I was recently asked to DJ for Paddy Johnson’s Sound of Art event in Toronto, and due to a passport problem, I decided to try DJing remotely via the Internet. I researched a lot of different ways to do this and it wasn’t easy to find all the info I needed, so I’m sharing it here.
My goal was to send both audio and video, but the audio quality was unusable for music with all the video streaming methods I tried. For a performance coming through a loud PA, I think the sound needs to be pretty decent unless it’s really lofi music. This site lists a lot of audio streaming options for performances, but most of the things I tried weren’t right for one reason or another.
Ultimately I ended up using Mixlr for audio and Ustream for video because they are free to use, are easy, and both have built-in ability to record. The problem with this setup is that the video and audio will not be in sync, but for my DJ performance it didn’t matter. Mixlr sounds great and is very stable but there is a delay of several seconds on the stream. Ustream also has ads if you use the free service, but I actually think this makes the performance more funny and interesting, and when you’re streaming the audio separately on Mixlr, the audio will continue playing during the commercials. And if you use Ustream, I recommend downloading Ustream Producer.
The primary problem with the setup was just that I didn’t have any way to see the audience to know how they were responding, which makes it difficult to know which direction to go with your set. If we did it again, I’d want to set up some kind of live camera at the venue, either using Skype or another Ustream feed from the venue.
Below are a couple pics of the show in Toronto. The first image is of the two Magic Carpet projections that we had installed, and the second photo is the third projector that was showing my Ustream video feed from my apartment in New York.