Stanton DaScratch Details: Touch Controller Self-Configures for Ableton, Traktor, Serato

Stanton has released the details of its new DaScratch touch controller, and I have to admit, it looks pretty terrific. About as far as anyone has gotten with a smart touch controller is an X/Y pad; this controller, by contrast, defines different areas of the touch surface for different functions and provides LED feedback so you can see what you’re doing. “Scratching” alone doesn’t really make sense in the computer world, even with DJ software, so you get lots of different functions for live performance. I think this may be as big a hit with Ableton Live users and laptop …

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More from Mutek: Tech and Gear Spottings, Ecology and the Planet

Liz and Peter Dines continue to send dispatches from the epic MUTEK festival in Montreal. Stay tuned to our events.createdigitalmusic.com page for the latest. Among the new reports: various Reaktor spottings among artists, insane turntable abuse, and even a discussion of how arts events can reduce their impact on the planet. (Oddly enough, that last panel evidently included Dan Seligman, with whom I worked at the Sierra Club on international trade and human rights issues in another life of mine.) Check out the ongoing MUTEK coverage while we wait for Liz and Peter to finish off their stack of interviews …

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New Turntablism Concepts: Touchscreen Decks, Crossfader Samplers, Needles

We’re seeing more and more unique ideas for reimagining DJing and the two-turntable setup. Here are two examples from opposite ends of the spectrum: one employs a non-traditional interface to do traditional DJing in a new way, while the other uses the traditional interface to produce new DJ techniques. To me, the latter is more interesting, but both are meaningful parts of the process. From the excellent PSFK, Dan Gould finds a project by Scott Hobbs, a Dundee University (UK) student, building a project that access sampling, looping, and scratching features via touchscreens, instead of desks. (Via Gizmodo — thanks, …

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Nintendo DS Scratching: New Protein DScratch Video Demo

DS music fans, I can’t add much that this video doesn’t show: think portable gaming, scratching goodness. New in this version, you can layer multiple instances of the modules to combine different "tracks" of sound — beats plus scratching, for instance. The video makes no apologies for editing or scratching ability, so no complaints, please. It’s all in good fun. Previously: DScratch: Warp, Scratch, and Mess with Audio on Nintendo DS

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Ghetto-Fabulous Digital Vinyl: Make a Mouse Into a Turntable

Scratching with a mouse just doesn’t feel right. One solution, as in FinalScratch and other products, is to print timecode onto the vinyl. But then there’s the direct approach: strap that mouse right onto your turntable and hit the club! That’s just what the DIY-oriented community of users of terminatorX have done. terminatorX is a fully open-source scratch synth on Linux, with support for files like OGG, MP3, and WAV, and even (recently) Linux’s open stereo plug-in format, LADSPA. terminatorX lacks fancy features like support for timecode-printed vinyl, so users take a more literal approach to melding mouse and turntable. …

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Digital Vinyl, Free and Open Source, in Max/MSP, Pd, Linux

Scratching began as a practical means by which DJs could cue records. (So say originators like Grandmaster Flash; if you’re interested in the history, check out the fantastic documentary Scratch — trailer above.) But something about the gesture, the mechanical feeling of scratching, and all that history has made the turntable compelling as a controller. It’s even taught as an instrument at Berklee. So, what if you want to scratch for purposes other than conventional DJing? Getting at Timecode Digital vinyl systems like Serato Scratch LIVE and Native Instruments Traktor Scratch are designed for DJs. Part of the whole advantage …

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Free Turntablism: Open Source Reaktor Ensemble Could Change Scratching

Digital turntablism is nothing new. But Ammobox, debuted at the first-ever CDM Futuristic Music Design Challenge, is unique in a number of ways. What creator Nathan Ramella has done differently: 1. He’s demystified digital vinyl timecode. With no previous DSP programming experience, Nathan created his own custom tool for reading vinyl timecode — and explains how he did it. 2. He’s changed the rules of scratching — it’s now polyphonic scratching. As Nathan puts it, "You get a polyphonic sampler that can layer multiple samples at the same time and scratch them all simultaneously." Yep: no more does digital vinyl …

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Teaser: ammoBox Project Digitally Scratches … What?

Nathan Ramella has sent us a video of a new project called ammoBox. What is it? Well, I happen to know a bit about it, but Nathan has sworn me to secrecy, so I’ll just point out: It claims to be the "world’s first stream scratching, simul scratching, sequ scratching" Nathan was a co-creator of the Unofficial Ableton Live API (which now lives on Google Code if you’ve been wondering where to find updates on that) — so we know he’s got the chops for hacking Yes, that’s Ableton Live … yes, that’s a turntable … no, this isn’t quite …

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Turntablism Reaches the VJ: Serato’s VIDEO-SL Reviewed on CDMotion

The convergence of visuals and sound on virtual vinyl has been a long time coming, but it’s awaited the perfect tool for controlling both. Serato’s VIDEO-SL promised to be that tool. We’ve gotten the crossfader in the capable hands of dj rndm and Robotkid to find out for Create Digital Motion. Here’s what the results look like, mixing: … and scratching: The review isn’t without the odd caveat: for one, you’ll need to pluck down a couple grand to get the complete setup because the Rane mixer employed is required, though rndm ultimately says that’s worth it for the integration …

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