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Digital DJ Tips: iOS DJ Apps Key Lock Test

Digital DJ Tips decided to test the Key Lock feature of iOS DJ apps. This is an important feature, which keeps the pitch normal when you sync tracks of different tempos. All apps seem to handle it a little bit differently. Traktor's results are particularly bad.

Video Description:

Quick test of keylock functionality and audio on iOS apps - specifically DJ apps. I used "Touch Me" by Rui da Silva as the test track, as it features kicks, snares, vocals and synths in the section I used.

I played the same section of the track on all the apps in the test, at -16% with Key Lock enabled on a 3rd Generation iPad running the latest version of iOS (6.1.3) and the latest version of all apps involved (as of 25.03.2013).

The uncompressed audio can be heard here: http://soundcloud.com/djhombre/sets/ios-key-lock-test

The apps used were Capo, Traktor DJ, DJ Player (NB: on the audio in the video for this app is in Mono - my mistake...on Soundcloud I re-recorded with the correct in-app setting for stereo output), CrossDJ, djay, Touch The Wave (TTW).

CrossDJ was recently updated with Keylock, and made some pretty bold claims about the quality of their algorithm used. Digital DJ Tips took up the challenge, which was the inspiration for this test. You can read a full article over on Digital DJ Tips that takes a deep look at their claims. This is extremely well done. Not only do they call them on their marketing buzz, but they get into the technical backend of all these apps.

CrossDJ certainly performs much better than Traktor! It is celebrating its 1 Year Anniversary, with a 90%-off sale this weekend only.

Buy CrossDJ for iPad on iTunes: $0.99 (On Sale, from $9.99)

Reader Comments 1

Happy Easter to everybody!

After reading your review and especially after watching your video, I had to make my own test, since I already own Traktor for iPad and are having lots of fun with the app.
I also gave CrossDJ for iPad a try, which btw is a no brainer at that price and the quality you get sound-wise.
My conclusion so far:

Traktor is good for the creative DJ, since almost everything is quantized. That means you can jump around in a track, loop, trigger as you like without having hick-ups, just flowing. Complex audio is ok till -8% , more than that sounds crapy. But it really depends on the complexity of the sound. I had another track (tech-house) with original 128 bpm playing at a 100 bpm still sounding good - but nonsense.

CrossDJ is as the UI suggests more for the vinylish mashup DJ. The quality of the sound is absolutely great even at -16%, no prob for the app. It has great effects as well. You can scratch around like on real vinyl. It's really like having 2 decks playing.

I play different sets, so for me CrossDJ will be great when playing my funk, hip hop acid jazz, basically my old vinyl collection.
But when it comes to tech/prog/minimal-house Traktor is the better choice. I love the master tempo, the slice mode, jumping through a track back and forth all in perfect sync.

I recommend both that's my 2 cent!

Best, Tom

March 31, 2013  | person_outline Tom

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