latency problem recording with zoomh5 [SOLVED]

I’ve managed to get audacity to see my line4 input to the computer, i can hear it on the monitor, but there is a latency and i am worried i won’t be able to solve this. I want to be able to lay down new tracks along with existing tracks, but if there is this lag, i don’t see how that is possible. Is there any way to defeat this? I want to hear what i’m playing in the headphones, along with the pre-existing tracks. Hewp!

So please round off the topic you started Can't record using zoom h5 xlr input, line 3 or 4 by telling us how you did that. It might help other users.

Turn off Transport > Software Playthrough at the top of Audacity then monitor in the H5.


Thanks for that one, Gale! I’ll try that out tonight and see what happens!

so, i imported audio i’d recorded with the zoom h5, and turned off the transport/software playthrough, selected the h5 headphones as playback, but i can’t hear what i’m playing through the h5 in my headphones - only after i’ve recorded. So, that eliminated the lag, because i can’t hear anything that i’m playing fresh along with the playback, but the rub is i can’t hear anything. I can finish recording, and then i’ll hear the old and new tracks on playback. but i can’t hear the live lines in the monitor through the h5 headphonese, neither while recording, nor while waiting to record, though the volume levels are responding on the h5 monitor. ugh. learning curves. any helps???

Turn on Transport > Overdub at top of Audacity if you have not already done so.

Set up the Zoom so that you can hear what you are recording into it. See H5 Operation Manual. Have you tried turning on Direct Monitor?

Otherwise you will need to wait for others here who have Zoom recorders to respond.


I’ve got the H2, and I assume that the H5 will work the same way. You need to have your headphones plugged into the Zoom, connect the Zoom to the computer as a USB microphone, and turn on headphone monitoring. You should now hear through the headphones whatever the Zoom “hears”.

Now launch Audacity and select the Zoom as both the input and playback device in the the device toolbar.
Ensure that “Overdub” is enabled and “Software Playthrough” is disabled (Transport menu).

Wow!! that’s magic!! it worked! thanks!! I had tried i thought every combination, but that just worked. Great instructions. But now i discover i’m hearing the old tracks recorded onto the new ones…I was hoping for sound separation, and the old tracks come through sounding “washy”. The problems keep getting smaller and smaller. Any idea how to separate totally my new recording from the previously recorded tracks in audacity? I just wanted my new line to be free from any previous tracks… Thanks again on the monitoring!!

oh. i think i figured it out. my mic was picking up the room sound - i hadn’t unconnected my computer speakers… just a guess. man, i feel dumb

no, that’s not the problem. I just recorded again, unplugged the computer speakers, and still i’m hearing the old mix coming through on the new mix. so, how do i keep out the previously recorded tracks from being recorded while i’m laying down what i want to be a pure new track, devoid of anything else?

Could the mic be picking up sound from your headphones?
What mics and what headphones are you using?

Have you read the H5 manual yet? Might you have “Loop Back” enabled in the H5? This seems to send the audio that comes from the computer back to the computer to be re-recorded along with your input.


I’m using the stereo mic set that comes with the zoom h5, and the headphones are akg k240. I’ll keep playing around and see if i can figure this out… I’ll try with a guitar line in instead this time. Thanks !

so, i set the h5 up, headphones and mic coming from h5, direct monitoring, i can hear the old tracks in the headphones, and i’m plugging in a guitar line. I hit record, and now it’s recording the previously recorded tracks, and if i play the guitar, it records that as well. If i just let it record, it lays down on the new track the previously recorded material. i can find no buttons to disable this, or even account for it. ugh

so now i’ve done the above, and then just for giggles, i turned down to zero the audio output from the audacity meter, and nothing is recorded, but neither can i hear anything. it’s not what i was hoping for. I’m aiming to hear what i had previously recorded, monitor it in headphones without lag, and lay down a new track at the same time without the old stuff bleeding into the new track.

As Gale wrote - ensure that “loop back” is off. See p77 of the H5 manual.

Holy Cows!!! That did the trick! I had asked the zoom guys about it, and they just kinda said, ah, it’s audacity’s problem. You guys are awesome! Is there a way to mark this thread as ‘resolved’ or fixed? I really appreciate the quick, concise help. Cheers again!

I’ll mark the topic as [SOLVED] and lock it for you.