Traktor + Serato DJs: Switching DJs on 1 Soundcard

One of the challenges for Traktor and Serato DJs sharing the same soundcard is seamlessly transitioning between laptops with only one soundcard or mixer. This isn’t an issue for DJs that use CDJs or Rekordbox since the other DJ can mix in on the other player. Ean Golden has a simple trick that makes switching between DJs on 1 soundcard super easy using the Roll effect commonly found on club mixers like the Pioneer DJM 900.

The BeatRoll DJ Switch Trick

Club mixers, such as the Pioneer DJM 800 or DJM 900, have a built-in FX section with a variety of selectable FX. The effect that we’ll be using is the Roll/Beat Roll effect, which is very similar to Traktor’s Beatmasher effect. The Roll effect can be used to create little glitches or loop rolls to throw into a mix. However this effect has a more utilitarian use that can help transition between DJs that need to share the same soundcard.

By setting a high beat/loop count (8/1, 4/1) DJs can create a seamless loop that’s playing right inside the mixer. This loop will continue to play until the Roll effect is turned off. Once the loop is set, the current DJ can unplug from the mixer or soundcard and the loop roll will continue to play from the mixer. This allows the other DJ to plug their laptop into the soundcard or mixer and mix out of the beat roll loop without any interruptions in the music.

There’s a lot of other important things to consider when switching DJs, be sure to know “basic DJ etiquette”.

Bonus Tip: Applying Color FX

If the transition is taking too long, the loop can start to sound really repetitive. DJs can apply FX overtop the loop such as the color FX of the DJM 800/900 to add some flavour to it. Another cool trick that can be used for transitions is shortening the loop roll length and applying color FX (such as echo) to create a dramatic build out.

Looking for more ways to transition between DJs?

6 Clever Ways To Easily Transition Between Multiple DJs

dj étiquettedj soundcardsDJM effectsean goldeneffectspioneer djm-800pioneer DJM-900seratoserato DJsoundcardsswitching djsTraktor Tipstransitions
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  • djfreesoul

    Great trick. Some mixers even have a built in sampler, so you can do the same, and then use echo out on that sample.

  • Dj Wajtas

    You can connect two (or more) Serato SL1 together. Using thru output on first device, which is conected on inputs on second device. Make sure the booth devices is set up in Serato app for correct source signal line/phono if using CDJ/Turntables. This setup have some cons , but it work….

  • Max Max

    The SL4 Soundcard allows 2 Serato connection !

    • James Brian Thomaston

      I did not know that, and was seriously looking at the Rane mixers to find that solution. I think you may have just saved me a bit of cheddar. Thanks.

  • Ulysses

    I just drop my trolleys and take a massive s**t. It sorts the men out from the boys

  • BreakNek

    I always make sure I have an aux cable with me for this exact reason! Keeps the sound going and allows you to switch the vibe to accommodate the following DJ if necessary.

  • Nurve

    Not technically for one soundcard but still gonna help some of you. Connect two of these cables for each input at the mixer and another set on each output of turntables or cdjs (recommend doing this at start of night, and clubs should be doing this anyway imo) You can then completely connect your interface up whilst the other dj is still playing. Just dont load any tracks up until they’re on their last tune. They can then disconnect their interface when you’ve taken over and the next dj can set up at any point during your set with no problems disconnecting and can even connect turntables back up. I know of course you could use multicores but I find them a bit of a hassle and have left them behind when packing up.

    • Nurve

      Pictures not showing then? Basically, its a Y cable with single male rca to dual female rca

  • Oddie O'Phyle

    I like to carry a Monotribe and a Y cable for extreme failures. You can usually buy a good 10-15 minutes with a good loop and some variation. Other than that, I usually carry a few local producer’s CDs as I own a pair of cdjs that I do shows with.

  • No Qualms

    I just play a song of an iPod or USB stick to use as a transition 🙂

    • Mac

      Simplest way right there

  • papa pee

    how can i get traktor scrach pro for ma poineer DDJ-T1 controller?plss any help

  • Gio Alex (Tekit Izi)

    Vinyl or CD if you’re using a box that has phono/line switch. Thumb drive if you’re using a CDJ with that capability. Daisy chaining boxes. Others mentioned aux in with a ipod/smart phone. You can also run that cable to your computers audio out and run itunes. an MC Lol. If you have a four channel mixer there’s endless possibilities.

    My personal faves for my purposes are bringing like 5-10 vinyl records. I used TTs and Serato. My other faves for emergencies are having a MIC and getting the crowd going while switching out or iphone aux in.

  • Chaser720

    Successfully train wrecked the crap out of the DJ transition which leads me to this quick tip: Make sure your mic is off when using the AUX/Mic port on your mixer. Plugged the iPhone in and everything was going great until the mic started feeding back and all hell broke loose. ha

  • Rob Ticho,Club mU

    Additionally, it’s always good to have an mp3 (or phone) on a Y cable ready in case you have to make a weird transition or if there is a catastrophic system failure. Usually 30 seconds of some weird atmospheric shit works great.

    As far as the Traktor/Serato combo on something like the DJM 900, you could probably hook up the mixer to use all 4 traktor decks and then use Soundflower on a Mac to route the two serato decks into live decks C and D in Traktor.

    • Gio Alex (Tekit Izi)


    • CUSP

      If you only have 1 sound card, what does your mixing board have as inputs? Usually mixers like that have an aux input, and a iPod is not only a great insurance policy, it’s a great way to playback V.O.s and DJ bridges (like “that was _insert_name_here_”, and a seperate one “coming up next _insert_name_here_” typically with a generic beat in the background).

      I’m pretty cool with using effects to transition, but It’s really hyper important that you learn how the effects work on a mixer before you engage them.

    • CUSP

      I don’t use Soundflower anymore because the buffer loads up after a few hours of play. I got distortion (which sounds like a bit crusher) no matter what I did after about 2 hours of play. It took closing and reopening Soundflower to clear the buffer.

      I found a better way though… A lot of the new mixers out today have the option for a USB sound card (I got a brand new X1204USB from Behringer) and I really like how I can play from and record to my laptop from the mixer, while (on a seperate input) also boosting my outputs from my Novation Twitch, use a microphone (with the silly onboard effects), and still have room to patch in two other mixers… in stereo. The mixer lists for around $150.

  • killmedj

    The old Beat Roll trick is gold! But thankfully I haven’t had to do it for a while.

  • Garrett Cox

    Good tip, or if you just have one CDJ 😀