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Let’s start with « Why do we actually need headphones when we are mixing »? First of all we need them to adjust speed of two tracks to the same BPM.
And second, we need them to set up a « CUE POINT » – point when we’re starting a transition.
1. Regular vinyl
So first things first, how to adjust speed without headphones? IT’s EASY! All you need is to know BPM of each track…You can count it and write down on your records.
For example you can use this site to count BPM on your vinyls:
The main trick here is that you have to play your set in the same certain speed all the time.
For presetting cue point on regular vinyl you will need 2 stickers, one sticker will push a needle to the groove where your cue point is and second sticker will show you position of the cue in this particular groove.
More information on placing stickers on djTLMtv: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqrGf8…
There’s one problem here however – you can’t play the part with the sticker on it and glueing all these stickers will take your time… a lot of time. That’s why I would rather use this technic for competitions like DMC or if I really want to impress someone. In other situations I suggest you using headphones but keeping BPMs and pointing stickers on your records which will speed up you mixing greatly.
2. Digital Vinyl Systems
Digital Vinyl Systems, like Serato, Traktor and many others are very popular because it’s VERY easy to use and actually it’s the easiest way to mix without headphones because you have your BPM and track information on the screen of your laptop and you can preset up to 5 on Serato and up to 8 Cue points on Traktor, which gives you a great capabilities for your creativity, especially if you’re using additional MIDI-controllers like Novation Dicers.
The same thing with CDJs – you can see BPM of the track on the display and you can preset up to 10 cue points plus 3 hot cue points using rekordbox or memory button on your players and instead of two channels on serato you can use 4 CDJs which doubles space for your creativity! That’s why it’s my favorite setup
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