The DJ Booth

Adding A Laptop To My Setup

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Harrison_PurePacha +

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Adding A Laptop To My Setup
looking for some help here guys i am a n00b when it comes to this

at the minute i have my 5 channel mixer with 2 cdjs

i want to add ableton to my setup i have my laptop and ableton ready but if i want to connect it am i right in thinking all i need is an external soundcard? or do i also need a midi controller?

if i need either of these can anyone point me in the direction of some good ones.

i am playing out regularly so the soundcard need to be good quality

im guessing its just laptop - soundcard - mixer

am i right?

thanks in advance

H
TOBY +

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Hey harrison.... I'm going to be nice to you cause I checked your myspace and you look like a DJ, so I assume you have some kind of brain damage ( i mean that in the nicest possible way)

we have a search function on our community forum, so maybe check with different answers that have been provided in the past!

The answer to your question is: it depends

As far as soundcards go: the requirements vary but most people use an external soundcard (with two sets of stereo outs) if they are DJing with Ableton or more if they are playing Live. you can get a "card" type soundcard, like and Indigo DJ which is very popular amongst Ableton DJs as it requires no seperate box.

If you want a decent sound card the brands worth looking at include: RME and Motu. Forget anything by M-audio, Edirol are OK but not on the same level as the other two,

Midi controllers: yeah you dont have to have one, but its going to make playing with ableton a lot more fun for both you and your audience. You can use the mouse/trackpad and keyboard but you'll be limited and you'll get bored.
I personally use three midi controllers (but then when I play Live its all my own stuff so I have a lot of parameters to look after). Mine include two faderfox (www.faderfox.de) if you have cash they are fantastic. Well made, with a specific use in mind. Also I have an M-audio X-session (enough knobs and a crossfader for those DJ moments), M-audio have a few new controllers out.
Probably the most wanted current controller is the Bitsteam 3x, and if i was getting a controller tomorrow (which i am not as my misses would kill me) I would get this. Lots of knows, faders and looks to be well made so its going to stand-up to the shit that you DJs give your equiptment....

Ableton takes time as you need to warp, and organise to a certain extent before your performance, even if you are just playing other peoples music. It looks from your myspace like you are also writing, so I assume you are using Logic or Protools or Cubase. As you can't connect your PC to mixer, and you are using some programs to write I find your question very strange.

The real potenital of Ableton is in its ablities as a LIVE performance tool. If you are just looking for something to play your MP3 off you will be better off with a tool like Traktor or Scratch whatever.
Back from the snow!

Last edited by TOBY: 23-Mar-07 at 08:02am

flexau +

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You've probably already had a go at taking the line-out from your lappy to a channel on your mixer, right? So now you can trigger clips using the mouse or keyboard and use your mixer to monitor the lappy and fade the channel in/out.

First steps I took were to get into assigning controls to the keyboard, like clip launch, stop and EQ kills -you may still trigger clips using the keyboard even when you have a controller, so explore this - 'Key' button, top-right of the screen.

I want a soundcard but can't afford it, I have to make do with warping the tunes so I know they're gonna be in-time and not-monitoring before fading up! But I don't play out at the mo' so it don't matter.

There are many threads in here [ITM] about soundcards and midi-controllers, so have a look, and for a fair bit of inspiration and more ideas read this ...

http://createdigitalmusic.com/2006/1...ormance-djing/

and this

http://createdigitalmusic.com/2007/0...jobs/#comments
Harrison_PurePacha +

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thanks for the help im looking at various soundcards now...

looking at a maya 44 USB Sound Card, it looks like it will do the job i want but im worried it will distort? can anyone put my mind at ease!

cheers
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