Cloud storage has largely replaced the need for USB sticks and other physical media in much of today’s working world. That hasn’t carried over to DJs as they must still maintain small arsenals of flash drives and SD cards to bring their music to the standalone media players in most venues.
With the 1.6 update to their Engine Prime OS and Prime media players, however, Denon DJ is bringing cloud storage synchronicity to their full range of standalone hardware and track preparation software.
In practice, DJs can now sync their music playlists and folders directly to their personal Dropbox accounts from within the Engine Prime export software or via standard file drag and drop. Once those tracks have been uploaded, users can step up to an internet-connected player and log into their Dropbox account on the device, using their phone for two-factor account authentication.
The player will download a database directory of the Dropbox library, with tracks pulled from the cloud individually when selected for playback. A connected physical storage device is still necessary to cache the track downloads, but a single SD card or flash drive can be left in the player for any DJ to use. Denon’s latest SC6000 series, like the standalone Prime 2 and 4 units, support an internal SSD which can also function as the cache storage.
Each player can have a single Dropbox account signed in at a time, so back-to-back DJ mixes are still an option in booths with two or more decks. When wrapping up a set, signing each player out of the respective Dropbox login is just a button tap away, ensuring a quick and safe swap to the next DJ. Preferences are similarly available for clearing any cached data, changing the local storage device, or refreshing the downloaded Dropbox database to reflect any new songs in the folders. The latter option is especially helpful for mobile DJs and home setup users who frequently update their libraries, but the fast login and track download functionality certainly seems ready for club DJ use.
Engine 1.6 also brings a few more major and long-requested features to the Denon Prime ecosystem.
Flexible Beat Grids now allow tracks with changing or dynamic tempos to stay locked in time with a master deck or beats-per-minute source. In-browser track preview and an improved horizontal layout for the Prime 4 are likely to keep home users happy. Beatsource Link track streaming joins Beatport, TIDAL, SoundCloud, and more for additional on-demand track loading.
Dual waveform view expands on the players unique ability to play two tracks on a single deck, allowing DJs to keep track of both playing songs with all the benefits of full waveform displays. This updated layout hints strongly at Denon’s leaked and upcoming sidecar controllers, which are likely to hook up with the dual-layer main players to provide full four-deck hardware control.