Multiple iTunes libraries - beneficial for music organization?
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  1. #1
    Tech Convert
    Join Date
    Jun 2013

    Default Multiple iTunes libraries - beneficial for music organization?

    Hey all,

    Just about to get started with digital DJing after a long break (my last setup was Technics and vinyl) and I want to get some advice on how to best organize my music collection to make it streamlined and scalable. Best to start now, before I get a massive library and then decide I need to change it. I'll be using Traktor and iTunes on a Mac, and Mixed In Key, if that info could be helpful. I mostly spin progressive house, but also sometimes breaks, drum & bass, and downtempo.

    I'm wondering what you all feel about having a separate iTunes library specifically for DJing, as opposed to a massive iTunes library that has both DJ tracks and just general listening stuff that I'll likely never spin.

    Given that digital DJing organization can often benefit from strange ID3 tagging setups, etc. that aren't all that conducive to a "normal" listening library, I was planning on just having two iTunes libraries, each with their own rules, tagging schemes, etc.

    Anyone else set up this way? Is it worthwhile? Any issues I should know about ahead of time? Any tips to optimize it?

    Another option could be to just have a single massive iTunes library with everything, DJ and not, and then just have Traktor as my "DJ only" library management software. But in that scenario, I'm guessing things like custom DJ tag schemes and what not couldn't be kept to Traktor alone, and would show up in both Traktor and iTunes. Correct? (I don't have Traktor installed yet so I can't test this.)


  2. #2
    Tech Guru
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    FL, USA


    Uhh.. don't see the point.

    Just use playlists to separate the music.
    Bedroom DJ | Pioneer DJM-800 | Pioneer CDJ2000 and CDJ900-NXS | 2 x Mackie MR8MKII | Sennheiser Amperior

  3. #3
    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010


    I'm not sure what you mean by tagging schemes. But, I kind of have multiple libraries in that I have multiple computers and don't bother to try and keep the libraries consistent.

    My DJ laptop pretty much only has DJ music on it.....there's also some stuff from random recording and production projects and recorded DJ sets (both mine and a few from other people), but they're not in iTunes.

    This music gets backed up to the music archive on my NAS, which contains "everything". The laptop itself is backed up separately on the NAS, but the music archive doesn't contain any database or collection information. My other computers (a hackintosh that's more-or-less dedicated to production and a linux box that does everything else) just access the NAS over NFS and don't really use databases. I tend to keep "listening music" albums together in folders and just listen to albums rather than playlists or individual songs. And the cli-only version of VLC on linux or Cog on OS X do that at least as well as iTunes does.

    Honestly, though, I tend to listen to internet radio at my computer and recorded DJ sets on my phone in my car. The only reason I still have a music archive (other than for backups of my DJ music) is that I've been collecting basically everything I've ever owned for the last 13 years, and it feels dumb to delete it when hard drives are so cheap. If I didn't have a 16TB NAS sitting by my computer, I probably would have done it, though. Most of it is in mp3, and if I'm going to listen to compressed audio, I might as well stream it from Prime Music or Earbits. If I had nice listening setups for all of them (and figured out how to overcome the exaggerated center from a 39" monitor), I might care more about actually getting good audio out of the linux box.

    So....I kind of have multiple collections, but I only use iTunes for DJ music on the DJ laptop.
    Last edited by mostapha; 12-03-2014 at 12:39 AM.

  4. #4
    Tech Mentor TreTuna's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Lake Tahoe


    I use four libraries...

    1. For tracks ready for DJing - Main DJ Library that's linked to Traktor
    2. For tracks I've gotten from Soundcloud mainly that I'm still listening to, processing, tagging, organizing to see if they make the cut to be put in my DJ library
    3. For my 1TB full music library that has a ton of stuff that I don't use for DJing
    4. For my sample collection

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