How Do You Make DJ Mixes?


Quick Answer

Make a DJ mix by using a combination of mixing equipment, such as CD or vinyl turntables, multi-channel mixers, DJ controllers, laptop computers and computer software, to blend songs together and record the mix. Industry-standard brands of DJ mixing equipment and software include Pioneer, Ableton, Serato and Native Instruments.

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How Do You Make DJ Mixes?
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Full Answer

There are several ways to make a DJ mix both with and without the use of a computer, but to record and save the mix a computer is almost always necessary. The most traditional method is to connect two to four vinyl or CD turntables to a multi-channel audio mixer and output the mixer to studio monitor speakers and recording equipment, such as a computer. Play a different song, or track, on each turntable, starting each track in a musically-coordinated manner by matching tempo and measure, agreeing keys and blending frequencies properly. Use software audio recording software, such as Audacity or Ableton Live, to record and post-process the mix into a shareable format, such as MP3.

For a more modern approach, use a combination of traditional DJ equipment, computers, digital DJ controller devices and special software to control and manage the music that is played. Industry-standard software brands that can be used without traditional DJ equipment include Serato Scratch Live and Native Instruments Traktor. For beginner-level mixing, use VirtualDJ DJ simulation software and mix audio files on up to four turntables without the need for any extra equipment. Scratch Live, Traktor and Virtual DJ can all record mixes in-software.

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