Music Tech: 'Töken' Brings Multitouch to DJs

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Move over, iPad and tonetable; there’s a new king of virtual DJing rigs coming. And it might just change everything (again).

The Töken multitouch screen concept, powered by EMULATOR and Traktor Pro, looks like something that would appear straight out of a club scene in any sci-fi movie. But the best part is that it’s not fake or CG. It’s actual, working equipment powered by real software. Video after the jump.

The Töken multitouch screen uses some kind of projector to beam the workspace onto a screen that responds to touch. This is where you do all your work.

What’s being projected onto the screen in the video above is a type of multitouch MIDI controller software called EMULATOR, which runs only on Windows 7 (sorry, Apple users – can’t let the iPad have all the fun now).

It appears that using the EMULATOR software you can set parameters to effects, as well as various controls to all sorts of knobs and faders, which is absolutely essential in today’s DJing scene. EMULATOR currently supports Traktor Pro (a type of DJing software) but will also support “Deckadance, Virtual Dj, Ableton and more” according to its designer, DJ Pablo Martin.

The EMULATOR interface. Photo: Pablo Martin

The use of multitouch screen MIDI controllers certainly has its place in music-making and DJing. I can see the obvious benefits of having everything conveniently located on one screen such as the Töken screen concept above. Programmable multitouch MIDI controllers certainly can help reduce the amount of other equipment that you lug around as well, much like how digital vinyls reduced the amount of stuff that turntable DJs like myself had to haul.

What does this mean to all us DJs? It means that our future rigs might be changing shape once again. Ultimately it’ll be up to us to bring this type of new technology forward or to leave it back to become background filler for movie scenes.

I personally think that while new technologies like this are certainly cool and can be game-changers (at least at face value), I still like to hold on to my old analogue equipment because sometimes you just need that “original feeling” that a screen and GUI can’t reproduce. Call me old-fashioned, but I bet I could find at least a handful of people who think the same. That being said, I’ll probably still be adding an iPad to my production rig back at the good ‘ol home studio and hopefully one of these Töken + EMULATOR rigs… if the price is right.

[via Engadget and Pablo Martin]

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GeekTecher David Saetang is a slave to the books by day, and a musical journeyman by night. Follow GeekTech on Twitter or Facebook .

This story, "Music Tech: 'Töken' Brings Multitouch to DJs" was originally published by PCWorld.

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