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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:52 am 
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From all the threads and posts about hosting programs here, it's pretty obvious to me that no two karaoke hosts can agree on every requirement. Just one small example would be the fact that I want my program to remember singers and the songs they sang and perhaps when they sang them... BUT I couldn't care less about kiosks, or folks accessing my library list with their cell phones. In fact, my show computer never sees the internet, so that feature is useless to me.

Mr. Scott's thread about getting back into the business prompted me to ask what are the "MUST haves", the "SHOULD haves", the "NICE to haves", as well as the "NOT needed nor wanted" features.

And Please don't tell me how WRONG I am for not wanting kiosks. Different strokes for different folks.

So, in your opinion, what are some of the MUST, SHOULD, NICE TO, and COULDN'T CARE LESS features of your perfect hosting program?

My top priority, or must haves would be:

1. Easy learning curve for us software program challenged old folks.
2. Fast song (and singer) look-up without needing full titles, names, etc. IOW ability to search partial names.
3. Simple method to add new songs
4. Remember singers' names and the songs they have performed. Perhaps remember key etc.
5. Rotation control (adding, deleting, inserting) singers
6. Standard key & tempo change.

Nice to haves might include:

1. On screen rotation scroll
2. Automated or manual "bumper" music
3. Sound effects

Some of the foregoing you may want, and others you may not. What are your needs/wants?

As an aside... I've compiled, in a spread sheet, the names of all the singers I can remember who've performed at my shows... right now, totalling 284. I'd love to add those names to my hosting program without having to associate a song, or songs with them. That can come later, if or when they perform again.

Whew! This is a long-winded post. :?

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 7:37 am 
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I fully agree with your statement about the different needs of different hosts. A "one size fits all" or "perfect" hosting software cannot nor will not work in this industry. Each host has their own different styles, needs and clientele.

With that said, if a program has more features than what you are using, there is no harm in "not" using said features. So, unless there is a cost issue for said program, then a program that has more functions can and will fit more peoples needs. That just goes without saying tho.

My program needs are pretty much the same as yours, but with a couple of additions.
Yes, I require remote kiosk/tablet access for singers for what I will be doing.
And the "next up" singer scrolling is a must.

As far as features that are "wanted",
Song history/singer history
bumper music (I can play this from an outside source just as well)
sound effects
Songbook management

Anything more than these functions are basically fluff to me, but if the program had them, so be it.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:36 am 
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Mr Scott, all that you listed, OpenKJ has including the wants. The history just works differently from the other programs. But it remembers keys as well. To set the key if entering from the player you have to highlight it in the que and set the key. It has a basic songbook feature that generates a pdf file plus all the basic stuff is idiot proof.
When you add a new singer, you get three choices where to place them in the rotation.
Bottom - Self explanatory
Fair - before the current singer
Next - self explanatory.
History - You have to set the singer by clicking on the the heart in the singer que on the singer's line.
Then when you start a new show and want to add a singer who has been at your show instead of hitting the add singer, you hit the heart next to it. When you choose the singer in the list that pops up, it drops every single song in his history into his que. You then highlight the songs and right click for options and toggle the songs as played. You can then hand pick from the songs the ones that the singer wants to sing and drag that to the bottom of their playlist. Any new song gets added below.

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Last edited by DannyG2006 on Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:44 am 
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DannyG2006 wrote:
Mr Scott, all that you listed, OpenKJ has including the wants. The history just works differently from the other programs. But it remembers keys as well. To set the key if entering from the player you have to highlight it in the que and set the key. It has a basic songbook feature that generates a pdf file plus all the basic stuff is idiot proof.


The version I tried had very little in functionality. It had no "next up", nor "singing now". I did find where you can see singer/song history. I could not see where a person can customize the screen. It seemed like it was a basic player without any way to properly host a real show. I did not like what I saw, nor will I be using it at all. Thanks for the heads up on it tho.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:48 am 
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mrscott wrote:
DannyG2006 wrote:
Mr Scott, all that you listed, OpenKJ has including the wants. The history just works differently from the other programs. But it remembers keys as well. To set the key if entering from the player you have to highlight it in the que and set the key. It has a basic songbook feature that generates a pdf file plus all the basic stuff is idiot proof.


The version I tried had very little in functionality. It had no "next up", nor "singing now". I did find where you can see singer/song history. I could not see where a person can customize the screen. It seemed like it was a basic player without any way to properly host a real show. I did not like what I saw, nor will I be using it at all. Thanks for the heads up on it tho.

It's all in the settings under tools. And I totally disagree with the assessment that it's a basic player only.
It has all the features that Compuhost has except for the ability to play discs. In fact it has one ability that Compuhost does not have, the ability to be run on Linux, Mac and Windows. You can play outside files that are stored on flash drives, all you have to do is to open up the folder the song is in and drag it to the singer's playlist.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 9:02 am 
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Personally for me
The software absolutely has to include
Rotation management
A phone app with the ability to be used as a kiosk
A music break player that can be easily searched in the same manner as the karaoke side plus the ability to tell it to stop after the current song ends for when I want to go back to Karaoke without losing the next song in the playlist
A scroller that tells my singers who is singing in the next three spots in the rotation.
A countdown timer to let me know how much time I have to be in the audience trying to encourage people to sing and mixing the sound.
Forgot to mention the capability to export a csv file to use to print books.
And must run on Linux. Best way to avoid automatic updates in Windows. Always asks me to tell it whether or not I want to download and install the updates, including critical.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:54 pm 
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I'm all for simplicity because the more bells and whistles that are added to software, the more that can (a) go wrong and (b) distract you from what needs to be done.

I don't need rotation management because it's just not that difficult a task to manage. I use an older version of Hoster. I can put in a song and move it anywhere in the list I want it to be. If the singer wants the key dropped (or raised) I can preset the key change or just change it live. Again, it's not really necessary for me to have that key change memorized for that customer on that song.

Nor do I need (or want) a customer history because I firmly believe that it simply makes people lazy and encourages them to sing the same songs... over and over and over again... Not to mention answering the never ending questions like "What did I sing last time?" I realize that many hosts believe that a singer history is "customer service" but I disagree and besides, look how often it gets completely wiped away when a software program crashes anyway.

Don't need scrolling banners either. Whether it's for drink specials or anything else, I find it a distraction... (but that's me). I don't need it to tell singers how long before they're up because it's not going to speed it up that process and I already display the next 6 singers on the screen (as a big list) between each song. If there's a drink special, I'll announce it.... because I can focus the audience's attention on the announcement.

As I mentioned, I like simplicity and because of this I can truly say that I've not had a software crash in 15 years. I've had hardware go bad like a video card, hard drive or a keyboard but not in the software dept.

So for me, a "MUST have" is rock-solid software.. and there are some choices out there (I recommend against Karma just because of the lack of software support and numerous reported crashes etc... )

As far as a kiosk is concerned, it's a "nice to have" because I've not had the expense of printing a book, repairing a book, no slips, pencils, etc. in 12 years either and that adds up to a LOT of moolah even with a modest book size. But I can understand if a host has a primarily older audience, they simply prefer slips and that's another acknowledgment that rotation management simply isn't as difficult as it appears.

I have used wireless mics for most of my career and eliminating the wires has made life easier.... albeit more expensive, but sometimes the quality of life is worth the expense. So while they are not a "must have" they are certainly a "nice to have."


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:34 am 
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Earl, with CompuHost's remote request system, you do NOT need an internet connection to use a kiosk or smart phones. I would never use a subscription based songbooks online type service.

And Earl, it's always better to buy something that has more than less. Even though you may not need or use everything now, at least you can grow into it and know that these features are there if you should need them. We call this future proof. And it saves you money in the long run.

Danny, why do you always try to cram junk down someone's throat just because YOU like it. There is NO comparison between CH and Open KJ. Sorry but CH blows it away. And contrary to what you believe, VocoPro mics and Behringer mics are NOT better than Shure mics as you have stated in the past.

Danny's posts come with no merit or credibility so anyone would be a fool to take anything he says seriously.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:45 am 
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Mtu Hoster does all of that

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 12:24 pm 
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pretty much all software today does all of what you want.
if you want simplicity, Siglos lets you close all the other "bells and whistles" and only have the rotation screen itself sowing.
no clutter, just the needed rotation information.
but any software has the features you must have in your list.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 12:27 pm 
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Umf, umf, umf, (clearing my throat) so does Karma :D


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 12:29 pm 
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Alan B wrote:
Earl, with CompuHost's remote request system, you do NOT need an internet connection to use a kiosk or smart phones. I would never use a subscription based songbooks online type service.

And Earl, it's always better to buy something that has more than less. Even though you may not need or use everything now, at least you can grow into it and know that these features are there if you should need them. We call this future proof. And it saves you money in the long run.

Danny, why do you always try to cram junk down someone's throat just because YOU like it. There is NO comparison between CH and Open KJ. Sorry but CH blows it away. And contrary to what you believe, VocoPro mics and Behringer mics are NOT better than Shure mics as you have stated in the past.

Danny's posts come with no merit or credibility so anyone would be a fool to take anything he says seriously.

As do you lack credibility because I have heard both the EV and Bose systems and to be honest with the exception of the EV being an all in one unit, I haven't noticed any difference between the two in sound quality whether or not Bose mixers are used at all.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:14 pm 
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DannyG2006 wrote:
Alan B wrote:
Earl, with CompuHost's remote request system, you do NOT need an internet connection to use a kiosk or smart phones. I would never use a subscription based songbooks online type service.

And Earl, it's always better to buy something that has more than less. Even though you may not need or use everything now, at least you can grow into it and know that these features are there if you should need them. We call this future proof. And it saves you money in the long run.

Danny, why do you always try to cram junk down someone's throat just because YOU like it. There is NO comparison between CH and Open KJ. Sorry but CH blows it away. And contrary to what you believe, VocoPro mics and Behringer mics are NOT better than Shure mics as you have stated in the past.

Danny's posts come with no merit or credibility so anyone would be a fool to take anything he says seriously.

As do you lack credibility because I have heard both the EV and Bose systems and to be honest with the exception of the EV being an all in one unit, I haven't noticed any difference between the two in sound quality whether or not Bose mixers are used at all.


WoW!!! Just Wow!!!! Danny, you need some professional help,,,, from an audiologist. Your hearing is definitely impaired. I Hope you don't plan to host with those ears, cuz that would be a pretty good case of HWD...."Hosting while Deaf"


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:51 pm 
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Lonman wrote:
Mtu Hoster does all of that


Lonnie, could you be so kind to tell me what are some of the features and advantages of MTU Hoster? And how easy of installing and setting up the program by someone like ,,, let's say "me" who is "technically challenged". Again, thank you.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:16 pm 
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I guess it's just like any other program in the sense you will need to learn some of the in's and out's. For me I was able to utilize it within a few minutes of playing with it. Some things I did have to ask in their own forum which I got figured out very quickly. Other things I figured out simply by playing with buttons and what not. What I liked initially about it was it played all files including video files and still do (when others seem to discontinue support on certain file types). Built in ripper (no need to download secondary program). Built in songbook generator (no need to download secondary program). No it fully incorporates SongbookDB for singers to look up and send requests to you which automatically enter into the rotation (this is optional and does not need to be turned on) - I have mine set as a song search only. Fully incorporates Party Tyme .net so when you buy a song it automatically adds to the database for immediate use.
Marquee is completely customizeable to show whatever your need message wise or upcoming singers. There is also an option to choose a static upcoming singers at the top or bottom of the screen (I show the next 3 singers at all times). Really too much to list, i've asked for special things that were once exclusive to Hoster that some of the others have adopted too. They listen to their users and consider new features and have awesome customer support when (if) needed.

Very easy to teach kj's how to use for general hosting. I have never had a host not figure the general play ability it in a few minutes of going over the basics.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:16 pm 
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I think most people learn from early solutions they use and that's what they get used to. It takes people out of their comfort zone when things aren't where they used to be or the options are slightly different. Goes for more than just hosting software and it isn't a hard and fast rule but I think it's close. I tried a few others and they just didn't feel right and things just didn't make sense. People would probably use mine and say the same thing.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:40 pm 
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MrBoo wrote:
I think most people learn from early solutions they use and that's what they get used to. It takes people out of their comfort zone when things aren't where they used to be or the options are slightly different. Goes for more than just hosting software and it isn't a hard and fast rule but I think it's close. I tried a few others and they just didn't feel right and things just didn't make sense. People would probably use mine and say the same thing.


There is a lot of truth in what you say. It took time to go from Windows 98 to learn Windows XP and then later operating systems. Same would hold true to any hosting software,,, we get used to certain ways and it's hard to break those habits and step out of those comfort zones.

I for one do not mind learning new things and new ways of bettering what I do and how I do it. So, I am out there looking for the "perfect" one for me and what I want to do.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:17 pm 
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DannyG2006 wrote:
I have heard both the EV and Bose systems and to be honest with the exception of the EV being an all in one unit, I haven't noticed any difference between the two in sound quality whether or not Bose mixers are used at all.

You have just proven my point. You have no credibility whatsoever. For you to say there is no difference between EV and Bose is like saying there's no difference between peanut butter and jelly.

I agree with Mr. Scott. You have a substantial hearing loss. I think that you should seek professional help from both an audiologist and a psychiatrist. Maybe it's time to look into another profession.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 3:20 pm 
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mrmarog wrote:
Umf, umf, umf, (clearing my throat) so does Karma :D


Setting aside the possibility that Karma "might" actually be a decent software (I do not personally know), the fact remains that the seller offers very poor customer service to anyone who might have issues with installation or operation. A lot of people are not as adept at computer technology and software application to know what they are are doing, so they feel the need to ask questions. Bob, in all of his "wisdom" shows absolutely NO patience for those who he deems "un-educated".

Karma is less than a "perfect" choice for hosting software for that exact reason. (No customer service when needed)


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 5:33 pm 
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mrscott wrote:
mrmarog wrote:
Umf, umf, umf, (clearing my throat) so does Karma :D


Setting aside the possibility that Karma "might" actually be a decent software (I do not personally know), the fact remains that the seller offers very poor customer service to anyone who might have issues with installation or operation. A lot of people are not as adept at computer technology and software application to know what they are are doing, so they feel the need to ask questions. Bob, in all of his "wisdom" shows absolutely NO patience for those who he deems "un-educated".

Karma is less than a "perfect" choice for hosting software for that exact reason. (No customer service when needed)

You can get any question on Karma answered by users on this forum...as many already do. You really don't need (or want) Bob's Customer Service.

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