Remix Decks are very useful when it comes to applying effects. The remix decks have 4 separate channels within them and each channel has it’s own FX on/off switch. This allows for the application of effects to be used on individual samples or loops, allowing users to affect only certain parts of a track.
Let me explain a little further.
Applying Effects to certain Frequencies
In a standard Traktor Deck, when you assign it to an effect, the entire deck is affected, meaning that all of the music passing through the effects unit will be changed and altered by that effect. Whilst this is standard procedure, it does come with some issues and limitations.
Some effects tweak the sounds so much that it can either reduce sections of a track that you otherwise wouldn’t want to lose, or it can increase certain frequencies; making things sound cluttered or muddy.
When certain effects are applied to bass or kick sounds, the deep low frequencies can be increased so much that it distorts in the speakers, making for a terrible sound, or even blowing the speakers.
For this reason, you will often find me turning the bass down at the same time as I increase the effect.
Whilst this does help, you may find that you don’t want to lose the bass and kick and you want to maintain the drive of a track. This is where the remix decks can come in really handy.
Separate the Tracks Parts
Using the methods taught in a previous tutorial, we can capture different sections of a track and place them in the remix deck to allow for this separation of frequencies.
I like to have my kick drums on the first column of remix cells, followed by bass in the second , then mids/melody in the third, followed by vocals in the fourth.
By separating the frequencies out like this it allows you to apply effects to only the melody or the vocals, or both; leaving the bass and kick nice and clean and punchy.
For this to work, the track you are working with needs to contain all elements on their own, at some point. This makes it easier to capture the relevant parts in order to create a cleaner sound. You want to be careful not to capture the melody whilst the beats are underneath it, as then you will be doubling up the beats and create a muddy, louder sound than you would like.
The video below shows you how I have captured various parts of a techno track to allow for this style of applying effects.
Now you have that down, you can use this method to add your own effects and flair to some of your favourite tracks.
It’s also a great way to add some texture to an otherwise boring melody or vocal.
If you are getting into music production, using the remix decks can really help you get a handle on your sounds. Instead of making a full track to play out, you can make parts of a track and throw them into the remix decks. Then you can apply the effects right here inside the remix decks, instead of adding them in to your production beforehand.
This is a good way to test out your productions with a hands on approach rather than sitting at a desk trying to automate in your DAW (Digital Audio Workstation). It will also give you an idea of how it sounds in a DJ setting and you get to play with your own music quicker than you might have done before.
Using effects inside Traktor remix decks is a lot of fun, so go and do just that. Things start to happen when you’re aligned with your passions, it’s time to go lose yourself in the music and make things happen.
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