Mixxx is an open-source DJ mixing application which is a great software for aspiring DJs. It is available on almost all desktop platform which includes, Windows, Mac OS X, Ubuntu, and other Linux systems.
Today, we are going to dive deep into this mixing software and see how it fares against the competition.
It’s fairly easy to use software with drag and drop elements. You can easily start mixing your tracks with Mixxx. You get 4 decks on your screen, each deck comes equipped with a scrollable and scratchable waveform where cue points and beats are marked.
The interface is quite refined and polished. If you are just starting out in the digital mixer industry then you will find it quite easy to navigate and use. You can resize all the skins according to your needs and show/hide most of the UI elements that you want. In addition to that, you can also customize the whole skin by editing an XML file.
You can customize the layout as you find fit and choose any skins for the software that you like. There are 4 designer skins included well focused on different screens and DJ controllers for the primary DJ use cases. In addition, there is an active forum to share user customized skins which contains some interesting additional alternatives. Mixxx could satisfy even larger user base by shipping skins for some corner cases by default. Some users ask for a “high-contrast skin” for daylight usage, a simple “juke-box skin” without any advanced controls, or a “broadcast skin” for jingles, which would further expand Mixxx’s application range even more.
Mixxx’s mater sync makes it a breeze to sync multiple tracks as the beats of all the tracks stay locked even when you tweak the speeds. There’s also a beat looping button that allows you to loop a certain part of the track. The beat looping option gives you the ability to loop any beat size including fractional and uneven beat loops.
There is a variety of effects within the Mixxx software which include, but not limited to Flanger, Echo, Reverb, Moog 4-pole ladder filter, and BitCrusher. It also gives you the ability to install LV2 plugins. The older version of Mixxx only had one effect, but now it has more than that. So it’s safe to assume that future versions will include even more effects. You can use a single knob to tweak different parameters at once.
Broadcasting your mixes or recording them is a very straightforward process with this software. You can then store your recorded tracks in a lossless WAV format, or you could just save them in the OGG Vorbis form compressed. You can share your tracks through Icecast or Shoutcast with just a click of a button.
You can also stream your tracks through MP3 streaming, but that feature is locked by default. That’s due to licensing restrictions. You can easily unlock it by downloading a LAME binary and moving some files to your Mixxx folder. The process is quite simple and there’s a step-by-step guide available at their official website to assist you with this process.
(Note: The upcoming version 2.3 will include a built-in MP3 encoder)
Although Mixxx was designed for live club DJing, it already suits to be part in a professional broadcasting setup. It has different option like latency compensation to setup a microphone without a disturbing echo, and allows to stream to multiple stream destinations at once.
However, Mixxx is not able to serve all user request like AAC+ encoding, scheduled jingles, and a flexible interface interface to RBDS/RDS encoders.
Mixxx Pricing and Plans
Here comes the best part about Mixxx. It’s an opensource mixing software that’s available for free. Yes, you heard that right! It’s entirely free to use and you don’t have to pay a single dime to access all the features of this amazing mixing software.
There have been reports of scammers trying to sell Mixxx on eBay and other marketplaces for a premium price. This is a total scam, so make sure to only download it from Mixxx.org.
The features available in Mixxx easily rival that of other paid mixing software. Best fo all, Mixxx also provides you with the ability to edit its code, since it’s open-source. So, if you have some programming knowledge then you can customize then software completely according to your needs. If you have the programming and coding knowledge, then you can turn this software into anything you want.
This is another area where the Mixxx DJ mixing software shines. It’s compatible with all the platforms out there. As long as you want to run it on a desktop platform, it will work just fine. It’s available for download on Windows, Mac OSX, Ubuntu, and other Linux distros.
It supports a huge number of controllers, many with official pre-installed mappings, others can be found in the user forum. The strength of Mixxx is the support older models on the used market that have already been dismissed by the manufacturer. A weakness on the other hand is to support bleeding edge controllers from their launch, also graphic displays ar not yet supported. This might be a result from missing commercial foundation or missing partnerships with controller manufacturers.
Customer Support and Community
Mixxx offers an amazing customer support center where you will be able to access frequently asked questions, manuals, developer’s official emails, IRC channel, and the official forums. You can use these different channels to ask for help whenever you are stuck or come across a difficult problem.
You can also use this community center to connect with other like-minded people and DJs who can help you with your issues. Their developer team is easily reachable through email. If you also want the latest news and updates regarding this amazing application then you can subscribe to official Mixxx Twitter and Facebook profiles.
Mixxx’s Best Feature (The Good)
Apart from all the other features that Mixxx offers to its users, there’s still one great feature that definitely needs its own section in this review. This feature is going to be the gold-nugget that vinyl jockeys are looking for.
Mixxx offers a free timecode control through vinyl which allows you to operate this application via your CDJ or turntable, and a mixer. It’s the only DJ mixing software that offers this feature across multiple platforms which include Windows, Mac, and Linux right now.
Their official website contains a handy step-by-step guide that shows you exactly how you can configure this setup and troubleshoot in case of any problems. Furthermore, if you are still stuck with the process then you can ask the community for helpful advice.
If you are a big effects fanatic and want to go crazy with different effects to inject in your mixes then you will be disappointed as Mixxx only has a limited number of effects to offer. It lets you chain a group of different effects together which allows up to 4 FX units, but if you are really looking to experiment with a variety of effects then you better look elsewhere.
Another downside of using this software is that there is no mobile support. Mixxx does not have any mobile version of the software. There are numerous other DJ mixing programs out there that offer a mobile version as well, but this one lags behind in this department.
These are the only downsides of this mixing program so far. Everything else is just perfectly fine.
Even though there are both the goods and bads of using this software. Ultimately, it all comes down to what you want from your mixing software. If you are a newcomer to the industry then you are better off with Mixxx as it costs no money and provides you with an easy-to-use interface.
Also, whenever you hit a paywall or limitation in other software, you can turn to Mixxx as it doesn’t limit you in any way. On top of that, it also gives you the ability to go beyond any restrictions by editing and customizing the code according to your needs.
If you are the kind of DJ that wants a fully-customizable and easy-to-use mixing software then this is the perfect choice for you.