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News

ADE Gear Test Lab with Pete Tong DJ Academy and Tribe XR

Immerse Yourself in the Ultimate DJ Virtual Gaming Experience at ADE Gear Test Lab with Pete Tong DJ Academy and Tribe XR

The Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) is just around the corner, and we invite you to join us at the Gear Test Lab for an unparalleled educational and immersive game experience. Get ready to elevate your DJ skills, challenge some of the industry’s biggest names, and take your shot at becoming the conference’s top DJ.

Highlights of the Event

  • Learn and Experience: Immerse yourself in the world of DJing and gain valuable insights from the Pete Tong DJ Academy and Tribe XR. Our immersive educational game-experience is designed to educate and entertain.
  • Challenge the Legends: Test your skills in a unique lesson-game mode where you can challenge yourself against legendary DJs like Pete Tong, Carl Cox, and Adam Beyer. Will you rise to the occasion and claim the title of the conference’s number one DJ?
  • Meet the Icons: Don’t miss the chance to meet Pete Tong and our experienced tutors in person. This exclusive opportunity allows you to interact with them, ask questions, and even challenge them to a DJ set in the multiverse.
  • Students DJ Gigs: Several of our talented students will be performing at ADE this year, and we’re thrilled to announce that two of them will have the incredible opportunity to play on one of the ADE stages. A great place to see our emerging talent at its finest.
  • Win Big: We’re excited to give away four ADE Lab passes and five scholarships to ADE attendees this year. Be sure to visit the ADE Lab hub at Het Groene Paleis to apply for these incredible opportunities.

The PTDJA x TRIBE XR Experience
The PTDJA x TRIBE XR experience at ADE will allow people with any skill level of DJing to learn on virtual Pioneer DJ CDJ-3000 decks in a virtual or mixed reality setting plus challenge themselves in a skills-game against the Pete Tong DJ Academy tutors, attendees will get the chance to get into the immersive VR experience of TRIBE XR while getting learning from Pete Tong DJ Academy DJ incredible teacher roster. Attendees will then get the chance to play a game while learning moves of those industry giants. Who’ll be crowned the ‘Best DJ’ of the conference?

Championing Diversity and Inclusivity
PTDJA and Tribe XR are committed to promoting diversity and inclusivity in the music industry. PTDJA actively works to eliminate gender, sexual preference, and race gaps, while Tribe XR is expanding access to DJ education globally. Additionally, both organizations are at the forefront of incorporating emerging technologies, such as VR and mixed reality, into music education.

About Pete Tong DJ Academy
The Pete Tong DJ Academy is a renowned institution dedicated to fostering the next generation of DJs and music industry professionals. With a commitment to excellence, PTDJA offers educational programs, mentorships, and real-life experiences for aspiring DJs.

About Tribe XR
Tribe XR is a groundbreaking platform that provides immersive DJ and music production education in virtual reality. It empowers individuals from diverse backgrounds to pursue their passion for music and DJing through innovative technology and engaging content.

About ADE
The Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) is the world’s leading electronic music conference and festival. ADE offers a platform for professionals in the music industry, as well as music enthusiasts, to connect, learn, and celebrate electronic music culture.

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Student Activities

Future Talent Awards Grand Prix Winner 2023

Last year, we introduced the Future Talent Awards to recognize exceptional artists from the academy. Ten students were selected to play gigs around the world with their mentors and receive career-building support. The ultimate winner, Constanza from Argentina, became the PTDJA Future Talent and played at the prestigious IMS event in Ibiza.


Overall winner of the Future Talent award – Costanza
“When I first saw the call to participate in the Future Talent Awards on Instagram, I knew it would be a great opportunity for me. Although I already took a DJ course a few years ago in Argentina, I chose to do the full PTDJA course to refresh my knowledge. In the first chapters I was able to reaffirm what I already knew. Then, in the advanced part of the course — I have to highlight the experiences and advice the teachers shared, as you know they are some of the most experienced DJs in the industry — they talk about topics that are not often touched on and what I consider very important for future DJs.


“I think in this sense the course is so invaluable, as they are not only educating future DJs technically, but also trying to train you in the correct way to conduct yourself professionally with good values. With that I focused on doing my best to be one of the finalists. I felt I was in a great moment and that is why I was very confident in myself, but then when I received the email notifying me that I had been chosen as the Grand Prix Winner, I actually couldn’t believe it. There was such great emotion. That memory is still fresh in my mind, and you know every time I think about it, I get goosebumps.


“Undoubtedly this is one of the greatest achievements in my career as a DJ, and in my life to date. I was chosen by Pete, Nicole and Carl, and the truth is I did not think I would be chosen by all of them — that brings me an immense amount of joy. It really is a difficult sensation to express in words. To be honest, I am still in shock because of what happened and what is going to happen.”


Congratulations to all the Future Talent Award winners for their outstanding achievements!

Categories
Student Activities

Future Talent Awards 2023 finalists

Last year, we introduced the Future Talent Awards to recognize exceptional artists from the academy. Ten students were selected to play gigs around the world with their mentors and receive career-building support. The ultimate winner, Constanza from Argentina, became the PTDJA Future Talent and played at the prestigious IMS event in Ibiza.


Dahien from Poland and Liz Somes from Seattle also impressed the judges and earned mentorship from Adam Beyer and Sama’ Abdulhadi. In addition to the top three, seven other finalists were recognized for their talents.


Dahein
“Going through this process gave me even more faith and confidence in myself, in what I was doing and that I was going in the right direction with the desire to pursue doing what I love in life (music) as a professional DJ. The decision to participate in the Future Talent Awards was a spontaneous decision. At the time I did not think of it as the ‘ultimate chance’ and that I would win something — I saw it rather as an interesting adventure — but I was aware that it was being judged by professionals and it was their opinion that I cared most about.”


“I knew that my work as a DJ would be judged on merit, and not as a specialist in social media and how many ‘Likes’ I have. One of my friends DJ Siasia once told me, ‘Learn not to be just another music player but a DJ’, and in PTDJA this is what you learn, exactly that — how to become a professional DJ and what it means. Then to be picked by Adam (Beyer) as his choice and one of the 10 winners, it’s hard to describe the feelings in words. I was bursting with energy.”


Liz Somes
“Honestly when I entered, I didn’t think I would win. I thought I had a shot, but once I hit enter on the form, it was out of my hands, and I forgot about it until I got the first email back months later. When I found out I had won, I cried, it was very emotional. To be chosen for this award by some of the best DJs in the world, I still pinch myself. It has already opened doors that were otherwise closed.”


“I can’t tell you how many times I have heard that people have said I have been ‘slept on’. If getting this award opens people’s eyes to the story I have to tell musically, I am for it, and all in. It also gives me a platform to represent women in the industry, to have those other conversations about ageism and tokenism, quite frankly, which have already started and have been wonderful and very positive. But most of all, I love being an inspiration to others and hope I can continue being that, just like others have inspired me. When you are an artist, you don’t have a choice to pursue something, you are driven… it is a part of you.”


The other finalists
Deefo – NUANS – Cozmic Cat – Mista Mani – 2 nomads – Daniella Font – Fivequestionmarks


Congratulations to all the Future Talent Award winners for their outstanding achievements!

Categories
Student Activities

Future Talent Awards Summer Tour 2023

Are you ready to immerse yourself in the vibrant beats and electrifying atmosphere of Ibiza’s renowned music scene? Look no further than the Future Talent Award (FTA) Ibiza Sessions, currently taking place at the iconic Destino Pacha Ibiza, where sun-kissed beaches and thrilling tunes come together for an unforgettable summer experience. 🏖️⛱️


As we hit the midpoint of this summer extravaganza, prepare to be blown away by the talent and passion of five exceptional FTA Winners, gracing the stage at one of Ibiza’s finest venues. Each event promises a unique blend of music, ambiance, and energy that will keep you dancing the night away. So mark your calendars for these not-to-be-missed dates:


1. Deefo – 30th June
2. Cozmic Cat – 29th July
3. Dahein – 3rd August
4. 2nomads – 7th August
5. NUANS – 12th October


The Future Talent Award Ibiza Sessions provide the perfect opportunity to embrace the essence of Ibiza’s legendary music culture. From sunrise to sunset, immerse yourself in the world of music and dance, surrounded by the breathtaking beauty of Ibiza’s landscape.


Don’t miss your chance to witness these exceptional FTA Winners as they showcase their extraordinary skills and passion for music. Whether you’re an avid music lover, a dedicated dancer, or simply seeking a memorable experience, the FTA Ibiza Sessions have something special in store for you.


So, what are you waiting for? Join us at Destino Pacha Ibiza for the Future Talent Award Ibiza Sessions and let the music take you on a journey like no other. See you on the dance floor! 🎵🕺💃

Categories
Student Activities

PTDJA Apple Music DJ Mixes June 2023

Are you a passionate aspiring DJ looking for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain exposure and recognition within the music industry? Pete Tong’s DJ Academy is thrilled to present its exclusive Talent Pool opportunity, where every month, the finest students will have a chance to be featured on Apple Music alongside the biggest names in the business, handpicked by the legendary Pete Tong himself. This is an unparalleled chance to share your DJ mix with new listeners, grow your fanbase, and propel your DJ career to new heights on a global streaming platform.

1. Record Your Best Mix: At PTDJA, we believe that talent deserves recognition, and that’s why our teachers carefully select the best DJ mixes from our students every month. This means your hard work and creativity will be acknowledged and rewarded with a spotlight on Apple Music, exposing your mix to a vast and diverse audience of music enthusiasts worldwide.

2. Grow Your Fanbase: Imagine your mix featured on our exclusive Curator Page on Apple Music, where new listeners will be able to discover and appreciate your unique style and talent. This dedicated platform serves as a springboard to grow your fanbase, connecting you with audiences who resonate with your music and paving the way for potential collaborations and networking opportunities in the industry.

3. Take Off Your DJ Career: By sending your best mixes as a Pro to our Talent Pool, you open doors to endless possibilities in your DJ career. Being featured alongside professional DJs on a global streaming platform like Apple Music not only elevates your profile but also provides you with invaluable experience and exposure that can propel your career to new heights.

Don’t miss out on this extraordinary opportunity to be a part of the PTDJA Talent Pool on Apple Music. Join our academy and let your creativity and talent shine as you take your DJ career to new heights. Share your mix with new listeners, be featured among the biggest names in dance music, and witness your fanbase grow like never before. Embrace the chance to be mentored by industry professionals and get a step closer to your dream of becoming a renowned DJ in the music world.

LATEST WINNERS
Categories
Dj Tips & Tricks Djing

How to avoid clipping & redlining in djing

It is common to see the mixer LED indicators turn red and then hear the monitors clipping, but what does this mean? How can it be avoided?

INDEX:

  1. How an audio signal works
  2. What is clipping?
  3. What happens to a clipped audio signal
  4. The importance of Gain/Trim
  5. Why redlining is wrong
  6. Possible reasons why a channel is clipping
  7. How to avoid clipping

How signal audio works

To best explain clipping it is necessary to review audio signals and how our brain perceives them.

How is the audio signal perceived by our hearing?

The sound enters and passes through the auditory canal, where the sound waves hit the eardrum and the ossicles inside the middle ear, making them vibrate; these vibrations are transmitted to the cochlea causing a movement of the fluid inside. The movement of the fluid is then transformed into neural signals for the auditory nerve, passing them into the brain which interprets these signals into sounds.

These sound waves, which are the ones that make the eardrum vibrate, propagate in a sinusoidal shape, which has 3 main characteristics:

Frequency: this is the number of times the wave is repeated, or ‘oscillates.’ This repetition rate of a wave is measured in cycles per second (called Hertz or Hz). The higher the rate of oscillation, the higher the Hz, the more we will perceive a high-pitched sound. The more a sound propagates with wider, more separated waves, the more low-pitched the sound will be (low Hz)

Frequency and wavelength are inversely proportional: the lower the frequency, the greater the wavelength.

Amplitude: this is the magnitude, and therefore volume of a wave, and is measured in Decibels (dB). The height of each wave peak measured from 0db is what defines the amplitude.

Phase: An angular measure of the time difference between two similar waveforms (expressed in degrees).

What is clipping?

Clipping is a form of (non-linear) distortion of the waveform. It occurs when an amplifier is pushed beyond its maximum limit, causing the amplifier circuity to produce a voltage that is beyond its capacity, causing signal distortion and therefore a noisy and unpleasant output audio signal.

So, simplifying, as far as DJing is concerned, ‘redlining’ or clipping occurs when an audio signal coming from a mixer channel is too strong and the signal is distorted, causing a reduction in sound quality.

What happens to a clipping audio signal

The audio signal, which has a sinusoidal shape, must be carried by an electric current before being output by the speakers.

The magnitude of the electrical voltage is directly proportional to the amplitude of the waveform, and as happens for any electrical device, there is a minimum and maximum value that can be conveyed, as is evident in the image below:

sine wave clipping

In clipping, the audio signal is overloaded until it reaches a point where the equipment is no longer able to manage the output. What will happen in this case? The sine wave will be cut, or ‘clipped’ from the top and bottom near the maximum values (peaks) resulting in distortion and deterioration of the sound.

It is at this time that you will see the red indicators on the mixer.

Clipping can be of two types: soft and hard. In the first case we have a slight ‘red’ signal in the meter but the sound will still have clarity and quality. In the second case, as seen in the image, it will result in real damage to the sound.

soft & hard clipping

ATTENTION:

If the mixer, especially during transitions, (that is when there are two open channels with overlapping frequencies) only occasionally goes ‘into the red’ (i.e., it does not remain constantly red) this does not mean that the audio signal is particularly degraded. In fact, clipping is a term for when the signal is constantly deteriorated.

The importance of Gain-Trim

The Gain or Trim control adjusts the input volume of a single channel and usually undergoes very small variations during a DJ set. This parameter is essential for two specific uses; first, to compensate for any volume variations between one track and the other during mix transitions; and second, in order to keep the volume of the master constant.

Generally, the Gain is set by default to 0 dB, but this does not mean that the song will play at 0 dB, rather that we keep the volume of the track at its original level.

The Trim is often the first ’culprit’ of clipping, in fact many DJs tend to abuse it in order to increase the volume of the master, but run the risk of going ‘into the red’ and at that point distorting the sound. This is harmful not only for the audio system, but also for your hearing, as explained in more detail below.

Why redlining is wrong

From the images shown above it is clear why it is important to avoid ’clipping’.

As we have said, one of the most common mistakes made by DJs is to tend to turn up the volume, because to the ear a higher volume is more desirable, but be careful!

There is a limit that balances sound power and quality. In fact, as previously mentioned, you cannot go beyond a certain ceiling.

This limit is dictated by a very important constraint: the power limit of the club sound system. This limit cannot be exceeded and if we try to push our console over, we will do nothing but obtain a distorted and ruined signal.

Thus, upon trying to exceed that limit, you will not gain volume at all, but instead will have the same volume (at the sound system’s maximum limit) just at a poorer quality.

Remember that in a situation where the sound is distorted (redlining/clipping) because you are trying to gain more volume, it is useless to keep turning it up from our console as this will just cause the club sound engineer (or the club’s compressors and limiters) to lower the volume in an attempt to recover quality on an over signal coming from the console.

After all, it will trigger a vicious cycle where the DJ will continue to raise the volume, and the sound engineer will try to lower it, with the result that the sound will come out degraded but at a ’normal’ volume, if not lower. This situation could compromise the success of your evening, ruining the experience of guests who will be listening to “distorted” music.

 

Possible causes of a channel clipping

TRACK QUALITY

It may happen that you buy a track from a retailer, but make the mistake of downloading it in an unsuitable format, such as MP3, or in a worst-case scenario, download it illegally and therefore use a low-quality track. The result of this will be to offer your audience poor quality audio signals.

CHANNEL EQUALISATION (EQ)

We reiterate the importance of checking the console EQ levels before starting to play, even if the following scenario might also happen during your own DJ set.

What can happen is that too many frequencies (low, medium and less often, high) have been added (or removed) to a single channel and this can cause the track to go into clipping. During your set, ensure you use EQ carefully to avoid sums of frequencies that can push the signal ‘into the red,’ even with appropriately adjusted gain/trim.

FX

fx pioneer djm 900

During a DJ set it is common to use effects, but remember that most of them, especially effects such as delay, tend to multiply the sound, and so it is very easy to end up clipping. It is therefore essential to leave enough headroom so the overlapping sounds can accumulate safely.

Obviously, it is possible to avoid clipping, as it also depends on the type of effect and how much is applied. Just remember to keep sufficient headroom to avoid the redlining zone.

How to avoid clipping

To avoid clipping it is therefore essential to:

  • Keep the Trim/Gain at a level that maintains some headroom between the signal output and the maximum capacity of the mixer channel. A good example of headroom can be identified on a mixer showing either just green or green and yellow (or orange) colours when the track is playing.
  • Buy high quality songs
  • Pay attention to the equalisation of the channels
  • Apply any effects appropriately during the DJ set
  • Keep a good balance between the volume of the monitors (on which we will soon do an ad hoc in-depth study) and of the headphones (flipping between the CUE and MASTER signal), so that you have a volume suitable for mixing, which does not alienate you from the dancefloor, but at the same time does not damage your hearing due to excessive volume
  • Always remember to keep an eye on the meters on your console
Categories
Dj Tips & Tricks Djing

3 Useful DJ Tips from The Pete Tong DJ academy

Push your DJ skills with these 3 useful dj tips for a perfect mix.

Protect your hearing! 

Wear earplugs and choose headphones with comfortable and large ear cups in order to isolate you from the monitors and avoid ear damage due to excessive volume. 

During a mix you can flip constantly between CUE and MASTER channels in your headphone channel.

Learn more HERE

Earplugs devices

Check your setup before start to play/LED indicator

It’s important to check the console or your setup (or both!) before you start to play. Check the knobs (turn all knobs to the middle), check the fader volumes (in order to avoid errors while you’re listening the cue deck preview) and ask the sound engineer if the CDJs are connected via ethernet.

Learn more HERE

Mix in key and the Camelot wheel. How to use them and when

Keep an eye on the key of your track and remember the Camelot Wheel colours; it’s important to mix tracks with a compatible key. The numbers represent the key and the letters represent minor (A) and major (B). The Camelot Wheel is based on the circle of fifths. Modular new generation consoles and many apps (such as Rekordbox, Serato, etc.) can scan and analyse the key and the BPM of your tracks, so you don’t need a third application but remember: the accuracy of these analyses is not 100%.

Learn more HERE 

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