Dedicated DJ

ddj-3g HELP

There is no ddj-3g manual. Actually there is, but it's not current. Trouble is, while everyone asked for it nobody ever seemed to read it. As a serious user be assured you can master this program with just enthusiasm and a moderate amount of time behind the wheel. Learn as you go, there are many pop-up tips for buttons and other controls and your music will never be harmed.

Basic Overview Ddj-3g is quite a sophisticated music player and is pretty much unrivaled in actual music control. That doesn't mean that it's hard to use. From a quick start of drag-dropping in a few songs to build a basic playlist most of the rest of the operations will be exposed in due time. Many buttons and other controls have associated pop-up tips when you hover your mouse over them.

It's best to understand the 3g or 3 song grid concept before you start. These grids Instant, Playlist and Library are all used in simple combinations to queue, play or store your music. The first time you start up ddj-sc all the grids will be empty. Drag songs to one of the 3 grids to add music. New music will be added to the Library and also any selected grid. While music can be played from all three grids the Instant and the Playlist grids are considered the main working grids.

The Library grid references the entire music library. It is specialized for quick filtering and flexible lookups for quick queueing. The Instant and Playlist grids, on the other hand, typically contain a subset of the master Library grid and are loaded for a specific music event. The Instant and Playlist grids target different DJ styles. The Instant grid was developed for the DJ that prefers to DJ hot with little music queued. The Playlist grid caters to the DJ that prepares music in advance. It is possible to switch between either mode at any time.

Songs are easily queued from the Library grid to either the Instant or Playlist grids. Notice that songs can easily be re-ordered by dragging the row to a new position. Now play a song and make some adjustments such as start, stop points, volume, rate, etc. Note that these new settings are still honored the next time you play this song. To permanently save settings to the Instant or Playlist simply save or re-save a playlist.

Note that music is not stored in the grids so deleting rows from any grid will never delete music. While music settings for the same song is allowed to be different in any grid or playlist the Library grid is considered the master.

Music songs should be in the mp3 format and ID3 tags are used when available. Video files should be in the mp4 format. Other formats can play but are not fully supported.


Q. What information is in the Logs tab?
The Logs tab contains both startup and operations data. Some log information is informative and may be helpful for technical support. Other log operations such as those starting with 'Ex.error' are logging potential errors. Note that the log from the previous session is available and it's location can be found in Preferences>Misc. If you are experiencing any startup or operations problems please check the log HistoryLog.txt.

Q. How do embedded tips work?
A. Many items such as buttons, labels or sliders have tips that appear when the mouse hovers over them. If a tip starts with F1... pressing function key F1 while clicking on that item will display extended information.

Q. What is Relative Tempo?
A. Relative tempo (RT) is tempo relative to a particular genre. ddj-3g is unique in understanding when a song tempo is appropriate for the genre. RT is supported by an embedded user modifed genre table and an embedded beat counter. When music is played relative tempo will display (red-yellow-green brackets) indicating how well the music conforms to desired target.

Q. How do I enable the Relative Tempo display?
A. Top center of the player you will find a control box containing a Count Beats button. Press this button to displays the embedded Beat Counter. When tempo and genre are established the Beat Counter button will disappear and the Relative Tempo display will adjust as the Rate slider is changed. Note that new genres are added from the File menu.

Q. I have seen projectors using the marquee, video and and event advertising simultaneously. What do I need to do this?
A. The software is complete you will only need your pictures or video and a computer that can support a second monitor. Most portables have second monitor capability and it is an easy addition to most desktop computers. You can connect this second monitor (commonly a RGB and HDMI connector) to modern large screen TVs and projectors from LED to the largest models.

Q. I use VLC Media Player and have friends using iTunes. How does ddj-3g differ?
A. If you aleady use either of those popular players you will already understand the basic operations of this player. ddj-3g incorporates most of the popular DJ features of both of those players and raises the bar.

Q. How do the equalizers in the EQ tab work?
A. Note the power of this equalizer. It is possible to globally compensate for rooms audio color and add this compensation to your individual song equalization.

Q. What are 'Foley Limits'?
A. Foley Limits modify some player operations with safety in mind. These limits are specific to the Instant grid and focus on the most secure play environment. This option disables grid edits forces the next song to play as the next row after the current playing song and enables more shortcut keys. Note that this option may help avoid inadvertent edits or row changes. It may be selected or de-selected at any time.

Q. Can I save my operating preferences?
A. Some settings are automatically saved when the player is closed. Others are specified and saved in the Preferences form. Others such as 3g column sizes and orders have specific save buttons.

Q. Can I test my music before queuing it without interrupting my party?
A. The Pro version of ddj-3g supports a second output device. USB sound devices can be as simple as a HDMI TV display. This would require listening with headphones to the second device. This option is not available on this free version.

Q. What is the e-mail option in the History tab?
A. The Pro version of ddj-3g allows a working DJ to interact with customers.  You may select any song in your play history and instantly email that songs information to your fan.

Q. What use is the Info tab?
A. The Info tab is often the best way to update a song in your library. All the data fields available in a 3g grid are also available in the Info grid. It is often easier to find and update data from the Info grid than from a 3g grid.

Q. What use is the Show tab?
A. The Show tab allows the DJ to prepare a quick start for the next play session. Pressing Go will preform the desired operations and checks to make sure your show is ready to go.

Q. Why does the History tab have two grids?
A. The first is a true History grid. It captures every song played in the current session including the order played the genre, title and time played. The History grid is available on the next startup and can be renamed and used as a regular playlist. The second Summary grid summarizes the current session summing similar genres and includes a target playcount. Playcount is set in the genre table.

Both the History and the Summary grids can be very helpful helping DJs pick new songs. The Summary grid helps a DJ determine the next genre due. Clicking a genre in the Summary grid will highlight all similar genres in the History grid allowing an easy check of what songs where played and when. The target playcount helps the DJ play the desired number of songs.

Note that if a Playlist was simply played that at the end of a session the History playlist will be equal to the selected playlist. If, however, changes were made to song settings or song order they would differ.

Q. How does song Announce work?
A. Song announcements (genre default) can be activated from the Hush/Announce button at the bottom of the player. In announce mode the genre type will be announced before the song is played. The default announce knows many ballroom genres. If the genre is not recognized the system will utilize text-to-speech to announce from associated text. Note that the default announcement voice is customizable and new genres can be added at any time. Note that there is an option in the Player tab called 'Wait for Talker'. The default for this option is checked and, when checked, music will not start before the genre announcement is completed.

Q. How does the Titling option work?
A. Titling is turned On|Off at the bottom of the player. Titling will scroll your selected message along the bottom of a second monitor display. By default the display will scroll Artist but this can be easily changed. From the Marquee tab you have multiple options such as song title, comments or even a column where you add your own custom message. Titling can be switched at any time.

Q. How do I find the songs genre?
A. There is no easy answer for this question. Most music is not sold or catagorized utilizing genres that DJs usually would consider adequate for their work. Also understand that genre is not an absolute single thing and multiple genres are allowed for a single song. If it's dance music the most obvious clues are tempo, beat emphasis and mood.

Q. How does the delay feature of the play control buttons work?
A. The Play control button row includes the Start, Next, Pause,Stop, Fade and Crossfade buttons. A right mouse click on these buttons will add time in 1 sec increments and the delay secs will display in the control. When the button is clicked you will see the seconds count down. This feature allows a busy DJ to queue up an action.

Q. Must I convert my music to mp3 format?
Yes, We recommend the mp3 format. The mp3 format offers maximum compatibility. Mp3 songs play on all media players and music DRM issues are eliminated,. Songs are easier to move between various media players or computers. Editing and tagging of songs is generally easier with more inexpensive or free options available. ddj-3g supports extended tagging only on mp3 music.

There are many freeware and shareware programs to convert between Apple and mp3 format. iTunes also will convert between these music formats. Of course, conversions to mp3 is not a high priority for Apple and easier conversion options are available. Still, the iTunes option will do a credible job.
Converting Apple AAC (M4A) to MP3