How to Beatmatch (Part 2)

by Mixing Dj on April 1, 2009

in DJ Tutorials

Let’s continue from where we left off in How to Beatmatch (part 1).

You are now familiar with the basic concept of how to beatmatch and what beatmatching is. But in How to Beatmatch (Part 1) I only talked about beatmatching 2 copies of the same song, and the result didn’t sound that good anyway. Let’s get a little more advanced in Part 2 of How to Beatmatch.




Just like in Part 1, take a duplicate track and put it on both of your decks. On Deck A, cue up the track right before the beat hits. What I mean by this is as follows:

On your CD player there is a Cue button. It lets you pause the track wherever you want and resume it later with the play button. When you are playing a track and you hit the play button to pause it, you hear a stuttering sound. This moment in the track is called a frame and it is a fraction of a second of sound. You can turn the jog wheel to advance or reverse frame by frame. Play around with this so that you get familiar with how to identify what you’re actually hearing by listening to these frames. You should be able to notice the way a drum beat sounds when you hear it in frames. Once you get the hang of it, what you need to do is position the track at the frame right before a drum beat starts to hit. Then press the Cue button and the track will be paused there.

If you are using records, the process is similar. Just stop the record with your hand and move it back and forth to identify the sound of a drum beat hitting. You won’t be able to pause the record there, but keep your hand on it at the point right before the beat hits.

Make sure that your crossfader is in the middle position.

Now, with your other hand, press play on the other deck. Get a feel for the timing of the beat. Tap your free hand to the beat if you want, many DJs find that helpful. When you’re ready, press the play button (or release the track that you had paused with your hand) at the exact moment that a beat is about to hit on the track that is currently playing.

If you did this perfectly, the beats on both tracks should be synchronized and you have pulled off a successful beatmatch. But that’s what happens in a perfect world. In reality you were actually a little off and you’re hearing the galloping I had mentioned in Part 1. No problem, just use the jog wheel (or touch the record) to speed it up a bit and get the beats to match up. Wasn’t that easy?

There you go, you have just learned one of the techniques of how to beatmatch. But you will not often be trying to beatmatch two tracks that are exactly the same speed. In Part 3 of How to Beatmatch I’ll talk about how to beatmatch when your tracks are different speeds, or have different BPMs.

-Mixing DJ



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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Bar and Night Club Enthusiast December 22, 2009 at 6:16 pm

once again, great article…. extremely articulate

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admin January 7, 2010 at 10:23 pm

Thank you, I’m glad you found it useful. I spent a lot of time writing this one.

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wainwright realtors February 9, 2010 at 8:49 am

In reality you were actually a little off and you’re hearing the galloping I had mentioned in Part 1 <– I don't get this part. Do you mean that even if you do all of the steps in the first part of the article you still won't get rid of the gallop?

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admin February 11, 2010 at 9:10 pm

@wainwright – Thanks for the question & sorry if that was a bit confusing. What I was saying there was that if you followed all the steps from Part 1 perfectly, you would get a perfect mix. But since if you’re reading this tutorial you are most likely a beginner, you are probably not going to pull it off perfectly without a little practice. So while in a perfect world you would have a perfect mix, in the real world, as a beginner, you are probably going to get a decent mix but you’ll still hear some galloping because your technique isn’t perfect yet. And as I described in this post, that’s not a problem because you can adjust the track so that it synchronizes perfectly.

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Mitch de jong March 12, 2011 at 8:18 am

Hey admin! i love youre tuts, im trying now with Virtual DJ to beatmatch properly. But it doenst really feel ”real” but i can practice on Virtual DJ too right? It got everything but its not as cool as real equip, and the scratching table is pretty f’ed up.

Thanks alot btw for this awesome help!

self storage cumming February 15, 2010 at 5:40 am

Thanks for this excellent tutorial. Just finished reading part 1 and part 2, heading over to part 3. Great post!
.-= self storage cumming´s last blog ..About Storage Neighbor – self Storage Facilities / Solutions in Alabama, Georgia & Atlanta =-.

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calgary caters April 6, 2010 at 2:16 am

Whew! Just finished reading part 1 and 2, off to part 3 now. Thanks for writing these, I wish you would update more often!

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string quartet August 19, 2010 at 7:54 am

thanks for the article. do you have any experience with the ipad DJ apps?

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admin August 19, 2010 at 8:14 pm

I haven’t tried those yet but I’ve seen some demo videos and they look pretty cool

Zach Browne August 24, 2010 at 1:48 am

I’m having some problems leaving a remark. I have attempted refreshing several times as well as closing and opening chrome. Are you guys having the same problem on this post?

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Kereta Terpakai August 26, 2010 at 11:01 am

I’m also finishing part 1 & 2.. it was great and awesome! thanks 🙂

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DJ Trinity February 16, 2011 at 12:16 am

You may not always be able to match two songs that are similar, try mixing in different genres of music.

Throw some screwballs at yourself such as trying to do a very quick beat match and mix as if you’re trying to play as many songs within a time period as possible.

See how long you can keep two songs matched with one another. Try throwing one track out of sync and then use your beat matching skills to resync them.

It may take a little while but once you have the fundamentals of beat matching down, you’ll soon be on your way to DJing.

Cheers.

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admin February 26, 2011 at 6:41 pm

Excellent advice, thanks for your comment!

admin March 12, 2011 at 1:01 pm

Yup, you can practice on Virtual DJ and that’s actually how I started out too. The biggest problem with it is that you can’t use your headphones to listen to a track you’ve cued up, unless you have an external sound card that can handle multiple channels.

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