Sunday, September 30, 2012

iOS App Review: CrossDJ

"CrossDJ is a professional-level music mixing app for DJs that is feature-rich, but has a steep learning curve for those who are inexperienced."

What It Is

CrossDJ is an advanced, user-friendly music mixing DJ app for iPad created by the France-based MixVibes. The app offers a plethora of DJ-ing features with a standard two vinyl deck interface that allows you to play and mix two tracks side-by-side.

The app is so feature-packed, this review will not cover each and every aspect of it. Moreover, I don’t have a lot of experience in mixing music at all (except for some basic experimentation) and nor have I used any other DJ-style music mixing app on iPad.

Price: $9.99
Available for: iPad

The Good

Feels like a very real DJ set

There is almost nothing you can do with a physical set that you can't with CrossDJ. Even when you haven't added any tracks, you can spin around the discs that are in place. It is quite intuitive, if you know your way around a real mixing board. The discs even have inertia and the disc scratching sounds real good.

Bar on top gives you quick track info

The app interface has a bar at the very top that  gives you quick info about the song that's playing on each respective table. You can see the song metadata, as well as quick facts such as pitch and BPM as of now.

Good iTunes integration

CrossDJ shares the iTunes library that has been synced to the iPad. It sees the same songs, so there's no need to separately go through any hassle of adding the tracks to the app itself. Moreover, you can see other track metadata such as your iTunes ratings. This last part is very useful.

Great multitouch support

CrossDJ makes a remarkable use of iPad's multitouch display. This point relates to my first point. The interface is so realistic, you can do multiple things at once. It is possible to press several buttons and move multiple switches at once. You can scratch both vinyls at the same time while your DJ partner manipulates other stuff.

Remember to turn off multitouch gestures for the best results if you're planning to do this.

The Bad

No tutorial for complex interface

As I noted before, I have no experience with DJ equipment. Hence, the CrossDJ interface has been extremely overwhelming for me. It still is, even after playing around for quite some time. There is a very steep learning curve.

This app, without any sort of help, is not a toy for beginners.