Pacemaker is reborn for iPad.
The hardworking gentlemen at Pacemaker Stockholm have done it again. After a few years locked up in their microspace office at Bondegatan 17 they are finally unveiling the new version of the legendary Pacemaker DJ mixer. This time it’s all digital, but innovative in a totally different way. The new Pacemaker is the first official app that allows you to mix Spotify tracks, playing up to two tracks at the same time (which was early not allowed to any app makers due to Spotify license model).
Yes this means you (and everyone else with an iPad) can now DJ with tracks from the whole 20M songs Spotify collection. All you need is Spotify premium (trial included in Pacemaker software) and a solid internet connection.
The software is super-intuitive. The screen is divided in two halves for two tracks – tapping one of them opens up your Spotify playlists allowing you to cue any track you want. DJing is super-easy as well. Don’t worry about the beat mixing, there is a smart sync button for that. Just pull the digital cross-fader back and forth and you can mix, no matter if you’ve been doing this for years or if you just turned four.
The business model hides in the effects. The Pacemaker for iPad is all free, but once you want to loop, use effects and skip beats you have to pay. The loop box only allows you to loop 1 beat. If you want to loop 4, 8 or 16 you have to buy additional loop buttons for €2 each. The EQ controls are there as well for gain, treble, middle and bass, but hi-lo is paid for. Same goes to effects like Echo, Roll, Reverb. No doubt that Pacemaker will be adding more and more paid-for goodies to the store.
Try the new Pacemaker out here and even if don’t want to use Spotify you can still try it out for free as it comes with two build in tracks – Shakarchi & Straneus’ Mogadishu and John Dahlbäck’s Zeus.
What this means for you as PRO DJs.
Since it’s very easy to learn, the Pacemaker is built for the mass market; basically for everyone who uses Spotify and would like to mix some tracks for their friends at the home party. Mixing on just an iPad might look very nerdy, but hey it does the trick. No doubt, Pacemaker will soon be the ultimate DJ toy at all the office parties, at the pre-parties and a natural start for all the super-young bedroom DJs. It’s cheaper (free) and more fun than softwares such as Traktor, Virtual DJ, Serato and Decadance.
The Pacemaker will probably water out the global, mainstream brand of THE DJ another bit more. After all now everybody with an Ipad can make (and record) smooth mixes with free and easy player that works with Spotify.
For The DJ community Pacemaker is a signal that each and everyone will have to once again innovate their individual brands. For every year that passes since the “DJ” brand went mainstream, and for every product like Pacemaker the supply of DJs is getting larger and larger. Everyone wants to be a DJ and the entrance barriers are now super-low. It’s now more important than ever for you as a DJ to stand out from the crowd. Make sure to find you personal DJ brand and perks – may it be the super cool 20-midi controllers set-up, or that you only play vinyl, or that you mix northern soul and Frank Sinatra with your house tracks as a trademark, or that you got into Guinness book of world records for playing for 62 hours straight. Make sure to stand out and tell your story to your fans and the clubs that book you. Don’t be just another Pacemaker DJ (with all the respect to the guys who made the software, and it’s a lovely software for starters). Still, if you want to pursuit a professional DJ carrier, the safest way to getting playtime is still to produce your own music. It’s also probably the most difficult one.
Last but not least I have hard time seeing any self-respecting nightclub owners or booker allowing their DJs to play with iPad only software, but maybe I’m just being to close-minded. Another issue is that current Spotify license does not allow you to play Spotify music publicly, like in bars, nightclubs and shops (even though nobody really seems to give a damn).