DJ Advice | The Truth Behind Using YouTube Video Downloads For Video Mixing Or Karaoke

DJS shouldn't use downloaded youtube videos

Every now and then, many of us partake in a little fast-food grubbing.

It’s quick, cheap and puts the kabash to hunger. Of course, later on we often regret cutting corners and accepting a quick-fix that only barely supplies necessary nutrients to move about our day.

Fast-food isn’t unlike downloading YouTube videos to use for your video mixing sets or for karaoke.

Sure, videos and karaoke files are readily accessible via YouTube and you’ll even find some hard-to-locate videos or karaoke tracks — but all too often YouTube video downloads are lower quality than expected, have bad frames or are poorly encoded via the downloader application and typically show an intro tag or the like instantly showcasing to your audience where you sourced the file.

Video Mixing With DEX 3 Live

Of course, I’m not even touching on the legality factor — which I won’t delve into much — but the bottom line is ripped and downloaded YouTube videos are not a commercially viable option for public performance. They come with legal risk, but the price your performance will pay is the larger one.

I’ve seen it all too often checking our support ticket logs. YouTube video downloads that contain bad frames, bad or corrupt tags, and lower resolution than the ‘720p’ designation are common problems that not only impact the listeners experience, but can impact the stability and performance of VJ/KJ software such as DEX 3. Is a quick fix really worth the risk, for the software or the audiences perception?

DJs should strive for continuity among the media files they perform with.  Bit rate, encoding quality should be as normalized as possible across all content. Your fans and the audience may not know why your sets sound sonically pleasing, but their overall experience and memory of your set will be a more pleasurable one.

DJs should also pay for their content.  It’s your overhead, it’s your livelihood.  You make a living off playing music and music videos created by amazing and talented artists – shouldn’t they be compensated, at least in some capacity?

DEX 3 and DEX 3 RE both support Pulselocker, and at only $9.99 (Streaming only) or $19.99 (offline use) DJs have in-app access to unlimited amounts of music. That’s relatively cheap.

There are many video pool services for video mixing DJs to select from that are both affordable and provide high-quality HD video downloads that are optimally encoded for live performance. We work with The Video Pool here at Digital 1 Audio and promote their service to our users; The most popular subscription is only $34.99 a month for 200 music video downloads of your choice. Again, a small price to pay to ensure your performances are always top notch.

For high-definition karaoke there are many online avenues for ala carte downloads, and we offer HD MP4 karaoke download packs are greatly reduced pricing.

Get your content from us, get it from any other legal and commercially viable provider – just PLEASE quit it with the YouTube downloads. End the suffering. Your fans and audience will appreciate it – and your DJ, VJ and karaoke software will perform as expected.

4 replies
  1. Meep70
    Meep70 says:

    I absolutely agree, and explain the concept to customers, quite often. The dialogue goes something like this:

    Customer: Do you have [insert new/hot song here]?

    Me: I don’t have it here, and my subscription service doesn’t have it available, yet. Let me see if I can buy it from one of my other sources.

    Customer: I can play it on Youtube, can’t you? Can I connect my phone to your system so you can play it that way?

    Me: Thanks, but I prefer not to rely on Youtube. I buy only high quality track from sources that I know and trust. With Youtube, if there’s a failure in the internet connection or it is something of inferior quality that someone has uploaded, or something that someone has uploaded illegally, then it is my integrity at stake. Also I don’t have a cable to connect your phone. [I do this intentionally, so that I can honestly tell them that I can’t do it that way] I’ll be glad to get the track through proper means, since that is part of my normal business expenses, anyhow.

    Customer: Thanks! (more often than not, leaving a tip in my jar)

    • Ryan Sherr
      Ryan Sherr says:

      Thanks Meep! The biggest issue I find when speaking to DJs about this is what you already touched on — their perception of YouTube and the lack of understanding of why a DJ shouldn’t use it (not just in the legal/moral sense).

      Just need to educate them in a kind manner I suppose!

  2. Oogie
    Oogie says:

    I Had the same on New Years eve, I informed them of similar and as they little drunk they got bit put out but when pointed out the landlords licence doesnt permit all videos to be displayed publically and that if caught out the fine wpuld be so great their local would no longer exist.yeah I know I probably didnt get full aspects correct but they did realise that their phone is classed as private my eqpt is public performance related, so they were then happy. I prefer to pay for all my songs videos heck even had to buy one song using my phone to download one night, bad planning on my behalf lol

    • Ryan Sherr
      Ryan Sherr says:

      Thanks for sharing your story! I think many DJs have to put up with the same issues – mainly with thee public simply not understanding YouTube legalities and quality (or lack there of).

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