Digital DJ Tips reader The General writes: “I’m new to DJing. I got a Numark Stealth with Traktor LE. My question is: Can I hook up an Akai LPD8 or Akai MPD18 so I can trigger sound effects? I play reggae music and I need sound effects like the horn etc. Please can you tell me if it would work and what software I would need… I am willing to spend US$100 on anything that would work.”
Digital DJ Tips says:
Traktor LE doesn’t have a sample bank, unlike Virtual DJ, for instance. You also have the issue that with LE versions of software that comes with DJ controllers, you can’t usually alter the mappings to assign functions to other controllers, such as the sample triggering devices you mention. So your issue is first to get DJ software that lets you use samples, then to make sure it’s a version of that software that allows you to assign those samples to a third-party sample triggering device – then buy a sample triggering device. It will cost more than US$99, I’m afraid, if you take this route. Using a third-party sample triggering program One alternative to the above would be to look at third-party sample triggering software such as KueIt (US$99), which can work alongside your DJ software. With KueIt, you can use keys on your laptop to trigger your samples, or assign them to any Midi device. They’ll never be BPM synced this way, but for reggae sound effects, that won’t matter. This software is within your budget if you choose to use your keyboard to trigger your samples – if not, with an Akai LPD8 (US$52) it would come to more than your budget, but less than some of the alternatives.
Now over to you. How do you trigger samples in your DJ set-up? Is there a cheaper way for The General to do this? Please let us know your solutions in the comments.