Im not a dj, but most of my friends are, I’ve enjoyed watching and listing to them for years but never took the plunge of learning how, delicate records, expensive equipment and space has always put me of, this is until i downloaded the djay app for the iPad, it was fantastic! instantly i could try my hand at mixing without the worry of ruining records or the expense of the equipment,
As i gradually got better and understood the concept of mixing more and more (much thanks to friends for pointers) i wanted to make it a bit more realistic, i had read that you can pre cue using a mono headphone splitter, this would greatly hep with my learning as i would be able to pre cue as you would on a real deck and mixer setup, i had found many on the internet but thought it was simple enough to make, this was great but only outputs in a mono signal
After apple released ios6 they added multi route audio (i.e. you could output sound from headphone jack and 30 pin connector cck and the same time) so i ordered a cheap usb sound card of eBay and boom, i could output in stereo (master out of usb sound card and pre cue through headphone jack) this was great and i progressed further, but i was still lacking the real feel,
When i was around a friends one weekend i had a little play on a tractor s4 controller, i was very impressed with the controller, I like how its more hands on and involved to control the music, i didn’t really like the software interface that, but thats because I’m use to the djay software, I find it much more simple to use and understand, all of my friends highly recommend traktor though, but i guess its down to personal preference.
So my quest for a controller began, i had an old laptop but didn’t really use it as i used the iPad all the time, so i was looking for a iPad compatible controller, and i found one, The Numark idjpro, compact, nice looking, many features of the more expensive controllers and a lovely space in the centre for the iPad, check my review,
This was brilliant and really fuelled my hunger to dj, so i took the plunge and brought one, its given me the feel and control that most modern dj’s have. Unfortunately the down side to this controller is that it is iPad specific, i.e. when my friends without iPads come over they cannot mix there tunes, so i wanted to find a way to connect a laptop to this controller.
After asking Numark the makers of the controller and Algoriddim the makers of the software if this was possible they both replied with “no this is not supported and is not possible” i was disappointed, but i was sure there would be a way, in the meantime i had brought myself a macbook pro, i downloaded the djay software on to this, again, i loved it, i just really like the look with the two turntables and the simplicity of the whole app, and all the headphone jack and usb pre cueing worked! then i noticed the midi menu.
This got me thinking that there must be a way to connect the macbook to the idjpro. the long and short of it, is after two months off trying different connection methods, different software, lots of trial and era and with many sleepless nights! I’ve done it, and it feels good!!
I can now use my iPad with the controller in a small portable unit and mix professionally anywhere, or when I’m at home i can connect my macbook to it with its vast library of songs, put together playlist ready to play out with the use of the same controller i will use to play out, and now when my friends come round they can now mix there own songs of there laptop on my controller!