Grooveo is a free and live streaming platform that allows DJs to broadcast their performances over the internet using a laptop with a webcam or a professional camera set-up. It’s a great way to give yourself the pressure of live performance from your own bedroom and maybe receive a few cash donations from your fans along the way. The only downside we could find is that the service remains relatively unknown, so doesn’t have the reach of similar platforms like Chew.
First Impressions / Setting up
Live-streaming technology for DJ sets is nothing new and many platforms already exist, providing such a service. However, Grooveo aims to shake up the market by offering DJs the incentive of the potential to be paid for their sets via donations from fans.
To get Grooveo to work, all you need is a sound card and a webcam. It works on Mac and Windows and you can use it with Traktor and Serato DJ software, Ableton Live or an external mixer – analogue or digital, it’s your choice! There is also the option to concurrently stream to Facebook Live.
On the home page, any “Grooves” (their word for streams) that are currently live will be displayed. As you can see from the picture above, the platform isn’t the busiest at the moment. On the one hand, this could be something to discourage DJs from the off, on the other hand, DJs might want to “get in while it’s hot” and be a part of something new.
Grooveo’s design is fine, easy to read and navigate – notably, very similar to that of Chew‘s. Scrolling down, you will be shown some featured content and artists and then the search function. You can search manually or by clicking the suggested tags. Grooveo focuses on different genres, including deep house, trance drum ‘n bass, hip-hop, minimal techno and more.
As mentioned earlier, there was only one live show streaming at the time of writing this review. I loaded it up and the audio quality was good with no noticeable lag but I wanted to see how the platform handled video. I found myself a stream with a recorded video via the “Grooves” tab at the top and loaded it up.
Again, the layout is pretty much identical to Chew’s. The video loaded up swiftly and once it was playing, there was no lag. There is no option to alter the video quality, though – what you get is what you are given. There is a chat function, which is always a nice addition. This allows DJs to communicate with their listeners easily and get instant feedback on their performance. It is also a good way to discuss and find track IDs.
Tipping the DJ
Then there is the option for listeners to make a cash donation, like a tip, to the DJs. To encourage donations, every new account gets US$0.50 to start off with and you can add as much as you want to your wallet in the relevant section of the dashboard.
This is great for DJs to see who their biggest fans are and also make a little bit of cash that they can put towards more music and equipment. According to Grooveo, it is “trying to create a unique platform where both the DJ performing live and the rights-holders of the songs being played would receive compensation”. If they can make it work out like that then they could be onto a winner.
Going back to the homepage to test the search function, I was pleasantly surprised. As I had no idea what to look for (just as user new to the Grooveo), I clicked on some of the tags below the manual search field. I wasn’t expecting to find much but in actual fact, there were hundreds of saved Grooves to pick from across all of the listed genres. I think a lot more could be done to show off this content. As previously noted, the homepage looks threadbare. What is the benefit of hiding all of this content behind the search function?
Grooveo is a useful platform for DJs who want to stream their sets and for people who want to tune in to some quality live music. It is similar to Chew in many ways but the main differentiators are the fact that Chew currently has a much larger audience and that Grooveo will store your streams for free (Chew recently moved to a paid model).
The site is easy-to-use and we believe that broadcasting your DJ sessions is a great way to give your practice sessions a “live feel” and crank up the pressure to perform. The presence of a chat function means you will get immediate feedback on your performance, and if you are doing well, you might even rake in some cash via donations. A potentially paid gig from the comfort of your home? Certainly worth trying out!