Recording your mixes

If you are a DJ, you will have to be able to record your mix. There are several reasons for that. For instance, you want to share it on the web. To either start creating a base of followers. Or for having feedback on how to improve your mixing level. You might also want to show your mixes to promoters to get booked. Or, the last one: You want to improve.

So there are a lot of convenient ways one can use its recorded mix. That is what we are going to see in this article about recording your mix.

I hope you are ready.

How do you record a mix?

The first thing to understand is how you can record your mix. This is essential because, more than just having the sound, you want it to be of good quality. If you want people to analyze your style, they might not be bothered by too much bass. Or by any sound problem that can occur. 

So let us see how you can record your music.

On a controller

I think controllers are the more simple tools to record your mix. Depending on which one you are using, there is a functionality that allows you to record internally directly. For instance, in Traktor, you can select the extended view mode, you will have the option in the upper right corner. On Serato, a button called “REC” is available for you to record your mix on the main panel. The same option exists in virtual DJ on the main panel too.

What you need to think about when recording, is the amount of processing power and memory it takes. Mixes can be heavy, so you need to have some free gigabytes. But most importantly, you do not want your computer bugging, so you need to avoid any latency problems. To do so, I used to run a program that would shut down all the unnecessary windows programs. You can also only shut down your wifi and close the application.

On turntables

When I speak about turntables, I discuss both vinyl and digital turntables in that case. The difference I am making is that you are unplugged into DJ software. Hence recording does not come easily. 

In that case, you will need an external tool to record. Nowadays, a phone can work, but you might have a fixed computer or an external recorder. In anyways, you will have to find an output (mostly the REC one) where you would connect a cable (mostly RCA). Then, from this output, you will need to connect to your recording device to get the proper signal. Then, you will have your mix ready on your device.

Note that the REC output sends a signal that does not vary. That means that you will not have music that can be too high or too low according to your volume levels. The signal will be standardized, which is better when post-processing your mix or uploading them.

The benefits of recording your mix

There are a lot of benefits to recording your mixes. Here, we are going to list them to let you understand why you should do it.

Publish on the web

If you are a DJ and desire to evolve, you will have, at one point, to publish your mixes. You will need to create your online profile and share your mixes with the world. I will be honest with you, only a few people will listen to it. But the ones who will, are the ones who will be your unconditional supporters. 

With the help of platforms such as Soundcloud or Mixcloud, you will be able to make your mixes accessible for anyone. It will serve to be discovered or to be looked for later. It will become part of your identity as you will be able to say that you are a DJ and that one can find your mixes on those platforms.

That leads to our next section:

Be findable and credible

You’re a DJ, but you feel shy? Everyone has been through this. Like a pyramid, the number of people who have uploaded their mixes is greater than the ones who have played in festivals. In any case, both can say they are DJs without shame. 

So if you want to be considered as a DJ, you need to have your mix out there. It is like, if you want a dream job, you need to have a resume ready to give. That is the whole purpose of being able to give out your mixes. That is the first step of a big journey. And believe me, more people will give you a gig than a job.

So yes, putting your mixes online is a big step, you might be shy in doing so, but you should not. Because when someone that will be able to give you a gig will ask you for a mix, they will be happy to see that you can provide them one. They will be even more delighted to acknowledge that you have made more than a dozen. And this is how it all starts.

Improve yourself

In my opinion, this is the most crucial point. 

How do you know you’re a good DJ? Like, your technic is good? I mean the crowd in parties dance to your music, but they are maybe drunk, they are maybe there with their friends or for getting laid. They might dance but not pay full attention to the music. They might forgive your music as long as the girl on the dancefloor is staying there. 

So how do you know you’re doing a great job? I mean, you’re doing your stuff. Hence, you can’t review what you’re doing. 

Well, the only answer to that is to record your mixes. It will help you to localize where you’re making mistakes and what you should improve. Maybe your transition is too quick, or too slow. You’re using too many effects. You don’t manage the volume accurately. There is a lot to take out of someone’s mix. But it’s even better when you analyze yours. Because you’ll be in total control.

Record your mix with your phone

You might wonder how you can record your mix with your phone? In this section of the article recording your mix, we will see how you can achieve it.

The cables

Your goal here is to capture the sound that comes out from your mix table into a device that records it. Here is your smartphone. To do so, you will find the right output for this. The best, as we mentioned early in this article, is the REC output as it gives a standardized signal. But any output can be good, you will just need to be careful with your gain.

To this REC, you’ll plug in some RCA cables. They can finish as a jack or you can buy an adapter for this. Then, you’ll need a TRS to TRRS adapter. For those who aren’t technical, let’s put it like that to understand. Some jacks can have 2 rings and then you won’t be able to record audio from them. You then need to have 3 rings. And this is how TRRS works. So it might not be 100% correct. But this is how I experienced it.

Record your DJ set on iPhone

There are a bunch of apps on iPhone that you can use to record your mix. In my experience, I would advise you to use the one you’re most comfortable with. I am using the normal dictaphone most of the time. The reason for this is that it exports to my email easily. But maybe you’ll find a better alternative such as Garage band or anything out there. 

I also know that pioneer has an app for that.

Record on an android phone

On the other hand, you might have an android and don’t know how to do it. Well, the Pioneer app doesn’t work in that case, nor does garage band. So you will have to find an alternative, but I am sure that the normal dictaphone works perfectly. Again, find something that suits your workflow.

I hope that you liked this article. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to comment and I will be glad to answer you.