Somewhat new to (physical) mixing; tips for beatmatching practice

Discussion in 'DJ's, MC's & Turntablism' started by Rapid99, May 26, 2014.

  1. Rapid99

    Rapid99 Active Member

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    Easy all,

    So i'm sort of new to mixing. I say sort of, because i've been mixing digitally with MIDI for about 3 or 4 years now. In terms of song choice, basic mixing, basic technique etc., i've got a somewhat decent grasp on... still practicing, still trying to improve. My disappointing admission though is because I learned on a digital platform, I learned with that guilty little "sync" button.

    I made the decision that if i'm going to get better, I have to learn on a real platform, so I upgraded to a physical set recently and got some used gear... but now I feel like i'm back to square one, because I have to learn beatmatching, and i'm struggling pretty bad.
    Any tips on the matter?
    I feel like either it takes me too long to hear the beats being out of sync, and the first section is already over with... or I get them preeetty close, and then 16 or 32 bars in the slip out of sync and start grinding.
    Another big thing for me is figuring out which direction to pitch the song... sometimes the snares or kicks are so similar that I can't really figure if it's slugging behind the first tune, or speeding a bit past it...

    And to make matters a bit worse (or better, since it forces me to match by ear), recently the LCD screen one of my decks died out, so my pitch percentage and song BPM are no longer visible.

    Anyway, again, any help for a noob is appreciated. I feel somewhat disheartened by the whole thing, lol.

    EQUIPMENT:
    2x Pioneer CDJ-1000 MK3s
    Pioneer DJM-400 Mixer
    2x KRK Rokit 5 Monitors
    V-Moda Crossfade LP2 Headphones

    Example of a previous mix before switching to a physical medium: http://www.mixcloud.com/Rapid99/drum-bass-canadian-mixdown-friday-the-13th-mix/
     
  2. Shatner's Bosom

    Shatner's Bosom murder TANMUSHIMUSHI

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    fuck the LCD screen, just use your ears, if you are struggling to tell your tunes apart then maybe slow the tune you're about to bring in a lot so you know which one is which? but still, that's kinda weird, you can press the cue buttons on your mixer to hear individual channels so I dunno how you could confuse them. Just take your time
     
  3. jimjimjim

    jimjimjim oldskool

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    sometimes if i cant work out if the track comin in is a bit faster or slower i will do this
    i turn off the volume of the track im mixing in (so i cant hear it). then bring it (volume) back in at the first beat of the track thats playing - then out again. then in again..
    i can then tell if its in time or a bit faster or slower.
    meh i dont think i explained that too well lol sorry
    if its really friggin loud and i cant hear properly i will do that - kinda works for me if i need it.
     
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  4. cele

    cele Well-Known Member

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    if i cant tell if its slower or faster i usually just pick one and you'll notice pretty fast if it fixes itself or just goes even more out of time

    something that can help at the beginning is the 0.6% rule (1bpm ~ 0.6%) on the pitch, only really works when pitching around 178-179 though
     
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  5. RUSSLA

    RUSSLA DNBF Monarch

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    Use really simple liquid tunes with long intros and just keep practicing with then at random speeds. Just focus on best matching and nothing else for now
     
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  6. RUSSLA

    RUSSLA DNBF Monarch

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  7. Forau

    Forau CONCUSSION RECS

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    Check out that fella on youtube, think his names Ellaskins. Helps you get your head round some of the basic concepts quite well.
     
  8. sam the dnb man

    sam the dnb man Variation

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    Fuck the percentage rules. They can be handy when learning but it takes all the fun away. If you get used to it thn use a pair of decks where the screen is fucked then you're in trouble. Learn by ear and you will be more able.

    How do you have your headphone cue set up?
    I used to have both tunes playing in one headphone. It was okay when mixing at home but when playing out it became problematic. Especially if there wasn't an add mix function. My EQ'ing and levels also suffered as if I turnt the treble or mids down too far I'd struggle to be able to tell if it's in time or now.

    Now I just have the tune I'm cueing playing in the headphones. Have the monitor as close to you as possible and you should be able to keep tunes locked once you have developed your ear.
    If you're unsure if the tune is bang in time just add mix to check.
     
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  9. WhoSayReload?

    WhoSayReload? Well-Known Member

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    Just gotta practice, practice, practice I get tired near the hour mark of a mix and the beatmatching starts to slip a bit though.. guess it's just a concentration thing
     
  10. hazdaman100

    hazdaman100 Bum 'n Face

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    Start off trying to beatmatch two tunes of the same speed, just by using the jog wheel/platter, keep the pitch on the same place.

    This should give you an idea on how tunes should sound when they are tightly mixed, then maybe try with a tune 1 bmp higher or lower, and get a feel for how different the pitch should be.

    Tunes will always slip out of beat, so you will have to either ride the pitch or use the jog wheel. The more you practise the better you will get at detecting this.

    Then just practise
     
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  11. Rapid99

    Rapid99 Active Member

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    Thanks a million, everyone. Gonna get to it.
     
  12. chz

    chz Member

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    buying my first pair of cd decks was the best thing Ive done so far. Before i was just doing random mixes on virtual dj with that fucking sync button. But since i bought my decks its just been an overhaul of inspiration. It's definately helping with the producing side of things, you start to get a bit deeper into your music taste.

    My best advice as a new Turntablist myself:

    Know your tunes really well. Switch your computer off, and just mix with the decks; nothing else but your ear matters!!!! Learn harmonic mixing if you havent already, but dont let it rule your mixing.

    Maybe slow down your tempo, I generally try and keep my bpm around 172. Might work for you.

    But im sure, as youve read literally everywhere, you know practise makes it all click. It will all just come together mate :D
     
  13. johneysvk

    johneysvk tnuc

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    tape your bpm/percentage readout over on the remaining deck. relying on x percent equals 1 bpm is not a good way. I see guys doing this struggle when a tune goes out of time, wrecking the mixes a lot
    and never rely on the things' BPM counters lol.
    if your struggling to hear which tune is which, i recommend turning your headphone volume down, so you can hear the track that's playing and then slowly bring the volume up so you can hear the incoming track, then it's quite easy to tell if it's faster/slower.

    edit: and like the guy above me said, knowing your tunes is very important
     
  14. mistasfx

    mistasfx MISTA SFX

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    Use ur ears. It takes time to train ur brain to determine what's what but eventually it'll all come together