Update on going Digital

Many DJ's are "switching up" to computers as the new way to DJ. They provide near-instant access to large song lists and can be integrated to control video and DMX lighting.

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Update on going Digital

Postby mickey j » Wed Jan 06, 2010 9:25 pm

Hi All,
This post has two motives 1. To update everyone who was kind enough to offer me support and replied to my messages. 2. To give anyone who may be thinking of going digital an idea of what I did and how much it cost me.
First, I have everything up and running, did my at home testing yesterday & today and will be taking it on the road this weekend. I am still converting music, but have all the essential stuff done. I am using PCDJ Red Mobile and have not encountered any problems (yet). During testing I even found out my virus scanner kicked in in the background (which is a resource hog) and was still not having any problems mixing. I am using my denon mixer through a gigaport HD interface & Windows 7. Keep in mind, I did buy a top end laptop because it is also for business, movies (blu-ray player), and photos, so I wanted a lot of RAM, a big harddrive, and the latest & greatest processor.

Second, so what did I buy and how much did it cost?
-Dell Studio XPS 16 Laptop, 500 gig hard drive, 6 gigs of RAM, blu-ray player (not burner), cd dvd burner combo, intel i7 quad core processor, full high def screen, backlit keyboard, etc. Beautiful machine, not cheap, does everything, named it: Mickey's Multimedia Monster
-Belkin cooling stand, usb powered
-Rosewill 7 port usb hub, usb or brick powered (so far no need to plug it in)
-Seagate 500 gig portable external hard drive, usb powered
-personalized mouse pad from Zazzle.com (very cool website, can design your own mousepads, t-shirts etc. check it out)
-microsoft wireless laser mouse (already owned this)
-2 outlet travel surge protector for laptop
-PCDJ Red Mobile DJ software
-Gigaport HD audio interface (external sound card), usb powered
-Pelican laptop case, nearly indestructible, lifetime replacement warranty, watertight (could literally throw my laptop in the lake in this case) It has "pluck out foam" to fit your components in. Everything I listed except the gigaport fit in the case. I then pull out the foam and use the case as part of my setup. See the pictures I am going to try and post next
Total cost: a little more than $2,000.
I'll post this first and try to follow this with pictures
Happy New Year All!
Mickey J
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Re: Update on going Digital

Postby mickey j » Wed Jan 06, 2010 9:41 pm

Ok, lets see if these pictures show up. This is my stuff in my dining room for testing. Sorry about the quality, had to edit them to post, quick & dirty
Mickey j
Attachments
P1060041_edit.JPG
P1060040_edit.JPG
P1060039_edit.JPG
P1060039_edit.JPG (36 KiB) Viewed 4076 times
P1060038_edit.JPG
P1060037_edit.JPG
P1060037_edit.JPG (27.75 KiB) Viewed 4076 times
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Re: Update on going Digital

Postby mickey j » Wed Jan 06, 2010 9:53 pm

Hi All,
Regarding the pictures above, to give you a better idea of the laptop setup:
It is in the pelican case, minus the foam I pack it up in (I'll post a packed picture later). The laptop has 3 usb ports, 2 on the left (as you are looking at it) and one on the right. The 7-port usb hub is plugged in on the left. The laser mouse and cooling stand (not visible) are plugged in the hub. This leaves a usb port on the left for my external hard drive (not in the picture) which will fit in the case as well. The gigaport is inside the big road case and plugs in the usb port on the right side of the machine. Thus, whole setup with external hard drive, laser mouse, cooling stand and gigaport requires ONE outlet!
Thats all for now,
Mickey J
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Re: Update on going Digital

Postby mickey j » Wed Jan 06, 2010 10:08 pm

Bigger picture, (I hope)
Attachments
P1060038_edit 2.JPG
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Re: Update on going Digital

Postby mickey j » Fri Jan 08, 2010 2:01 pm

Hi Again,
Two things, first, keep in my my total cost involved a LOT of looking for deals, getting Bing cashback, applying for credit cards to get cashback etc. Thus, if you just price my components you are likely to come in at closer to $3000.
Second, below is the setup packed in the case. Note that it has a combinantion lock and two holes for padlocks if you so desire. First picture is Laptop, USB hub (bottom left), Surge protector (bottom middle), laser mouse (bottom right) with usb hub cord in same hole, Laptop power cord and brick (top right). In the second picture I've put the mouse pad, external hard drive and cooling stand on top of the laptop. It still shuts securely, although I may be compromising the watertight seal, but I don't plan on throwing it in a lake. Case is heavy fully packed. I've also gone to the printers to make a sign that will attach to the two padlock holes and cover the front of the case with my logo and phone number. I'll post a picture when I get it back. It will be black and white and allows me to NOT hang my banner at formal events which can look sloppy if you are hanging it on a table with skirting as I used to do. Banner is also under re-design. Last picture is old "basic" setup.
Thats all folks, wish me luck!
Mickey J
Attachments
Picture 018 edit.jpg
P1080043edit.JPG
P1080042 edit.JPG
P1060040_edit.JPG
P1060038_edit 2.JPG
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Re: Update on going Digital

Postby mickey j » Fri Jan 08, 2010 2:11 pm

Whoops, posted two wrong pictures, heres laptop in case
Attachments
P1080040 edit.JPG
P1080039 edit 2.JPG
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Postby CJ Greiner » Fri Jan 08, 2010 3:46 pm

Mickey J,

I don't think I can express in one post my gratitude for the time you took to post this info... but I'll try.

I did a lot of my digital conversion from scratch, and went through many back-breaking (too heavy equipment) gigs before I got to where I am today.

Your post should inspire those who haven't converted to go ahead and do it. And for those who have, will give them some great ideas on how they can improve their cases and setup. You obviously did some research during the process, and it shows.

THANK YOU.
>> CJ Greiner
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Re: Update on going Digital

Postby mickey j » Fri Jan 08, 2010 4:43 pm

Hey CJ,
Glad you appreciated my input, I too hope it helps others. I do not DJ full time but got laid off from full-time job which has really helped, time wise, in re-vamping my system, converting music and making these posts. (My full-time job is as a Financial Advisor which is crazy hours, I DJ just to get away!) The real Bit*h has been converting all my CD's, couldn't even estimate the hours I have spent. Anyway, thanks for the kind words. It looks like I may be back to work full-time soon, wish me luck. I will make at least one more post to let you know how giggin went and post photos of the new set-up at work.
Peace,
Mickey J
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Postby TheBartman47 » Fri Jan 08, 2010 5:51 pm

I remember when I first converted... I had 4 different computers going at once ripping the hundreds of CDs I had to load on the hard drive. Took several days, but well worth it now.
Bartman Audio Production
http://www.bartmanaudio.com
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