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BPM Controls, Tips, and FAQs
BPM Controls, Tips, and FAQs

Learn how to edit, control, and manage track BPMs and related issues.

Noah Feasey-Kemp avatar
Written by Noah Feasey-Kemp
Updated over a week ago

BPM (beats per minute) is a key concept within DJing. A huge amount of DJ skills revolve around controlling and mastering the tempo of tracks.

So, we added a range of methods for changing and interacting with track BPMs. This guide shows you how to control and edit BPM in DJ.Studio.

BPM Controls in DJ.Studio

There are several controls and systems for altering track BPMs in DJ.Studio

The BPM Control Line

The easiest way to control BPM in DJ.Studio is with the BPM control line.

This simple tool works like a traditional value automation lane, where you draw and move points on the line to change the BPM speed wherever you want.

You can:

  • Click on the line to create a new BPM automation point.

  • Click and drag points to change their position and BPM value.

  • Double-click a point to remove it.

  • Grab the line and move it up/down to change a large area of BPM.

By Right-Clicking on the BPM line, you can access more options.

  • Set track BPM - Opens a text box for entering an exact BPM speed for the selected track

  • Add BPM Point - Creates a new BPM automation point

  • Set Mix BPM - Opens a text box for entering the BPM of the entire mix. This will delete all BPM points and set the whole mix to a single speed. You can also specify a start and end speed, to create a consistent increase or decrease in speed throughout the whole set.

  • Restore Mix BPM- Deletes all BPM automation and returns the values so tracks play at their original recorded speed.

Auto vs Manual BPM Mode

We changed the way you can manage changes in BPM between tracks.

When you create a mix, you decide if you want to use the Auto function or add Manual BPM points.

With the Manual option enable, you can define all of your BPM transitions with BPM points, like the early versions of DJ.Studio. All existing DJ mixes are set to this Manual option.

All new mixes will default be set to the new Auto BPM setting.

With the Auto BPM enabled you can set the location of each BPM transition with these 4 new options:

  • Half: Start in the middle of the transition window.

  • Full: Start from the beginning and end at the end of the transition.

  • Manual: Place the start and end of the BPM transition at the place you want.

  • Sync/No Sync: If you want no beat synchronization at all, for example when you are mixing pop music and don't need to beatmatch.

Find out more about these BPM modes in the following video.

Changing Track BPM Analysis

Another system for interacting with the BPM is the track analysis BPM value,

Whenever a track is imported into DJ.Studio, its BPM is analyzed and added to the track's internal metadata. This tells DJ.Studio what BPM the track is, based on our algorithm's analysis.

However, sometimes tracks' BPMs can be hard to analyze, and the results may be incorrect. In this case, you will notice that tracks aren't beat-matched correctly.

You can access and change this value from the left panel of the Track Tab.

For example, if you know a track is 120bpm, but it's been analyzed as 125 - it won't beat match properly. Simply head over to the track tab and update the BPM to the correct value.

BPM Range Explained

DJ.Studio uses smart analysis of track BPM in your library, to make a rough judgment of your average BPM range.

This is used on the BPM timeline, to make sure that the BPM range isn't too wide for you, which would be hard to edit smoothly.

You can easily change the boundaries of this range in the settings menu. This is useful if you want to change the BPM of a track drastically beyond it's normal tempo, or if the analysis has used half/double time.

Click the Settings Cog > Go to the General Tab > Change the BPM Range setting.

BPM Related Issues & Questions

Here are some common issues and questions relating to BPM in DJ.Studio!

How do I mix if the BPM change is very large?

Sometimes, you might want to mix two tracks with a large BPM difference - for example a 90bpm hip hop track into a 160bpm drum and bass beat.

Because of this huge difference, issues will arise when trying to beat match the drastic tempo change.

One of the main issues is that glitchy audio artifacts are created when you apply a large amount of speed increase/decrease to audio. This makes the music sound distorted.

Working out how to make a large BPM change is an advanced DJ technique, but here are some methods.

  • Create a super short transition, within a single bar.

  • Use an echo effect to transition out of the first song.

  • Make a 1 or 2 beat loop of the first track, then adjust the overall BPM.

  • 'Meet in the middle' - change the BPM of both tracks so they meet half way between the two, then you can transition to the second track's speed after the first track has been silenced.

  • Mix the breakdown - some tracks have breakdown sections with no beats, these are a good place to bring in a new track without creating clashing tempos.

How do I beat-match when the original music wasn't quantized?

Not all music is perfectly aligned to a quantized metronome. Particularly in early, non-digital music, you can find songs where the beat isn't consistent, and it drifts in and out of time.

This can make it hard for DJs to beat match, as the beat isn't aligned to the grid.

At the moment DJ.Studio can't quantize individual beats, but you can try these solutions if you are having issues with wonky beats:

  • Use a DAW to quantize the wonky track. Software like Ableton Live makes it easy to snap the beats of tracks to a grid. It might take some time, but if you want to beat match the song, then this is the cleanest solution.

  • Use a loop - create a short loop of the first track, making sure it's aligned to the grid. You will now be able to beat-match a consistent tempo to this track.

  • Use a short, punchy transition - Rather than using a long crossfade, try a more instant cut, without overlapping beats. Adding an echo can help to make this smoother.

  • Mix tracks together in breakdowns - some tracks have 'breakdown' sections, where there are no percussive/beat elements. These sections present a good opportunity to mix in another track without having clashing beats.

How to transition old songs without beatmatching?

Sometimes, you want to move from one song to the next with no beat matching. For instance, if you are mixing two old songs with different tempos, and you don't want to change the speed of either one.

Check out this video tutorial.

The best way to do this is to create an instant transition, maybe with a bit of space in between.

  1. Create a large transition window over the two tracks by dragging the handle edges.

  2. Grab and move the second track so it starts just after the first song finishes.

  3. In the BPM bar, place the BPM markers in an instant jump as pictured in the image below.

How to remove beatsync / beatmatch from a transition?

Sometimes you might want to disable sync for a transition. This is useful if you are mixing two songs with different BPMs, and don't want to change the speed of either one.

To disable beatsync for a transition, simply click the Sync button in the control bar. See the image below.

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