View Full Version : Backup equipment - "basic"

04-09-2012, 08:08 PM

I'm just wondering what I need for bare basic backup gear.

2 powered tops.

what am I missing:
software...any recommendations?
2 channel mixer...recommendations?

laptop plugged into mixer...mixer connects to both speakers...
is that it?
and how is the laptop connected to the mixer...usb?

(i currently use a rane ttm57sl mixer with serato software...so I don't know anything else)


04-09-2012, 11:18 PM
i would go with the free version of virtual DJ if you cannot afford a secondary Serato / Traktor box. My backup includes a Pioneer DDJS1 or CDJ 350s with DJM300 mixer. I would look into the M-Audio speakers that are getting blown out at PSSL.com i picked up a 10 for a monitor when i do rooftop parties for $99 and its NOT bad at ALL.

All depends on your budget.. my DDJS-1 Setup ran me about $1200 with the glider case and system (i already had a backup laptop) you CAN get away with a smaller setup from American DJ or even Numark.. these controllers plug into the speakers via 1/4in or XLR in most cases and then you plug in USB to your laptop. The DDJS-1 runs Serato Itch and i LOVE it. Good luck

04-10-2012, 12:19 AM
Thanks for the info!
As i said, I am just looking for something really basic.
The backup system will be just a 'computer dj' setup. (no cdj's/tt's)
plug and push play.

Dave Daschofsky
04-10-2012, 12:57 AM
I've got a lot of spare gear but i usually don't take it with me. Just a second laptop and a small behringer mixer.

04-10-2012, 08:13 AM
As a basic backup I use my laptop 3.5mm stereo output to XLR input of two daisy chained powered tops.

As simple as can be. Not much room for anything other than basic dinner music with automix though.

DJ Donnie Lewis
04-10-2012, 08:32 AM
if you want a really simple setup get another mixer with two rca to headphone jack cables and hook up 2 ipods.

I have a full secondary setup minus 1 tech but I have 2 other options, a controller laptop and control software, and I have those 2 plugs setup in my 4 channel mixer (channels 2 and 3) with an Ipod and Ipad hooked ready to go for any reason.

04-10-2012, 10:21 AM
I use the Traktor S4 through a Mackie 402vlz3 compact mixer. For output, I use two Mackie SRM-450s and a SWA-1501 sub. For backup, I use either a phone or an iPod that has a 10-15m mix cued.

My reasoning is that IF the laptop goes down, I'll play the mix which will give me enough time to either (ideally) bring the S4 backup or (minimally) bring up iTunes. Either way, the show will go on.

It's been over a year with the S4. I've never played the backup.


04-18-2012, 04:03 PM
This is based on the OP's "basic bare bones backup" comment.

Put the MB top 100 on your phone, and run a 1/8" to 1/4" stereo patch cable into your mixer. That takes care of music for a while, so you can trouble shoot your PC / software / CDJ / turntables, etc. Maybe not their requested music, but still popular songs while you get the main system rebooted. Free, assuming you already have a smart phone, or even an iPod can be used for the same purpose.

Get a cheap two channel Behringer mixer to plug the phone into, so you have music input and a spot to connect a wired mic. Well under $100 on eBay, or Amazon.

Have a powered speaker or a spare passive speaker (if you use amps) sitting in the trailer or van. $150 - $900.

All this depends on what dies in your system, of course. Just swap and go.

Unknown DJ
04-18-2012, 04:41 PM
Location of the nearest Long & Mcquade is good to know.

04-18-2012, 05:07 PM
Backup gear:

1) Extra laptop
2) Extra sound card
3) Extra amplifier (I run passive gear)
4) A wired mic
5) extra bulbs for the moving heads
6) LOTS of wires
7) Extra mixer

04-19-2012, 01:30 PM
Location of the nearest Long & Mcquade is good to know.

What is Long & Mcquade?

04-19-2012, 02:24 PM
Add to your 2 powered tops and laptop, a Denon MC6000 which has XLR outputs for your powered tops, is bundled with software which could be loaded on 2 laptops I would think... check licensing/protection schemes.

The MC6000 has an analog mixer section so you can plug any source into it.
It comes bundled with software so you don't have to buy that.
It gives you mixer and deck control.
You can probably find a bag that will carry the MC6000 and your backup laptop along with your backup cables in one compact package.
Add an iPod/iPhone/Android and an appropriate 3.5mm or dock to RCA adapter cable and you can play off your portable phone or media player. There are even a few DJ apps available for these devices meaning you could have a 3rd level source backup, or use the smartphone/pad device as your immediate backup. The only downside is, they only have one set of outputs so you're restricted to using the on screen mixing vs. the full functionality of the controller's decks and mixer.

Add one or two extra of every cable.

And if you want to be able to carry on even during a power failure get something like the DuraCell PowerPack.

04-19-2012, 02:28 PM
What is Long & Mcquade?

It's a Canadian music gear retailer. They sound awesome.... if you're in Canada like UnknownDJ is.

Unknown DJ
04-19-2012, 04:07 PM
It's a Canadian music gear retailer. They sound awesome.... if you're in Canada like UnknownDJ is.

And they have ridiculously cheap rental rates on anything Yorkville because that's there house brand.

04-30-2012, 10:31 PM
Is anyone familiar with the Alesis imultimix9r? http://www.alesis.com/imultimix9r

It's an older mixer but I'm thinking I could use it as a mic mixer (which I still need) and also serve as my backup. In my pursuit to continue to downsize - I'm thinking this could replace my Denon DN-X500 and Numark D2, both of which are used in conjunction as backup to my Traktor S4/Mac and free up 4U of rack space and ~8lbs in my case (plus I could further downsize my case which would also free up weight/size). Additionally, with my current setup, I'm in need of another mixer for my mics, and this would solve that as well. I have no problem loading my wedding gigs to my ipod and using it as backup in the Alesis. I basically do the same thing now with the Numark D2, except I have to load them on a flash drive. Thoughts?

05-01-2012, 10:16 AM
I built a small case to use for wedding ceremonies, put in a cheapo 2 channel mixer, added a laptop stand (which I usually throw a netbook on, to both play music and record the ceremony), and got 2 Mackie TH-12a speakers, also for ceremonies. Works well for backup too. I can just throw it in the van on my way, and it doesn't take up any extra space. The netbook has a good amount of music on it, so if something drastic happens with my main laptop, I still have plenty of music to keep things going.

Here's my little case:
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7237/6985851594_2bd6ebf65b_n.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/78015501@N07/6985851594/) http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8003/7131935627_a9e1e9c861_n.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/78015501@N07/7131935627/)

And here is one of my TH-12a speakers sitting next to one of my TH-15a speakers:
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8148/7131939597_dbfefdeb4b_n.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/78015501@N07/7131939597/)