Controller Overload - It's all the same!!
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  1. #1
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    Default Controller Overload - It's all the same!!

    Any other midi experts out there who feel like the million varieties of "dj controllers" out there is just overkill? Let me explain what I mean. I'm coming from the perspective of someone who builds and uses custom maps, so the out-of-the-box functionality doesn't mean jack to me. I could take three controllers and make them all do exactly the same thing. It's just midi, after all. So after that, what's left to distinguish any of these machines from one another? To me the only things that matter are:

    Feel of controls and build quality
    Does it have any special type of transmission (timecode, OSC, HID, or hi-def midi)?
    Does it have any unique controls (endless encoders, ribbons, etc)?
    Does it have enough controls?

    I don't know, I guess I'm just talking out loud to think it through. Seems like everyone gets all fired up to sell old stuff and buy new stuff, and I'm just kicking back thinking "what's wrong with your old stuff? you can program it to do everything the new stuff does". If its cause someone hates the build quality or whatever, I get it, but I'm bummed seeing people get excited about things like factory installed 4 deck switching on a controller with two channel faders, like it's a new innovation or something. DIY, baby.

    Here's what I want to see:
    1) A mid sized controller with a ton of buttons, faders, and endless encoders with leds, without a soundcard. But most importantly, I want each control module (fx area, eq area, transport, etc) to have a number of banks, stored in memory, that send a different set of messages depending on which bank you're in. I want the banks to be progammable, and stored in memory. This way, YOU get to define what and how the controller sends info.

    2) A hi-end midi enabled mixer surface with a built in sound card that takes digital input via the card but sums it in the analog domain.
    MacBook 2.4GHz, 6GB, Traktor Pro, Ableton Live, Bomes MT, Audio Kontrol 1, Vestax VCI-100 SE Custom, M-Audio Axiom 25, Akai APC40, NI Maschine, 2x Midi Fighters (c/o DJ TechTools - Thanks!!)

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  2. #2
    DJTT Dominator JesC's Avatar
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    i feel you...I a vci100, xl, nano pad/kontrol, axiom 25 and so on. I went back to the basics, 2 cdjs 800 + dvs + ddm400 and im a happy camper
    Controllerist: Think different | SoundCloud | MixCloud | Twitter |

  3. #3
    Tech Guru Str8upDrew's Avatar
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    I pretty much stick with a controls per dollar model. As in how many buttons and knobs am i getting for my buck. So naturally i had to get a launchpad, and a nanokontrol when those first came out.

    And i really would like to see your second idea come to fruition. As much as i love midi, nothing really sounds as good as "high quality" analog summing.

  4. #4
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    totally feel this.

    some cool gear coming out sure, but worth another 1000$ investment... ahhh not quite imo.

  5. #5
    Tech Guru BradCee's Avatar
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    totally agree to, was all fired up about wanting an S4, but i'm happy with my vci100/dicer combo. no need to remap anything right now. until the Tpro sampler deck update comes out, then it's just a few simple tweaks to the mapping

    Win 7 / 2x Reloop Contour / Numark M6 /Traktor Pro 2.5
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  6. #6
    Dr. Bento BentoSan's Avatar
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    I do all my own totally custom midi maps and for me the two biggest contributing factors in my purchase are 2 things

    1) Build Quality
    2) Controller layout

    Both of these are huge factors, i cant have one without the other.

  7. #7

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    ^^ totally agree

    for me its build quality, layout, and having enough controls, and at the same time not having too many controls

  8. #8
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    build quality/feel of controlls; enough controls; soundcard, hi-res or HID jogs that you can scartch on.

    Now having that thru an analog mixer would be awesome. I think the S4 came very close. With these new controllers coming out, the S4 is really looking like an awesome deal for everything it offers. I don't there will ever be a controller that satisfies EVERYONES needs. So somwhere along the line you're gonna have to sacrifice a bit. Whether it's one less button or the need to add an extra controller. I personally prefer things as simple as possible.
    SSL - DJM 800 - Technic 1200's - X1 - ITCH - NS6 - VCI-300

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Str8upDrew View Post
    I pretty much stick with a controls per dollar model.
    Yeah, I'm right there with ya on that. Add Bento's build quality and layout, and that's pretty much what I look at in a purchase. There's definitely no "one size fits all", but damn if I'm not tired of all the vci-100 clones, and the DB4? What is that? I really like the S4, the efforts of Livid Instruments, and I think the VSM4 was a shot in the right direction. Strange as it seems though, I can't live without my APC40 now, just can't beat that many controls and leds. And $300 US? That's what I'm talkin about.
    MacBook 2.4GHz, 6GB, Traktor Pro, Ableton Live, Bomes MT, Audio Kontrol 1, Vestax VCI-100 SE Custom, M-Audio Axiom 25, Akai APC40, NI Maschine, 2x Midi Fighters (c/o DJ TechTools - Thanks!!)

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  10. #10
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    You should look at the BCR/BCF controllers and that shiny new Xone mixer.

    That, or the Xone 3D or 4D
    I'm not good at things, but I like to pretend I am.
    :Project-Segfault:

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