FAQ

Can I learn how to sing?
If you can talk, you can sing. Singing is a completely natural activity; our voices are designed for both speaking and singing (in ancient human tribes, everyone sang, not just a few “professional” singers). Singing uses basically the same skills as speech, but for singing we use our breath differently, hold sounds longer, and use a wider range of tones. These skills, as well as a practical knowledge of the tone and rhythm patterns that are used in music, can be developed with training and practice.

Don’t I need talent?
You may not be able to become the fastest marathon runner. However, unless you have a physical condition that prevents you from running, you can most definitely train to run marathons successfully, and get very good at it through regular exercise. Similarly, you may not be able to become the next Pavarotti; however, you can be as good as many professional singers who sing for a living, provided you train your voice regularly and with focus. Even if you’re not willing to put in a lot of effort, you can always improve from where you are, and at least impress friends.

For some people, singing great does come naturally. But these people have usually been practicing since they were very young, or for many years. On shows like American Idol®, the contestants who make it past the initial auditions usually have many years of singing experience, even if they just sang along regularly with their favorite songs. There are thousands of very successful singers who sing really well without any special talent. At some point they decided they wanted to learn to sing, so they trained and practiced in order to improve their skills. Just as you can’t run a marathon without any training and practice, you can’t sing well without training and practice. If you never try, you can never know what your voice is capable of.

Do I need formal training?
It definitely helps. Formal training (such as the lessons used in Erol Singer’s Studio), focuses on techniques and sounds that show you how to use your voice effectively, and prevent you from making the most common mistakes in singing, such as breathing poorly and closing your throat (e.g. by letting your larynx rise up). These carefully selected sounds, which have been in use for centuries around the world, ensure that your muscles are coordinated in the most useful ways for singing. By practicing these sounds and building up the muscle memory, it becomes easier to sing other sounds as well and you have more freedom in different parts of your vocal range, such as when you’re singing high notes.

What styles does Erol Singer’s Studio teach?
Erol Singer’s Studio teaches techniques that are widely accepted as effective, and have been commonly used in voice training for many many years. The techniques are general and can be applied to all popular styles including pop, rock, musical theater, folk, jazz, R&B, and even opera. The app does not teach heavy metal growls/grunts, as these are specialized techniques.

How long will it take to learn to sing?
No technique, teacher, or software application can make you a great singer overnight. As with any field, singing well requires regular practice. The good news is, you already know how to speak, so you are already a good portion of the way to singing. By focusing on your breathing, range, tone, and ear training, you can see quick improvements in the quality of your singing skills and impress your friends. However, to be a world class singer, you will need to spend a significant amount of time practicing and do so regularly.

To motivate you, Erol Singer’s Studio tracks your progress over time, and displays how much your range and pitch accuracy have been improving in a very unique, easy to understand format. For more information on this, see Vocal Blob™ in the Session History section of this manual. In addition to the Vocal Blob shape, the app also scores your performance in the lessons that contain note bubbles, which it then displays under the name of each lesson. You can use these features to set goals for yourself.

Does Erol Singer’s Studio replace the need for a vocal coach?
Yes and no. No software application that exists today (including Erol Singer’s Studio) can replace the trained ears and individualized support of a good voice teacher. For best results, we do recommend taking at least a few lessons from a vocal coach to make sure you are doing everything right. However, you can decrease the number of hours you need to spend with a voice teacher by practicing on your own using Erol Singer’s Studio. This way, not only can you practice on your own time and save money, but you also have immediate feedback on your ear/pitch skills, which no teacher can do to the same degree.

Why do I need to learn new breathing skills?
When we speak, we use a lot of rapid variations in the pitch of our voices to emphasize/stress different parts of words and sentences. When we sing, we hold vowels for much longer (which requires a steadier flow of air), and keep the pitch and volume more consistent within each syllable (which also requires a steady flow of air). Both of these acts require different breathing skills than speech. Not only that, but proper breathing also relaxes the muscles and improves the quality of our voices tremendously. By adjusting the amount of air you breathe out, you can also have more emotional expression in your voice.

Why do the same note names appear multiple times on the top portion where I see my pitch?
One of the reasons why a lot of karaoke singing sounds okay (the better ones), but lacks the emotional impact of the original songs, is that amateur singers often do not realize the importance of singing in the correct octave. The same notes can be sung in various octaves, meaning they can be sung high or low while still fitting in with the instruments. Many professional singers can sing one or two octaves above their normal speech level, which allows for a lot of emotion in their singing and brings out the dynamic qualities of their voices.

Unlike console-based singing games, Erol Singer’s Studio is able to detect and display the octave you’re singing in, so you learn what it means (and how it feels) to sing in the right octave.

What will Erol Singer’s Studio do for me?
Beginners:
– Detect your vocal range
– Show you when you’re singing the right notes and help you sing in tune
– Teach you correct singing techniques that are widely used around the world
– Train your ear
– Allow you to practice on your own if you’re shy about singing in front of others (even in your car via bluetooth*). If you use it in your car, please follow your local laws and never look at the screen while driving. You will find the exercises that are customized to your vocal range useful even without the display.

* Bluetooth access requires a bluetooth device with a microphone.

Intermediate Singers:
– Show you what parts of your range have problems
– Increase your range and track your progress
– Improve the quality of your tone
– Help smooth vocal breaks
– Improve your musical ear

Advanced Singers:
– Improve your sight singing (through standard sheet music notation)
– Provide you with effective warmup/cool-down exercises
– Keep your voice in top shape with a thorough voice exercise program
– Inspire you to practice intervals, scales, and arpeggios that will greatly expand your musicianship (requires the purchase of the “Ear Training for Singers” add-on)

What will Erol Singer’s Studio NOT do for me?
Make you an amazing singer overnight. Singing is like any physical exercise – it requires constant training and practice. Although you can achieve significant improvements over short periods of time by following the techniques taught in this application (or any other formal vocal training), no technique, teacher, or application can turn you into a singer instantly. If you want to get good at singing, you will need to practice and practice often.

Also, Erol Singer’s Studio is not a karaoke game and as such does not include sing-along songs. In addition to the formal training provided by Erol Singer’s Studio, we also highly recommend singing songs on your own, in a choir, with karaoke tracks, or with some fun games like SingStar™, RockBand™, GuitarHero®, and BandHero™, among others.

  • Erol Singer’s Studio and Vocal Blob are trademarks of Erol Studios Inc.
  • AMERICAN IDOL is a registered trademark of 19 TV Ltd. and FremantleMedia North America, Inc.
  • SingStar is a trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.
  • Rock Band is a trademark of Harmonix Music Systems, Inc.
  • Guitar Hero is a registered trademark of Activision Publishing, Inc.
  • Band Hero is a trademark of Activision Publishing, Inc.
  • All other trademarks, logos, and images belong to their respective owners.

55 thoughts on “FAQ”

  1. Is there a way to reset the points for each lesson? I let my buddy try and exercise and he scored a lot higher then me so now i cant see my improvements because his score is always there.

    1. Yes, you can simply remove the app and reinstall it from the App Store to reset everything. If you’ve made any In-App purchases, be sure to use the Restore Purchases button under settings to recover your add-on content after reinstalling.

  2. I love the app. Are there any exercises within the app designed at removing breathiness or creating a more pure sounding voice (particularly in chest voice)? Any suggestions?
    Thank you!

    1. Hi Sheryl, our voice teacher has been out of town for a few days. However, I’ve passed your question to her, so she can get back to you on her return.

    2. Dear Sheryl,

      We are so pleased that you are enjoying the app. The exercises for resonance (with mm and nn sounds) will help with reducing breathiness; the more you are feeling the buzz of the sound in your face, the more your vocal cords are in alignment, which means they won’t be letting as much extra air through. Also, the exercises that start with the ‘g’ sound help keep your cords closed as you sing higher in your range. In addition, practicing good breath control and diaphragm support also helps. Have fun and good luck!

    1. How often to practice depends on whether you are a beginner or are more experienced, and what your voice tells you it needs. Singing is an athletic activity, so at the start, you need to really work on developing your technique and slowly build up endurance. One program, 3 days a week is a good place to start, and make sure you include some of the breathing exercises. This is approximately 15-20 minutes per session. If your voice feels comfortable and not tired afterward, you can then practice your favourite songs for another 15-30 minutes or so. Or you may choose to repeat some of the exercises on the app for additional practice. 15-30 minutes 3 times a week is suitable to start with and you increase it when that is comfortable.

      When you have built up some endurance you can do 3-5 practice sessions per week, and go for longer. Some people like to do a beginner program as a warm up, then one of the intermediate or advanced programs. The app serves as a great warm up for song practice as well.

      It’s actually not as helpful to practice 7 days a week for hours, because your voice also needs time to rest.

      Have fun!

    1. We haven’t tried it with an iRig microphone, but you should be able to use any microphone that connects using the standard microphone interfaces, including bluetooth. I believe iRig uses the mic jack, which should definitely work. Note that we’ve optimized our algorithms for the frequency response and volume levels of the built-in microphones of Apple devices, so make sure the microphone you’re using isn’t performing worse than your device’s built-in mic when it comes to pitch detection and silence detection. Having said that, an external microphone has the advantage of being farther from the speaker of the device so it doesn’t pick up the piano sounds from the app itself.

  3. Hi, I just got the app a couple days ago and I was wondering. When i do the excercises I call tell when I’m singing on pitch but when I listen to regular music how can I tell when I am singing on pitch? I guess what I’m askin is how do train myself to hear not only piano keys but other genres such as pop, hip hop, etc… ?

    1. Hi John, a great way to tell when you’re singing on pitch is to pay attention to the loudness of your voice when mixed with an actual singer’s voice. You’ll notice that when you’re on pitch, your voice should suddenly sound a bit louder and harmonious even though you’re not singing any louder. When you wander off the target pitch, you’ll notice an immediate drop in this louder quality. If you’re unsure, play around with your pitch as you do in the free-flowing sound lessons until you notice the increase in loudness.

  4. Hello, wonderful app, thank you for developing it. I was wondering if you could expand the breathing training area to include some silent exercises that could be done in ‘down time’ and wouldn’t disturb others e.g when watching tv, walking, lying in bed reading, sitting at the computer etc?

    Cheers!

  5. I’ve been using Singer’s Studio for about a year now, and I’ve noticed _such_ an improvement in my pitch accuracy. It is a _brilliant_ tool — thank you so much for developing it!

    I find myself wishing for a version that would import MIDI files, allow me to select the melody line, (transpose if necessary,) and work on training with actual songs… and perhaps even sets, (because a scale is one thing, an hour long concert with fatigue and everything is another! 🙂

    If you develop something like that, (and I hope you do,) so long as you let me know it’s available, I’ll be among the first in line to purchase it!

    1. This would be an amazing feature.
      I would pay for that update too !!!

      The ability to make your own exercise would take the app to another level !!?

    2. Would love to see this feature too, please make it happen! Making custom blobs to practice against, either by uploading a midi file or audio of a well performed vocal recording would be very useful.

  6. Can you add a free-singing mode (without the target bubbles or scoring) that graphs the pitch on a scale that shows the notes accurately (unlike the warmups, which only have octave markers)? Basically, what I’m asking for is a cross between the features of the free warmup mode and the normal, scored training mode.

    1. We have have been considering just such a feature. I’ll make sure that it is on our task list. Cheers.

  7. I am considering buying this app for my Phone because it seems to be exactly what I’ve been searching for. If it’s as good as I think it is, I may buy an iPad to have a better interface. I’ve been on the fence about buying an iPad, and this app may make up my mind. Would I have to buy the app and in-app purchases twice to switch from running it on my iPhone to running it on an iPad?

    1. Hi Jim. You can buy a single copy of the app and use it on both your iPhone and iPad. We’ve made Erol Singer’s Studio a Universal App, so that our users don’t need to pay twice for the same thing. As for the optional InApp purchases, you don’t need to buy those twice either. When you install the app on a second device, you can use the “Restore Purchases” button under the Settings tab within the app to restore any earlier purchases for free.

    1. Hi Joyce, there’s a way to slow down lessons while practicing individual keys, but not while practicing them in their entirety. The speed of each lesson has been adjusted by our voice teacher for the specific goal of the lesson, and should not be altered for vocal training purposes. However, like I said you can practice the pattern of any lesson at a slower speed. To slow down the pattern, press on a key on the in-lesson piano keyboard, and slide your finger up. The percentage you’ll see is the speed of the pattern relative to the original tempo of the lesson.

  8. Hi!

    I’ve been using this app for almost a year now and I can’t recommend it enough! My voice and ear have improved a lot and I’m truly grateful for the work you have put in to this.

    I have noticed a bug though. After I’ve done the exercise “Range Extension ‘Ooh-ah’, my preset range expands to the expanded range which is used in that particular exercise. I’m not sure when this happens; if it’s when I leave “Advanced program 1” and enter a new program, or if it’s when I’m just switching exercise.

    I’ve also just noticed that the “vocal blob” now appears to be full. I no longer get information regarding todays exercise, instead the blob seems to bundle it in with information about the exercises I’ve done over the (“this week”).

    Finally, I’m eager to hear some news regarding future updates; what you have planned and when this is due? Personally I would love to be able sing some songs with your pitch detector.

    Keep up the good work,

    Cheers!

    1. Hi, glad to hear you’re enjoying the app. Feedback like this makes our day.

      The automatic range expansion was an intentional experimental feature of the app that we tried, didn’t like, but forgot to remove from the app. We’ve removed it in newer versions of the app, because it was confusing to most users and it was never meant to be there anyway. Please update from the App Store to make sure this is remedied. It is much easier and more straightforward to manually expand the range when you feel ready.

      The vocal blob works that way by design. We intentionally designed it to consolidate the results into days, weeks, months, as the number of sessions increases, so that you don’t see a very long list of session results, and instead can focus on what matters — your long term progress using the app. When you’re new to the app, the blob shows a lot of detail for each session during your day, week, etc, hence focuses on your short term progress. As you use the app longer, it starts maintaining the height of the blob within a couple of pages, so that your progress is always visible in a clear, easily understandable way. Yet, the current session is always shown on a separate line of its own, so that you know how you’re doing currently. When you close the app, the results from the current session are consolidated into the blob, and a new session is created the next time you open the app. We believe this to be a good way to visualize the results and progress. I’m still thinking of your use-case though. Maybe increasing the duration of the current session as the apps gets used longer, or giving you an option to keep sessions open for the day might be a good solution. This is not desirable when a user first starts using the app, but may be a good solution as the height of the blob increases. Because not everyone may like that change, I’m thinking an option box under Settings may be the best way to go. Stay tuned for this one.

      As for future updates, we are still very actively working on the project, and have some cool features in the works that will make the breathing lessons even more fun. We believe that most people don’t realize the importance of breathing technique for singing, and may tend to skip those lessons for the more-fun pitch lessons, so we’re doing our best to make the breathing exercises just as much fun as the pitch-oriented exercises. We also have several other advanced features added over the past several months, which are waiting for our next release. Although we prefer to make major updates with as many amazing new features as possible, our users have been keen on seeing an update, so we may consolidate the smaller updates from the past several months and do an interim release. Each release takes a lot of testing to ensure what we’re releasing is very solid though, so that takes away from our feature development time. However, rest assured, this project is our number one priority and we’re still working hard on it.

      Cheers.

  9. Thanks for the quick response!

    I noticed when I read your response that I had not been particularly clear of what I meant regarding the vocal blob. What I did mean to say was that the current session did not show up on a separate line of its own whilst I was doing a session. In other words; the current session did not appear at all whilst I was practicing. That is how I came to the (rather weak) conclusion that the vocal blob was full and that the software was bundling in the current session with earlier sessions (i.e “this week”) in real time. This has only happened once though, and it actually happened the same day as I was writing the first post above and has not happened since, so I really should not have brought it up before I was sure it was a reoccurring problem. So my apologies for not being clear enough and for pointing out problems before I really know there are problems.

    With that out of the way, I like your idea regarding the breathing exercises. I have spent little time with those exercises myself because they lack a bit in the fun-department compare to the other pitch-exercieses. This phenomena to me show just how important the instant feedback regarding your pitch and score is for people coming back to the exercises; I’ll even say is somewhat of a revolution when it comes to fostering motivation to evolve your voice.

    So again, thank you for your work, you have truly made a genius app which have helped me evolve my voice and ear in a really significant way.

    Cheers!

    1. A new feature in iOS7 is user permissions to use the microphone. I’m wondering if you may have accidentally disallowed the app from using the mic when it first started under iOS7. Can you please check your permissions via the Settings app on your device? To do so, open the separate Settings app, select Privacy, then Microphone, and then make sure that the switch next to Erol Singer’s Studio is in the On position (green in the default theme).

  10. I’m glad to hear that you’ll be adding more breathing exercises & making them a bit more fun as extra incentive.

    This may already be covered in the “fun” part, but it would be helpful to have a cadence or background music in the breathing exercises…both would be nice

  11. Hi there
    I love this app !!!
    I’m using the app with a mic and headphones and it works great except that I can’t hear my voice on the headphones only the piano … Is there a way to listen to my voice on the headphones ??

    Please please let us make custom exercises!!! To be able to practice a part of a song and transpose it would be amazing, as well as a harmony exercise !!

    I can’t wait for new updates
    Thanks so much

    1. Hi, glad to hear you love the app. The app is designed to play the piano on the headphones, and not your own voice. We recommend using inexpensive earphones that don’t cover your ears completely so you can hear your own voice clearly too. Having said that, we will experiment with direct voice feedback on the headphones and see if that improves the learning process.

      As for custom exercises and harmony lessons. Both have been on our list right from start, and we do plan to implement both after we finish some exciting features that we are currently working on. We’ll post news about them on our Facebook page and Twitter account.

    1. Hi Miguel. We’ve optimized our algorithms for the built-in microphones of the various iOS devices. Therefore, even if the external microphone works, we would recommend using the built-in microphone of your device. However, we highly recommend using earphones.

  12. I’ve just started using this app, and am doing Beginner’s program 1 daily. When should I add/switch to program 2?
    I’m a blues harmonica player who has finally admitted that if I want to play at jams, I HAVE to sing, but this is going to take a lot of work! Thanks for the help!

    1. You can move up to Beginner 2, Intermediate, and/or Advanced programs when you feel you’re ready yourself. What I mean by that is, if you’ve already been practicing with Beginner Program 1 and you can comfortably score at least 50% for each note within the lessons, give Beginner Program 2 a try, see how comfortable you find the exercises, and make the decision yourself. The same applies for moving to the Intermediate to Advanced programs. When you move up, don’t forget to continue practicing the lower levels every now and then in order to refresh your skills and memory about the techniques. The breathing techniques taught in the lower levels are very important, so use the techniques you’ve learned there in the higher level programs too. One thing I should add is that the higher level lessons generally need a wider vocal range to be effective. If you notice that the lessons end very quickly, that would mean your range is not wide enough yet to effectively tackle the higher levels.

      The more variation you use, the less you’d get bored of any single training program. Practicing different patterns will also help with your ability to move from note to note in different parts of the scales. You can also create your own mix of lessons, e.g. with some from Beginner 1, some from Beginner 2, etc. using the Favorites list, and use that as a training program. Make sure you don’t skip the breathing exercises though.

  13. Hello,

    I have heard many wonderful things about this app from members in my music ministry and others. I do not have an Apple device though. Will this app ever be made available for PC or for Android? I feel cut off through no fault of my own.

    Thank you.

    1. We plan to release a Windows (PC) version, which was developed before the iOS version, but has been waiting for a final polish of its menu system since.

  14. I’m considering buying this app because of all the wonderful reviews. Are there any other in-app purchases aside from “Ear Training for Singers” for advanced singers?

    1. Hi. There are no in-app purchases since v1.8 of the app (released Dec 2014). Everything has been included since in the base app. An upcoming subscription edition of the app will act a little differently, but the main Erol Singer’s Studio app includes everything without any additional purchases.

  15. Any chance that you would add some jazz oriented exercises? Using basic or advanced jazz intervals, arpeggios, and patterns? That would be amazing! I recommend the app to my students all the time!

  16. Can I import a song sheet into the app? I bought a song from musicnotes.com which I would like to practice

    1. Not yet, but very soon when Version 3.0 of the app is released (we’re working night and day on it). Starting with Version 3.0, you will be able to edit existing lessons, create your own exercises (including songs if you’d like), and share your creations. Check the App Store for updates.

    1. Yes, this is covered in the tutorial (if you skipped it the first time, you can start it manually using the “Start Tutorial” button on the Settings tab). In short, press your finger on any key of the in-lesson piano keyboard, and slide your finger up without releasing it to set the tempo. This will change the tempo once, and play the pattern in the key you’ve selected. To repeat in the same key, you can use the little circular repeat button that’ll appear on the piano keyboard. If you’d like to practice the entire lesson at this altered tempo, see the “Sticky Tempo” switch on the Settings tab.

  17. I just started using the App. So far I‘m very happy with it.
    It would be very nice if one could two profiles, so two people could track their progress. My husband uses Android, but would like to use the App , too . Maybe you could consider that.

  18. Love the app! Is it possible for the app to track progress across multiple devices? I have it on both my iPad and iPhone, but if I practice on my iPad, I don’t “get credit” on the app on my iPhone.

    Thanks!

    1. I started adding iCloud-based synchronization at one point, but had to put it on the back burner to complete higher priority features. I still want to do implement some form of cloud-based synchronization at some point, but am working on some much bigger impact features right now, so this will have to wait for a little while longer.

    1. Yes. But Bluetooth has a little bit of a delay that makes it less than ideal. You’ll get the best benefit by using wired headphones. Also note we enable microphone monitoring — the ability to hear your own voice — only with wired headphones, as mic monitoring sounds like a distant echo on Bluetooth devices. Pitch detection works great with both types of devices (wired or Bluetooth).

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