How to Start DJing With a Laptop
DJs are frequently seen performing with standalone devices, CD players, and vinyl records. The tools mentioned above are essentially considered industry standards. Each club typically has its own stationary equipment that is already connected and set up for the performer to use right away. This implies that unlike rock bands, who occasionally bring many trailers with sound amplifiers and strong audio systems to concerts, DJs don’t need to bring their own equipment. High-quality gear is, of course, extremely pricey, especially for rookie DJs who don’t yet have enough income to spend thousands of dollars on gear.
Happily, there are workarounds that enable aspiring DJs to begin their education and even their first performances without having to invest in their own equipment. All you could require is a desktop computer, or even better, a portable laptop. Nevertheless, a computer alone won’t allow you to perform your job effectively; you also need to install DJ-specific software that will allow you to easily deal with tracks and mix them. We’ll look at some premium and free DJ software that can only be used with a laptop down below.
Choose the software for DJing on a laptop
We won’t go into detail about the software’s features, but we will give you a list of the greatest ones so you can check them out and determine which is more practical for you. Start with the options that are free. The following products, which feature an online version and don’t require installation, are preferred by many DJs: Mixxx, Serato DJ Lite, WeDJ, and You.dj.
NI Traktor Pro, Serato DJ Pro, and Algoriddim DJ Pro AI. The latter is already equipped with AI technologies that let you work more productively and add additional, sophisticated mixing possibilities. You can find articles on our site that discuss the features of DJ software if you’re interested in learning more about it.
Best Laptop for DJing
The computer you choose to install the program on should receive special consideration. It’s critical to realize that each piece of software has certain system requirements. When a program is equipped with superior signal processing tools, effects, or artificial intelligence that demands more processing power, it can occasionally be rather high.
DJs have long considered the Apple Macbook to be a kind of standard. Their equipment is undoubtedly pricey, but there are also less expensive ones that are capable of handling mixing chores. The fact that these laptops are well-known for their stability, longevity, and speed is a major plus. The cost of the newest models is the only negative, and you frequently have to pay extra for the software.
Reliable equipment can be a major factor when purchasing equipment for DJs who have already been invited to large events or clubs. It makes sense to pick a Mac in this situation. If money is an issue, you should first review the system specifications of the software you intend to use before selecting a number of laptops with the Windows operating system and the necessary characteristics from the store’s selection. There are several DJ apps available for them, many of them free, and they are less expensive than Macs.
Choose a model by balancing your budget with the software and computer you want. The two most crucial elements are the CPU speed and RAM capacity, both of which should be more than adequate for the DJ app you want to utilize. Install a number of programs on your new laptop after purchasing it, and then give them each a try. Make a note of which option is more stable and practical for you. You may also test out the paid versions because they all have a trial period. You can also buy it if you like it.
Done? You currently possess a laptop and software. If you don’t have access to convenient faders and other tools, how can you mix music? Most DJ software has hotkeys that make it simple to operate the mixing process via the keyboard, while other actions may be carried out using a touchpad or even a standard mouse. Naturally, this could feel awkward at first, but it will help you gain a feel for the procedure and prepare for live performances. We’ll then discuss a few additional controllers that let you easily adjust the volume and EQ frequencies.
Additional external controllers
Full-featured standalone controllers are pretty pricey, as we mentioned previously in the article, but there are some with a small number of faders and buttons that make it easier to mix music and can be reasonably priced. If you invest in such inexpensive gear, you will be able to play your DJ set entirely, if necessary, using just a laptop and a little USB device. Yet, you don’t need it. We hope that by now you realize that you don’t need to invest in expensive equipment to start DJing and that you can begin your performances with just a computer and software, even for nothing.
We want to give you another life hack that will help you stand out and be attractive to the audience from the very beginning. Most beginner DJs play only other artists’ music in their sets. If you have a track in your tracklist that no other artist has, it will help you look like an attractive DJ against the background of other beginners. But how can you do this if you don’t have your own music? In this case, there are services with music created by ghost producers. One of these services is I am Ghost Producers. We offer exclusive music and provide documents describing its rights. So go to the store and buy a ghost production track, and you can play it in your DJ set, radio show, or even send it to a label. If influential people like your track, you will have access to professional DJ equipment!