So you are in the 1% of the DJ’s who don’t use a Mac to do their thing and you are looking for an open source tool to make your job and life easier?
Gnome users are waiting for the creation of Pyruvic Studio that aims to be a simple but complete dj application for Gnome DE, but till then you can use the magnificent Mixxx!
Mixxx is a straightforward open source and free to use DJ application that incorporates some very interesting features regarding advanced and specialized technology support.
I found that doing things on Mixxx is pretty simple and fun. The default gui is a dark dual deck with a crossfader at the middle.
The buttons below the spectrograms are for easy looping control, volume and effects are in the middle while the sync bar is placed next to the song diagram. The playlist is at the bottom of the application, so everything in the gui design is well placed easy to begin using.
The looping is easier than ever as you can set points or specific time based looping with one click. The sync can be done by hand, but the amazing factor here is that Mixxx can automatically detect the beats per minute of the songs added in the decks and synchronize them by adjusting both of them. Clicking on the spectrogram will play the song from that point, while clicking and dragging right and left creates a realistic scratching.
The playlist is initially set by choosing a local folder. This can be rescaned any time and the songs can be added to the decks by drag n drop. You can also add songs to the playlists, auto DJ and crates! iTunes playlists are also supported.
Auto-DJ is using crossfading on a pre-set playlist while you take a brake
If you find the looks of Mixxx somewhat strange or not suitable for you, you will be very pleased to know that it comes in different flavors and resolutions. Although this may cause frustration and confusion when changing from the one to the other (things are placed differently), it certainly will help everyone find the most suitable way to do their favorite thing using their device.
Apart from playing MP3, M4A/AAC, OGG and FLAC audio, you can also record your performance (or whatever) on WAV, OGG, MP3 and AIFF. With Mixxx, you can also broadcast live on Icecast and Shoutcast. All you need to do is configure the corresponding parameters on the preferences and you are ready to go.
What is there but I couldn’t test is the midi and vinyl support. I can give you the claims of the developers about this sector though.
You can control Mixxx from your existing turntables or CDJs and a mixer using timecoded vinyl or CDs. Serato and Traktor Scratch 1 timecodes are supported with absolute positioning, needle cueing, and our own needle skip prevention code.
Check out the list with the supported hardware and see if your tools are compatible with Mixxx.
Can’t say much about whether you should download Mixxx or not. If you are a DJ who uses Gnome, then this is maybe the most valuable open source tool that you can find. Mixxx is modern and feature-comprehensive meaning that it doesn’t offer every possible feature that all the people in the world may wish for, but it does offer an above the average set of abilities and functions.
Mixxx can do almost anything in the right hands, so if you think yours are, just go for it!
Ubuntu users will find the latest version on the Software Center, but you can use the following repository by typing these commands on a terminal if you want regular updates:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mixxx/mixxx sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install mixxx libportaudio2