found here: How to Optimize a Windows Laptop for Low Latency Real Time Audio. It’s full of tweaks that will allow you to handle lower latencies with fewer audio dropouts. These tweaks range from very basic and safe (close all other applications and plug your laptop in) to more advanced/risky if done incorrectly (measuring DPC latency and removing unnecessary drivers). Only do the ones you feel confident about and do so at your own risk. Of course, the more optimizations you are able to apply, the better your computer will run FarPlay or any other professional audio software (ignore the recommendation about unplugging ethernet, of course!).
Before using FarPlay, ensure that the latest manufacturer-provided ASIO driver for your audio interface is installed. This is usually found on the manufacturer’s website in the “Support” or “Downloads” section. If your audio interface doesn’t offer this, you can try the more general ASIO4ALL driver.
The preferences for your ASIO driver are usually accessed through an icon in your system tray. If you have an RME Fireface interface, for example, you’ll access the settings here:
In your ASIO driver’s settings panel, look for an option that says Buffer Size. Your options are typically powers of two (64, 128, 256, etc…).
Lower numbers are faster but more prone to audio errors/dropouts. You need to find the lowest buffer size with little to no audible audio dropouts. In my experience, 256 tends to be the maximum I can use to play with a remote partner in real-time; however, 128 and 64 are more comfortable. If 256 still has too many audio dropouts you need to apply more optimizations as described above.
FarPlay also has its own Buffer Size setting. It is simplest to have FarPlay reflect the same Buffer Size as your ASIO audio driver. You can do so by opening FarPlay, going to Menu -> Preferences, ensuring the correct ASIO Interface is selected, and choosing “ASIO Buffer Size” in the Audio Buffer Size setting. Don’t forget to click “Apply” after you have selected your desired settings.