Editors note: pardon the step by step writing below – it wasn’t possible to make a video OF how to make a video…

Hangouts on Air (or HoA) is a free publishing and video conferencing service provided by Google.

A few of it’s features tie in nicely with what we’re doing at UPA.

  • Cloud based recording (while broadcasting live): No need to edit or upload files after you’re done recording.
  • Tons of discussion/interaction features during and after the broadcast.
  • Ties into Calendars, events and contacts within Google
  • Sessions publish through youtube (initially they are not listed), with the easy option of posting later to UPA for reference, or to social media for marketing.

The basic info from google can be found here.

Initiating a Session

  1. From your Google+ home page, hit “hangouts” from the dropdown menu at the left.
  2. Choose Hangouts on Air>”Start a Hangout on Air”.
  3. Give it a name and description, along with any hashtags in the description (e.g. #UPA, #synthesis).
  4. DELETE “Public” from the audience, and type in the students you’d like to communicate with.  For test sessions or codex, just enter in your own email.


  1. You’ll be taken to the launch screen of the HoA.  Hit start (it won’t be recording yet).
  2. “Skip” for “Invite Guests”
  3. Hit the gear icon at the top of the HoA window.
  4. Choose your sound input.  See next section for more on this.
  5. IMPORTANT: Switch “Voice” to “Studio”.  This will significantly increase the audio bandwidth.
  6. With those settings saved, check all the options on the left of the main window.  Here you’ll find your screen sharing, chat and other key options.
  7. Hit “Start Broadcast” to begin.

Simultaneous mic and DAW output to HoA.

This is the only tricky part.  We need both the microphone and the output of the DAW to be present in a single input (accessible by the HoA config).  Here’s a list of solutions:

  • RME cards have a beautiful workaround.  In totalmix, make a submix on an adat channel (e.g. ADAT 9-10).  With the adat channel selected, turn up both the mic input and the DAW output.  Then enable “loopback” for the ADAT channel.  Select the stereo adat channel as the input in googles config.  Boom!
  • Other cards often have a mixing front end app that allows for this same technique.  Motu, for instance, can also perform this loopback function.
  • The Soundflower app (Mac) is also an option, allowing you to route your main outs to a virtual input.
  • Since Pro Tools cards do not have a mixing utility app, you may need to hardwire the monitor output of Pro Tools into a new channel, then choose the new channel as your google input.
  • If all else fails, you can just leave a monitored aux in your session with a live mic on it.  The drawback is that you can’t change sessions during the recording, or fade with the master volume.

I’m available for help in this area at any time.  Send an email or comment below and we’ll figure it out!



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