DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Da hand
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by Da hand » Fri May 21, 2010 4:47 pm

Ninja-Matic wrote:
Da hand wrote:Well, if you are using the line "it is correct because x so and so showed me / does it" as your only reply, then it seems like you do not understand the tools yourself very well. And I guess the "basement DJ" comment was an attempt to ruffle our feathers a bit? :D

If you are using an external mixer - like Deadmau5 does (and like everyone should) - then there is no reason to be using compressors and limiters on the master channel of your software. Compressing and limiting songs that are already compressed and limited very hard will only serve to degrade your sound. And while you may use the compressor and limiter to catch the peaks caused by your effects (to not go beyond 0dbfs), it is far better to leave yourself some headroom on the software's master channel instead and simply raise the volume on your external mixer.
Everyone learns what they learn by research or being taught by someone else. Research can simply mean trial and error. There are basic rules to adhere to when considering audio fidelity and dynamic range.

Oh but there ARE reasons to use compressors and limiters - I compose my sets live on stage - also - you need to consider that not every song is mastered for every sound system at every club you play in - this is why we do something called "sound checks" before shows. So you can get peak performance and fidelity based on the setup of the particular venue you decide to play at.

I was always under the impression that headroom is perfectly acceptable. This is not news to me.

Most venues I play at will have some type of sound engineer on hand and my feed is usually well below 0db - the compression and limiting are left to the venue's engineer.

It is different everywhere I go - but as stated - there are ways to enhance the audio to give it a smoother polish depending on the venue and their sound system. "PLUG AND PLAY" has never been my way to go.

I do break down and master individual instruments/percussion ahead of time to limit CPU usage during live shows - but there is a mild bit of processing still done with plugins that emulate the more CPU-intensive Waves that I use in my home studio.

What REALLY sucks - is that simply moving from studio to real-world sound systems - you're losing a LOT of fidelity right there. A lot of the hard work that goes into perfecting every track is lost during the transition from studio to car stereo, club, home systems, etc. None of those systems are designed to reproduce audio like proper studio monitors.

Simply bouncing to 44.1/16 is a major hit in fidelity.

If there is a way to help increase the overall quality during live performances - then I'll use it - whether I found a trick myself or was taught a trick by someone else.

The funny thing is - you're all giving your own ideas on what YOU think others should do - but then saying that just because XYZ works for someone else means you suck because you have no brain of your own.

Irony != awesomeness. :mrgreen:
Dude, with this answer you just totally negated what you stated as your point "2" which I quoted and argued against. :wink:

I am all for learning from others, but it is to "learn" why they do it and not simply to copy without knowing why. A statement saying "do it simply because person x does it" with no further explanation as to why this person x does it, implies copying and not learning. In my example, I gave reasons for my way of thinking.

As to fidelity, you only loose as much as you allow to be lost. If you are playing a Live set - your own tracks, then it is the limits that you set that will determine the quality of what comes out on the sound system - especially when playing on a very good sound system. What is preventing you from playing the files / projects at their peak quality - quality of gear? time? space?

SubFunk
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by SubFunk » Fri May 21, 2010 4:51 pm

Da hand wrote:I am all for learning from others, but it is to "learn" why they do it and not simply to copy without knowing why. A statement saying "do it simply because person x does it" with no further explanation as to why this person x does it, implies copying and not learning.
i agree with da hand,

that is exactly how i interpreted your statement as well, being a blind copy cat, not a learner.

a learner understands first.
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McQ714
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by McQ714 » Fri May 21, 2010 5:10 pm

Ogg Vorbis FTW!!!

SubFunk
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by SubFunk » Fri May 21, 2010 5:12 pm

McQ714 wrote:Ogg Vorbis FTW!!!
yep, for example and by far superior to mp3s, for sure.
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Da hand
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by Da hand » Fri May 21, 2010 5:25 pm

I just wanted to add that I totally get where you are coming from SubFunk regarding the quality of sound. The public may not be aware as to why exactly one DJ's set sounds better than the one before, but they feel it. And why not go that extra mile and strive for perfection in every possible way. It may not be always achievable, but at least we can do our best to be as close as we can.

SubFunk
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by SubFunk » Fri May 21, 2010 7:58 pm

Da hand wrote:I just wanted to add that I totally get where you are coming from SubFunk regarding the quality of sound. The public may not be aware as to why exactly one DJ's set sounds better than the one before, but they feel it. And why not go that extra mile and strive for perfection in every possible way. It may not be always achievable, but at least we can do our best to be as close as we can.
that is my opinion, spot on. :P
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Ninja-Matic
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by Ninja-Matic » Fri May 21, 2010 9:46 pm

Da hand wrote:Dude, with this answer you just totally negated what you stated as your point "2" which I quoted and argued against. :wink:

I am all for learning from others, but it is to "learn" why they do it and not simply to copy without knowing why. A statement saying "do it simply because person x does it" with no further explanation as to why this person x does it, implies copying and not learning. In my example, I gave reasons for my way of thinking.

As to fidelity, you only loose as much as you allow to be lost. If you are playing a Live set - your own tracks, then it is the limits that you set that will determine the quality of what comes out on the sound system - especially when playing on a very good sound system. What is preventing you from playing the files / projects at their peak quality - quality of gear? time? space?
I can tell you're not illiterate - but you missed the part in an earlier post where I said: "The idea is to LEARN from others and make your own interpretation."

Nowhere did I negate any 1 point I made and nowhere did I say "I DO EXACTLY AS X DOES". I stated he showed me a few tricks.

Perhaps I'm giving you guys more credit by just "assuming" that there are unwritten rules like - applying what you've learned/know to your own stuffs.

Is that wrong? One compression plugin might not work the same across different songs - but there is a BASE model that all compressors follow - a workflow to produce an end result. Settings will obviously change from song to song as you master - but the purpose and methodology behind the compressor, doesn't. They all serve the same basic purpose.

The idea is to learn and apply what you've learned to what works for you. Where you get off implying that I have this all-encompassing premade "X WORKS FOR EVERYTHING" rack - I have no clue. I can only venture that you're not reading my posts, or just skimming through them and spinning and misconstruing my words.

That's the sign of a losing debate.

As for your last point - I don't DJ like everyone else. I HAVE DJ'd with MP3s - but I've stated I construct music live on stage. The OP was questioning about CACHING when everyone started berating him for using MP3s. The same sample sets I use to create my tracks for studio work are the same sample sets I use for live composition. The only difference is that in the studio I use logic, ableton, pro tools, reason, NI synths, etc.

Nothing is limiting my performance and sound quality but the venue at which I play at. Some are great - some suck. As I stated - "sound checks" will help ease some of the burden of crap audio systems at clubs.

You still have to consider that EXTREME audio fidelity destruction occurs at high decibels. I haven't performed or attended a performance where my ears were not ringing the next day.

Unless, of course, you folks like spoken word at coffee shops.

Audio played at these levels - no matter the system - will receive some type of distortion. Again - this is why final mastering occurs at extreme low volume levels so you can hear every discrepancy in the audio. Louder != better. Since all club systems are designed to rattle ceilings and vibrate floors - you're loosing a LOT of fidelity in the "mud" that is created.

The typical fidelity loss comes from lowering the dynamic range of the frequency spectrum in MP3 conversion. 320 can achieve 48khz no problem with a range of 20-20k - which is WELL outside the norm for normal human hearing.

Another thing to consider is the type of program being used by laptop DJs - the spectrum changes from one song to the next depending on the software used and is dependent solely upon the types of algorithms that are used to calculate the final output. Traktor DJ Studio sounds entirely different when playing the EXACT same MP3 or WAV than does Serato, than does Ableton.

The mixer you use impacts the sound quality, cables, hardware FX, etc.

Again - there is no "end all" answer for increasing audio goodness - but there are tricks that you can use as guidelines to create your own plugin algorithms to accommodate a specific venue/sound system. Starting points, not "the best method".

So stop being childish and ignorant, everyone. If you don't want to read my previous posts in a debate then don't comment on them. You wind up missing stuff and looking particularly unintelligent in the process.

Best of luck, dwellers.

silveriofunk
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Re: DJing with WAV's or MP3's??

Post by silveriofunk » Mon May 24, 2010 10:42 am

SubFunk wrote:
Da hand wrote:I believe that the MP3 format is not going to last very long anymore as the main audio format. Certainly not for DJs. Its usefulness is starting to run out - with faster internet connections (and all reputable stores selling FLAC and Wavs) and bigger hard drives.

When you think about it, how many songs do you really need to have with you at a gig? Do you really need to have your whole music collection with you (from classical music, through funk, acid jazz, techno, hip hop, whatever....) when you know you will play a 2 hour techno set? Wouldn't 1000 techno/house songs more than suffice? And I mean the ones that have potential to be played in your set. That would be like 10 record bags of vinyl!

In digital terms, let us say each song is 10 minutes long and in WAV format - that only equals to 110 Gigs. Any hard drive you get these days has way more space.

For those that claim they have no space to carry WAVs, I think it is more just laziness in not making gig specific collections that you bring with you and update / sort / clean up like you would with a record box of vinyl.
+1

definitely aggree with this
good points

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