Stems are dooooomed. Doooomed, I tell ya!

No, bud, I’m a #1 fan of change. Can’t remember I last time I had a crossfader out of bypass mode though.

I’ve enjoyed loads of big technology launches that I’m sure you use everyday; like Super-Audio CD, Sony Minidisc, DivX, CSR AptX.

Everyone’s a DJ now, including me. This tech is great.

Same. That’s a truth nugget right there.

Haha and here’s me doing a massive reset on my DJ skills and learning how to use one :rofl:

I’ve tried to scratch but the coordination needed is by far more than my brain can handle.

Maybe one day I’ll revisit it.

It’s mainly cutting on the 45s for me, learning the timing. Too many short soul records can’t be blended


I think that, as in any field, as soon as there’s a new technology, it’s only those who don’t master it, who don’t understand it well.

Most people will certainly use stems just to isolate an acapella or an instrumental and to do fairly basic things…

Whereas in reality stems can be very powerful and formidable in terms of creativity in a mix when you know how to exploit this technology.

I’ve often said it but I’m so used to using stems that now when I mix without them I often feel frustrated because I can’t do certain things I’d like to do. And I find it a lot less fun than when I can use stems.

The only time I engage the crossfader is when I’m playing Old, Middle & Nu-School Breaks. :stuck_out_tongue:

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That’s quite a narrow minded view of it, firstly Stems has been a thing for over a decade in software world with Traktor so it’s hardly ‘new’ and before that people were using dubs and acapellas/reprise records and instrument samplers to get creative, ive also got some locked grooves on vinyl that can loop over a bar of music forever.

Perhaps it’s just the fact people are sick of anything that gets hyped to the point it’s rammed down their throat all day, every day. This over exaggerated complaining that life without stems is simply not worth living etc etc.

Whenever something gets over marketed then over hyped to death by the internet pitch fork wielding crowd it’s going to invite pushback from people who don’t fall for every single new feature/gimmick that comes along. It’s nothing to do with lack of understanding, it’s to do with those who tire of the constant spamming of a subject.

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I don’t think you can really compare the stems technology developed by NI years ago with the real-time stems separation we have today.

Of course, I agree that NI stems were of excellent quality, because they were multi-track titles that were already designed as such. But if they didn’t take off, it was because they were complicated to operate. You either had to buy tracks that had already been designed in this format, and the catalogue of available tracks was very thin because the record companies didn’t follow suit. What’s more, the few titles that did exist were more expensive.

Or you had to use utilities like nuo stems to prepare your own stems for specific tracks. This was time-consuming and tedious, not to say impossible to do for an entire collection. That’s why the NI version of stems flopped.

Today’s stem separation technology is much more flexible because you can use it instantly on any track in your collection, whether it’s a simple mp3, flac, wav or any other audio format compatible with your software. There’s no need for any special preparation beforehand, or for paying utilities like nuo stems.

As much as I never got hooked on NI stems because they were horribly complicated to set up, real-time stems totally change the game for me, simply because any track is compatible.

I agree it’s a great new technology, and very useful for mixing between tough tracks where vocals may clash etc.

But I also sympathise with people who are sick of seeing/hearing/reading about it on the internet…… I honestly don’t know a single DJ in person who cares about them (perhaps because most of them are CDJ users), yet logging into a social media site you would think every single DJ on the planet was head over heels with them. Even Jazzy Jeff and Skratch Bastid who were used by Serato to heavily promote it are barely using them, I watch Jeff steaming every week and he’s doing bits and bobs but nowhere near the usage that the original promo pointed to.

He certainly plays some hot stuff.

I’ve used NI Stems (Real stems) and they’re fun (I own a couple of Kontrol D2s) but the main reason they bombed was in my first post. If you produce a track, you or your engineer master it to sound as you intend - so producers don’t like releasing Stems. Period.

So whats the problem with AI stems (Fake stems) then? Well… the other problem with stems remains. i.e. It’s a real handful trying to use them creatively out of the lab, in front of an actual dance floor with real people on it, PFLing potential tracks as fast as you can, in the middle of peak time while some drunk punters just spilled a beer on a subwoofer and some others are hassling your left ear about playing their favourite vibe-breaking buzzkiller. No time for Tik-Tok transitions there, so nice tech, but I’m not missing them. The revolution is overrated.


I bought the Kontrol S8 for fun around 2015 and actually really enjoyed it as a different way of playing. It was gigged at home and just to experiment with.

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Interestingly Mixxx are adding the NI .stems format from what I was reading last week. Probably because it’s open and could pave the way to AI stems.

They’ve stated the AI stems is a little too far of a stretch at the moment.

Interesting code regarding the Serato format: AI stems separation · Issue #11391 · mixxxdj/mixxx · GitHub

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Is that me in the back of your icon?


Looks a lot like you, but actually Henchman 18, you remember? 18 had that mishap with the jetpack Mk.1?

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