Listening: Paul Croker’s Sampled Vinyl MPC Collage, PublicSpacesLab

Photo (CC-BY) Hryck. / Todd. Barcelona-based, Los Angeles-edited PublicSpacesLab is an example of what a netlabel can be. Instead of just another dumping ground for sounds, it feels like a well-curated cafe, pairing regular but thoughtful releases with reflections on music making. Everything is Creative Commons-licensed, free music, from a variety of artists spanning geographies and genres. If you’re in the mood for reading, recent thought pieces from the editor cover a range of topics: Expansion, the lesser known dynamics tool (Amen, brother) The demise of an indie radio station in LA (with some harsh words for the town – …

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Read Traktor-Timecoded Vinyl in Max, Max for Live, (Soon) Pd

This freaky-looking screen image: yours free. It looks like you’re navigating some microscopic rover on another planet. Awesome. More software is speaking timecode, opening up control of digital sound to real, physical vinyl on turntables. The latest addition: Time TunnelXL is a pair of externals that decodes Native Instruments’ Traktor Scratch vinyl and scratches not only sound, but visuals or anything you can make in the open development environment Max. Right now, it supports Max/MSP (and thus Max for Live) on the Mac, but support for Linux and Windows and the open-source Pure Data as well as Max are planned. …

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Scratching Live Video Input: Ms. Pinky + Max for Live

Scratch Yourself Stupid from digital funfair on Vimeo. Can you do exciting things with video inside Ableton Live using Max for Live? Yes, you can. It’s just a proof of concept/demo, not really a polished performance, but Digital Funfair has revealed with his Max for Live work how you might scratch incoming video and not just audio. Using a webcam input, he’s able to keep a buffer of incoming video and scratch that with the vinyl. He promises to share this lovely work with fellow Max for Live owners. There’s more: at bottom, he takes the Buffer Shuffler concept from …

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Ms. Pinky + Max for Live = Scratch Anything in Ableton

Ms. Pinky Revised from Mastah Lee on Vimeo. What should DJing in Ableton Live look like? How could conventional vinyl cueing and scratching be integrated with the Live environment? Serato and Ableton gave us one possible answer to that question last week with The Bridge. Their solution: use your Serato DJ set normally, and simply sync the transport of Ableton Live when the two run simultaneously. That solution could be ideal for some users, but it falls short of what many expected, which was the ability to scratch audio elements from Live as though they were on vinyl. Scratching Live …

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Ableton + Serato: The Bridge Fuses DJ Sets, Live Sets; Full Details

Live maker Ableton and DJ and virtual vinyl developer Serato today announced the results of their partnership. First off, this isn’t what many of us originally speculated: it’s not a DJ deck inside Live. Instead, the collaboration seeks to bridge (ahem) the gap between the way DJs perform and the way Live users perform. The result focuses on the way a performance set is assembled in the two paradigms, an attempt to guide the flow of music between the two programs. Here’s how it works. Bring Serato “mixtapes” into Ableton Live: Save a DJ mix – called a “mix tape” …

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Rane Sixty-Eight: A Mixer/Controller for Two Computers

It had to happen sooner or later: the computer has supplanted the turntable, so why not a mixer intended for two computers? That’s the idea behind the just-announced Rane SIXTY-EIGHT. It’s intended for use with two computers via two independent USB ports, plus controller support (intended primarily for Serato’s tools, but presumably adaptable to other software) for up to four virtual decks. Now, as a way to manage four decks, it seems like absurd overkill – hasn’t Traktor done four decks for years? But if this solution is indeed software-agnostic, it could be a boon to advanced computer musicians wanting …

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Meet the Digital Vinyl Systems That Predated N2IT’s Patent

It’s something we take for granted now, but not so long ago, the only way to scratch and cue records was with analog vinyl. Now, of course, simulating those behaviors using digital records on turntables connected to computers is commonplace. But that hasn’t stopped the question of who owns the technology from spawning legal disputes. Most recently, a suit brought by patent claimants N2IT against M-Audio was dismissed. You can read the history from the time N2IT, a two-person company, launched their first commercial digital DJing (for BeOS, no less) back in the late 90s. In patents, “first” is everything. …

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As the Turntable Turns: Digital Vinyl Survives, Real Technics 1200 Dies (Or Not)

Rick Harrison. The legal wrangling over patents and who owns digital vinyl technology continues. The latest development: the court has dismissed N2IT’s claim against M-Audio, as covered by djtechtools. Before you strike this as a victory in the M-Audio column, it’s possible the parties settled out of court. Based on my limited legal background, I tend to agree with Ean Golden at djtechtools: this does seem to diminish the likelihood of N2IT successfully pursuing a new case against Serato. (In the Netherlands, it’s not possible to buy Serato, because there is would violate Dutch patent law, in the country in …

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Vinyl + Ableton: Ms. Pinky and Max for Live Working Now

Photo (CC) Brendan Dawes. It’s round, it’s mechanically-resistant, it’s tangible, it supports multi-touch and gestures. Yep – it’s the turntable, and outdoing it would mean reinventing the wheel, literally. And so it is that more than a few Ableton fans have wondered how they might work vinyl into their software axe of choice. Ableton and digital vinyl vendor Serato have announced they’re doing “something,” and then announced at the beginning of October that an announcement would be announced on January 14, 2010 at NAMM. Oh, and they said it will “unleash your creativity,” which sounds good. (It’s better than, say, …

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Turntablism in the Digital Age: DJ Jungleboy with Stanton SCS.3d; Open Scratch Scripting

Want to reignite interest in DJs who actually use their hands and fingers to slice up and juggle sounds? A cavalcade of “laptopists” is the ticket. Suddenly, at least in some corners, people are again interested in turntablism. It’s nice to see how a controller can integrate digital loop and cue points with a setup that still focuses on scratching. And Stanton’s SCS.3d turns out to be scriptable in the open source DJ software Mixxx. As some live PA musicians revert to a “push play” mentality, DJs can keep it interesting.

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