In recent times iPad users have gone from needing to search high and low for good apps to write and perform music to being spoilt for choice with a great range of increasingly high quality apps being released on a regular basis. Algoriddim djay was one of the first generation of iOS-powered DJing apps that managed to bring a professional level of mixing performance to the iPad platform, gaining a lot of fans in the process as well as picking up an Apple Design Award. Of course, a lot has changed since djay was released at the start of 2010.
Often new versions of apps turn out to be a collection of bug fixes with the addition of some bells and whistles to justify the fanfare, but djay 2 is much more than this. Algoriddim have really gone to town with this upgrade and have redesigned many of the core elements of the user interface and workflow, adding some seriously tasty treats. While all the action took place on one screen in the original djay, version 2 has split the various functions it performs across multiple screens which has vastly improved the user experience. The home screen will be instantly familiar to existing djay users as the large decks are still there, as are the waveform displays, albeit in a much improved colour form, and the look and feel is still stylish and uncluttered.
Waveform representations have been improved across all areas with colour waveform displays now the standard, and a new Waveform View screen that has two huge waveforms scrolling side by side to make manual beat matching an absolute breeze has been added.
A very slick little addition is the way that, when slip mode is engaged, the waveform splits apart so that the bit that is being manipulated is on view whilst the original timeline is moving underneath. Such attention to detail is incredible — Algoriddim have really raised the bar here with features like this. Spectral Timeline is another new feature that visualises the sonic content of the waveform and matches colours to these features making it very easy to pick out song structure elements such as verses and choruses, and when zoomed right in, it is possible to see individual sounds such as kick drums and snares. Another uber cool feature is the waveform representation, which is now mapped to the vinyl playing on the decks to create virtual grooves that look exactly as they would had they been pressed to vinyl. An improved beat grid system keeps tracks in perfect sync automatically, even coping well with live recording, and beat grids can also be edited, saved and even shared via iCloud.
An entirely new track browsing and loading system has been devised for djay 2 making it easier than ever to browse and search for tracks as well as building playlists quickly and easily either in full screen library mode or in pop-over view mode keeping the decks in view. The onboard sampler has also had an overhaul, with a full screen pad trigger view mode or the option of replacing just one deck with a bank of pads. High quality sample packs are included or users can record their own loops using djay 2.
All these new features are so easy to employ that it only takes a few minutes of messing around with djay 2 to really master and deliver great performances. Other sexy new inclusions to djay 2 are the X-Y FX pad with simultaneous filtering and looping effects, which really add some great nuances to the mix. Slip mode is great for scratch FX and scratching, and the beat slicer mode is great for instant chop-ups.
The best thing about djay 2 is that whilst it will still appeal to the mainstream crowd who just want to mess around and dabble with mixing their iTunes library, there is now more than enough pro end depth to the app for DJs who actually want to use this in a professional environment — and it really does work.
Djay 2 is avaiable to purchase for £1.49 from itunes
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