The 110th trade show for the National Association of Music Merchants, more commonly known as NAMM, took place last week in Anaheim and crossfadr was on the scene. The massive conference was held on three levels of the cavernous Anaheim Convention Center. Over four days 1441 exhibitors from around the world showed off the latest and greatest in musical instruments, technology and other music related products to some 95,709 registered attendees.
Crossfadr combed the halls in an effort to find out about some of the companies that are offering new products and technologies for DJs, selectors, turntablists and vinyl fanatics. Here’s a look at some of the cooler DJ-related booths we encountered as we wove through the throngs of shaggy-haired metal-heads noodling away on the latest custom electric guitar gear.
Headquartered in Yokohama, Japan, Stokyo is a company that specializes in distributing premium DJ products including hardware, software and analog records. What set Stokyo apart from some of the bigger name DJ-tech related exhibits we encountered at NAMM was the company’s commitment to analog and maintaining a decidedly old school aesthetic.
“Blending the old school vibe with modern technology is what it’s all about at Stokyo,” explained one of the company’s DJ/representatives standing around the crowded turntables at the Stokyo booth.
Stokyo’s product line includes an extensive selection of break, beat and scratch tool analog vinyl as well as a line of custom Serato Control vinyl that feature designs by renowned street artists. Other products the company produces include slipmats, apparel, jewelry and accessories. Stokyo also has a license to produce and distribute the Soundwagon, the world’s smallest portable vinyl player, which famously comes in the form of a miniature VW Bus that travels around a record in a circular motion, projecting the sound out a tiny speak in its roof.
For more about Stokyo and a complete selection of the products they have available visit: www.stokyoworld.com
Of course once you’ve ordered your custom Serato Control vinyl from Stokyo you won’t want to go back to just dropping your records on those tattered old slipmats. To that end, you’ll want to pay a visit to Slipmats Online.
“We carry custom full color slipmats in a variety of weights and felts,” said Kevin Springfield, a rep at the Slipmats Online booth. “No limit on color or artwork as long as it fits on the template.”
Turnaround for custom slipmats is normally about ten days to two weeks. “You just email your artwork to us,” Springfield explained. “We put it on a template, we send it back for approval and then we’ll run from one to thousands of pairs of slipmats.”
The San Diego-based company offers a sliding price structure with the cost of each slipmat going down the more you order. Individual slipmats start at about $20 each.
To submit your artwork and order your own custom set, visit: www.slipmatsonline.com
Ion: iLP & Vinyl Forever
Even if you’re a total vinyl junkie, hauling all those records around can get cumbersome. Or maybe you want to hear that rare ‘70s funk LP you won in an online auction the next time you’re on the treadmill at the gym. To that end you’ll want to check out the iLP by Ion. The iLP is a turntable conversion system that enables you to transfer your vinyl records directly onto your iPod, iPhone or iPad.
“The iLP allows you to take you vinyl records and convert them to MP3s or WAV files,” explained Ion representative Fred Galkin. “It accommodates iPod Touch, iPhone, iPods, iPads, anything with a 30pin connector, and it goes direct. It’s also got a USB so if you want to store all your stuff on your computer, you can do that as well.”
The iLP features an RCA out that allows you to listen to your records while you are transferring them, or just to use it as a regular turntable. It retails for $99 and is available from major retailers across the U.S. Of course if you already happen to have a few turntables lying around, you may be better off with Vinyl Forever.
“Vinyl Forever does everything iLP does if you already have your own turntable,” explains Galkin. “You plug your turntable in, it’s even got a ground and USB control. It comes with its own software, it’s called Easy Vinyl Tape Converter and it comes with all of our conversion products. Its very easy, very step-by-step, it tells you exactly when to drop the needle when to hit record, all of that stuff.”
The iLP retails for around $99 while the iPod-sized Vinyl Forever goes for just $34.99.
For more information on the iLP, Vinyl Forever and some of the other fun products Ion produces visit: www.ionaudio.com