Here Are The Results From Our 2022 Census, The Biggest DJ Survey In The World

Phil Morse | Founder & Tutor
March 9, 2022

Every year here at Digital DJ Tips, we conduct a unique survey with you, our community, to take a snapshot of your DJing, the gear you use, your favourite software and music, your aspirations, and more.

With the world slowly getting out of lockdowns as we learn to live with COVID-19, and with international supply chain issues affecting DJ gear supplies along with many other goods in our economies, it’s been another strange and challenging year for DJs.

So here it is: The Global DJ Census 2022, easily the biggest survey of its type conducted anywhere, and today we’re publishing the highlights of the results of that survey. Scroll on for a revealing look at where the industry is at, and where it is headed – at least, as far as you, the 21,000 people from our community who completed this year’s census are concerned. Thanks to all of you for being a part of it.

Alongside the census, we run a prize draw, which is contributed to by practically all the hardware and software companies that supply DJs with the systems they need in order to do their job. So this year we’d like to extend our heartfelt thanks to main sponsor Denon DJ, and also to Pioneer DJ, Roland, Serato, Allen & Heath, Traktor, Virtual DJ, Reloop, Numark, Evermix, AIAIAI, Hercules, Phase, IK Multimedia, Mixed in Key, Algoriddim, Beatport, UDG Gear, DJcity, Glorious and Beatsource.

Read this next: All The Winners Of The $40,000 Global DJ Census Prize Draw

Obtaining the full survey results

In this article, we are running the highlights of the results. Do you want to see the full results, including actual percentages and numbers itemised, and the other categories that we haven’t included here?

If you’re already a Digital DJ Tips member, you get a link to obtain the full results PDF as a digital download via email (we’ll send it to you on or soon after 16 March 2022), where you can see number breakdowns and extra info on all the featured sections, plus further sections detailing our community’s social media habits, other interests outside DJing, and more.

If you’re in the industry and we’re not currently working with you on this, please note that you’re just as welcome to have a copy of the results as everyone else. So if you would like to obtain the full survey results PDF, please get in touch and we’ll happily provide you with a copy. And we’d love you to consider joining us next year as an official partner.

DJ Demographic Info

This is the section where we find out who is taking the survey. We want to know your age, gender, education level, country of residency, relationship status, household size, whether you work (and if so, what you do), and similar things. This information helps us to get a clear picture of who is interested in DJing in 2022.

You are a multi-generational bunch, as we have a clear spread of DJs from all ages. Sure, there are fewer community members under 18 and over 55, with the peak being between 25 and 44 years old, but as we said last year, the spread of ages in our community is indicative of what Fatboy Slim says: Unlike footballers, us DJs don’t have to retire!

You’re overwhelmingly male, most of you live in the US and UK (with Canada, Germany and Australia the next most popular countries), and you’re a pretty even split between married/long term relationship and single.

Half of you have full-time jobs, with the rest of you a spread of self-employed, students, part-timers, business owners and out of work. The vast majority of you don’t earn much at all from DJing, with over three-quarters of you earning less than 10% of your income, and only 7% of you earning the majority of you income from DJing.

DJ Type & Experience

The DJ world is a broad one, and a DJ who plays high-class weddings is very different to an experimental DJ/producer playing techno in underground clubs! So here is where we find out what type of DJing our community is involved in, how long you’ve been doing it, and what your aspirations are.

As befits the age range of our community, you also have a wide range of experience levels, from 14% who have just started or been DJing less than a year, to a full 46% of you who have been DJing for more than a decade.

You’re a proper spread of DJ types: While the biggest single group of you identify as bedroom/hobbyist DJs, we also have wedding DJs, DJ/producers, party DJs, club/resident DJs, and pub/lounge DJs. Not surprisingly, many of you dream of being superstar touring DJs!

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You tend to play out only occasionally, with only 25% of you having regular public gigs. However, you love the idea of livestreaming. While only 11% of you are doing it regularly, nearly 30% of you have tried it, and nearly half of you want to give it a go.

Just like livestreaming, you have a big interest in making music, with over 40% of you who haven’t tried it. Most of you use Ableton Live for that, with FL Studio the clear second choice of software.

DJ Set-ups

Just a generation ago, it was two turntables and a mixer. Now, it’s hard to imagine a wider variety of DJ systems out there. So here is where we dig deep into what our community is actually using to DJ and make music with.

Just over half DJ on a controller with a laptop, a number that is nevertheless dropping year-on-year. Around a quarter of you use CDJs/club-type separates or all-in-one controllers with USB/SD drives instead of a laptop. Around 55% of you are Pioneer DJ gear users (down slightly), with Denon DJ, Traktor and Numark commanding about 10% of the gear market each..

DJ software-wise, Rekordbox DJ and Serato DJ are your most popular platforms, with Traktor and Virtual DJ vying for third and fourth spot. You favourite gear release of the past 12 months was the new Pioneer DJ XDJ-RX3 standalone unit, with Denon DJ’s deck controller, the LC6000, in second place.

Music Styles & Sourcing Of Tunes

What kind of music do you like to play? Where do you get it from? That’s what this section looks at.

To start with, most of you (nearly two-thirds) class yourselves as “mixing multi-genre DJs” – you play a bit of everything, and try to do it well! However, house and its variants are easily your most loved genre, followed by hip hop. At home, though, you listen to all types of music, with rock, reggae, pop, jazz and indie among your preferred non-DJ genres.

Two-thirds of you buy music from online download stores, with Beatport out in front, ahead of the iTunes store and Bandcamp. You also buy from smaller specialised stores like Traxsource and Juno Downloads. Over 70% of you subscribe to a music streaming service (rising year on year), and for nearly 70% of you, that service is Spotify, despite it not being in DJ software. SoundCloud Go+ , which is present in most DJ software, is your next favourite streaming service.

Around 30% of you are a member of a download pool, with BPM Supreme easily your favourite, followed by DJcity, Digital DJ Pool, and ZipDJ.

Social Media

Where do you hang out online? Are you doing it for entertainment, or learning? What are your favourite DJ channels? That’s what this section aims to uncover.

Not surprisingly, maybe, Facebook and Instagram are your favourite social media channels, with YouTube close behind, and Twitter, Snapchat and TikTok following those. Also not surprising for a survey conducted by Digital DJ Tips, Digital DJ Tips is your most-viewed website – but you’re a vociferous lot, and you also love to read content from Crossfader and DJ TechTools, plus more mainstream DJ sites like Mixmag, DJ Mag, DJcity, Resident Advisor and others.

On YouTube it’s the same story, although it’s great to see so many smaller DJ channels on your radars too, with the likes of DJ Angelo, DJ TLM, Phil Harris, Carlo Atendido and others adding to the names mentioned above. Many of you spend a long time on YouTube, too, with 60% of you spending between an hour and five hours a week on the channel (down from 75% last year), and 4% of you spending more than 10 hours (down from 7% last year’s – we all had a lot more time on our hands in lockdown, it seems…).

At least you’re doing so for education – double the number of you watch YouTube for education as watch it just for fun.

Let’s close with some trends…

One of the most useful things about conducting this survey every year is spotting the trends year-on-year, and so here are a few things we’ve spotted comparing this survey with last year’s, and going back even further:

 

  • DJs are coming out of the COVID era and returning to gigs – It’s great to see this, because gigs were hit hard last year. But while it appears to be very different now than before out there in mood and feel, at least gigs are coming back
  • Livestreaming hasn’t gone anywhere – We thought livestreaming may be a bit of a “flash in the pan”, but it’s remained something that while only one in ten of us do it, a lot of us have tried it, and even more want to
  • There’s a gear shortage – Any talk of who’s “winning” in the brand wars (Pioneer DJ, by a long shot, although Denon DJ is making clear inroads) is tempered with the fact that few people can get their hands on gear, due to a very real global shortage
  • Rekordbox is now the most popular DJ software – Not by much, but it’s notable that this year we’ve seen Rekordbox pull a percentage point or two ahead of Serato, which is still very strong itself – both brands still holding at around 30% each, well ahead of Traktor, and Virtual DJ
  • SoundCloud Go+ is winning the DJ music streaming battle – Of the music streaming services available in DJ software, SoundCloud Go+ is the most popular, followed in order by TIDAL, Beatport Link, and Beatsource Link

 

There’s one other trend that isn’t in the census results that we can share: Digital DJ Tips as a DJ school grew rapidly again last year, which for us underlines the huge swell of interest in DJing caused in no small part, we think, by people in general reassessing their lives to give more love to their hobbies and passions.

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Our job now as DJs, a community, and an industry, is surely to capitalise on this growth and keep DJing in the spotlight as an awesome thing to do going forward. The more people who are enjoying DJing, the more healthy the hobby and culture will be going forward.

Thanks to our sponsors

One more time, a huge thanks to principal sponsor Denon DJ, and also to Pioneer DJ, Roland, Serato, Allen & Heath, Traktor, Virtual DJ, Reloop, Numark, Evermix, AIAIAI, Hercules, Phase, IK Multimedia, Mixed in Key, Algoriddim, Beatport, UDG Gear, DJcity, Glorious and Beatsource.

Last updated 22 March, 2022

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