How To Chose Your DJ Software


Controlling the Software

Choosing your Software based on your Hardware

The Software you choose will largely be influenced by the DJ Equipment that you use.

A DJ mixer is a piece of hardware that allows the DJ to mix multiple audio sources together, including turntables, CD players, and digital audio interfaces.

Many modern DJ mixers now also include built-in audio interfaces and can be used to connect directly to a computer running DJ software.

A controller is a piece of hardware that connects to a computer and allows the DJ to control the software using physical buttons, knobs, and faders.

In this setup, the DJ mixer/controller acts as a bridge between the hardware and software, allowing the DJ to control the software using the mixer's physical controls.

Controllers can vary in size and complexity, from compact units with just a few buttons and knobs to larger controllers with dozens of controls and built-in screens.

Some controllers are specifically designed to work with a particular DJ software, while others are more versatile and can be used with multiple programs.

MIDI Controllers

A DJ controller can be thought of as a game controller for music.

Just as a game controller allows a player to interact with a game and control the characters and actions on the screen, a DJ controller allows a DJ to interact with the music and control the tracks being played.

A DJ controller is designed with specific buttons, knobs, and faders mapped to different software functions. For example, just as a game controller might have a button that is used to jump or shoot, a DJ controller might have a button that is used to set a cue point or trigger an effect.

DJ or Production Software

As a new DJ, it's essential to understand the software used to DJ and produce music.

First, let's talk about the two primary types of DJ software: DJing software and music production software.

DJing software is used for live performances, allowing you to mix and manipulate tracks in real-time.

Some popular DJing software include:

  • Serato
  • Traktor,
  • Virtual DJ.

These programs typically have a user-friendly interface and offer a range of features, including beatmatching, looping, and effects.

On the other hand, music production software is used for creating and editing tracks in a studio environment.

Some popular music production software include:

  • Ableton Live
  • Logic Pro
  • FL Studio.

These programs are more complex than DJing software and offer a range of tools and features for music creation, including virtual instruments, audio effects, and automation.

While both DJing and music production software have their benefits, they also have drawbacks.

DJing software is designed for live performances, so it may have fewer tools for music creation than music production software. On the other hand, music production software can be overwhelming for beginners and may offer different performance features than DJing software.

So, which software should you use? It ultimately depends on your goals as a DJ. If you want to focus on live performances and mixing tracks, DJing software may be your best choice. On the other hand, music production software may be a better fit if you want to create and produce music.

DJing Software:

  • Beatmatching: The ability to sync the tempo and timing of two tracks to create a seamless transition.
  • Cue points: The ability to set markers on a track to quickly jump to different parts of the song during a performance.
  • Looping: The ability to create repeating sections of a track, allowing for extended transitions or remixing on the fly.
  • Effects: The ability to apply audio effects like filters, delays, and reverbs to enhance the sound of the tracks being mixed.
  • Harmonic mixing: The ability to mix tracks that are in key with each other, creating a smoother and more musical transition between songs.

Music Production Software:

  • Virtual instruments: The ability to create music using digital versions of instruments like synthesizers, drum machines, and samplers.
  • Audio recording and editing: The ability to record and edit audio tracks with a range of tools like equalizers, compressors, and time-based effects.
  • MIDI sequencing: The ability to create music using MIDI data, allowing for precise control over the timing and pitch of musical notes.
  • Automation: The ability to program changes in various parameters over time, such as volume or effects settings, to create dynamic and evolving sounds.
  • Mixing and mastering: The ability to combine multiple audio tracks and apply mastering techniques like compression and equalization to create a final, polished mix.
  • Both types of software offer a range of additional functions and features that can be used to create unique and creative mixes or productions.

DJing and music production software are essential tools for any aspiring DJ. By understanding the differences between the two and choosing the right software for your goals, you'll be well on your way to creating and performing your own unique sound.

Regardless of which software you choose, it's essential to take the time to learn it inside and out. Most programs offer free trials, tutorials and online resources to help you get started. Also, don't be afraid to experiment and try new things – that's part of the fun of being a DJ!

Download a free/lite version of DJ and Producer software to see what appeals to you.

Choosing your DJ hardware is often directly linked to the software you will use.

The best way to learn a software is to have a specific goal in mind instead of just trying to learn the entire suite.