Uses This

A collection of nerdy interviews asking people from all walks of life what they use to get the job done.

A picture of Jonny Wilson

Jonny Wilson

Video DJ

Posted in mac, musician, video, windows

Who are you, and what do you do?

Jonny Wilson, aka Eclectic Method. I call myself a video DJ producer remixer.

What hardware do you use?

In the studio I work almost entirely on a PC. I have a reasonable 6 core machine for the studio, and on the move I have a suped-up Alienware that can handle 1080HD video and effects. Then I just have a pile of hard drives and a few crates of hard drives in the cupboard that will never see the light of day, but I can't bare to part with them.

When I play live I use a MacBook Pro, a Serato SL4 with 4 channels so I can have 2 audio + 2 audio/video channels, a Pioneer DJM-800 mixer because it has MIDI out so I can control video cross-fading and effects with the dials on the mixer, and CDJs (almost always 1000s).

And what software?

I edit almost everything with Sony Vegas. It has the ability to edit music in beats and bars instead of frames and seconds, which is just vital to feeling musical about video or looping stuff as you work on it like you would in an audio editing program.

I use After Effects to do small effects - mostly cutting stuff out and then editing it in Vegas using an alpha channel. Recently I have started using VDMX to do effects (mostly stuff made by Vade), I just haven't found any easier way to do stuff like convincing datamoshing and simulated breaking graphics cards on a PC. I plug an MPC into VDMX and just jam about with dials and record it using Syphon. Then I bring the edits back to Vegas and choose the best bits.

When I left school I worked a bit with Brian Eno, and one of the most useful things he taught me was just to record everything and cut the best ideas later. Sometimes I will sit down and already hear in my head what I want, but a lot of it is picking the best moments from messing around. I use Ableton to make music with synths like Massive and Trilian and a lot of effects like Guitar Rig and Waves plugins. Ableton has a great way of compiling multiple channels of audio, it sounds the greatest to me and doesn't start clipping as you pile on more and more. Sometimes I use a very simple MIDI keyboard and MPC to work out melodies and beats.

What would be your dream setup?

At the moment I am working on two shows that are going completely different directions. One is using Algoriddim's Vjay app to DJ video on an iPad, so I can show up at a house party with the smallest setup available and jam 1080 HD video.

The other setup I am working on is multiple MacBook Pros running VDMX and Ableton to run multiple video screens but with different images on each that interact and can be "jammed" live. I hope from there to add stuff like holograms and portals to other dimensions once they are invented. The odd robot wouldn't go amiss, and I'd love to waste some money on fogscreens. I'd like ED-209 to walk out halfway through a show and inform everyone they have "20 seconds to comply".