Have you ever thought about the possibility of an OS or software failure on your laptop computer while being in the middle of a DJ gig or live performance ?
If not, better do. As a wise man said, ” Nothing is perfect “. You HAVE TO have a back-up source for your digital DJ setup.
I previously mentioned about the importance of having at least one or two separate copies of your entire DJ music library in case your primary storage dies or fails to operate. Without another storage, you lose all your music in just one second, it’s gone !
Club, bar owners and private party hosts like weddings pay DJs decent amount of money for providing and maintaining high quality music and sound for their events which includes seamless and trouble-free performance.
How can you make sure your equipment will never fail ? Impossible.
So, let’s go over the topics of a complete back-up solution for your digital DJ setup at a gig together.
Your DJ Controller
Hardware malfunctioning is less possible compared to software and other components of your equipment.
Since there is no embedded firmware in most DJ control devices, they receive commands from your laptop and operate accordingly.
What can go wrong with a DJ controller ? Faders, buttons, knobs not working properly. That may happen only if your device is roughly used, old or defected.
As long as it is kept in good condition, you usually don’t have to worry about your DJ control device. Broken parts and pieces are always somehow manageable during a DJ gig without interrupting music.
A Second Setup
This is a way out for some DJs who have their old pieces kept. Of course it means more work to set up and break down and more load to carry.
With today’s technology, I don’t think it’s really necessary to put the second setup on the table. You’d only need few minutes to reboot your computer and get ready to play.
Just to make sure your laptop is fully optimized for DJ’ing, go ahead and read the article I published before.
One more thing about the extra setup. If you decide to do that, there needs to be a separate mixer to plug both controllers in order to get sound out from both. Or at least an amplifier with multiple connections.
Consider this option if you have a CD player in the booth you’re performing. I recommend CDs for DJs playing with their own digital DJ setup in a bar or club.
Some of you may not have played such a gig before, so let me explain.
If you’re hired to DJ at a public venue, there always is a DJ booth and permanent equipment including CD players, mixer, etc.
You’re told to connect your setup into one of the available channels on the mixer so that sound goes out to the main system.
If there are 4 channels on that mixer, at least two of them are for the CD players.
I always keep my own mix tape CDs in the bag and insert one of them in the CD player before the gig.
If anything goes wrong on my digital setup, I immediately start that CD and it gives me way enough time to reboot my system.
This way, music is not interrupted except few seconds.
Your Mobile Device
Easiest option for backing up a digital DJ setup.
I don’t think there is any DJ out there without a smart phone or tablet.
If your DJ controller is AC adapter powered like Reloop Terminal Mix 2 with additional AUX in option, you’re good to go.
Connect your mobile device to it with an audio cable and there you have it, an excellent back-up source.
An iPad with music and a mobile DJ software on it makes a whole separate digital DJ setup ! You can even play the rest of your gig like that.
You can consider any of these three options depending on whichever is more convenient for you.
Last and a VERY IMPORTANT advice ! Please please, bring an external hard disk with your entire music library in it to every single gig you play. You never know when you need it.