New Play user looking for advice (general settings + USB audio)

Hey folks,

I’ve recently caved in and bought the Play Plus in hopes of replacing my Novation Circuits, but I’ve since then discovered a couple of things that might me a dealbreaker with my workflow. I haven’t managed to find any info on these elements online nor in the manual, would someone be kind enough to point whether it’s actually impossible or maybe I’m missing something?

My main gripe is that when the play plus is connected to a computer through USB, there seems to be no output from the regular jack going and no way to enable it? If so, this sucks for me, I was expecting to be able to jam with the play plus using my guitar pedals setup, while also recording the different tracks through USB as a back-up.

Also, is there really no way to set up general MIDI settings, or at least to have a ‘template’ project with settings that would be applied on every new project I create? It’s a bit tedious having to go to the menu and set up MIDI and transport to “jack” every time for every new project.

It might sound dumb as those are pretty minor gripes, but both of them might actually be a no-go for my workflow (I do a lot of live improv/jams, and can’t always afford to spend any time setting things up and waiting for them to load).

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Hi @andrey.kalinovsky. Welcome to Backstage! Great to have you here in the community :slight_smile:

I’ll do my best to answer your questions (hoping I understand them properly).
Regarding your first question, I take it you are talking about the physical 3.5mm output on the Play+? If that is the case, then you should have no problem getting audio out. If you’re using a DAW, you’d need to assign the Play+'s outputs. If you want to both have the Play outputs and your speakers going at the same time, then you’ll need to set up an aggregated device to allow multiple interfaces to work together.

As for the MIDI template, I do believe that currently most settings will reset per project. However, one solution could to

  1. Start a new Project
  2. Set up the Play+ settings exactly how you would like them
  3. Save that Project as, for example “MIDI Template”.

Then anytime you start a new project, instead open that template and use “Save-As” to give it a new name in order to not overwrite your template. It’s a bit of a workaround, but it works!

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thank you very much, i did indeed manage to get the outputs working the way i wanted to :slight_smile:

the MIDI template thing is still a bit of a bummer, but at least it’s not as bad as my first issue, which actually made me consider returning the device

ahem; so i tried routing stuff through ableton, like, having 8 tracks grouped and armed for recording but not being monitored, and another track that’s just the main output

(just to be clear: my use case is having all the tracks playing through the 3.5mm output, while also having the tracks being recorded invidually in Ableton)

it works fine for basic projects, but as soon as i load a synth or something like that, the bitrate goes down immediately and never gets back up again… my computer shows no signs of struggling and its fans don’t even take off, so definitely looks like a Play issue I guess?

Hey there,

I consider myself a bit of a novice when it comes to gear, and despite going through the documentation, I find myself feeling frustrated because I’m struggling to grasp the workflows and connections. I also share the sentiment that there’s a lack of information on setting up Play with Mac/PC and DAWs. As a user of Logic Pro and Ableton for recreational purposes, I’ve been attempting some tests, but the only outcome so far is getting the audio input and output. While I can hear something from the Play and maybe even record, I’m unsure about more advanced features like separating tracks into individual channels. I would greatly appreciate it if someone, especially a Polyend member, could create a tutorial that’s both basic and thorough on this matter. I believe it would not only be beneficial for me but also for the brand, showcasing the full potential and attracting more users.

Also how the right connection with others midi controllers or gear is. In my case with arturia microfreak.

Another point of frustration for me is that despite watching around 4 thousand videos on YouTube, searching through documentation, etc., I still can’t figure out how to record internal audio with my mobile phone sent from Play. I have a variety of cables (TRS, TRRS, OTG, RCA, USB), a couple of audio devices, and it’s hard to believe that none of these work. It’s especially disheartening to think that the only solution might be getting an iRig, and even then, it’s not a guaranteed fix. I don’t want to do streaming, just record it directly with the phone without having a huge set up.

I’d really appreciate some guidance on these issues.

Best regards!

sorry for the twitter link, but here’s a video of what I meant.

For the setup, as I said, I have 8 tracks that are armed but not recording, and one “master” channel that’s not armed but playing through. As soon as I add a synth, it looks like it’s over for sound quality. This happens no matter whether I try setting up agregated devices or whether I just use the Play as the main interface. Any ideas on what I might be doing wrong? or is it a bug?

Hey folks (and welcome @andrey.kalinovsky :wave: ). Have a look at these:

And regarding mobile/tablet here is a long thread with infos:

For me this kind of bug goes away if I output not from the play into the machine with usb-c, and back into the play to then go out the audio jack on the play, instead doing from the play into the machine with usb-c, out to my normal audio playback like my audio interface and headphones. We had a number of discussions on this lately here and iPads can get the same issue. But outputting the audio a different ways fixes it.

oh yeah I see what you mean, but sadly it doesn’t really work with my use case

I have a dawless setup, with currently two Novation Circuits going into a bunch of guitar pedals, including a drolo fx stretch weaver that I use to create weird glitches between the Circuits and another track coming from a guitar looper

I usually use this setup for live improvisation, and lately i’ve been streaming it on Twitch and recording in Ableton, through a Line 6 HX Stomp and its USB over audio (so there’s basically one track for the Circuits, and one track for the stuff coming from the looper)

my dream would be to have the possibility to record each track individually through USB so I could do some post-prod editing and mixing and straight away turn the jams into songs without having to rerecord each track separately, so I was considering replacing the Circuits with the Play+

so basically at this moment all my monitoring happens in the HX stomp, and I feel like adding an extra sound card that outputs the Play into the guitar pedal setup to then be picked back again by the HX stomp would add a whole mess of unnecessary complexity and possibly latency

are Polyend usually quick to fix these kinds of things? I’m quite on the edge of my seat to return it for a refund while I still can

i find it kinda crazy that the 3.5mm output isn’t always enabled btw, it’s the case on the HX Stomp for instance, i mean it definitely makes sense at least for the eventual monitoring latency

Question. Where were you listening to the mix from so far? Through the Line 6 HX Stomp?
If so, by aggregating the Play+ through Ableton, you’d still be able to do exactly what you said.


do you mean something like

Play → aggregated device → the master track gets sent into the HX Stomp through USB → FX send → guitar pedals → FX return + the track from the looper that gets recorded by the main HX stomp input?

I guess it should work, I have to admit I never managed to figure out how to get the HX stomp FX loop to work with a DAW, but i’m gonna give it another try tomorrow

EDIT: yeah I remember why I never figured it out; i want to record two signals at the same time in the HX stomp, and it’s definitely possible when setting the FX return as an AUX in and sending one 6.5 jack into the regular input and another into the FX return. However now i’m trying to send audio from my computer through USB and I absolutely cannot figure out how to make it go through the FX loop while somehow still having another channel available for the guitar. no matter what I do I keep hearing the Play master track unaffected by the FX loop. But maybe that’s a me issue.

EDIT2: found a weird way to route it, but I only managed it by treating L and R FX returns as mono inputs, so i’d need to have both tracks to be sent back to the DAW in pure mono, there seems to be no way to make use of the main physical input of the HX stomp while also having your signal chain input being sent in through USB. I guess it’s better than nothing though!