How to Live Stream a DJ Set
On my daily browse of Twitch I stumbled across a DJ set that basically played all the dance hits from the 1990s through to the 2000s. It had special effects, background dancers, everything! Now, in the world of DMCA takedowns, streaming copyrighted music, something we have discussed before, isn’t really a good idea but if it’s DMCA safe? It can be a great way to connect with a new audience! Let’s take a look at how you can live stream DJ sets with a bit of production flair!
Setting up to stream a DJ set
At a very basic level, streaming a DJ set can be very simple. It’s likely you’re DJing old school with turntables and a mixer, or via software like Traktor or Serato DJ Pro. If it’s the former all you need to do is send an output from your mixer to an input on your PC. This can be your line input or a dedicated audio interface like the EVO4.
If you’re using software and the audio is coming from your PC, all you need to do is capture your system sound. XSplit Broadcaster does this automatically so out of the box you won’t need to change anything. However, if it’s not, just head to Settings, and Audio and select the correct audio. If you’re using software with a DJ controller, like a Pioneer DDJ, then all you need to do is see if it has an audio output you can capture like a traditional DJ system.
Now you have your audio set up correctly to stream a DJ set, let’s take a look at setting up some visuals. A good start is for people to see your lovely face, so why not add a webcam? Or, if you’re not interested in having yourself on the screen you could point the camera at your mixing decks. No matter what, the best entry-level camera for streaming is the Logitech c920 series. They can mount on a monitor or you can use the ¼ threading mounting point to add it to a tripod.
If you’re using software, you could capture the software in XSplit Broadcaster as well as your webcam by adding it from either the Game Capture menu or, if it’s not showing up there, by using Smart Capture. You could even take a cue from lo-fi hip-hop beats to chill, max and relax to and put a looping video image or gif. These can be put directly into XSplit Broadcaster, for a video simply right click and set it to loop forever. With a gif, it will just run automatically. Simply resize it to fit the way you’d like and you’re good to go!
Taking streaming a DJ set to the next level
What is a DJ broadcast without some special effects? We need some air horns! With XSplit Broadcaster you can create a variety of special effects to help you stream a DJ set! We’ve actually made a hand video that I’ll link below which shows off some of the power effects systems that are built into Broadcaster.
It’s best to use effects in conjunction with macros so you can easily trigger them with a hotkey press or even automatically depending on the conditions you set. You can learn more about Macros here but basically, you can install the Macros plugin and set “if this, then Broadcaster should do that”. The “this” could be a button press and the “that” could be changed to a different camera, for example. We’d highly recommend checking out the Elgato Streamdeck as well. It works perfectly with Broadcaster and can trigger a whole bunch of things with a physical touchpad. This makes it much easier for you to hit production buttons while you’re DJing.
Broadcasting your DJ set
Now that you have your production setup, it’s time to stream! Broadcaster supports all the popular platforms like Twitch, YouTube, Facebook, all you need to do is login to your account. Some sites that don’t support direct login through Broadcaster will require that you use the Custom RTMP option. What you’ll need from the site is the RTMP URL and your stream key.
For your streaming settings, this will depend on your PC. For minimum requirements for a 720p 30fps stream, I recommend either a 4 core 7 series processor either AMD or Intel OR an NVIDIA RTX GPU.
The most important setting though is your audio bitrate. Make sure to set this as high as possible to give your viewers the best audio quality possible. After you’ve configured your settings, just hit the stream button and go live!
As with all things, remember consistency is key, and make sure to let your community know when you are live! Let us know in the comments how you’ve got your DJ setup ready for streaming. What DJs do you watch already and what do they do that inspires you? Be sure to let us know! If you’ve enjoyed this guide, let us know as well so we can make more things like this for you!