Considering moving back to Controllers (GAH??!?!?!!?!?)
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  1. #1
    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
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    Default Considering moving back to Controllers (GAH??!?!?!!?!?)

    For those who don't know, a short history.

    I started on Vinyl.
    Moved to SSL. Sold it.
    Moved to CDJ-200s + Vinyl.
    Moved to Final Scratch 2. Sold FS2.
    Sold CDJs, moved back to SSL (vinyl).
    Sold everything, Moved to Ableton + VCM-600.
    Sold everything, Moved to Traktor Pro (X1s + xone:62).
    Incorporated Maschine (X1 + Traktor/Maschine + xone:62).
    Sold everything (except Maschine), moved back to SSL (1200s + vestax).

    I went back to SSL because I realized that I had more fun that way, and the all-controller sync'd setup just wasn't as much fun. I'd play out whenever the opportunity came up (mostly small parties), but I never practiced……and I never beat-grid new songs until the day before I was supposed to play out because it was more of a PITA than a time-saver.

    </history>

    Recently, I was considering getting rid of the Vestax and buying an Empath…and probably a 3rd 1200 and an SL3 at some point.

    Then, I saw the Pioneer DDJ-SX. It looks really interesting. I'm not good at finger drumming, but I could definitely learn to abuse its sampler……it's been on my to-do list for a while anyway. Everything else seems pretty straightforward. And it's probably a better mixer than my Vestax.

    The motivation is that I just plain don't have room for my full DVS setup in my current apartment. I could squeeze in a DDJ-SX, and then I'd probably actually practice & spin for fun as opposed to just not spinning very much of the time.

    I keep thinking that maybe meeting people will eventually lead to steady gigs, but every time I start making in-roads, life gets in the way and I stop going out for like 6 months. So, I'm pretty sure it'll be nothing but a hobby.

    And with the standalone mixer, I could still spin vinyl, which I enjoy occasionally.

    Computer is currently a 13" MBP, but I'll probably switch to an iMac (produciton + general use) and an 11" Air (DJ + work/school). So, that's not a huge issue as long as Serato DJ works on Mountain Lion.

    I don't think I'm really interested in any other controllers.


    Thoughts?


    Note: for those wondering, yes, I'm still in school. Apparently I hate the real world because I keep coming back.

  2. #2

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    Why not just get some CDJs, or small CDJs even? Even that XDJ thing has 99% of a 2 deck DVS, and has analogue ins for decks. There are pretty compact setups that don't involve a laptop.

  3. #3
    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
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    XDJ is more expensive and looks like a toy. From looking at it, I know I won't be happy. Plus, I think I went in to GC and felt one at some point. If I were going to do that, I'd just assume get an SCS.4DJ for small parties and never practice………which is like what I'm doing now, except that I have turntables for the small parties.

    I don't mind having a computer involved. If I were going to go without it, I'd probably just get CDJs (2000s or 850s) and while I can afford it, I don't want to. And it'd have the same kinds of space problems as the turntables. Lesser CDJs aren't for me. I spent the entire time I had with CDJ-200s wishing they were better. They got abused like mad. To their credit they kept working, but I usually threw them unprotected at my trunk (rather than putting them in it) because after spinning on them, I wanted them to die.

    I can perform on anything. Enjoying it is 100% feel to me……I might as well not have a setup rather than have something collect dust that I don't enjoy.

    Apparently my local GC has the DDJ-SX's in stock, though IDK if they're on the floor yet.

  4. #4

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    why no Xone K2's and a standalone mixer? as much as i like my X1 i think i will sell it and pick up a pair of K2s, i dont think i could ever go all in one controller, it just wouldnt be enjoyable

  5. #5

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    Realistically, CDJ-850s are like $550 a deck refurb from Pioneer, thats deal of the century if you're looking for a refreshing setup, and costs right around what the SX is going for.

    The real decision youre going to have to make is what kind of setup you really want. From there it's just what fits your fancy.

  6. #6
    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoizeuNit View Post
    why no Xone K2's and a standalone mixer? as much as i like my X1 i think i will sell it and pick up a pair of K2s, i dont think i could ever go all in one controller, it just wouldnt be enjoyable
    I've done the X1 thing. K2s aren't all that different to me. I don't like sync, and I don't see a control on there that would feel anything like a CDJ/TT pitch fader.

    I have no problem with sync. I just don't get good results out of auto-gridding and I know I won't take the time to grid my tracks manually.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shishdisma View Post
    Realistically, CDJ-850s are like $550 a deck refurb from Pioneer, thats deal of the century if you're looking for a refreshing setup, and costs right around what the SX is going for.

    The real decision youre going to have to make is what kind of setup you really want. From there it's just what fits your fancy.
    That's the problem. What fits my fancy is not viable in my current living situation. I just don't have the space for turntables and a mixer. And the SX might get there while costing about half of what 850s and the mixer I'd upgrade to would cost. Again, I can afford that……I just don't want to.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by mostapha View Post
    I've done the X1 thing. K2s aren't all that different to me. I don't like sync, and I don't see a control on there that would feel anything like a CDJ/TT pitch fader.

    I have no problem with sync. I just don't get good results out of auto-gridding and I know I won't take the time to grid my tracks manually.
    Ah makes sense, yeah im not really a fan of sync either, K2s plus my 1200s is the winner for me, but i know you said u need a smaller form factor and turntables make that hard

  8. #8
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    Do it, and keep your tables. Like you, I started on turntables and have gone through various set ups. I get the most enjoyment from playing on 1200's but to be honest, at home, I play mostly on my VCI-300 when I'm messing aroudn because it's easy, quick, accessable and I can play anywhere in my house on it.

    I recently plugged in my X1 and DJM into Traktor to try out 2.6 and I couldn't stand it for more than 20 minutes. Just not what I consider fun. Although I have the most fun on tables, when Im at home I don't play on them as much so I can see why having a controller would cause you to play more at home. For me, sometimes I gig with my SL3 and then never hook it back up, or I've taken my mixer to a gig, etc. and instead of hooking things back up I just use my VCI. Now having used a bunch of controllers, I think the key is to find one you truly enjoy playing on, or you'll be in the same shoes. I had a DDJ-S1 and I still liked the VCI-300 more, in fact I got rid of a VCI for a DDJ-S1 and then went back to a VCI because of it's size I figured I'd give myself more chances to play small parties than lugging around a DDJ. So if the goal is to play more, then get it.

    If you have the cash I say put your tables under the bed, don't sell them, put your DDJ-SX somewhere you'll use it, and keep your SL card handy in the event you play at a club and just want to take you SSL box. Sell the Vestax.

    I'd wait till the reviews were out though before buying.
    SSL - DJM 800 - Technic 1200's - X1 - ITCH - NS6 - VCI-300

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by haze324 View Post
    If you have the cash I say put your tables under the bed, don't sell them, put your DDJ-SX somewhere you'll use it, and keep your SL card handy in the event you play at a club and just want to take you SSL box. Sell the Vestax.
    Definitely not selling my tables again. Well……unless I already have 3 M5Gs in my possession. I made that mistake once.

    The sad thing about turntables is that they're just for me and with where I live now, I can't use them. If I went to a club, I'd burn CDs or use USB sticks. Unless I'm touring/headlining, it's not worth the hassle to set up anything else except maybe a groove box IMO. And I think I've about missed out on that one at this point.

    Quote Originally Posted by haze324 View Post
    I'd wait till the reviews were out though before buying.
    Not sure about waiting for reviews, but definitely getting whatever I get from Gutiar Center with Pro Coverage. Between that and being a former employee, worst case scenario, I run it over with my car, say it wasn't reliable/robust enough, and get the money to put towards something else. Somehow, they think that's preferable to allowing you to return things that come with software.

    Also, The VCI-300 is still kind of a contender in my mind. I like the way Vestax stuff feels, and it's capable of just about everything I actually do when DJing. It's just that for a few hundred more, I feel like the SX is much more of a controller.

    Maybe I'll go by GC and see if they have one on the floor yet.

  10. #10
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    If I was a "pro" mobile DJ I'd probably take a good look at the DDJ-SX as it really is feature packed, real mixer, 4 channel, mic inputs, etc. All things wanted/needed for serious mobile gigs. For messing around I've enjoyed the VCI-300 more than any controller (perhaps the NS7 was a bit funner, but huge and heavy as hell).

    I stopped club DJing a few month back and started selling a few things and my boy Bigbeatz on this forum gave me great advice he said "don't sell your tables and don't sell your DJM-800, even if you only use it at home....every time you play on it you are going to feel like a pro playing in a club" and he was 100% correct. So when I play on that equipment it's absolutely just for me.

    the VCI is just very convenient, small, easy to use and I don't do much out of the norm. 2 decks, a few effects, and handful of drops, handful of scratches. There's def. something missing in comparison to "real" gear but I've felt that with every controller. Also with current prices and the VCI being older equipment I've seen a VCI-300MK2/VFX-1 combo going on CL for 400.00 bucks. Hard to beat.

    I think your choice if you want to play more (even if it is for yourself) and you need to save space is find a controller that "feels" fun for you. I had an S4 and liked it, but never loved it. Much more enjoy the simple VCI. (same way some folks enjoy their VCI-100 with arcades so much. It's just fun). If you get to test out the SX, post up your thoughts on it.
    SSL - DJM 800 - Technic 1200's - X1 - ITCH - NS6 - VCI-300

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