How to stream Dorico over Zoom using Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 4th Gen. interface

I want to give a shoutout to @Ulf for helping me figure out how to share Dorico over Zoom when I was under pressure to prepare for an online meeting with my composing coach. While fresh in my mind, I thought I would share the successful setup if anyone finds it useful.

Streaming video of Dorico via platforms such as Zoom is easy. Streaming Dorico audio is hard. At least, it was for me.

If you’ve ever tried to share a live session over Zoom with Dorico (or, for that matter, Cubase), you’ll quickly find that Zoom cannot pick up the audio from Dorico. The solution is to get the sound from Dorico routed into the microphone selected in Zoom Settings > Audio. Essentially, we want Dorico’s sound to “loop back” into the mic channel so that Zoom will pick up Dorico’s sound through the Microphone setting.

To do that, there are software solutions and hardware solutions. I found several discussions on setting up software solutions in this forum and almost nothing on a hardware solution.

Software Solutions. Two software solutions often discussed in this forum are Voicemeeter and ReaStream. Plenty of folks use these (and other software) solutions, but honestly, I didn’t have the time to figure them out—though I did take a stab at Voicemeeter without success in my limited time.

Hardware Solutions. The hardware solution uses an audio interface with loopback functionality to send the Dorico signal out in the same channel as the mic signal; in other words, again, to loop back the Dorico sound to the same channel used for the mic.

From my understanding, I needed an audio interface with a loopback function. I had a Focusrite 2i2 3rd Gen. interface, but it didn’t have loopback capability. (Other 3rd Gen. versions did, such as the 4i4, but, as I said, I didn’t have those versions.) When I learned that the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 4th Gen. interface has the loopback function, I bought it, and it works perfectly as the solution I needed.

There are useful tutorials on how to set it up here: Tutorials – Focusrite.

Now here is a bit of information that, had I realized it sooner, could have saved me hours of needless frustration: Even if you set the Focusrite Control 2 software that comes with it to activate “Direct Monitor,” which sends your mic and Dorico out through a Direct Mix channel, the Zoom Audio settings won’t “see” the Direct Mix channel; it will only see the Analog 1 + 2 Focusrite USB Audio, which works only the mic sound and not Dorico sound.

So, to make the Direct Mix channel visible and selectable in Zoom, you need to follow the instructions in this article: Selecting different I/O in non-ASIO Windows apps – Focusrite

It is of particular importance to expose additional channels from your Focusrite interface to non-ASIO applications (e.g. Skype, Discord, Zoom, Audacity, Camtasia). To do that, click the Focusrite Notifier icon in the taskbar, then click “Expose/Hide Windows Channels” (image is from the Focusrite site):

ExposeMenu

Once I did that, Zoom could see the Loopback L + R USB Audio, which is what we need. Here are my current Microphone settings in Zoom Settings > Audio:

I should mention that other audio interface brands will work, such as the Steinberg UR22C USB 3 Audio Interface, which @Ulf confirms works well for this purpose as he uses it himself: UR22C: The Perfect Portable Interface | Steinberg. The key is that the interface must have loopback capability.

I hope this is helpful to anyone desiring a hardware solution. I’m not an expert by any stretch, so I hope others will chime in if I have made any mistakes in explaining this or if anything is not clear.

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Regarding hardware solutions: Here are the settings for loop back if you use an RME interface.

  1. open TotalMix
  2. click on the wrench symbol on one of the Hardware Output Channels; I prefer to use an output for this that is not connected hardwarewise
  3. activate Loopback

In my example I use the channel SPDIF. So in Zoom or OBS I would set the audio input or microphone device to RME SPDIF. However, RME allows you to utilize any output channel for loopback.

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