Do you like music? Yeah, me too. (Ok, pretty much everyone likes music.)
But do you like playing with your music? If so (and you have an iPhone or iPad) you should download djay 2.0 immediately because it's one of the most fun applications on the App Store – bar none. In December 2010 I called djay my favorite iPad app, and v2 continues the streak.
Even though it's a professional-level app that's used by a number of pro DJs, what makes djay 2.0 compelling is that it's extremely approachable and has an extremely low barrier to entry. It's as easy as picking tracks from your music library for deck 1 and deck 2 and then scratching and cross-fading one track into another. And when your done spinning, simply touch the Automix button to have two playlists mixed automatically so that you can grab a drink and mingle with your guests.
Onto what's new.
Djay 2.0 is a complete rewrite from the ground up. Although it looks like djay 1 at first glance, it's improved in almost every respect. The main "vinyl" view (above) -- which is still my favorite -- is skeuomorphism done right. Nothing beats the tactile interface of a record on a turntable, it's such a simple and natural interface that both my kids (ages 6 and 3) take to it instantly. Just drop a record on the turntable then spin it, drag it around, and move the needle. Algoriddim took it up a notch by adding realistic grooves in the vinyl which show where tracks start and end and where the pitch changes in individual tracks — just like real vinyl.
The Sync button, which syncs the BPM of two tracks, got a major upgrade too. Instead of a one-time sync, djay 2.0 keeps both tracks in perfect sync throughout your crossfade, continually stretching tracks so that they stay in sync and sound smooth across your mix.
The built-in sampler in djay 2.0 (above) alone is worth the price of admission. It rounds out an already amazing app and provides another tool that aspiring and pro DJs can use to sweeten their mix. While a track is playing simply touch the little grid icon in the center of the screen and the decks (or waveforms) slide away to reveal a series of drum pads that can be used to pump up the jam. Djay 2.0 includes three high-quality sample packs (Essentials, Sound FX, and Dubstep). The best part is that you're not limited to just those, djay 2.0 allows you to create your own samples on-the-fly from your iTunes library which can then be saved and reloaded later.
The most stressful part of DJing, whether for a house party or in a big room, is finding and queuing the right track to play next. Invariably, you'll think of a track that you want to play (or someone will request one) and you only have a few seconds to find it and queue it up. Algoriddim spent a lot of time on the re-designed music browser and it shows. Finding tracks is much easier in this release and you can easily build a playlist for the perfect set. Djay 2.0 now keeps track of what you've played and allows you to preview tracks inline. You can also swipe tracks into your playlist, make the browser full screen, and even dim it to a dark "club mode" so that it doesn't scorch your retinas like the solar white backgrounds can.
I really wish that djay 2.0 could stream tracks directly from iCloud/iTunes Match, but the developer tells me that it's a limit of the Apple API. The good news is that you can download tracks from iCloud via Apple's Music app and they'll be available in djay 2.0. A setting to hide cloud-based music is also a welcome addition. Unfortunately, music with DRM still does not work with the app. The other thing I'd like to see is even more sample packs for the new drum pads, even via in-app purchase. While the three included packs are excellent, many people are too lazy to create their own. (Cough!) I'd like to see tie ups with popular artists - I'm talking to you Snoop and Skrillex!
Overall djay 2.0 is the app that I'm most excited about this summer and I can't wait to use it drop the need at a house party this weekend. It's the perfect music app for users of all ages because it allows you to touch and feel your music in ways you never thought possible, and sound good doing it. Djay 2.0 ($0.99 for iPhone, $4.99 for iPad) is half price for one week, so I highly recommend that you grab it (especially the iPad version) before the price goes up.
Here's the demo video: