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TinyLightShow

Feeling overwhelmed....

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I wanna be a DJ.

 

I have no clue where to begin lol I need some pointers on what to buy, what equipment to start with, how to start learning, etc...

 

I have a vast knowledge of music theory and a very good feel for EDM, and I've gotten a few really good ideas with mixing songs together, I just don't know how to apply it O_o (not to mention, I'm a drummer, and have a VERY good sense of rhythm ;-) )

 

I downloaded a program a good while ago called VirtualDJ but I know its not even close to doing the real thing...

 

Can anyone point me in the right direction? Any help will be GREATLY appreciated!

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I'm right along with you but luckily my friend is a DJ so he's giving me pointers along the way and not to mention the full version of VirtualDJ

 

but anyway he told me to start with VDJ, he said most people start with it and it just gives you a better feel for mixing songs and shit

 

but anywho, uhm he told me to buy some CD decks since Vinyl is expensive o_o

and to get Serato, which lets you mix from your computer straight onto decks or something but yeah

 

im still learning and hopefully some of the DJs here on GS.c can help me out too

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same, I'm becoming more and more adept at producing every day, but as far a bridging the gap between making songs on the computer and mixing them live I have no idea where to start.

I'm Using Fruity Loops 8

and not much else.

Kanoodles post is informative though, hopefully we can get more discussion from more expirienced Djs.

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ok....where to start indeed.....*once, needs to listen to music for this...*

...

......

*lights cigarette*

so, djing.....

 

before i started Djing, or even messing around making my own beats, i thought that DJs were the people that took beat tracks, and mixed in vocals and other sounds.....

for lack of better words, i KNEW NOTHING....lol

 

luckily, i had a friend that i met through events with my glowsticking, and i asked stupid questions, like, "where do you get the beat noise from?" and other things that depicted my newb-ness...

 

and from there, i would go over to his house, brew a pot of coffe in the morning, and we would just bang out rtacks in his basement all day.

 

practice makes perfect.

your not going to get it (in most cases) right away. it will take you a while to be able to match up the beats, even with a BPM counter.(but it does make it easier.)

 

 

suggested equipment:

-CDJ's (i learned on Stanton's C-304s, far from industry standards, like the pioneer 1000's, but a sturdy, durable, well constructed deck good for beginning on.

i wouldn't recommend that you go with any cheaper decks, because of the wear and tear that you'll put on them in your practice sessions, and if they break(and they will) you'll just be upset, and have to buy new ones, which only means more money in the long run.

 

-MIXER

a 2-line mixer will fufill the needs of any starter DJ, but 4-line mixers give the viability of other options, such as having 2 CDJs, and two vinyl, or four deck set.....COMPLETELY UN-NECESSARY for the beginning enthusiast.

American Audio has cheap mixers that (from what i've heard, are pretty durable) in the range of $80 up to $500.....the pick is up to you.

 

-CD-Rs.....i recommend using cd's over using Serato, at least in the beginning. sure, serato ROCKS, and is way more convenient then having to create a playlist, nd burn them to CDs, and then worry about them getting scratched, yada yada yada.....but, if your only getting started, and your not sure the extent of your involvement of DJing, it is a costly investment. ALSO, Serato requires a pretty nice laptop. not saying you can't use a desktop, but that severely cuts down portability. the chances that you have a laptop that can simply burn a CD compared to one that can keep up with serato....well you get the picture.

 

-HEADPHONES

a GOOD pair while help alot with recognizing the down-beats of a song. (we'll get to that later)

i would recommend a pair of HED CANDY head phones, or BOOSTED head phones, both have there own web site, just look them up on google, im sure you will find them. HED candy recognizes 40-18000 hertz, which your would ensure that you would hear most if not all of the sound coming from your tracks. but if you're a bit obsessive, the Boosted headphones are the way to go, being they register sounds from 30-27000 hertz. this is WELL beyond the hearing capacity of the human ear, which, with the right OHM impedance, will almost guarantee loss-less sound in playback. if you can't afford the expensive brand of head phones, just look at the packaging to see what the OHM impedance(i can't for the life of me remember what the average is, i think around +-30....maybe) and what the freq. register is.

 

*lights another cigarette, and contemplates quitting smoking*

 

 

-TIME

you will need alot of it.

 

 

so pointers....

 

1)a PLETHORA of tracks. you can NEVER have too many tracks when your just starting out. i would recommend, to start out, bang out house music. any kind of music will do of course, but i find that house, electro house, and other house-based music has a more defined 4-on the floor base note, sitting around 120-135 BPM, that makes standard styles of mixing easier to learn, like standard break fades, to beat matchs over vocals.

B)for the sake of practice, start out with tracks that have minimal to no vocals. AS ALWAYS, you can mix what you want, but i find that the tracks with out vocals in them, especially vocals that run through the whole track are easier to mix, being as you don't have to worry about two sets of vocals over-lapping. true, sometimes, if done right, vocal overlaps can sound cool, but this is a more difficult transition to make.

 

2) THE DOWN BEAT. if you can't find the down beat in a given track, there are ways that can help you find them.

b)when the song starts, try and pin-point the first bass note that you hear.....the really heavy one. this will, more than likely, be the FIRST COUNT IN THE MEASURE. from hear, play it by ear, and let the track play, hwile counting in your head, "....1-2-3-4-1-2-3-4-1-2-3-4...." while staying in beat.

for some people, this will come naturally, if you have that innate sense of rhythm. for others, this can be very difficult. practice it, because when first stating out it will be your easiest way to match the beat.

 

if you try practicing this, and still can quite get the hang of it, there is another way. this is a more visual way. start up a track, and set you EQs (the high, mid, and low knobs) so in play back, the track is not distorted. make sure your gain(the knob located above the EQ) is not set to high. depending on how loud you're able to play your music, it's upto you. when you turn up the line volume, you will see (if your mixer has it) the LEDs start to pulsate. if you watch them for a moment, you will notice a pattern. and that pattern will follow the 4 notes in the baseline. from there, just count. ....1-2-3-4-1-2-3-4... this will also help with your rhythm, so if you can't have the volume up, you can do an audio count in your head.

 

 

 

 

*stares at the computer*

 

i need to go to bed......it's REALLLLLY early.....

 

 

will post the rest tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

 

nite!

- Bad Luck

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Here's a tutorial from DJ Ravine on how to make a basic mix in VDJ. Ravine has some sick Happy Hardcore mixes and I like his song choices. But anyway here you go

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cdj 800s

vestax mixer if on budget

if not on budget go big or go home

cdj 1000s

pioneer djm 600 or allen and heath xone 92

 

then get yourself a nice pair of headphones

and there you go all the equiptment to get started besids some nice speakers to pound it through.

ive already gotten plenty of rave gigs and club gigs and my set up is somewhat budget.

cdj 800s and a vestax vmc 004fx mixer

im probably upgrading the mixer soon

 

hell you could always be like ASYS and get cdj 800s and a pioneer djm 400 mixer haha even the pros dont always have the top of the line stuff at home.

 

as long as you hve yourself a decent pair of pioneer decks wheter it be the 800s 400s or 1000s

i say 800s beat 400s but thats me. i find the feel is way better and just over all performance is better. but meh whatevr.

 

and a decent mixer and your set for having the equiptment.

and headphones i recomend. Sennheiser HD 25 II

nothing beats them. especialy if your gonna be a headphone dj like myself

i mean dj using headphones not booth monitors. they go loud and still never distort unlike pretty much ever other dj headphone out there

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djravine's rl cool.............xD. i just downloaded virtual dj and started messin around on there.

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I have a vast knowledge of music theory and a very good feel for EDM (not to mention, I'm a drummer, and have a VERY good sense of rhythm ;-) )

You have no idea how happy this makes me. :D

I downloaded a program a good while ago called VirtualDJ but I know its not even close to doing the real thing...

Yeah... it kind of sucks.

 

but anywho, uhm he told me to buy some CD decks since Vinyl is expensive o_o

If you only knew... T_T When you pay $15 for a single track, you need to admit that you're addicted to the black crack. I usually tell people to go for CDJs unless they want to be turntablists.

 

(All alliteration is unintentional.)

 

practice makes perfect.

Repeat this daily. Post it on your walls and on your fridge. Make it your mantra. It is quite true.

suggested equipment:

-CDJ's (i learned on Stanton's C-304s, far from industry standards, like the pioneer 1000's, but a sturdy, durable, well constructed deck good for beginning on.

i wouldn't recommend that you go with any cheaper decks, because of the wear and tear that you'll put on them in your practice sessions, and if they break(and they will) you'll just be upset, and have to buy new ones, which only means more money in the long run.

I lurv me some Stantons for vinyl, but all of their CD decks are trash. All of the Pioneer models are pretty accurate and durable. Not as many features as the Denon line, but the Pioneers will still play after being tossed down the stairs. Whatever you buy, get good gear now and you won't have to re-buy anything later.

-MIXER

a 2-line mixer will fufill the needs of any starter DJ, but 4-line mixers give the viability of other options, such as having 2 CDJs, and two vinyl, or four deck set.....COMPLETELY UN-NECESSARY for the beginning enthusiast.

... or anyone else for that matter. Using some five-channel behemoth is a telltale sign of either being a wizard (only if you have about eight or ten things plugged into the mixer, though) or not knowing anything about mixers (99% of people with mixers that have more than two channels).

 

American Audio has cheap mixers that (from what i've heard, are pretty durable) in the range of $80 up to $500.....the pick is up to you.

While most AA is junk, the QD-5MKII is actually very solid, even for scratching, and at $150 it is a steal.

 

-CD-Rs.....i recommend using cd's over using Serato, at least in the beginning. sure, serato ROCKS, and is way more convenient then having to create a playlist, nd burn them to CDs, and then worry about them getting scratched, yada yada yada.....but, if your only getting started, and your not sure the extent of your involvement of DJing, it is a costly investment.

Ehhhh... you don't use SSL on its own. You can, but no one does. You need to control it externally, whether through CDJs or vinyl or MIDI.

 

That said, CDJs are usually the way to go, whether you add on SSL or not. CDJs will cost more than turntables (or at least it will seem like that until you factor in needles, slipmats, etc.), but you will save thousands of dollars on buying CDs versus vinyl.

 

 

 

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ALSO, Serato requires a pretty nice laptop.

Not really, actually. I ran it on a 400Mhz laptop for nearly a year and never had an issue.

 

-HEADPHONES

 

Sony MDR-V700

or

Pioneer HDJ-1000

or

anything Ultrasone

 

-TIME

you will need alot of it.

Oh, how true it is!

 

1)a PLETHORA of tracks. you can NEVER have too many tracks when your just starting out. i would recommend, to start out, bang out house music. any kind of music will do of course, but i find that house, electro house, and other house-based music has a more defined 4-on the floor base note, sitting around 120-135 BPM, that makes standard styles of mixing easier to learn, like standard break fades, to beat matchs over vocals.

B)for the sake of practice, start out with tracks that have minimal to no vocals. AS ALWAYS, you can mix what you want, but i find that the tracks with out vocals in them, especially vocals that run through the whole track are easier to mix, being as you don't have to worry about two sets of vocals over-lapping. true, sometimes, if done right, vocal overlaps can sound cool, but this is a more difficult transition to make.

Tracks are your most important piece of gear. Not your mixer. Not your decks. Not which DVS you run. Your music. And you can never have enough.

 

cdj 800s

vestax mixer if on budget

O_o They start at like... nearly half a grand. That's not a budget.

 

If on a budget, really any mixer will do unless you're scratching. Just be easy on the faders.

 

cdj 1000s

Ehhhh, the 800s have all the major features and cost half as much. They also have the handy auto-loop buttons.

 

pioneer djm 600

>_<

 

Pioneer made a good 3+ channel mixer once. I'm sure. Back in 2000. Not so much anymore. The DJM-707 and 909 were sweet, but the rest... ugh. A&H, Ecler, and Rane are much better at that price point.

 

or allen and heath xone 92

Mmmmm...

 

The Xone:22 is a great deal for beginners and for more experienced people who just want a simple mixer. A&H quality, 2 channels, basic filter effects, very clean interface, rock solid construction.

 

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