Home DJ Setup

  • 14 April 2018
  • 8 replies

Looking to start a thread about DJing @ home (to start) and how to best setup Sonos for live DJ sets

Best answer by Chris 14 April 2018, 17:56

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8 replies

Hi all - am looking for advice on how to setup my home Sonos system to start to DJ - what do I need to start? Mixers, etc, that can easily connect thru a PC or better yet, direct to Sonos wirelessly...looking for any and all feedback
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Depends on the kinda DJing you plan to do. If your just playing songs from Sonos its fine - - - but if your planning on a live microphone that's when it gets tricky.

Sonos is going to add in a 70ms delay. When speaking through a microphone your voice is going to have a slight delay that can probably be annoying.

Mixers etc. would have to feed analog input to a Sonos analog input (Connect made for that but Connect:Amp and Play:5 also have an analog input).

If you have live speakers off mixer and then want speakers other side of room with Sonos ... again don't recommend as that will have an echo with the Sonos speakers being 70ms delay behind.

As you can see - I'm not leaning toward a use where Sonos is good for DJ'ing unless your doing simple DJ'ing like just creating a playlist and playing song request (or just using Sonos as a music source)..

I had a work event and I did hook my Sonos Connect to a couple PA speakers for music at the event. I just created a Sonos playlist and then added songs as people requested them. So I used Sonos as mearly a music source - not a method to play. That actually works. I plugged mic into the PA system and Sonos was just a music source for the PA. So if using a mixing board etc. you could use Sonos as a music source (treating it just like you would a phonograph or CD player hooked to the mixing board). That again would mean a Sonos Connect. A Sonos Connect definitely can be used as source of music for a DJ setup. But just a music source. Sonos speakers as far as playback is concerned is not a good choice.

Now as a music Source - sonos works great. A connect hooked to mixing board and then sonos app with all your music service sources etc. is a great way to find and play any song you can think of (all but probably not legal if you technically look at terms of use of many music services like apple music and Spotify - probably say only for personal use). Of course Sonos can be used to index music library of hard drive with DJ collection of songs they own.
WOW - amazing answer and thank you so much - yeah, for me, I am just starting out - play and stream at home quite a bit but have yet to actually try out mixing - so would like to begin to learn how to catalog, store, organize my library - of course, play and mix at home to see what I like to do and learn to use the controllers - so not doing anything like it sounds you do for now, just want to begin to get feel for the equipment and how to seamlessly interweave the beats I like - from there, probably do some recordings and put up on Soundcloud, etc - soooooo.... - looking at this mixer and then how to integrate into home system for now - or any other recommended mixer
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I guess since I have recently done this I should explain further - as I do have home and work events that I made myself an amateur DJ setup.

First mixing board - I got a Numark M6 mixer. Great little mixer. For source I have Sonos Connect hooked to it (giving me all of Sonos music offerings) and an old laptop of mine hooked to it via the USB. $150 on amazon

You can Run Virtual DJ 8 software free version with the Numark Mixer because the Numark mixer is not a full midi device and to Virtual DJ only shows itself as a sound card on your computer. So the free version of Virtual DJ 8 works well with this mixer.

Friends also wanted to do some Karaoke and I found Virtual DJ Studio best for Karoake files and playing (very nice interface and playing screen). It's about $49 (not as good a pure DJ software as the Virtual DJ 😎.

The mixer also has 2 Microphone inputs. I did purchase Phenyx Pro set of 2 wireless microphones. Less than $150 on amazon for their higher end model.

I have fairly cheap PA Speakers running then off the Mixer. Fairly cheap but work real well for me just dabbling. I got the ION Pro PA speakers on sale over holidays for like $125 a speaker I think at Sam's Club.

My IONs actually came with microphones and XLR cables. I have purchase additional XLR cables for between my microphone setup etc. LynxPro cables have been my favorite of the XLRs I got off Amazon. Monoprice Stage Right ones have been good as well.

Short of going all out expensive in getting full MIDI mixing board rig - my little system is pretty darn good for amateur DJing. I mean - most would say its all out professional just short of the platters etc. for scratching etc. (which can be done virtually with Virtual DJ but not really the professional all out deal).
so are you directly plugging into Sonos connect then from mixing board? I was hoping to see if there was a way to wirelessly connect and avoid the direct plug in - that may not be possible yet

Ideally, I'd set up the mixing board and perhaps USB connect to laptop - then, the sounds could go thru my laptop, essentially, to be played on the Sonos ideal state - again, may not be possible today/yet
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I am plugging my Sonos connect into the input of the Mixing board so that I can use it as a source of music (no different then a CD player plugged in mixing board).

Again - you could output from the Mixing board into a Sonos connect. But as soon as input into the connect it will introduce a 70ms delay. so if your just playing music you won't really notice or care about the 70ms delay as long as your only using Sonos attached speakers (as they will all then be delayed 70ms).

Trouble you run into is that if you speak into a Microphone into the mixing board - your voice will be delayed 70ms before it comes out of the Sonos speakers (and it will be annoying I'm sure). 70ms is not a lot but it will be noticible in messing up the timing between speaking and hearing.

The other trouble would be if you hooked any speakers (non-sonos) direct into the mixing board. Those speakers (like my PA speakers I have hooked to my mixing board) will exibit no delay since they aren't processing throught he Sonos Connect. So that will cause an echo in your system where the speakers hooked direct to the mixer will be ahead by 70ms from the Sonos speakers.

IF you feel you can live with the microphone issue but wanted some live speakers hooked to mixing board. I guess what you could do is feed the output from the mixer into the Connect - then the connect output back into the mixing board (say input2). And then on the live speakers from input2 (which since connect is the source of input2 then the live speakers would be delayed the same 70ms and in sync with the other wireless Sonos speakers).

Hopefully that makes sense!
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Yea that's a nice all in one Pioneer DJ mixer. So if your wanting to scratch etc. with the Pioneer mixer I don't think Sonos is best answer. That is a full midi mixer (believe it comes with the Serato DJ software - which is the competitor to Virtual DJ so you still don't have to pay for the DJ software).

But - you could use Sonos if you really want to send music all over house. What your going to want to do is use headphones from the mixer to do your scratching and do best to tone out the music from the Sonos (good headphones and Sonos not being loud by your DJ area should work). Scratch and do all your mixing via the headphones and then just ignore the fact that what Sonos is playing to guests is ever so slightly delayed. As long as your mixing using the headphone output you should be fine.

You still have the microphone issue with the delay which again I guess if you focus on only listening to the audio through headphones and not what Sonos is doing it will work ok.

Again - Sonos connect is what would need hooked to your Pioneer mixer to be able to send the audio around house to other Sonos units.
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If it were me, I would tie the analog output from the mixer to a aux input on a Connect:Amp. Then you can share the Connect:Amp's aux in with the rest of your Sonos system. That would mean that 1 Connect:Amp would need to be physically next to the Dj system, the rest would be wireless via wifi/ethernet. Then you could put monitor spealkers with you at the system driven by the close Connect:Amp. One more option for you.
I am going to try this! I have a few connect Amps in a network rack not too far from my system. Will run a long RCA to them just for grins..