• Matthew Messina

    does anyone know where to find traktor mapping for the hercules air+? I looked on traktor bible but I can only find the air not the air+

    • http://www.antifmradio.com/ antifm

      what would happen if you applied the AIR. Then saw what it was missing and applied those mappings to it?
      can you do that to start?

  • DJSpec

    The Gemini G2V/G4V is only 7-bit MIDI enabled controller. Keep that in mind. I hope that Gemini would update the firmware to give us the promised 14-bit resolution on the controls!

    • amontanez

      I believe the jogs are 14-bit… I did contact Gemini specifically in regards to the pitch faders, and they said the pitch faders are definitely 7-bit and CANNOT be made 14-bit with a firmware update (it is a hardware limitation).

  • Pingback: Six Controllers for Under $300 ReviewedUniqueSquared Pro Audio Blog

  • Phil Morse

    Thanks for featuring our video. Just like to add that for me, the Denon MC2000 is THE budget controller – it’s the only one under $300 I’d actually DJ on public happily forever with if need be.

  • Matthew Messina

    I’m thinking of getting the kontrol s2 mk2 as my first controller. My computer can’t run serato since it has a crappy AMD processor (amd a4-3300m APU) so I plan on using traktor. Anyone have any other recommendations? I doubt I will be able to afford the s4 if anyone was going to recommend that.

    • Mario García

      Get a traktor x1 mk2 and a traktor z1, portabilty, fun and cheapness (if the word exist)

  • Toontown

    The audio issues with VMS2 and Traktor are well documented–any n00b should avoid this controller if they want to use Traktor. I think an X1 and a Z1 will get you where you need to be and you’ll get Pro-level software to boot.

  • Dave

    Novation Twitch with full Serato DJ. Cost me £200 total, second hand but barely used. Better having performance pads than low quality jogs I reckon.

  • Chris Wunder

    Best upgrade to Traktor 2 is to go on craigslist and find a MK1 Kontrol S2 for 200-300 bucks.

  • e.fada

    You can sometimes find the VCI-380 as B-Stock new for around $375, which with the free Serato DJ included makes it roughly the same investment as a Mixtrack Pro w/Serato DJ upgrade. Also, The Vestax Typhoon goes for under $200, has a built in sound card, comes with Virtual DJ, has presets for Traktor and Traktor LE, works with Serato DJ and intro, and is compatible with Mixvibes. Great way for a beginner to get in at under $200 and try out all the major DJ software programs.

  • U2berggeist

    I’m surprised you didn’t talk about the behringerr studio 4a. I have that now and it works pretty fantastic. It has tons of cue points, a dedicated loop and FX section for both decks. While it doesn’t have much in the controlerist department, I think it’s at least worth mentioning.

  • smurf

    i would get second hand Pioneer CDJ100s and a cheap mixer for that price… or if you insist on computer based dj , i would take NI Z1 + Numark DJ2GO and will upgrade in the future to NI X1mk2 if needed.

  • Gangi

    Mixtrack is good one for dusty tripping in mexico! saw one guy with it – SUPERB BOMB, and not so pity will be in case of crash at the end of good party)

  • Michael Wagner

    been a few years, but I’d imagine the Twitch still holds up pretty well, though you’d probably need to do a fair amount of custom mapping for traktor. to be honest, that was always one of the things I liked about it.

  • Mark Smith

    MY career started out with me using a Pioneer DDJ-WeGO (Original) back in October of 2012 with VDJ Pro 7 (I paid for the upgrade however it was discounted due to the WeGO purchase with VDJ LE) as my official first piece of hardware. I had been a DJ prior however this was my first serious investment and when it comes to simple there are a lot of these controllers that would fall somewhat short. The WeGO is short on features compared to most of these however it also has iOS compatibility that puts it into a different class of beginner controllers. It is also in the same price range as these other offerings. Alternately for between about $35 and $50 more than what was reviewed here you can have a Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol Z1 and an X1 Mk2 and also have a Traktor Pro 2 license and be able to record, broadcast, and work with software that has a ton of community support for mappings and overall help.

  • http://www.antifmradio.com/ antifm

    i have to say.VDJ has come a long way from its really bad rap start. I am not a user but i have test it out a couple years ago and even in that stage it still seemed a bit enticing. iwas also looking into the

    AMERICAN AUDIO VMS2 but it just didnt have some of the qualities i needed compared to the use of DekaDance. Then i bought a new controller and Deka wasnt pre-mapped to it so i ended up with NI S4 – along with Taktor obviously.
    if i wasnt able to get it, id have ended up with the VMS2 im sure

  • Jake Hale

    I love seeing my three favorite DDJ blogs referencing each other. WORX, DJTT, & DDJTips.

  • nem0nic

    I’m not sure what’s going on here, so let me see if I get this right. It’s OK to lift images from someone else’s website? That image of the Numark Edge on the trade show booth is a DJWorx image – http://djworx.com/musikmesse-2013-numark-edge-dj-controller-hands-on/ . Is it OK to talk about warez in the forums now too?

    • DJ Hombre

      …and the Gemini G2V is Phil Morse for Digital DJ Tips!

  • LongTimeLurker1stTimePoster

    Mixtrack I & II series, regular or Pro, are just fine. Regular Mixtrack I controllers are about $100 used, if that, sometimes can even get a Mixtrack I Pro for about $130 used. For a tech oriented site, I think it might be useful to have a “sidebar” discussion about not *always* needing a built-in soundcard. With a modern PC / Laptop (i5, 4GB RAM, 7200 RPM drive) and decent Windows configuration, a person can use ASIO4ALL and save at least $100 – $150 off the numbers listed here. It’s not glamorous, but think how many good tracks a person can purchase with that leftover dough to get started…

  • Arj

    Novation Twitch is available for less the $299 I think. And its got a huge number of buttons so there’s no fiddling around.

  • http://djworx.com/ Mark Settle

    Any chance of a picture credit Markkus?

    • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thYkF4Fpbog filespnr

      Watch out mark, theyll ddos you

    • http://www.djtechtools.com Ken DJ TechTools

      Mark, my apologies to you for the error in crediting the image. I’ve since removed it from the piece, but please know that this was not the fault of the author.

      • http://djworx.com/ Mark Settle

        Thanks Ken.

  • Hugh

    I think that the most important thing in a good starter controller should be high resolution, accurate and long Pitch faders as well as good jog wheels..Other features like Filters, Effects, Cues etc. are all very cool and once mastered add a ton to your mix, but don’t these controllers just promote a generation of sync-pushing button mashers with little understanding of the core albeit ‘technical’ skills behind DJing? To that end i think the American Audio controller must be the best starter effort

  • hushhush…what what!


  • renegadesanta

    Older, general-purpose MIDI controllers are good options as well. The Evolution UC-33e is discontinued but can be had on eBay for usually less than $200 and has more than enough knobs and faders, if a little short on buttons. I’ve seen an interesting setup involving two Akai LPD8s and a Korg nanokontrol, which seemed pretty comprehensive, but most of this kind of stuff doesn’t have audio interfaces. Out of this list I would probably go for the Gemini

    • Oddie O’Phyle

      i still love the UC-33e, it was a great controller. used it in my live set up for 5, 6 and 7. ended up giving it to my 12 year old with a launchpad and my ableton licence when i switched to maschine. she still uses it.

    • Audun Notevarp Sandvold

      Great options, but you gotta remember the first line in this article:
      “Starting to DJ doesn’t have to be so expensive or intimidating that it freaks you out.”

      Most newbies aren’t gonna start building maps by them selves when starting out….

  • calgarc

    I did used to have a launchpad S mapped for full 4 deck control of traktor pro. EQ’s effects and all. i was even able to get an LED meter working using a line of pads :D

    • Sprchrgd

      I too used to mix with Launchpad. It is indeed possible, but it was so terrible compared to how comfortable you can play with Twitch. I cannot imagine myself intentionally using Launchpad with Traktor anymore.

      • calgarc

        i used it more for transport controls and mixed externally, but the mapping was a fail safe in case i did not have a mixer to use for a show

        • Audun Notevarp Sandvold

          Great option, but you gotta remember the first line in this article:
          “Starting to DJ doesn’t have to be so expensive or intimidating that it freaks you out.”

          Most newbies aren’t gonna start building maps by them selves when starting out….

          • calgarc

            true. great thing is, others have already made maps for almost every type of controller :D

          • Audun Notevarp Sandvold

            Absolutely, and personally I love to mess around with a lot of midi controllers, can be a lot of fun and very customizable. However, I think the article was trying to focus on the VERY basic plug&play segment.

      • DJ_ForcedHand

        Yeah, I think this article might have chosen to disqualify some very good controllers that sell for. ‘a little bit more than $300.’ So, with that in mind, I think that people would benefit a great deal from controllers in the $300 – $400 range, like the Twitch (which really can give most of what a Controller DJ is looking for all by itself… Ok, with a laptop computer plugged in).