MBA for DJ'ing

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Perdut, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Perdut macrumors newbie

    Oct 24, 2010
    Hi guys (and gals ofcourse),

    If I would take the MBA with the best specs (256 GB, 2.13Ghz and 4GB RAM) would it be sufficient to run Traktor Pro ? Would you think the 13" screen is big enough to look at during a gig ?

    Further from that it would only be used for websurfing, watching pictures/movies (when I'm on the road) and maybe (just maybe) running the SDK development software. So I think that should be no problem with this little baby. I'm just doubting about the primary usage (DJ'ing).

    So if anyone has an idea or maybe even better, tested it out. Thanks for sharing !

  2. HLdan macrumors 603


    Aug 22, 2007
    I would really recommend a Macbook Pro if you want to use it for Dj'ing. The lack of ports and low power might prove to be a hinderance for the type of work you're doing. Only you can answer if the screen size is easy enough to view for your gigs, we honestly can't tell you that.
  3. BClear macrumors newbie

    Oct 24, 2010
    One consideration should be that the keyboard is not backlit. This may be an issue if you don't really use a controller, or deal with functions in Traktor that require the keyboard while in low light situations, unless you have a light in the booth. Very subjective to the situation/venue, but it seems like it may turn of some DJs.
  4. Moodikar macrumors regular

    Mar 4, 2010
    Toronto, Canada
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    I can't say much about dj software needs but I do a lot I'd dj for corporate events and I mainly use iTunes! It does what I need (no scratching or mixing obviously).

    I do however like the ssd storage as if I had to play say a video or stinger music, there is no worry about the hard drive going to sleep. It's always ready.
  5. macbook123 macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    Does the combo headphone jack on the new MBA's support audio in, e.g. for recording instruments?
  6. Bobjob186 macrumors 6502a


    Apr 16, 2005
    Laguna Beach
    I've had a MacBook Air as my main DJ computer in the past. I've since moved on to a MBP but only I needed the real estate for excel not because of the DJing. I started with a Rev B 120 using Traktor 2. Machine would get hot and the fans would be blaring but not have one hiccup at any show. The air was always elevated though, not sure I would ever let it rest just on a table. 1 USB was fine for me because my MIDI controller ran perfectly fine that way. Moved onto a Rev B SSD started using Serato and the machine worked just great, size was fine, screen was awesome, and the backlit keyboard was a huge help. Needless to say the new machine will run everything you need flawlessly. I'm a huge fan of djing with the Air because it's soooooo light and it's an eye catcher when you're on stage.

    On a separate note, check out some of my older mixes.
  7. Perdut thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 24, 2010
    I'm working with a MIDI controler so the fact that it's not a backlit keyboard is not that big of a problem. There's always a ledlight at the desk also. The new MBA has 2 USB ports so that's already an advantage as well.

    So main consideration for me is the screen. I'm used to the 15" screen and am wondering if the 13,3" will do.
  8. macbook123 macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    Sorry for hijacking this thread, but somebody here has to know the answer to this question, no?
  9. M87 macrumors 65816

    Jul 18, 2009
    I would think it doesn't or they would have mentioned it in the specs. I would use an apogee one anyway for musical purposes.
  10. jamespa66 macrumors 6502

    Jul 6, 2007
    Kenosha, WI
    Yes it does. Already tested it out.
  11. macbook123 macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    Great, thanks to you two. I don't know what the advantage of an apogee is (as I'm an early amateur), but will look into this!
  12. BobbyCarbn macrumors regular


    Jun 21, 2009
    I found even a 13 inch screen was too small to run DeeJay software and not be hunched over while mixing. The smallest I would recommend is a 15 inch screen if you are serious about your gigs.

    FYI, I use an M-Audio Xponent with Torq.
  13. antmo macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2008
    I know there was a previous answer that it does... not sure if that's referring to the 13" only, but I've got an 11/1.4/2/128 and the audio port (i.e. headphone jack) does NOT support audio in. when I plug an audio cable in and go to audio prefs/audio input, the only choice is "internal microphone".

    on my 13" mbp (where there's also a single audio port), I get "line in" as a choice.

    hope this helps.
  14. Sanderr macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2007
    I use Traktor Pro with 4 decks, 4 FX units, set recording and everything else except the key-knobs. A while ago I did a stress test with my macbook (specs in sig) and with the maximum tax Traktor can put on a computer my CPU usage was 45% so you should be more than fine with the Air. About the screen size; that's obviously a personal matter, but one important aspect to take into account is that most dj booths are pretty cramped and sometimes I even have trouble finding space for my 13" so anything bigger will only be harder.

    Don't forget, if you use an USB soundcard, that you are out of ports when also using just one controller. Firewire soundcards to free up USB ports is not an option ;)

    If you play live-sets with a huge amount of clips and you really need the screen real-estate I'd agree with you, but for general DJ'ing the only time you should be hunkered over your laptop is when browsing for a track. Rest of the stuff can be seen with a glance most of the time.

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