Anyone use macs for pro music or DJing

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by ian559, Apr 3, 2003.

  1. ian559 macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2002
    I run music for a local peewee sports and highschool type sports. Up till now I have used a imac 600 snow and played the music through itunes and holding a micrfophone up to my sound sticks so it goes out the normal pa speakers.
    We have been givin a grant to get a real system just for music. I would still like to be able to play the music from my now new ai 12 inch powerbook (mine not the leagues, I convinced my wifef we needed it ). The system would need to be strong enough. I would also be using it for dances, festivals, and cheerleader compititions
    Any idea????? Any help;??? I have have never done this before.......
  2. patrick0brien macrumors 68040


    Oct 24, 2002
    The West Loop

    I always find that if you want to get professional, go to the professionals.

    One such example of a professional that does what you are looking to do is BT (Brian Transeu), professional DJ and recording artist. He uses Logic Platinum.

    When he's on location, I believe he uses a TiBook for his mixing. the modern 12PB sould be just fine.

    BTW- Don't worry about the 4200 rpm speed of the HD in the 12PB. The cache on it mitigates the 'slowness" just fine.
  3. ian559 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2002
    I love my powerbook slow drive and all lol Ot rocks
  4. tjwett macrumors 68000


    May 6, 2002
    Brooklyn, NYC
    well, it sounds like you are just simply playing music from iTunes from other artists. are you writing your own music as well? if not iTunes is just fine for playback of mP3s. there are not many options for that. there are some mp3 DJ software applications that allow you to timestretch and even scratch but it doesn't sound like that's what you need at all. that would be more trouble than it's worth. there is one application though that was built excusively for live use. it's called, surprise, Ableton Live! and it kicks an unbelievable amount of ass. i've used it since it's birth and it's truly amazing. it will allow you to trigger music clips and sound effects whatever in real time. you can even manipulate, record and do a million other things in real time too but you probably won't need most of the features. but for keeping all you r clips organized it's awesome. i used it to do live music and sound for a play and it was awesome and i got a huge response. you can get a demo here:

    you can use the mini jack on your computer or pickup an audio interface. i reccomend this one for your needs.
  5. ejb190 macrumors 65816


    I used to do a bit of DJ'ing on the side back in college. I was playing with iTunes last night and got to wondering. If there were a way to send the visuals to a different window (an LCD projector running off the split screen) and keep the music on a list on a notebook screen, that would make a nice setup for dances and that sort of thing. No more hauling two CD players and a mixing board, not to mention some of the lights you could do without.

    Or am I way off base?
  6. ian559 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2002
    I have a list olf the 2 or 3 thousand songs I have. I give each team a list. They set what music the want. I then go into itunes and make a playlist for their team. I also keep playlist for spirit music, tv tunes, movie tunes, movie quotes, funnys. After I get my amp and speakers I can make up playlist for just about anything from a dance to a festival. No changing cds, no tapes.
  7. daedelgt macrumors member

    Jul 17, 2002
    That'd be kick ass. I can only hope Apple sees this and takes a hint.
  8. Nipsy macrumors 65816


    Jan 19, 2002
    I've seen scores of bar & club DJs nowadays using two iPods and a mixing board!
  9. Xero macrumors 6502

    Dec 2, 2002
    Los Angeles
    you should be fine with any Mac that will run iTunes [which is basically every available new mac] and some sort of simple audio interface. iTunes will fit your needs perfectly, and anything else would probably be overkill/uneeded expenses. depending on the bit-rate quality of the mp3's your playing, you could opt for a 3rd party audio interface, but if your mp3's are only 160kb and under, you wont get much quality improvement over the built in audio-out on a mac. just make sure you use quality audio cables if the PA system/speaker system is a ways from the computer. you can be assured tho, that the sound quality will go up considerably if you actually run the audio straight into the speaker system, rather than mic-ing a set of speakers.

    go to and do some searches like "USB audio interface" or "USB Audio" and you can get a pretty good idea of whats out there, and whats in your price range.

    even an eMac would fit the picture here, no problem. hell get the school to buy a whole lab's worth while they're at it. :D
  10. ian559 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2002
    Not a school. Just me being a parent that is way to involved!!!!!! I will use my new powerbook. Better than toting a imac
  11. spacepower macrumors member

    Jul 8, 2002
    we'll my 2cents
    I have been involve with Pro Audio since 1994.
    I think alot of options may be overkill for your situation.
    What type of mixing board do you have? Does it have tape inputs? RCA inputs(like the kind on your VCR)? 1/4" inputs? Alot of mixers have both of these.
    My recommendation on the hardware from is to buy a high quality 1/8" stereo to 2 RCA adapters. then connect straing to the mixing board. This will bring out much better quality then the microphone/soundsticks combo.

    "Live" is nice software but is probably overkill
    "Traktor" is nice too, but also overkill.

    I am not sure is you are happy with iTunes for playback or not?

    If you want to edit songs? such as making a songs intro longer cutting of the intro then this is a great FREE product
    Spark ME for OSX

    give us more info about your mixer and ideal setup and uses.

    BTW, I saw Herbie Hancock in concert last year. He had a Powerbook G4 connected to a projection sceen, displaying the iTunes visuals throughout the entire concert. pretty cool.
  12. neut macrumors 68000


    Nov 27, 2001
    here (for now)
    12"s of audio

    some good usb audio devices are talked about here (among other cool audio stuff).

    Native Instruments might have some digital dj tools you could get up to speed on, if your lookin' to get a little more advanced.

    but cross fading in i-tunes might just work fine with the right playlists...

  13. neut macrumors 68000


    Nov 27, 2001
    here (for now)
    herbie is the man

    handcock is awesome.

    STS9 was here the other night with another band. at least 3 power books were on stage (two g3's and a TiBook). If you have a chance to see them, GO!

    i've heard there are some clicks and pops coming from the 12"ers. might want to check it out on the home stereo before hooking some RCA's into a P.A. If there are any pops, a simple usb audio interface will solve that.

    have fun mixing!
  14. Mac til death macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2002
    I found a small DJ program on Source Forge not too long ago.

    It's called Mixxx

    It works pretty well, but it can't hand a lot of directories, so just put several mp3's into one folder when you try it out.
  15. ian559 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2002
    I have nothing yet but the powerbook lol. The 800 buck grant was to buy a amp and speakers.
    I had hoped to use a mixing program right on the mac then go from the mac to the amp is this possible?
  16. djbombjack macrumors member

    Feb 2, 2003
    Crooklyn, NY
    I'm a professional club DJ here in NYC, and I take my 12" PB out with me and leave iTunes running during the first hour's warm-up.

    All I take is a mini-jack to RCA cable and plug into the mixer.

    The crossfade option works well... doesn't beat match... but during the warm up that doesn't matter anyway.

    My MP3s are generally 192 kbps, with the odd 160 kbps... and on these high-end professional systems, there's no sonic degredation.

    I'm really happy with the way everything works, so go ahead, do it!
  17. evoluzione macrumors 68020


    Jul 19, 2002
    down the road, that's where i'll always be
    whereabouts??? Brookie or the City?
  18. firewire macrumors newbie

    Feb 24, 2003
    Powerbook 17 with Pro Tools!!!!

    Here is my New Powerbook with Pro Tools!!!!!!!!!! I have the Mbox. I mix Live Sound at a Club and do a lot of recording. I plan on selling the Band a CDr at the end of there set? It might help pay of my Powerbook?
  19. djbombjack macrumors member

    Feb 2, 2003
    Crooklyn, NY
    I play at Bungalow 8, The Hudson, Morgan's, Lot 61 and Centro-Fly.

    Oh, I also forgot to mention that I also use Pro Tools 6 LE on my 12" PB, and get great results.
  20. hacurio1 macrumors regular

    Dec 13, 2002
    Re: Anyone use macs for pro music or DJing

    Check out Traktor DJ Studio
    It is really neat. Probably what all you guys are looking for!!!
  21. herr_neumann macrumors 6502


    Mar 27, 2003
    Roseville, Ca
    I personally do not use a mac for these things, but I know of plenty of top notch musicians who do. My pop has been in the music industry for the last 20+ years. He has worked for some very big name artists and in designing there home studios has always installed macs, especially since the invent of pro tools. I do however remember a mac classic or two running performer, thinking about it a mac plus (my first computer) as well.

    You can do anything you can think of and more to music with a mac.

    Have Fun....
  22. MacQuest macrumors 6502a

    Jan 18, 2003
    You See Dead People...
    Software, amp & speakers...

    iTunes is okay, but you would probably benefit from buying a program that will let you "cue" the next song in your headphones before throwing it in.

    Basic software solutions under $100.
    [Download the demos]:

    Clean interface that looks and acts like an actual mixer. Allows beat matching.

    Darker interface and can be somewhat confusing. Allows beat matching:

    Amp & speakers:

    Go to:

    Call the 800 number and go to extension 8149.

    Advanced software solution for $200:
    [Download the demo]

    Very cool!!
    Clean interface [although very thorough, it may be confusing for your needs] that looks and acts like an actual mixer. Allows beat matching with waveform view [for ultimate accurracy], special audio effects, and alot more.

    If you have records and you ever want to get more advanced, check this out:

    STANTON FINAL SCRATCH [Mac OS X version coming this month]:
    Use two turntables and a mixer to access audio files from your 12" PowerBook. Includes TRAKTOR FS software.

    Hope this helps and good luck!!:)
  23. tjwett macrumors 68000


    May 6, 2002
    Brooklyn, NYC
    nice to see some fellow brooklyn mac musicians here! i use Logic in the studio and Ableton for live sets. Anyone else here go to Share at Open Air BAr?
  24. beatle888 macrumors 68000


    Feb 3, 2002
    what about the audible POPing sound on the powerbooks?
    is that do to the sound "going to sleep"?
    if so, should he download the "soundon" at versiontracker to keep the sound from going to sleep?

    at least i think its called soundon.
  25. ian559 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2002
    I never thought about the sound poping....
    My imac I used last year never did the. Thanks for all the info. ?I knew I could find answers here. any and all info will help

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