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LabRat

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  1. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Mitch in Pioneer CDJ-3000   
    The 2000's for the usb were great. Definitely made taking your collection from venue to venue so much easier. Everything after that became wank and it was Pioneer cashing in on the market. Fair play to them but I feel this thing isn't required
  2. Like
    LabRat reacted to Mitch in Pioneer CDJ-3000   
    Yeah I can’t see many places adopting these until the current units start to fail/need replacing. Nothing compared to the CDJ1000 -> 2000 where they introduced USB sticks (i.e. game changer).
  3. Upvote
    LabRat reacted to Mitch in EQ Cheat Sheets   
    Saw these online, thought I’d share here. 
     




  4. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Da Bang in Hi Guys new here   
    Welcome mate! 
    Facebook dj / music groups are as good as what ITM were back in the days. It's a pissing contest and nothing more. Very hard to find good help in those things
  5. Like
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Hi Guys new here   
    Welcome mate! 
    Facebook dj / music groups are as good as what ITM were back in the days. It's a pissing contest and nothing more. Very hard to find good help in those things
  6. Upvote
    LabRat reacted to Cupe in Livestreaming DJ Sets in 2020: A Complete How-To Guide   
    In the last two weeks, the world has seen a massive increase in the amount of DJ sets streamed to the internet. With clubs across the world shuttering their doors and artists staying home, many have taken to sharing their own creative expressions via livestream.
    Before you dive into streaming DJ sets, make sure you have the best setup for a quality stream. Let’s tackle what that means: from software and devices to streaming platforms, audio, video, and your internet connection.
    Meet Your New Best Friend: OBS
    No, seriously. First things first: download OBS, or Open Broadcaster Software, onto your preferred streaming device (you should probably use your laptop—more on that later). It’s a free, open-source program up for grabs for Windows, mac and even Linux.
    This is your end-all, be-all tool for streaming – it offers high-quality, real-time video and audio streaming. You can set up and test your audio and video here before pushing it out to the platform of your choice, and it keeps things running smoothly without needing to stream to a platform directly.
    For what it’s worth, it’s also sponsored by some of the streaming giants out there – Twitch and Facebook – who’ve supported OBS’ growth and clearly see the worth in using it. Here’s a quick how-to on setting OBS up.
    We actually got popular streaming Twitch DJ Cutman to make a complete video guide to getting started using OBS and Twitch to stream DJ sets – and it all still applies:
    Where to Stream + Copyright Issues
    This is one of the biggest things people ask DJTT every day: what platform should I stream DJ sets on? Here’s a quick overview – remember, things change in this world all the time.
    Twitch.tv: Probably one of the most popular streaming networks. Incredibly consistent, tried, and tested by uncountable video game streams that has proven to be useful for more things than just gaming. I’ve seen quite a few artists use Facebook Live as an initial platform to direct their friends to their Twitch for an uninterrupted stream (more on that below) – a great funnel to drive more friends who are unfamiliar with the platform to try it out. Plus, signing up is quick and free if you haven’t done it yet. Instagram: Reliable, consistent streaming – but only from apps (iOS and Android), no desktop streaming easily accessible (see “Streaming To Instagram” below). Subject to copyright takedowns afterwards. Videos stay on your story for 24 hours post-stream. This is where a lot of people naturally are, and livestreams show up at the front of everyone’s story list. Some big DJs have had 100k+ people streams this weekend on Instagram.

    One downside: people tend to not stick around as long, since they’re usually swiping through the app as one does. Facebook: For many DJs, Facebook has a similarly sized built-in audience as Instagram. The challenge. Seeing as its arguably the most popular social media platform out there, it also tends to grab your videos a ton of attention from your immediate friends. Facebook Live works in your favor algorithmically to get eyes—it sends a notification to friends when you’re live—but it comes with a swath of consistent copyright issues (assuming you’re playing released music that you bought somewhere). Their stream will cut you off once their AI detects a copyrighted track, and then you’ll have to re-start another stream if you want to keep playing (and again, and again). It’s a regular occurrence in my newsfeed. YouTube: Also risky with copyright issues similar to Facebook, with seemingly higher stakes. If you get 3 copyright strikes, they’ll terminate your account. Plus, depending on your followers and streaming setup, you can also only do it via laptop—mobile streaming is reserved for users with more than 1,000 subscribers. Probably worth sticking with one of the others or just using this as a secondary platform. Zoom: We previously wouldn’t have considered this a live streaming service, but DJs around the world are using this tool to have massive dance parties where you can see the entire crowd. Watch the clip below from Gardens of Babylon’s 900+ person stream to get a sense of what’s possible. No copyright restrictions, audio quality seems to be a bit more mediocre (so we’ve seen a few streams run a Zoom call alongside another service), no recordings saved afterwards unless you record it yourself and post it to another service.

    Pro-tip for Zoom: you can get better audio with the “Preserve Original Sound” setting – this removes a lot of the compression and auto-ducking that the app does. Streaming To Multiple Services
    My friend Clark streaming from his front porch on Twitch and Facebook using Restream.io There’s clear advantages to each of the services mentioned above. So why not consider streaming to more than one concurrently? You could do this from your computer, but bandwidth will quickly become an issue.
    The best service I’ve found to stream to more than one platform concurrently is Restream.io. It’s a free/paid service — you can stream to 30+ platforms for free, with a limit of one channel per platform. It’s worth paying the $16/month if you want to stream to a Facebook page (like your DJ page), or to multiple channels per platform.
    Castr is another option that lets you stream simultaneously, though it doesn’t offer a free option like Restream does. A $9.99/month membership gets you five social platforms and one Facebook page or profile (keep in mind, that means you could stream to your DJ page but not your personal page, or vice versa).
    Streaming From iOS Devices
    If you’re looking to stream from your iPhone, iPad, or other iOS device, it’s worth looking into a solid livestream production app like Wirecast Go. It can stream out to most platforms except for Facebook – but Twitch, YouTube or Periscope will work – and it’s a quick $5.99.
    Using an iOS device to stream isn’t the best way to run a high-quality stream, so stick with a laptop if you can. We’d mostly recommend running with this if it’s a last resort. You’ll need a laptop’s processing power to keep things running smoothly and run proper audio and video. I’ve noticed that trying to stream on my iPhone and do literally anything else, results in everything freezing and/or glitching. Plus, you may end up with potato-quality video depending on your device model.
    Live Streaming DJ Sets To Instagram
    Instagram is fickle – they consistently work hard make sure that content is authentic and not spammy, and as a result there are more restrictions on the source of content you upload. This comes into play when thinking about streaming DJ sets to Instagram because it is not an option in Restream and doesn’t provide options for OBS support by default.
    We’ve found two decent options:
    Stream a second stream on a mobile device: Lots of streams in the last few weeks have taken this approach – using a second device to make a secondary stream. The issue is often audio – most people don’t have a second audio device to route good DJ audio into their iOS / Android device. Use Yellow Duck: Yellow Duck is a free software tool designed to get a streamkey and RTMP URL from your Instagram account. It works well, and is the best workaround we’ve found so far. The Most Important Part: Good Audio
    This is essential anyone who is streaming a DJ set needs to remember that what the stream looks like is secondary to what it sounds like. You should make every effort to get a good direct audio feed from your DJ setup into your broadcast device. Your fans may not stick around as long if the audio isn’t doing so great.
    For the sake of everyone’s ears: don’t rely on your laptop’s external mic to pick up the room sound. Instead, use an audio interface – I like IK’s iRig Stream – to hardwire sound from your mixer directly to your laptop (and, bonus: you can use the iRig on your iPhone/iPad as well, though streaming may still kill your battery there). Its price point sits at an affordable $100, and it’s well worth it – you get proper sound quality and easy flexibility with level adjustments as well.
    Other devices that you can use to capture great audio with:
    most newer mixers with a soundcard built in can send a Record Out signal via their USB connection. As long as it can be detected by your system (this could be an issue for MacOS Catalina users without updated drivers, like my friend who owns a Xone:DB2), it can be used as an input in OBS. any outboard soundcard (many DJs have these!) a handheld audio recorder – for instance, the Zoom H4n can be used as an input device Roland’s newer GO:MIXER Pro At the end of the day, you’ll find that your viewers stick around much longer when your audio is routed into your laptop directly. That also means you won’t have to tiptoe around the room while you’re playing, you can have conversations or turn your monitors up or down as loud as you’d like, and you don’t have to avoid making any background noise that could get picked up with room sound. It’s the best for everyone.
    Camera Angles and Visual Appeal
    Visual appeal is almost as important as audio appeal in any livestream. Think of it as performing on a stage in front of an innumerable number of fans—a combination of those who may know you, or may not. It’s the Internet, after all.
    Desert Hearts’ Mikey Lion decorated his booth nicely for an epic 7 hour set on Saturday.. At minimum, you should have one camera set up – if you can’t get a webcam camera, make sure your laptop camera is angled in a way that gets your entire booth (that means yourself, your gear, and the ambiance of your space). Multiple cameras, if doable, is the way to go. Three is a great number; two will do. Not only do multiple cameras give your livestream a more professional feel – it also shows people what you’re up to.
    You can use your laptop camera as one camera depending on your budget, but it’s worth looking into buying a webcam or two as well. I like the Logitech C922 Pro Stream, which runs at $99 and offers 1080p video quality. Alternatively, you can turn your mobile devices (iPhone or iPad) into cameras with OBS’ own OBS Camera app as well.
    As for angles, in a best case scenario, you would have three cameras. Consider placing one at a further distance to capture your full booth – the same placement we recommended above if you’re only using one laptop camera. The second and third should go
    closest to your mixer so the audience can watch your technique, and at an angle that shows your face. Humans connect with other humans, so this makes a big difference in terms of user connection. Pro move: bonus visual points come into play if you add overlays to your stream. The setup is pretty straightforward – watch a two-minute demo from OBS here – and there’s plenty of room for creativity here. You can even add people dancing on your corresponding Zoom call, like in the screenshot below:
    Kudeki streaming for SF Queer Nightlife Fund – with dancers from Zoom overlaid. And lastly: give your booth a little flair! Showcase your personality, your sound, and your space with lights and decorations. Consider running strip of LEDs behind your gear setup, put an uplight behind those monitors, add a few plants around your DJ gear! Take a piece of your personality and share it with the world. Wear something fun. Project an entertaining visual behind you. The options are endless.
    A Note on Streaming + Running DJ Software
    Streaming a DJ set can take a lot of processing power, which means that running DJ software on the same computer as the stream may cause issues. If you have a second computer, consider running the stream on that instead to avoid overloading your processing power.
    Even if you have a beefy computer, streaming + multiple video inputs + playing and effecting audio on multiple decks can start to test the limits. This applies to battery power as well – I’ve noticed that my laptop slowly loses battery charge over the course of a stream if I’m running too many other softwares concurrently. The last thing you want during a stream is your laptop powering off. I’d recommend having your laptop plugged into the charger for the duration of your stream—better safe than sorry.
    A Solid Connection
    Let’s talk about internet connections quickly and how to optimize your network for during a streaming session. Here’s a few simple tips:
    Ethernet if possible: Yes, wi-fi networks have gotten a lot better in the last few years, but they’re still dramatically less reliable than a hardwired ethernet connection. If you have a USB-C computer without an ethernet port, consider grabbing an adapter (maybe one with a few USB-A slots on it too, like this). Turn off wi-fi on your mobile devices: This one is somewhat self explanatory – don’t degrade your stream by adding more network traffic. I watched a stream this weekend where the DJ would pick up their phone and reply to texts and message threads. Each time they did, the video and audio would stutter and lag. If you want to talk to people, use your cell signal instead. Close your browser windows: Also self-explanatory. Shut down any unnecessary browser windows while you’re streaming. This can also add to the lag and cause issues with your stream feeding through to the masses. Test Your Setup
    Before streaming out to the masses on your platform(s) of choice, make sure to test your full setup. The last thing you want is to go live for your first time, and end up with no sound because a cord wasn’t plugged in, or your audio wasn’t turned to the right level. Try it before you push it live.
    Once you have your gear connected to OBS, set up your camera angles in the main screen, and toggle your audio input levels in the “Audio Mixer” section on the bottom row.
    I found that the sound quality is usually best if your mixer’s master sound is lower, your audio device is at a good level but not peaking, and the OBS Audio Mixer sits on the upper end of the green section (between -25 and -20dB). OBS also offers an incredibly straightforward start-and-stop streaming system in the “Controls” section, so once all systems are go, it’s a simple one-click to dive in.
    Here’s a hack for testing your setup. I typically check to see what my stream looks like by setting my Facebook posts to private – only I can see them – and connecting OBS to my Facebook Live stream. From there, if you’re ready to check on all the things, you can hit “Start Streaming”, and it creates a Facebook Live video that only you can see. You’ll be able to troubleshoot any issues from there. Once you’re ready to go fully live to your followers, don’t forget to change your privacy settings out of “only me”, though.
    Keep in mind when testing: there’s typically a lag between OBS and any streaming platform by a few seconds, so that’s normal – don’t stress on it if you hear your video briefly behind what you’re actually playing.
    Tackling each of these areas will ultimately result in a fun-to-listen, fun-to-watch stream that can be enjoyed by everyone. Take the time to dial in the right setup, and create a space in which you enjoy playing. Your viewers will thank you.
  7. Upvote
    LabRat reacted to Exode1 in Exode - Hard kube pack (Frenchcore) Free   
    Exode - Hardkube pack 

    Style : Frenchcore/Hardcore

    Product Details:

    - 1351 Loops & Samples audio includes
    - 47 Athmos drones
    - 302 Hard kicks
    - 237 Top Loops
    - 56 Bass
    - 55 Fills
    - 87 Fx noises
    - 73 Hats
    - 36 Hits
    - 136 Sfx energy
    - 40 Snares
    - 138 Synth loops
    - 55 Vocals +/-
    - 54 Whitenoises
    These are old personal loops

    Get It Free here : @ https://www.primamateriaaudio.com/free-download

    And other things

    Maybe you will find a one sample or two that you like.

    Have fun...
  8. Like
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Ableton Live Enhancement Suite   
    Looks interesting. Anything that can help speed up workflow is obviously for the better. Have you giving this a go @Mitch?
  9. Like
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Tractor Scratch Vs Serato Scratch   
    I thought this argument was reignited and was just about to wonder why until I saw the date. Time's have changed mate
  10. Upvote
    LabRat reacted to Mitch in Liquified Spotify Playlist   
    Update: enjoyed 👍
  11. Like
    LabRat reacted to Cupe in Sub Vibes Playlist   
    Fucking dope. I'm always looking for shit like this when I'm driving in the car.
    Will wack it on next drive.
  12. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Sub Vibes Playlist   
    Hey guys, 
    I've been meaning to put this playlist together for ages and I've finally gotten around to doing it. I've collected a few super chill and super subby dubstep and trap stuff (not heavy scratchy festival shit) and thought I'd share it around with anyone that wants to vibe out. Not looking for Spotify fame (if that's a thing) but I'll be adding to it as I keep finding stuff. Enjoy 
    https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0FNKUccZ9pHwKyg5WGMU88?si=NZf-q0O3TZq9HHtqR7SWew
     
  13. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from OwenDavidson in First post here, Madeon Remix   
    Nice track dude. Everything sits nicely and vibe is mint! The sounds are perfect for it too. It can be easy to overkill the synths with those massive festival sounding saws on a track like this but these are perfect. 
    Nice job
  14. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Hey everyone! I’m new here.   
    Welcome dude. Another perthite to add to the list
  15. Like
    LabRat reacted to Cupe in Submitting Music Independently to Streaming Platforms   
    Yeah I removed the spam links in its sig.
    Wouldn't mind a few bots like this bumping threads around town tbh
  16. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Submitting Music Independently to Streaming Platforms   
    Commonly used services
  17. Upvote
    LabRat reacted to OwenDavidson in First post here, Madeon Remix   
    What’s up guys, 
    this is my first post here.
    My latest track here is a remix of Madeon’s ‘Be Fine’, I took inspiration for the drop from Porter Robinson ‘Divinity’.
    Any constructive critiscm, why you did or didn’t like it, would be hugely appreciated.
    cheers!
     
     
  18. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Checking in! Trying to revive my passion.   
    Welcome back stranger! All the best - I'm still here to help you along the way
  19. Like
    LabRat reacted to SolDios in Checking in! Trying to revive my passion.   
    Hello All!

    It's been a while since I've posted so I thought I'd check in again. 
    Have been out of the industry for 2 or so years, got fed up with doing weddings and kissing promoters asses to get the smallest of club gigs. I brought some new equipment to try doing it as a passion, but I was just so burnt out at that point that I just couldn't enjoy mixing anymore.

    Fast forward 2 years and here we are, those 900's I brought are still untouched but I can't bring myself to sell them. So I'm having one last crack at revitalizing my desire to DJ.
    As a side note, I also do photography for a local radio station for their events. No cash for em only drink cards, but that's how I want it to there is no pressure if I fuck up.

    Currently my goals are the following:
    Move my Rekordbox library to my Surface Pro which I take to work everyday to find songs on my train ride home. Submit a Mini mix to my local radio station. Do some Twitch streams of me DJ'ing on Friday nights with some beers in hand. Short of this not happening, I will sell my decks and put it to bed. Can't bring myself to sell my PA or Sub though!

    My Gear:
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=18Mp2S1M4gCP7a3OS4CG6ZTkpeL4D8eQL

    My Flickr Account:
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/135142707@N06/
     
  20. Like
    LabRat reacted to Cupe in Checking in! Trying to revive my passion.   
    Don't let the dream die. You were a major part of ADJF and showed everyone how you can push through pressure and make something of yourself.
    One of the toughest dudes in ADJF history and I'm glad you're still around mate.
    Get a mix happening!
  21. Upvote
    LabRat reacted to Cupe in A Beginner’s Guide To Audio Cables   
    It might be a bit terrifying to older DJs, but many new DJs don’t know anything about audio cables, wiring, and pre-amps. In today’s article, guest contributor DJ Soo shares a back-to-basics guide on audio cables. This is essential reading for every new DJ – pass it along and share your own must-know knowledge in the comments.
    Why Do Most New DJs Not Know About Audio Cables?
    For decades, stereo systems were largely component-based gear requiring a certain level of knowledge and understanding to get home hi-fi systems up and running, with various components sending signal to each other. There were separate amplifiers, turntables, CD players, cassette decks, etc – and each had to connect to one another to get sound to the speakers.
    Wiring a hi-fi system is a skill of the past.
    In the last 20 years or so, the way we listen to music has drastically changed. The home stereo is no longer the source of music. Computers and phones are how most people consume their music, and the industry has focused on creating technology devoted specifically to them. Most home audio setups rarely need more than a 1/8”  cable, USB cable, phone dock, or a Bluetooth connection.
    DJing and PA systems on the other hand, still remain firmly entrenched in a more traditional use of audio cables to connect various components and there may be many younger DJs that are not fully familiar with the various types of cables available and how each functions.
    So with that said, here’s a beginner’s guide to the different types of audio cables you’re likely to meet as a DJ.
    Editor’s Note: Many of these concepts might be obvious to most veteran DJs – but they are all included here to act as a comprehensive guide. 
    Signal Flow
    The inputs and outputs on a DJM-900NXS
    The first thing to understand about audio is that it is very linear. There is generally either an output or an input. When it comes to audio connections, Output refers to the sound coming out of those ports, while Input refers to ports that receive that sound. This is what is known as “signal flow” or “signal chain.” Outputs should be connected to inputs along the chain of devices.
    For instance, when connecting a device like a CDJ or controller to a DJ Mixer, you want the CDJ outputs sending audio to your mixer inputs for their respective channels. On a standard DJ mixer, your MASTER, BOOTH, and REC OUT will be your outputs while your channel ports will be your inputs.
    Left/Right
    Audio cables are often colored red and white to easily track which side is connected to which channel.
    This one is fairly obvious – the tracks you DJ with are almost always produced in a stereo field. This means the signals for the left and right speakers differ. In most audio gear, that means separate ports and cables are required for the left and right side of the signal.
    Traditionally, the right side port will be colored red, while the left side will be white or black. The coloring on the cables makes no functional difference – they’re just an easy guide to keep track of where things are plugged in.  
    Male/Female Connectors + Plugs

    The terms “Male” and “Female” in regards to cables and ports refers to the type of connectors of the cables. Male connectors plug into things, while Female connectors have things plugged into them. I’ll let you figure out where the terms originated from.
    Most cables used in DJing will have male ends on each side, with the female connections as the ports on the hardware. With XLR cables (more on them below), there’s almost always a male and female end, with outputs on hardware almost always being male and inputs almost always being female.
    Balanced/Unbalanced
    There’s a wealth of technical reasons and descriptions differentiating Balanced and Unbalanced cables using such jargon as “differential,” “reversed polarity,” “phase cancellation,” and so on, but instead of getting into that, let’s stick to the practical application – the most important thing for DJs to know:
    Unbalanced cables tend to be more prone to interference and added noise once getting beyond a certain length (about 15-20 feet) Balanced cables tend to have less noise and allow for longer cables In order to use balanced cables, the hardware must also have balanced outputs. This will be labeled on the gear. If you have to use long cables, you should always try to use balanced cables and outputs!
    Of the most widely used cables:
    RCA is always Unbalanced XLR is always Balanced 1/4” can either be Balanced (TRS) or Unbalanced (TS) Here’s a great quick explanation of the two concepts on YouTube by Joe Gilder:
     
    Pre-amps
    Amplifiers do pretty much what the name states:  it amplifies power and in the case of audio, the volume. Audio output from computers, CDJs, phones, and other non-analog devices is what’s known as line level audio. This is a specific range of volume output by devices.
    There are, however, certain devices that output considerably quieter or weaker signals that require an extra stage of amplification to output at a similar volume. The two most commonly encountered pieces of gear for DJs will be turntables and microphones.
    The inputs on a DJ mixer often have selectable phono preamp or line level inputs – like on the back of this Rane Sixty Two
    DJ turntables require what’s known as a phono pre-amp to get vinyl at a similar volume level as a CDJ or controller. Almost all DJ mixers will have built-in pre-amps, and some of the more modern turntable options also have built-in pre-amps.
    Phono inputs on DJ mixers are specifically for turntables and nothing else as they have a specific layer of EQing required to make vinyl sound like real music (known as the RIAA EQ curve). If you’ve ever plugged in a turntable into the Line input of a mixer and heard a quiet signal or worse, or plugged a CDJ into the Phono input and heard a loud, distorted mess of a signal, it’s because of the pre-amp (or lack thereof).
    Microphones also require a pre-amp as passive mics also tend to be very weak compared to line level sound. Most line or front-of-house mixers have both line level and mic level inputs that can be plugged into. Unlike phono pre-amps, the input does not alter the sound outside of amplification so it is possible to plug a line level output into a mic input and drastically lower the gain to prevent clipping.  Some mixers will also have what’s known as a “pad” option which automatically adjusts down the level by about 20 db essentially converting the input into a line level input.
    Audio Cable Types
    RCA Cables
     

    RCA is one of the most ubiquitous cable formats in audio gear. Developed in the 1940s, it has remained largely unchanged since and continues to be one of the standard cables for linking audio components. This cable is used for everything from CDJs to mixers to main outputs to stereo systems.
    Due to the unbalanced nature of RCA cables, they are best used for shorter distances. This is fine connecting a CDJ to a mixer or a controller to a mixer, but for entry-level mixers and controllers that only have RCA outputs for the mains, it isn’t recommended to connect directly to a PA system if the cables are going to be longer than 15-20 feet just due to the increased risk of noise and interference.
    RCA cables can also be used for S/PDIF or Digital Outputs although a specific cable (75ohm cable) is supposed to give the best results. This is most commonly seen in higher end Pioneer CDJs and Nexus mixers.
    TRS / TS Cables

    TRS stands for Tip Ring Sleeve which is another ubiquitous cable format alongside TS which is simply Tip Sleeve. The most commonly seen usage of the TRS connector is the 1/8” or 1/4” jack used in headphones. These cables are also used as PA Speaker cables, microphones, and instrument patch cables. Outside of headphones, in the DJ world, they are often used as main outputs or booth outputs.
    The important thing to note: these cables can either be balanced or unbalanced. TRS cables are balanced while TS cables are unbalanced. The easy way to tell the cables apart is that TRS cables have an extra plastic ring around the jack rather than the single in a TS cable.
    XLR Cables

    XLR cables are one of the standard cable formats for pro audio. Unlike most audio cables, XLR will almost always have two different ends – one male and one female. XLR outputs and inputs are most commonly used for main outputs on mixers or higher end controllers or for microphones.
    XLR cables are popular in the pro audio world for a few of reasons:
    They are always balanced – it’s very easy to run long cables They lock into place – making it more difficult to get accidentally unplugged Due to the dual connector ends, it’s very easy to link up a series of shorter cables together for a longer run If you’re building up a mobile PA system, this will be the cable you will most likely use the most to connect speakers.
    SpeakOn Cables

     
    SpeakOn cables are most often used in higher end and larger PA systems – festival and concert rigs and the like. DJ gear does not use SpeakOn connectors – they’re used to connect amplifier racks to passive speaker rigs. The advantages to SpeakOn cables is the greater shielding to prevent interference or even electrical shock, more durable and thicker cables, and a superior locking mechanism.
    Newer passive speakers (i.e. requiring separate amplifiers) will often sport SpeakOn connectors vs XLR connectors on powered or active gear.
    Speaker Wire

    I’ve always hated speaker wire. It’s messy, ugly and hard to deal with. They were the standard for HiFi systems for decades. It’s essentially two raw bundles of small copper, wrapped in rubber, with the copper exposed on each end. This wire is used to connect an amplifier to passive speakers. If you’ve ever had to ground a Technics to a ground post with the grounding fork missing, connecting speaker wire is the same, but more of a pain.
    Speaker wire is essentially two wires melded together – a positive and negative side. The exposed wires are often twisted up and jammed into a clip connector or a binding post (similar to a grounding post). Some speakers will have special connectors you can attach to the wires to make it simpler.
    Bonus Concepts + Additional Notes
    Combo Jacks
    Combo jack Mic inputs on the back of a VCI-400
    Combo jacks are jacks that can take both XLR and 1/4” TRS/TS cables. They are always female so they always function as inputs.  These are most commonly found in active speakers.
    Adaptors
    There are times that certain pieces of gear require different connectors on each ends (for example, connecting a DDJ-SR – which only has 1/4” outs – to a pair speakers that only have XLR inputs). The easiest way to solve this is to use either adaptors or cables with different connectors on either end.
    Want to change cable types? There’s seemingly an adaptor for every possible situation.
    If you can think of a combination of connectors, then an adaptor or cable exists for it. While adaptors are convenient, I tend to gravitate towards dedicated cables (or in the case of XLR, they also function as adaptors – just with a length of wire between them).
    Adaptors can be bulky and in the case of some manufacturers of connectors, aren’t the most snug leading to signal loss or noise. Add to that, given that most DJ gear tends to plug in horizontally, heavier adaptors can stress the plugs – which can end up damaging your gear.
    Converting unbalanced to balanced signal
    If you have a mixer or controller which only has RCA or unbalanced 1/4” outputs and you want the option of running cables longer than 15 feet, there are a couple of ways to convert the signal to a balanced output.
    The first is a DI or Direct Box which is a small unit that is purpose-built to convert the signal into a balanced output. They come in different sizes and styles some which are very basic and others which have a host of more features. Best bet is to find one that supports stereo inputs and outputs, otherwise a pair of boxes will be required. The other option is to run the device into a separate mixer with balanced outputs. There are plenty of small-size and affordable mixers which accept RCA or 1/4” inputs and have balanced XLR or 1/4” outputs. The added benefit of these mixers is that it allows for an extra gain stage to boost volume. This is especially useful for entry-level devices that tend to have lower output. A DJ mixer will also function well for this application – so venues with any type of house mixer will work fine.
  22. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Cupe in Denon DJ’s X1850 Mixer: An Aesthetic Refresh And That’s About It   
    I haven't seen Denon gear in so long. Almost a bit of a shame though because their stuff back in the day was bulletproof
  23. Like
    LabRat reacted to Mitch in Competition Ideas   
    Sounds intriguing!
     
  24. Upvote
    LabRat got a reaction from Mitch in Competition Ideas   
    Not sure if there was a thread anywhere but if anyone is up for a challenge I have some ideas. These are more directed at music makers rather than DJ's but everyone is welcome to give it a go. 
    The initial preset challenge
    This one is about using your creativity using nothing but the initial preset. Inside the plugin you can have control over the envelopes and filters but that's it. You're not allowed to chance the waveform. You can manipulate the sound any way you like using as many plugins as you like. The idea of this is to be as creative as you can by forcing you to use all those extra plugins you got that you may have shoved aside or just not used. It's a good way to understand how they work too. 
    One sample challenge
    I saw this on YouTube and loved the idea. We all have 1 sample, can be a section of an acapella, a song or some other random audio sample, and we call create a piece of music around that one sample. The idea is to obviously use the sample in as many different ways as you can, challenging your creativity.
    If anyone's interested we can organise a deadline and I can come up with some more detailed rules.   
  25. Like
    LabRat reacted to Cupe in Competition Ideas   
    I'd def be keen to do the One Sample challenge.
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