I downloaded and tested DJay from DJay Software last night, just for fun and it was an interesting experience. The few times I’ve DJ:ed in recent years was using Ableton Live; nowadays I don’t even consider myself a DJ any longer as producing music takes any spare cycles I have in addition to being a session musician here in the Bay Area.
Anyway, DJay is very much a typical two-turntable DJ UI that hooks to iTunes and has the basic features plus some more. So there’s really nothing different from the other players with the exception of the much lower price. The beat-matching was somewhat working but not perfect, it takes a lot of effort to easily get transitions working. A nice touch was the option to use USB headphones to cue; means you could really use a laptop’s audio output as the only audio interface.
The integration with iTunes was fun, I could search all kinds of tracks from my library and see what happens. As for the transitions, they had some effect-like transitions such as speed-down, backwards loops and so on. For some kinds of music that is icky to mix together such as rock and other types of less fixed rhythm tracks those did the job.
I would think that for anyone who does not want to spend time doing all the necessary work for Ableton to work with tracks a package like this works just fine. You miss maybe 30% of the other features you need. Then again, I have a feeling DJs now will go back to the idea of spending more time finding the right tracks and play then than spend ages mixing things into small pieces. As such a simpler package like this works just fine.
During the tests I got the idea to find all tracks in my iTunes library shorter than two minutes and exclusively using those to a mix, that was very interesting, might do more experiments with such micro-scale music parts one after another.