Looking for advice on where to begin with controllers and which software you use.
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  1. #1
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    Default Looking for advice on where to begin with controllers and which software you use.

    I started Djing with Traktor DJ then LE and recently Pro. I'm not playing out but it would be good to start a weekly show or do mixes to promote releases. Two options i'm considering are Traktor and a controller or Ableton Live with a Akai APC or similar.

    Setup i've been using comprises of Traktor Pro with a Z1 and maschine mk2 with the MOTOR template which works well but the issue i've had when mixing is keeping on top of whats going on; lack of visual feedback on the track settings, fx parameters etc so been relying on muscle memory when recording sets and praying i don't screw up which happened quite a few times.

    So i'm looking for a controller that's intuitive to use and controls most of Traktors functionality. The that seem best are the D2 or S2 but then there are things like Novation Twitch and the Denon MC2/3000 etc. I'm not loyal to Traktor but i do know it quite well so was curious about Serato etc as alternatives and which controllers are worth looking into.

    Live i know really well but is it possible to have as smooth a DJ setup as with Traktor using something like the APC or is there a better controller for DJing with ableton live?

    Ok that's about it, thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Tech Guru astromech's Avatar
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    Kontrol S5?
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  3. #3
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    Thanks, was thinking more in terms of a D2/S2 but i take the S5 has controls over all Traktors functionality? It's a bit out of my budget anyway for just for recording a few mixes but in that price range i'd definitely be looking at alternatives. It's just having hands on control so i can mix intuitively.

    But lets say 2-300 for budget.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by philtr3 View Post
    Thanks, was thinking more in terms of a D2/S2 but i take the S5 has controls over all Traktors functionality? It's a bit out of my budget anyway for just for recording a few mixes but in that price range i'd definitely be looking at alternatives. It's just having hands on control so i can mix intuitively.

    But lets say 2-300 for budget.
    Not an expert on this, but the Allen and Heath K1/2 midi condolers are good. For your budget you could probably get 2 or 3 ,and you can daisy chain them with 'X link' (just a cable that sends power and data to Allen and Heath controllers, saving you USB ports). You could then map them to traktor and you can have control over what you want.

  5. #5
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    Thanks, that could be ideal as it's not platorm dependent, i'll check for templates but i love the idea of daisy chaining and expanding. I'll look into templates and stuff as i don't want to have to everything from scratch.

    The Akai AMX looks nice but zero experience with Serato. Are there any used controllers worth looking into?

  6. #6
    Tech Mentor JelaniRobot's Avatar
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    Buy a used S4 and save the rest of your money to buy more music. The DJ is the sum of the records, not the strength of the MP3 player.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by JelaniRobot View Post
    Buy a used S4 and save the rest of your money to buy more music. The DJ is the sum of the records, not the strength of the MP3 player.
    I am leaning in that direction. It's the hardware i'm interested anyway, i'm probably either going to get an S4 or an Akai APC40 but am also curious about other controllers on the market that integrate well with the software.

  8. #8
    Moderator keithace's Avatar
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    I would start with something small and more traditional looking and acting. By this I mean something that is mixer based. Like an S2 or Akai AMX. Mixtracks are also fun to play with. Since you are just starting you might want to learn how a traditional mixer works and how to input and output things. I went through a myriad of controllers before I settled on a physical mixer with an Audio4 and a Kontrol X1.

    I came from turntables and CD players so I like the feel and flexibility of having an actual mixer.
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  9. #9
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    Thanks, the S2 looks ideal. I have the Z1 but i wanted something more traditional, i either forgot or didn't know of the S2; all i could find was D2s and S4s or X1s etc which is why i posted.

    I can mix but i'm still learning. I use beatgrid's but that's cause i don't anything turntable related, last time i used decks was about 5 years ago but yeah i want get something to practice on, improve my skills etc.

    If i can expand the S2 with other controllers that will be ideal but now with Link i'll be able to run Live or Maschine with it.

  10. #10
    Moderator keithace's Avatar
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    Alot of people accent the S2 with a F1, K1 or K2, or something from the behringer CMD series to give them better control over effects, remix decks or decks 3 and 4.

    You don't need to spend alot of money to get something you are comfortable with. If you go check out the used section there is a killer deal on an X1 MK1.
    Weapons, not food, not homes, not shoes
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