With a lot of venues closed due to social distancing, DJ’s are looking for different ways to stay relevant, keep busy and stop boredom. 

We have seen a growing amount of DJ’s start doing live sets in place of playing out at venues. this post is a list of the best ways to get audio into your live streams so you can also take part in the online world. 

3) Phone recording

Recording via your phone is the most accessible way to get your recording onto your live stream.

All popular live-streaming platforms will offer a stream now option which can be accessed via phone. For example, Instagram, Facebook and also Twitch and Youtube both offer the same. 

The live feature allows a user to use their phone’s camera and mic to stream video and audio straight onto the web via the chosen platform. 

As a DJ this useful for doing live sets, where you can just point your camera at your equipment and yourself and start playing. 

Going live via this method also comes with some negative aspects; for example, Recording via your phone will not get the best sound and any background noise can be picked up. Checking your sound levels is more difficult as the sound can easily be distorted or not allowed enough when streaming. 

Advantages

  • Easily accessible/Portable
  • Video and audio on one device
  • Record anywhere at any time

Disadvantages

  • Non-isolated sound input (Able to pick up Background Noise) 
  • Bad Audio Quality
  • Mono recording

2) Mic/Line-in port

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Although these two ports are grouped together, they work in different ways. For example, a microphone input is expecting a microphone and will amplify the sound on this port to accommodate. Using the port for anything else will often result in distorted sound. The port also only uses a mono sound input which is not ideal for music. The line-in port is used for other audio devices, such as cd players. This will require volume settings from the external hardware which is more reliable. Finally this port records in stereo sound.  

Most computers and high-end laptop will allow for microphone input and/or line input. These ports can be found next to your headphone jack, in some laptops can be the same port. 

Going live via this method gives you an isolated sound single, which means you will not pick up any background noise while recording. The disadvantages for this method are, it does not allow the flexibility of a phone recording and a computer or laptop is needed.

This method will require additional streaming software which will allow you to input audio and video then stream into a chosen platform. Another disadvantage is that this method will not give you the cleanest audio signal, when a mixer is connected via these inputs you get a slight hum from your hardware. 

Advantages

  • Isolated sound input
  • Volume input can be controlled via streaming software
  • Audio can be recorded separately

Disadvantages

  • Audio only, no video
  • Additional software needed
  • Not a clean feed of the audio signal

1) USB audio interface

An audio interface is a device that will receive sound signals and send them to your computer. Audio interfaces are mostly used with instruments to record onto a computer. However, they can be used with DJ mixers and DJ controllers to record or used to stream live. 

A USB audio interface allows input of hardware that will be connected to your computer via a USB connection in turn giving you the cleanest possible sound signal. an audio interface device also allows controlling volume on the device giving you extra control over the levels. 

There are certain devices such as the iRig stream that will allow you to input connection from your DJ mixer and output via USB C or lightning port, which can the go straight into your phone. This will allow you the options of going live via Instagram or Facebook from your phone and giving you the best sound quality. 

Depending on what device you have, the negatives for this method is similar to the line-in method where there is no video and you need additional software. however, if you have the iRig stream, both of these points are ruled out as you can go straight into your phone. 

Advantages

  • Isolated sound input
  • Volume controlled via the device
  • Portable

Disadvantages

  • Audio only, no video
  • Additional software needed
  • If using iRig Stream, then none. 

Summary

Depending on your home setup, the platform that you go live on and your budget will determine which one you go for to go live with. 

Going live on a budget and not wanting to spend on additional hardware and to get online in the easiest way, via your phone will be your route. 

If navigating streaming software and purchase a phone to headphone jack cable, then the mic/line-in port will be your best option. 

To go for the best possible sound, then use of an audio interface device will be in your favour, and going for an iRig Stream will open up even more options for you live sets. 

Have you gone ahead and gone live yet what method you used to add audio to your live sets. 
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