The Pacemaker app is an iOS app for DJ’s. Its great graphics and intuitive controls make it a winner among expert and novice DJ’s. Pacemaker for iPad is the flagship version of the app. While Pacemaker for iPhone is stripped down to just the Autoplay function with effects and sharing capabilities. Even so, its Apple design award looks and a magical algorithm will have you loving this app so much that it will become your default music player.
I remember walking into a record shop back in 2008 and seeing the guy behind the counter thinking with something. It looked like a Sony PSP at first. But it wasn’t. It was actually a fully portable Pacemaker DJ device. The first of its kind. There were no apps back then and controllers were still trying to break out. This was some real Star Trek tech. It wasn’t meant to replace any DJ setup. But to use as a canvas to prepare for DJ sets while on the road. I was amazed to realize that the same people are responsible for the Pacemaker App.
The iPad version is loaded with awesome features. You can DJ on 2 traditional DJ decks with various effects and filters. Or you can simply Autopilot and let the app DJ for you. It will even choose songs that it thinks will work best in a mix. The iPhone version is a much more stripped down version. It’s basically the Autopilot feature. At first, I was discouraged, but this feature is so amazing that it does very well on its own. It even won an Apple design award.
Here’s a video that runs you through all of the app’s features. The video is a bit old but most of the core features still remain the same. Ean Golden and the guys over at DJ Tech Tools really know their stuff.
What Makes the Pacemaker App Unique from Other Apps
There are a lot of DJ apps out for iPad at the moment. The two most popular apps being djay 2 (Algoriddim) and Traktor DJ (Native Instruments). The look of djay 2 is very traditional and straightforward. It is the quality and reliability of the app that puts it at the top of the list for a lot of iOS DJs. Another reason for its popularity is the fact that you can connect a compatible DJ Controller to your iPad and control djay 2. Traktor DJ is a little unconventional in the sense that you DJ by looking at the waveforms of your music instead of decks. The tracks are also stacked up on top of each other. Traktor DJ is compatible with NI’s Traktor Kontrol S2 and S4.
The Pacemaker app sticks to the more traditional. Unlike its rivals, the app has very colorful and snappy graphics. The big winner with Pacemaker is its autopilot feature. You can let pacemaker automatically mix a playlist of your choice or you can choose each track in the order that you want. The sleek and colorful graphics continue in this section. With the waveforms taking on a single color which represents the artwork of the track. There are other apps on the market that feature auto mixing (like Pioneers WeDJ). But none of them come close to the wizardry and looks as the Pacemaker app. Serato Pyro is an app that is very similar to the Pacemaker iPhone app. But Serato is still a newcomer in this platform and the app is nowhere near as polished as the Pacemaker app.
No Need to Hire a DJ, Just Autopilot!
Autopilot is the main focus of the app in the iPhone version and is also available on iPad. Autopilot seamlessly and flawlessly mixes tracks that you select. It can also mix from a playlist, but in the order that it sees as most suitable. The algorithm behind this autopilot feature is extremely intelligent. It doesn’t merely match songs according to their key or bpm. It takes things a bit deeper like genre or style or even artist. This is not a fact but an observation. The Pacemaker app is my go to music app and I have over the last few years spent too much time on the Autopilot feature to know this. As a DJ
As a DJ I collect full-length house tracks on a regular basis. I load the new tracks into a playlist on my iPad and let Autopilot take over. After all the tracks are analyzed, they are usually mixed in order of genre or style. I know this probably can’t be confirmed but it is true. The Autopilot feature is also a great new track discovery tool. As mentioned earlier, just dumping a whole lot of new music and letting it play will give you ideas of transitions between some tracks that you would have really thought of mixing in the first place. If you are a DJ and you already have a list of tunes you want to mix, you can then drop them into Autopilot in the same order you plan to mix them. Autopilot will give you an idea of how compatible your selection of music is.
Should You Get This App?
Of Course Yes!! It is perfect to use in your car during long trips. You can go trough a playlist of some golden oldies that will be mixed smoothly and quickly. My iPhone integrates with my car. So I can see the track names on the screen of my car stereo. I can also control the app with my car by letting it know exactly when to mix into the next track. I can simply do this by pressing next on my cars steering wheel controls. The same goes for my smartwatch which is able to control my iPhone.
Pacemaker is always updating and upgrading the software. The latest version allows you to set the transition times in Autopilot mode. This is very cool if you wish to get through a playlist in a short time. I really love this app and so those the rest of the internet (hard to find any bad reviews). Go ahead and download it now. It’s free!