Though it came out almost a year ago, many digital DJs may not have noticed the Flux Mode feature available in Traktor Pro 2.6 and up. Flux Mode kind of works like an advanced Looper, allowing you to do all sorts of crazy tricks like jumping around hotcues or adding glitchy effects without accidentally backtracking in a song.
In today’s video DJ TechTools resident Mad Zach takes us on a journey through Flux Mode and explains some of his techniques for adding a little spice to a regular DJ routine:
Flux Mode can be useful for a lot of performance oriented improvisations, almost letting you play your tracks like an instrument. To turn it on, right-click one of your decks in Traktor and select “Flux Mode”. If you run a Kontrol Z2 mixer there is a dedicated button for toggling this, but if not it might be a good idea to set up a mapping on your controller. As for tricks you can pull in Flux mode, here are some of Mad Zach’s signature moves:
#1: Casual Backspin
This one is great for adding a little slice and dice to your set. Having Flux Mode enabled will make it so that you can scratch on a track without losing your place. Some helpful tips for getting the most out of a Casual Backspin:
- Use this technique only on beats, not a whole song. Your mix will get muddy otherwise.
- When adding backspin be careful that the platter doesn’t keep spinning.
- To get better platter control use your other hand to slow the side of the platter.
#2: The Impromptu Build
Builds can be created many different ways in a mix, but by using Flux Mode, a looper, and a one-shot riser you can create simple impressive climaxes. To start, set up a looper on one deck at 1 beat (for best results). On your other channel, load up a build or riser sample in a remix deck.
Since we’re in Flux Mode you can layer the beat repeat from the looper over your rise effect without having to worry about missing the next beat. At the same time you trigger the riser, engage the looper. Now you can do a beat roll on one track while the build up come through on the other.
#3: Alien LaserBots
Last but not least, we can take elements learned in the first two techniques and combine them to produce weird glitchy zaps and bleeps, perfect for some improv breaks in your performance. The Alien LaserBots effect mostly comes from looping/rolling a sample on the remix deck, but you can do the following with Flux Mode enabled to get really crazy results:
- Use the platters to scratch your sample back and forth
- Flick the pitch control up and down to get a nice wobbly sound
- Layer in some effects like a reverb for extra trippyness
Once you turn off the looper, your song will pick up right where you left it.
Have any other Flux Mode tips or tricks? Share them with us in the comments. Also don’t forget you can find some of the sounds featured in Mad Zach’s videos by visiting the DJ TechTools store.