Finally! You Can DJ In Serato Without A Controller, As Of Today*

Joey Santos | Read time: 2 mins
Club/Festival DJing Pro Serato DJ Lite Serato DJ Pro tidal
Last updated 18 September, 2020


(* If you don’t mind testing it on beta.)

Serato just announced public betas for Serato DJ Pro 2.1 and Serato DJ Lite 1.1. The updates include a brand new expansion pack called Serato Play (review here) that lets you DJ using just your laptop by giving you a mixer interface, keyboard hotkeys and DJ splitter cable compatibility. The latest versions also include Tidal music streaming integration which lets you play any tune from the Tidal catalogue straight from within Serato DJ Pro or Serato DJ Lite.

Serato Play is a US$39 expansion that adds three-band EQs, filters and a crossfader, plus new hotkeys for controlling them using your keyboard. You can also enable output splitting, which lets you use a DJ splitter cable. This “splits” your laptop’s stereo output into two mono outputs: one goes to your headphones, one goes to your speakers. This lets you prepare and cue up your next track in your headphones without affecting what’s coming out of your main speakers, which makes it possible to spin with Serato DJ without a controller, interface or mixer connected.

Tidal now comes baked in, filling the void left by Pulselocker’s closure last year. You need an internet connection and a Tidal subscription in order to use it (there’s a 30-day free trial for new subscribers) and then you can access Tidal’s library and playlists from within Serato DJ. There is no offline mode at the moment, so you need to be connected to the internet if you want to stream from Tidal’s library.

Our thoughts

Serato Play’s features aren’t revolutionary – they’re just basic mixing controls that have been standard in other DJ software like Virtual DJ and Traktor for a while now – but this is the first time we’re seeing them in Serato software when you use the app without any other DJ hardware connected, so they are welcome additions to the feature set. Tidal integration is also interesting, though it isn’t the most obvious or popular streaming choice around.

We’ve had a chance to test Serato Play and Tidal integration in the past week, so check out our full review of Serato Play as well as our first look at Tidal streaming integration within Serato DJ. If you’re a heavy Spotify or Apple Music user who has tons of playlists that you wish you could port on over to Tidal, we’ve got a little Tips & Tricks hack for you that makes it possible to do so.

Serato DJ Pro 2.1 beta and Serato DJ Lite 1.1 beta are now live. Serato Play is also available for US$39 and comes with a free trial. Check the Serato DJ site for more details.

What are your thoughts on these Serato developments? Do you like Serato Play’s features? Think Tidal integration is cool? Why or why not? Let us know below.

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