Over To You: Where Do I Get Music Videos For DJing?

video collage

Becoming a video DJ can stand you apart. But where's the best place to get music? Pic from: Sonic Waves

Reader Omar Cortés Zapata over on our Facebook Page asked: "Please, some tips regarding with where to buy music videos online, preferable full HD. This is actually one area we're going to look more at in 2012, as we think video DJing is a good way to pull away from the pack. But at the moment we're just starting our learning in this area (expect a review of the MixVibes VDJ product next month), and we have to admit we're not sure of the answer to this question.

Digital DJ Tips says:

Reader Lenny Sultana from the UK tells us that full HD download sites are pretty much non-existent due to bandwidth considerations, older material not even being mastered in HD, and the fact that in most common venues audiences wouldn't notice the difference.

He then goes on to highlight Mixmash and Promo Only as good places for general music videos (the former is UK-based, the latter seems to be more international). However, we're hoping you, our readers, can help us out with some more firm ideas for Omar. So over to you. Can you help? Are you a video DJ who has good regular legal sources for music videos? Telling us where you are and what styles the services you use can provide would be useful. Please add your advice below.

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  1. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I personally been looking for videos to buy instead of ripping them off youtube like I've been doing lol.

  2. José Reach says:

    Well, don't know about HD movies, but you can download youtube movies with a Free Youtube Downloader. Some clips are HD so maybe you can download it HD as well.

    • If he plays those same downloaded vids in a club, he might get in trouble for that.

    • Please note that as per the article, we are only interested in legal solutions, we don't condone or wish to promote illegal downloading.

      • Is using music videos from Youtube really all that illegal though? I mean those videos have (generally) been licensed by Youtube by the video copyright owner under a terms of use agreement that they agree to when they post the video. And under the agreement video copyright owners grant youtube users a non exclusive license to:

        "... access your Content through the Service, and to use, reproduce, distribute, display and perform such Content as permitted through the functionality of the Service and under these Terms of Service." (Youtube TOS Part 6)

        It is because of this clause that people are able to embed videos on their websites without infringing on people's rights. And while I'm aware that the clause states that use of the video has to be within the funcionality of the service I wonder if it could be enough to think that when videos are posted on Youtube, the owner assigns away broadcast rights? And also from another angle, if the venue is already paying a license to whatever collection agency your country has, surely they would be able to collect mechanicals for video broadcast? So wouldn't that in fact be beneficial to the copyright owners and probably, if an infringement, one that would be tolerated? I'm pushing the idea far and I may very well be in the wrong but it would be an interesting hypothetical to attack- and one that would highlight the wild wild west that antiquated copyright laws have turned the digital realm into.

    • Andy Taylor says:

      virtual dj has a feature called "netsearch" which lets you stream videos straight from youtube- no legal problems!

  3. Andy Taylor says:

    I do some video DJ'ing- but I've not found that much demand for it to be honest. I enjoy it but there aren't that many clients actively looking for it. It might get you the gig at some places over somebody else though who doesn't do it though.

    For videos there's smashvidz.net, that's my favourite site and my first port of call. They have a lot of the latest commercial music and do "Extendz" versions with extended intros and outros for smooth mixing.

    itunes is my next stop after that: the audio on the video files is the same quality as the music so it doesn't make any difference on that front.

    Then mixmash (which will serve the whole of Europe- have a look at mixmash.nl for the spanish, italian, etc, discs) which I haven't used for a while, but I've just noticed now there's a download feature on mixmash.com

    There's also the ppl video store, but they seem to offer videos to broadcasters rather than DJs- they didn't reply when I emailed them! http://www.pplvideostore.com/index2.php?test

  4. You record your videos from HD tv and edit ....using Pinnacle video catch and a proper video editing software

  5. PromoOnly is a popular service for us in the US. Monthly DVDs can be mailed to you of various formats. Their POOL service allows digital downloads. They also service a disk of MP4 files.

  6. We design a fair number of video hardware solutions, and I personally still do a fair amount of video DJing on the computer. There are a several services out there. Promo Only has several series and is the most comprehensive and on the cutting edge, but there are several others also designed for DJs with mix in and mix out points. X-mix, ERG, Top Hits USA quickly come to mind.

  7. I'm the resident DJ at this teen club in the US and I was told that I need to start getting video so it can play off the projectors. All I have is music and no video at all. I'm not sure what to do here. Any help would be great!

  8. Okay, let me put this out. The next time you guys go in a bar, pub, etc. and see someone playing music videos, look in the right or left bottom corner. You'll see something like Promo Vid or whatever. That means the DJ bought the vids. I've always saw this since the late eighties in night spots. Your chances of being caught with unlicensed video? Pretty slim. Yet, some jealous idiot just might snitch on you. I'm not saying it's cool to download YouTube, a practice they discourage. http://support.google.com/youtube/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=56100 Yet, if you're going to do that, keep your mouth shut!!! Don't even tell your mates, amigos, ya boys,etc. More than likely, that's who'll snitch on you. As far as I know, nobody has gotten in trouble for playing unlicensed vids. Yet, I wouldn't put it past the music to go out and start pouncing on folks who practice this. As far as playing vids from You Tube itself, I have not yet seen someone get in trouble for this. Still, I wouldn't put it past the music industry to start trouble.

    • I totally agree. These days, with the amount of unauthorised use going on, it's a fully viable option, depending on your morals, to use vids off of youtube. That being said, based of the (totally cursory and not in depth at all) bit of research I did on the subject, it's probably still infringement. You are still using somebody's works for a purpose that you weren't given a license to do. And honestly, most of us are probably infringing copyrights anyways by playing songs off of our computers, since downloads (legal or illegal) and digital copies made from physical copies usually do not have the correct licensing to be played for anything other than personal use. Check this out:
      How ridiculous is that!? I think it's becoming pretty apparent that copyright, as an effective set of laws to balance copyright holder remuneration and societal benefit, are antiquated, cumbersome, confusing, and generally irrelevant. They have not evolved to deal with the uses that the digital realm offers consumers and creators, and must be reformed to reflect this paradigm shift. Of course that'll take a while and means next to nothing to the average digital dj tips reader so I recommend an alternative that adequately reflects the core goals of copyright laws.
      As an alternative, I would do some soul searching and decide whether or not the benefits that you as a dj stand to gain by using people's videos are so minuscule that it would impede you, to the point where you were unable to do something beneficial, to invest in licensing these videos from their copyright holders. Or, perhaps you're splicing and mixing videos in such a way that you've created something completely new from old work a-la Girltalk. In these cases you shouldn't feel obligated to suffer licensing and royalty payment to such a prohibitive extent. So if you're just trying to learn the art of VDJ-ing and maybe playing some smaller gigs around your hometown, I reckon you wouldn't be all that evil in ripping vids off of Youtube. On the other hand, if you're VDJ-ing to the point that you're seeing significant financial gain, you should totally license the videos that have brought you wealth and acclaim because, without those videos and the investments that were required by somebody to make them, you'd have nothing to rock crowds with.

      So to finish, yes it's probably infringement, but with copyright laws as antiquated and cobbled together as they are, most of the creative uses of works that we can now do with technology are. The laws haven't kept up and I think that, as an alternative, you should look to see if the benefit you're getting from using these works warrants kicking back royalties and licensing to the people that made it.

      Just as a final note, these are my personal opinions on the subject and should not be taken as legal advice. I don't want the RIAA smashing in my door hahahaha!

  9. If you're VJ'ing you need clips designed to VJ with, not music videos. VJ loops do just that - they loop and can be broadcasted


  10. I subscribe to the following remix pools:
    DTVideos: http://dtvideos.net/
    RemixCrew: http://www.remixcrew.com/
    Xtendamix: http://xtendamix.com/

    DTVideos and RemixCrew have more of hyped-up commercial tunes. However I like Xtendamix as they have a huge collection of tunes from 50s to present. Some of them rock, latin, reggae, etc., which I really need in my residency, where the customers vary from... well, 50s to present as well. (^_^)

    Also, I just found out this pool also, http://www.8thwondercdpool.com/
    I haven't tried it but they are the cheapest, US$12.99 / month.
    If anyone is a member of 8thwonder, let us know how are their videos.

  11. I know a VDJ and I asked him where he gets his videos from. He told me labels send them to him directly. Kind of like they send music to radio stations directly for DJs to use. How to get on that list I do not know.

  12. I've done some demos using video and honestly I was hooking to DVD/VOB rip. The full HD isn't so popular into clubs/bars, so they don't have the required displays.
    You can have monthly DVD with all the hottest top 40 tracks and some legacy ones (will give some names when back home).

    If you're in a local scene, you can get in touch with your local artists, they're always happy to give you the HD files of their latest videos to promote them.

  13. 3 good places to get video from. Note, HD video is a waste of HD space, 90% club video systems dont support HD (even when hooked up via HDMI due to the way matrixes work) and NOBODY is ever going to be able to tell well they are partying and if they cared they should be shot.

    Crooklyn Clan, Great for Mashups and custom made remixes. (i find them to be far to expensive)

    Xtendamix, Great site, Great service, still kinda new, but have a ton of videos, and there cheap, works out to 10 cents a video.

    Smashvidz, As far as the people on the serato forum are concerned there is nothing else worth considering. They are amazing, best video's some remixes and tons of edits of big songs. More expensive than xtendamix, but worth the money!

    A note, both Xtendamix, and Smash Vidz put out tracks nearly daily and are very quick to get out new tracks. The guys at Xtendamix take lots of request and have always posted any request i have ever had.

    I personally subscribe to the last 2.

  14. Aside from the legal reasons You cant use Youtube videos if ur looking to use the youtube audio as well as the sound quality is too poor for a club environment. Never forsake sound quality for video. Sound comes first, you can always drop funky effects onto the video to hide poor quality.

    I was Hks first resident VJ - most of us start off by ripping off movies etc but the fun starts when you start creating your own loops.

    Ive been lucky enough to VJ for some huge international DJS and this finally prompted me to started DJing about 2 years ago, after 20 years having it on the dancefloor, i stepped up behind the decks and what a load of fun im having!

    now if i could just get DJay 4 to work as well as DJay 3 did ....

  15. FYI if I catch you playing YouTube videos. I WILL SNITCH ON YOU IN A HEARTBEAT! I have spent thousands of dollars on music and videos! For you to go in a club or bar with those videos and undercut my prices is the reason why people don't respect or pay DJs what they deserve. I know the #s to BMI and ASCAP. I will ask you your name and contact info in a nice way and your equipment will be seized in a matter of weeks. The venue will be fined and monitored. Don't do it.

  16. In case anybody reading this didn't know, Xtendamix recently moved into Europe. Hit http://www.xtendamix.com for the Canadian /European landing page or go directly to the European site via http://www.xtendamix.eu


  17. Question, I'm currently using Traktor and their NI's S2. What hardware/software are you guys using to do video mixes?

    Also, I am just starting to think about using video, so when I initially start using it, I will have a lot of audio only tracks...do you use random video clips for the audio only stuff you have?

    Looking forward to learning and moving forward!

  18. Where can I get more video rather than just iTunes ..

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