My Serato Settings

I just thought I’d post up a little bit about what settings I use in Serato ScratchLive and why. Obviously different people choose different settings for different reasons but I hope that maybe by explaining why I use the ones I do I might help some people discover new things they can do with this software.

These settings are from Serato 1.8, some new settings and features were added with this release so if the options look different to your’s then you might want to consider upgrading from The ScratchLive Website.


There’s not many options in the hardware settings section. You have the audio input which you much set to phono for normal turntables or line for CD players, turntables with digital output or any other line device with line level output.

The usb buffer size you want as low as possible (slider as far to the left as possible), the way to set this is to start all the way to the left and try it, if you get glitches then move it 1 notch to the right and try again. Repeat until you don’t get any glitches with your sound.


Track End Warning

I have this on, all it does is flash on the screen when a track is running out, I’ve found this slightly useful on occasion and it has no adverse effects so I leave it on.

Playback Using Shift Keys

This makes it so shortcut keys which affect the play back of a track won’t work unless you press the shift key at the same time. This can be useful in avoiding embarrassing circumstances in a badly lit club or if you’ve had a couple of drinks. For me though I found it got in the way as I like to do things which I have to do quickly and not loose time thinking about what I am trying to do.

Lock Playing Deck

Again has the potential to avoid embarrassing situations, and in fact the very first time I played out using ScratchLive I loaded a track on the wrong turntable while it was playing. However I again found it got in the way and more over the Instant Doubles feature doesn’t work the same with it on.

Sort Cues Chronologically

Thought this might get confusing if it rearranged cue point which I was already used to so I left it off.

Use Auto Gain

This works for me, means less messing around with the gain knobs on my mixer. I left the setting at 92db just because that was the default.

Hi-Fi Resampler (added with 1.8)

This came new with version 1.8, better quality sound…hell yeah!

Play From Start

I have this on, it just means when I load a new song in relative (or internal) mode it starts at the beginning of the song

Instant Doubles

Hell yeah! fantastic feature (must have lock playing deck disabled for it to be really useful). Instant doubles is an easy way to move over to the other turntable seemlessly as well as quickly perfoming tricks like doubling, phasing and echos (see the beat juggling tutorial). Rather that go into more detail I think I will write a post at a later date specifically on using Instant Doubles.

Play From First Cue Point

Normally I set a cue point at the start of each file but on occasion I don’t, I therefore leave this setting off so that I still get a chance to start at the beginning of the track instead of the first cue point.


This is for internal mode only so it doesn’t really concern me, be on the occasions I use internal mode I generally prefer instant breaking anyway.


I generally prefer stereo here so you can hear the music in all it’s spacial glory, however mono is useful at times in some clubs and sometime when recording in the studio. What would be really nice would be if Serato made this option available for each turntable and on the main screen but we’ll just have to wait and see.

Vinyl Control

Reverse Vinyl Scroll

This is for when you choose which file to load using the central ring of the control record. I consider this being like the invert Y axis settings on some FPS computer games, some people find one way more logical, others the opposite. For me the default works best.

Adjust Loops With Vinyl

Not really used this much but it seems like a good idea.

Next Song On Flip

I quite like this idea, if you got a play list and you want to work throught I guess it could be useful. For me though I generally don’t have the time to flip the record and if I do it’s generally because the side I’m play has got too dirty. So I leave it off to avoid confusion.

Vinyl Scroll Speed

This again is to do with picking tracks with the inner most ring on the control record, fastest works for me.

Drop To Absolute Position (added with 1.8)

Potentially useful if you are in relative mode with no cue points, problem is you can’t reposition you marker when this is on and when you replace the needle it will jump into a different point in the track. If I end up in this situation I generally set some cue points on the fly.

Drop To Cue Point (added with 1.8)

By far one of the most useful additions in version 1.8, I talk about this a bit in the post about juggling with Serato, using this you can jump to cue point with out touching your laptop and it achieves the same thing as sticking stickers on your record grooves but in a nicer & easier way. This option is an absolute must for the Serato juggler!

Vinyl Start Offset

This is for when you’ve burnt out the start of your control records and want to get a bit more life out of them. I guess it may also be useful if you records are slightly warp and skip alot at the outer edge. I’ve not had the need for this yet and when my control records burn out I’d probably just use another set.


Read iTunes Library

I don’t get on with iTunes at all, I’ve tried but I just get annoyed with. Also most of the tunes in the iTunes shop don’t working in Serato without loads of messing about anyway.

Protect Library

I don’t use this although I think I should probably get into the habit, as I understand it when it is on it doesn’t allow accidental changes to the library.

Center On Selected Song

Not tried this but I’m quite happy with the way songs are listed anyway.

Show All File Types

Don’t see the point of enabling this unless there is some issue you are trying to fix.

Include Subcrates

I like this it means I can have a Hip Hop crate with US Hip Hop, UK Hip Hop, Instrumental, etc. as sub crates but still if I want to mix all styles of Hip Hop I can select the parent crate and see them all.

Autofill Overviews

I normally build all my overviews as soon as I import my tracks into the library but on occassion when I don’t then this is useful.

Import AAC Files (new to 1.8)

Why not, the more audio files the better althought to be honest I don’t think I’ve actually got any AAC files.


Maximum Screen Updates (per second)

I left this at the default, I don’t seen any reason to change it as I’ve not had any problems.

Audio Cache (seconds)

Again, not had any problems so it can stay when it is.

Horizontal Waveforms

YUCK! Tried it, didn’t like it. It’s much nicer having the 2 waveforms running side by side.


I don’t use midi devices with Serato at this point in time so I’m not going to talk about it.

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