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James Murphy + 2ManyDJs On DJing, Their Custom Despacio Soundsystem [Video]

James Murphy and 2ManyDJs teamed up to build their dream soundsystem this year in New Century Hall for the Manchester International Festival last month in Manchester, UK. The Despacio Soundsystem, which they originally planned to create for their own “true Balearic” night in Ibiza, was designed to be a vinyl-only soundsystem:

“Eight speaker stacks each standing at 11 feet, 48 McIntosh amplifiers at £22,000 a piece, close to 50,000 watts averaging 100db on the dancefloor”

Watch James, David, and Stephen talk about the creation of the soundsystem and their back-to-basics approach to the club and night itself in the video below – including why James thinks that DJing is more like being a chef in a restaurant than some might like to admit:

Plus, watch the construction and transformation of Despacio Soundsystem in this cool timelapse video:

[via The Vinyl Factory – read the full interview over there!]
  • erniekay83

    the club i play at just recently moved the dj booth from 10 feet above the crowd to down on the floor and the vibe in the room is totally different now

  • KIMchi kush

    awesome. come to LA!

  • Martin Wilson

    I’d be interested in seeing the instructions on how to make a wicked set of monitors that James mentions he hands out to all the DFA artists.

    • randombeat

      ditto bro, he said they could throw them together for $700, right? wonder if thats dollas or euro….

      anyhow, im gonna do some searching for them and ill reply here if i can find the plans and info…

      chris benoit

    • Dan White

      Agreed – I went ahead and contacted DFA to see if we can get a DJTT exclusive on the instructions for those.

  • Anal0gK1LLER

    This is where it’s at. When can we see those stacks on tour? Would love to have that party you guys would want to be at here in Zurich!!

  • Keith Shocklee

    This is how I came up in the mid 70’s and 80’s in the mobile and club scene in NYC Long Island. It was always about fidelity and earth shaking sound and if you were a mobile dj and didn’t have that banging sound and suck as a dj you got your equipment taken from you!

  • Frydac

    I hope soooo much that? this will inspire more and more ppl to do similar things.. I’m 32 now, and feel like the audioquality in clubs and especially events is worse than it was in the late 90’s (it could be a case of ‘in the old days everything was better’ syndrome though).

    The last 2 times I went to “I love techno” (a big EDM event in belgium) it was so bad I said: “never again” (and stuck with it the 2nd time I said it :D, wich is now 3-4 years ago I think )

    Sometimes it is good though.. but its just so rare.

    For example: I remember last year at an afterparty of one of the areas of extrema outdoor belgium (a medium to big event) in a club I visited regularly at the time and knew the soundsystem was subpar, but not the worst. They brought in their own sound ppl/system.. I was so impressed by the sound quality, I got goose bumps regularly only because the soundquality.

    For me a good soundsystem adds so incredibly much to the experience!

    • KIO

      I fully agree Frydac. I was at Sensation a month ago after a five year hiatus from going to EDM events and I was thoroughly disappointed with the quality of the sound. IMHO it was because back in the day the sound came from vinyl. Now the DJ’s were playing mp3 (I guess) which lack the umpf of the kick. I mean you still hear the kick, but you don’t feel it any more in your stomach.

  • 031999

    does anyone know if that set was recorded??? it looks like it sounded awesome!!

  • randombeat

    I began djing in 99, right in between the old school and the new school, of course with vinyl… this post and video is amazing. I have always been into sound design and the quality of the system. they took it back, and took it to a whole nother level in the process. i respect this so much. thanks to djtt for bringing this video to my attention. its stuff like this and the wax to trax i entered, along with your inginuitive controllers and such, that help me to see the art and sound focus have not been lost…. amazing….

    chris benoit

  • I love this video, their intentions and the direction of this project. Dj’s need to get out of the spot light, and put more focus on the music experience instead of their ego and the VIP agenda.

    • Chaser720

      My thoughts exactly. Stories like this are why I visit this site daily.

    • KIO

      If you find that DJ need to get out of the spotlight (I fully agree), then why are other articles on this website promoting DJ’s to become more than guys playing records, but rather become button mashers so that the crowd has something to watch?

      • Chaser720

        I believe the button mashing is more manipulate the sound not to entertain visually. Though it can be interesting to watch.

        I think Ean is speaking more to the point of DJs dancing around on stage and entertaining while a track just plays in the background.

  • leavesremix

    His comment about the chef not being out front throwing food at people was perfect!

  • Mario García

    2 many djs are my heroes but this concept is kind of boring

    • Chaser720

      I couldn’t disagree more. I love the idea of hifi sound from real vinyl for a large group of people and the DJ not being a performer but an actual DJ. Things like this give me hope that real love for music and not just the fame is still alive.

      • Mario García

        But someone who gonna see a dawaele brothers gig knows by anticipation the very good music selection, the quality and intensity of the under the covers concept is more enjoyable for me.

        • Chaser720

          Not really following you here.

  • DJ Libeato

    Aiming for 100 db plus on the dance floor is irresponsible, at best. Considering exposure at that level can cause permentant hearing damage. It’s time for the industry to start using all this technology to deliver a good club experience without the ear destroying db levels.

    (Edit, 100db is ear safe for 15 minutes, after that its ear plugs or ear damage)