Is this a reasonable method of beatmatching?
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  1. #1
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    Default Is this a reasonable method of beatmatching?

    I'm using a traktor kontrol s2 and I never got any formal training in beatmatching or anything like that so I've been trying to teach myself how to but I'm not sure if the way I'm going about it is correct. What I've done first of all is disable the BPM indicators in the Deck displays so I can't tell the exact bpm of a song and I've also disabled the phase meters. Then after I have two songs picked out I'll start the first song playing and let it get a minute or two in, just so I can get a feel for the song. Once I've got an idea of its BPM I'll cue up the other song on the first kick and try to play it on the kick of the first song so that the kicks can be aligned. Then I'll play it out for 2 or 3 bars and listen to the kicks and see if they stay aligned. If not I stop the second track, slide the pitch slider to slow it down or speed it up (I normally have some trouble figuring out which one is faster so advice on figuring that out more easily would be great) and then cue it up at the same kick and try to play it again aligned for a couple of bars and then repeat. Is this a reasonable way of beatmatching or am I doing it in an odd way?

    Also, generally when I get them matched up on the same bpm and I think they're lined up and playing when I listen to my mix afterwards they're always off by a little bit, is this just because I'm not that good at beatmatching yet or is there some fatal flaw that I might be making? Thanks for your time!

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    Tech Guru Cybertrash's Avatar
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    I'd say you just need more practice, in time you'll be able to distinguish even slight variations in phase without any problems.

    As for figuring out which one is ahead/behind, I usually listen to the snares.
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    If your training for CDJ's don't push yourself so hard, CDJ's come with BPM indicators, when you move the pitch slider the BPM on the song changes so it's pretty much like traktor, only thing you would need to worry about is the phase meter and imo that's a pretty easy thing to do, i have an S2 aswell and i'm doing this too.

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    Tech Guru IznremiX's Avatar
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    your on the right track. theres one mistake that is causing this:

    "I normally have some trouble figuring out which one is faster so advice on figuring that out more easily would be great"

    instead of stopping the track after 3 bars (when the beats start falling off) try using the jogwheel to speed up or slow down the track. If you speed it up, and the beats reallign, then you know that you have to increase the pitch. If you speed it up and the beats fall further apart, then you'll know that you have to slow down the track
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    From what I've heard though the CDJ's BPM indicators aren't generally too accuate, I could be wrong though. And I'm not exactly training for CDJ's I'm just trying to see how good I can get at beatmatching completely blind so when I'm not blinded to stuff I can do it with no trouble.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IznremiX View Post
    your on the right track. theres one mistake that is causing this:

    "I normally have some trouble figuring out which one is faster so advice on figuring that out more easily would be great"

    instead of stopping the track after 3 bars (when the beats start falling off) try using the jogwheel to speed up or slow down the track. If you speed it up, and the beats reallign, then you know that you have to increase the pitch. If you speed it up and the beats fall further apart, then you'll know that you have to slow down the track
    That's fantastic advice! I can't believe I never thought of that but that definitely will help with the problem I've been having! Thanks, I'll definitely try that.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by IznremiX View Post
    your on the right track. theres one mistake that is causing this:

    "I normally have some trouble figuring out which one is faster so advice on figuring that out more easily would be great"

    instead of stopping the track after 3 bars (when the beats start falling off) try using the jogwheel to speed up or slow down the track. If you speed it up, and the beats reallign, then you know that you have to increase the pitch. If you speed it up and the beats fall further apart, then you'll know that you have to slow down the track
    This is a good advice aswell, i'm gonna use this too.

  8. #8
    Tech Mentor Chamix's Avatar
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    What I tend to do, and this could be wrong, is have track A playing then set a 4 beat loop on the first 4 beats of track B, Drop track B in (on cue, through headphone) on the 1 beat. Then play with bpm and nudge the platter around until they are beat matched. Try the looping technique, worked wonders for me. You can then release the loop when its the first bar of 32 beats. If that makes sense :s
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobalandi View Post
    I'm using a traktor kontrol s2 and I never got any formal training in beatmatching or anything like that so I've been trying to teach myself how to but I'm not sure if the way I'm going about it is correct. What I've done first of all is disable the BPM indicators in the Deck displays so I can't tell the exact bpm of a song and I've also disabled the phase meters. Then after I have two songs picked out I'll start the first song playing and let it get a minute or two in, just so I can get a feel for the song. Once I've got an idea of its BPM I'll cue up the other song on the first kick and try to play it on the kick of the first song so that the kicks can be aligned. Then I'll play it out for 2 or 3 bars and listen to the kicks and see if they stay aligned. If not I stop the second track, slide the pitch slider to slow it down or speed it up (I normally have some trouble figuring out which one is faster so advice on figuring that out more easily would be great) and then cue it up at the same kick and try to play it again aligned for a couple of bars and then repeat. Is this a reasonable way of beatmatching or am I doing it in an odd way?

    Also, generally when I get them matched up on the same bpm and I think they're lined up and playing when I listen to my mix afterwards they're always off by a little bit, is this just because I'm not that good at beatmatching yet or is there some fatal flaw that I might be making? Thanks for your time!
    My first question is, how long does it take you to beatmatch using this method? My 2nd question is why turn off the BPM indicator, why turn off the phase meter? Anyone who can clap their hands in time with a beat can recognize a train wreck ultimately knowing if its not beatmatched. I have said this a million times and I will say it a million more all in the efforts to educate. I started DJing in 1989, I had an electronic metronome that I used to time out the BPM of every record and I put a sticker on every record sleeve with the BPM or just wrote it right on the label. Every DJ that I knew that Djed in a club did something similar and we all kept our records in BPM order, most having 2-3 crates of the same BPM because this is how we knew what song went with what. I don't know when knowing the BPM of a track became cheating. Turning off the BPM display is unnecessarily making it harder for yourself. The very first thing I did when playing a record for the first time was to time it out. Now I don't have to do that anymore. The technology is there, these are just tools, use them to your advantage. The phase meter isn't going to work right if the track grids aren't on point so that helping you depends on your grids. I would say, turn the BPM display back on, you can keep the phase meter off, so now you know how far away in BPM the tracks are and what you need to do to make the tracks match and by how much you need to slow down or speed up. I had turntables that didn't have any markings for increments in pitch control. I had to go by the strobe, so if I was playing a record at 120 bpm and my next record was 121 bpm, I knew that I had to bring down that 121 bpm to match the 120 by moving the little wheel back to make the strobe lights reflecting off the turntable to look like it was moving backwards. My point is, I knew the BPM. SO when CDJs and mixers and software came out with BPM displays, I was in heaven because now my life was made easier and I could accomplish the goal of beatmatching more accurately and faster. It was hard and still is to get it exactly matched, you always had to speed the record up or run your finger on the side to slow it down and continually adjust, now you can do that with the jog wheel.

    If you feel your way will make you better at beatmatching, by all means, do what you feel comfortable with. Im not saying just hit sync and don't learn to beatmatch, it is good to learn but IMO you are making it harder for yourself because the software, the cdj, the mixer, will tell you the BPM, so why not use it?

  10. #10
    Tech Guru narrah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chamix View Post
    What I tend to do, and this could be wrong, is have track A playing then set a 4 beat loop on the first 4 beats of track B, Drop track B in (on cue, through headphone) on the 1 beat. Then play with bpm and nudge the platter around until they are beat matched. Try the looping technique, worked wonders for me. You can then release the loop when its the first bar of 32 beats. If that makes sense :s

    I would advise against the loop idea, simply because this wont work so well when attempted on CDJ's...when you loop on a cdj you almost always have to make a correction even if your bpm was close to perfect. Yes it works in traktor but I can only assume that he intends to maybe use CDJ's one day. Also, by looping you wont hear the song as it progresses a little, sometimes you will cue up the initial intro only to find that 16/32 beats in it clashes.

    Beat matching will eventually become second nature and you wont have to think about it so much....as previously mentioned once your incoming track falls out of sync I adjust on the platter then adjust accordingly on pitch fader, each time getting progressively closer and closer to exact match. Some guys like to speed the track up momentarily using the pitch fader rather than using the pitch nudge on platter, I personally have always found this difficult to master, and less accurate but I have seen guys do it that way and have a track matched so quickly. There is a guy on youtube from the UK that gives good lessons.... check it out.
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