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Power App: Image Line Deckadance

June 30, 2014

Creatively slice, gate, repeat, and scratch audio with the Gross Beat effect in any DAW

Add compelling rhythmic effects to full mixes or single stems as a finishing element.


Deckadance 2 works as standalone DJ software or as a VST instrument plug-in. You can use it to process audio through its effects engine, where you can chain up to three effects and choose to effect the three EQ bands individually. There’s also a separate effect module called Gross Beat that’s worth the $79 price on its own; the highly editable Gross Beat applies a huge amount of real-time slicing, gating, repeating, and scratching effects to audio. You can record Deckadance 2’s output like a regular virtual instrument in a DAW.

Step 1 With music playing in one of Deckadance 2’s decks, select the Gross Beat effect from the center module of the software. The module holds 16 labeled presets—eight for left deck and eight for the right deck. Click one of the presets to activate the effect. Each Gross Beat pattern is one bar in length.
Step 2 Click the arrow at the bottom of one of the Gross Beat preset slots to open the menu and choose a new preset. More than 200 presets are available in categories such as Turntablist, Stutter, Gates, and DJ Patterns. Experiment with three playback modes for each preset: One Shot, where the effect pattern plays once and re-triggering the button stops the effect; Re-trigger, where the pattern plays once but allows you to re-trigger the pattern from the beginning while it’s playing back; and Loop, which repeats the pattern until you re-trigger the button to stop it.
Step 3 Check out the Gross Beat Editor by choosing Show Editor from the Gross Beat menu. The resulting grid represents 4 beats of time horizontally and 8 beats of time behind the current playback position on the vertical axis. Time and Volume envelopes show you the effect pattern for your preset.
Step 4 Edit the Gross Beat pattern by adding, moving, or deleting control points, and changing segment types and curves. Editing options are available from a contextual menu or from the editor menu, where you can snap movements to the grid, flip the curves vertically, and more. When you are finished, you can name and save the preset.

Step 4: While editing a Gross Beat pattern, loop the track playing in Deckadance, so you can hear the changes you make in a consistent way. In the Loop column of either of Deckadance 2’s decks, choose a loop length from the drop-down menu (4, 8, or 16 beats recommended), and then click Loop to activate it. 
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