Over the years as I have DJed I have always relied on external storage. Just by size alone it was hard to find a good performing laptop that had the built in storage to cover carrying all my music to a gig. And then I had an epiphany after experiencing some external USB hub failures; why take so much music to a gig?
A Paradigm Shift
In the days of vinyl and even CDs, part of selecting a DJ was trusting their curating skills. But when digital files came into play, suddenly you could have as much music as storage would allow. In it’s infancy when storage was far more expensive the total size of the library was generally limited (and of lower quality to fit as much music as possible) but as time wen on and storage got cheaper it became trivial to just bring large libraries.
Until it didn’t.
The after effect of having all this cheap storage and large libraries is comical and complicated. Comical in the sense that some DJs will bring 50,000, 100,000, 200,000 songs or more to an event. Of course this is shy of the millions of songs that streaming services offer, but in this streaming world where most people don’t own music the DJ has turned into a jukebox. It’s also complicated because large libraries are more prone to corruption and slowing down DJ software like Serato.
So I started to think smaller. I pared down my library to ~10,000 songs and I was able to fit it all on my internal SSD. I can also fit this on an large USB Thumbdrive as well.
Bye Bye Blips
By switching to an internal drive I have removed what had been an occasional headache for me. My external USB hub would sometimes have an occasional hiccup and I would lose connection to the laptop, and playback. Nothing like having a 0.25 – 2 second random blip just because. By removing this hub I have taken that potential issue out of picture.
By relying on a SSD speeds are through the roof.
Even syncing up via my thunderbolt cable to my other laptop produces incredibly speedy transfer rates.
But It’s Your OS Drive Too
Ever since storage was a thing, it’s been best practice to have your data on a different drive than your OS. While this is not an inaccurate statement, it’s also impractical with most laptops using an internal drive. While some PC laptops have two drive options, the ability to convert an optical drive to a hard drive on a MacBook Pro died when Apple ditched the optical drive.
Just like with every storage option out there, you best have a backup. In my case I not only clone my music directory to a whole other laptop, I also clone it to an external drive. I try to maintain a number of backups to ensure I don’t have an unrecoverable catastrophic failure.
Really You Can’t Go Wrong
Don’t Forget To Backup
I cannot stress enough that with any storage solution (and really any critical piece of equipment) that you should have a backup or two. You don’t want to lose your entire library in case of a damage or theft.
Be Sure To Check Out The Other Reviews
This is one part of a three series review of storage solutions. Be sure to check the others out.
Author Biography: Lou Paris of Paris Creative
Lou Paris has been DJing since 1988 and has a deep passion for music of all styles and genres and became a wedding DJ in 2012. Coincidentally, Lou is also a successful 20+ year IT professional and has merged many technology concepts to ensure a successful night of entertainment. Click here to learn more about Lou's background.