First Impressions / Setting up
We all like to start out “minimal” with our digital gear. “Now,” we say, “I can do on one laptop what I used to need a roomful of music equipment to do back in the old days! It’s so simple!”
Except it doesn’t stay like that for long. As we add audio interfaces, external hard drives, USB sticks, extra battery chargers, required leads plus regional adaptors, extra controllers, torches, tools and everything else to our kit, what started out as a simple little set-up can – for many DJ/producers – become something far more complicated. And while we still may only have three or four pieces of actual gear (controller, sample pad, Midi keyboard perhaps, plus laptop), all those other accessories that go with it soon add up.
And what’s more, they’re probably the most valuable part of our set-up. After all, you can replace a Midi keyboard or a controller at a push, but all your drives full of music? It pays to keep those close by and well protected at all times.
Enter the UDG Creator Digi Hardcase Large. The latest model in the company’s range of music accessory cases aimed at DJ/producer types, this one differentiates itself by coming complete with a powered seven-port USB hub with adaptors for all major world regions, making wiring up those Midi set-ups and laptops just that little bit easier for the travelling pro DJ.
The case itself is a little bigger than the size of an iPad (an accessory that, in fact, it isn’t designed to hold), and while it is “soft” in that it’s lightweight, it’s also extremely well reinforced in all areas – hence the “hard case” in the name. Nylon on the outside with smart UDG decal and a well-riveted rubber handle, it is a felt-like material inside, with stitched-in elastic nylon holds and mesh bags to keep everything in place, along with the USB adaptor mounted on a flap for ease of access to the accessories beneath it. it has a three-sided zip with internal hem to protect from dust and so on when closed.
It easily fits external hard drives, small audio interfaces, battery charges, power blocks, audio/computer leads, maybe a torch and so on, and has got plenty of room for your individual requirements, including dedicated sections for four USB sticks. What I particularly liked about it was the fact that due to the USB hub being on a “flap”, it’s possible to semi-permanently wire up all of your smaller USB devices contained within; one lead to the outlet electricity and one to your laptop, and you’re off and running.
For many DJs, a case like this would be overkill. After all, most controller bags have compartment or two that could hold most of this stuff. But this isn’t really aimed at “most” DJs; it’s aimed at pro DJ/producer types who travel a lot.
In such instances, keeping the most valuable parts of your set-up very close at hand is often pretty vital, and the addition of a powered USB hub as an integral part of the case is a smart move that will appeal to those who are never quite sure how many USB sockets they’re likely to need (remember, you can always plug your phone in for a cheeky charge too).
Bottom line is it’s a well designed, well built case that does what it sets out to do, and if your set-up is starting to need its own support team of leads, drives, adaptor and other vital bits and pieces that you’re always worried about misplacing or losing in transit, the UDG Creator Digi Hardcase Large may be just what you’re looking for to gather then all safely together and keep them close at hand.