Algoriddim’s popular Djay app still leads the way in terms of an effective music-mixing device on your iOS devices like iPhone, iPad and also Mac. It’s a surprisingly powerful and effective tool and is fairly easy to get to grips with, but if you’re the kind of person, who doesn’t tend to read the manual, be aware of the simple but effective features it possesses. Here is a brief overview of how to get up and running.

Algoriddim's djay App : Hands-on Review

Algoriddim's djay App : Hands-on Review

Before You Start

The first thing to note is that the Djay app mixes music held on your iOS device. So if you don’t already have music playlists in iTunes, you won’t have much to mix with. Make sure you move music onto your iPhone’s iTunes first and then you can get started.

The Deck Interface

When you launch the app, you will see a graphical interface simulating a real vinyl record deck. Turn the iPhone horizontally and you now see two side by side, just like a standard DJ set-up. This feature quickly allows you to switch between two essential configurations for DJ-ing and gives you the ability to see one deck up close and more accurately for fine-tuning the pitch fader or scratching etc. Once a track is loaded onto the deck, it appears as a vinyl record on the platter and can then be manually manipulated by moving your finger back and forth over it, as if you were moving a real record deck with your hand. The tone arm and stylus can also be moved over the record to different positions.

Algoriddim's djay App : Hands-on Review

To load a track from your playlist, press the music note/+ button on the top left of the screen. This launches your playlist of tracks to select from. You can order tracks or artists alphabetically, or by BPM (by pressing the small curved arrow in the top right of the screen.) Select the track and it will load onto the deck.

To load a second track to mix into, repeat the process on deck 2. To alter the BPM of track 2, press the small faders button at the bottom right of the deck. This will take you to another screen view, where you can alter the BPM (amongst other things.) You can either move the pitch fader manually or can go for the easy option and press the SYNC button. This will match the BPM of track 2 to the BPM of track one. Once you have cued up the tracks (a cue point can be set at any point in the track by pressing the circular dot button on the transport bar), they are ready to be mixed via the crossfader,

Scratching, EQ FX and Loops

The decks respond very well to simulated scratching; use one finger for a standard scratching style or two, to produce “Auto-Cut Scratching” a stuttering, gated scratch sound, which is always in time with your track. The spinbacks and stop and starts are fairly authentic and can be altered in the app’s settings, which are accessed by clicking on the small cog button at the top of the app. If you go to the BPM view, there are three more sub-views available: EQ, FX and Loops. These are fairly self-explanatory and allow you to manipulate the relevant parameter with your fingertips.

Automix and Record

Djay allows you to set a playlist of tracks to be mixed automatically. This is done by pressing on the Automix button, above the crossfader. Here you can choose what tracks will be mixed, shuffle options and transition settings etc.

If you want to record a mix, simply press the red record button at the top centre and press, “start new recording.” The recorded mix can then be uploaded via iTunes (and can even be re-imported back into Djay and mixed into again!)

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djay Accessories

Third-party manufacturers offer various accessories and Griffin’s dedicated DJ Cable is particularly worth the money. It allows you to pre-cue a track on a split headphone, so you can check the mix is in time before the crowd hears the results. There are also many external hardware controllers available, which effectively turn the iPhone and iPad  into a realistic DJ set-up, whereby you have physical controls for most of the parameters.

For it’s low cost, Algoriddim’s Djay is quite a revolutionary app. It is possible to DJ authentically with it, although this can be at times very fiddly. There are however, numerous YouTube videos of users producing incredible results, so learn the basics and dive right on in. Now could be the time to take to the stage!

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