Many music enthusiasts spend hours and hours in search of the Best DJ Controller and still end up making the wrong choice. The process of selecting an appropriate controller can be very exhausting.
Advancement in technology has made these magical audio boxes really compact. Efficient DJ controllers consist of software for hip hop, music player, and the mixer itself.
Let’s Dive in,
A lot of them actually come with other equipment too which makes it a good package overall. These controllers are easy to upgrade and customize. You can choose to modify them from time to time.
Sometimes people invest more in additional equipment for their controllers. Besides this, if you want to enjoy extra storage you can install external memory.
- Top 10 Best DJ Controllers Reviewed
- List of Best DJ Controllers 2021
- 1. Pioneer DDJ-1000 – Best Professional DJ Controller
- 2. Pioneer DDJ-SX3 4-channel – Best Serato DJ Controller
- 3. Denon DJ MCX8000 – Best Standalone DJ Controller
- 4. Pioneer DDJ-SR2 – Best Portable DJ Controller
- 5. Traktor Kontrol S2 (MK3) – Best Affordable DJ Controller
- 6. Traktor Kontrol S4 MK2 – Best For Beginners
- 7. Traktor Kontrol S8 (Traktor Pro 3) – Best Glitch-Free
- 8. Numark NS6II – Best 4-channel
- 9. Numark NVII – Best Quality Controller
- 10. Pioneer DDJ-SB3 – Best Lightweight
- 11. Hercules Dj Control Jogvision 2-Channel – Best Hercules DJing Controller
- 12. Numark Party Mix – Best DJ Controller Money Can Buy
- Essential features to consider before buying a DJ Controller:
- Final Verdict:
Top 10 Best DJ Controllers Reviewed
We have gathered some incredible options for these controllers in order to make this daunting process convenient for you. By the end, this article will equip you with every piece of information regarding DJ controllers. Have a glance at all the options and make your purchase wisely.
List of Best DJ Controllers 2021
Pioneer DDJ-1000 – Best Professional DJ Controller
Pioneer DDJ-SX3 4-channel – Best Serato DJ Controller
Denon DJ MCX8000 – Best Standalone DJ Controller
Pioneer DDJ-SR2 – Best Portable DJ Controller
Traktor Kontrol S2 (MK3) – Best Affordable DJ Controller
Traktor Kontrol S4 MK2 – Best For Beginners
Traktor Kontrol S8 (Traktor Pro 3) – Best Glitch-Free
Numark NS6II – Best 4-channel
Numark NVII – Best Quality Controller
Pioneer DDJ-SB3 – Best Lightweight
Hercules Dj Control Jogvision 2-Channel – Best Hercules DJing Controller
Numark Party Mix – Best DJ Controller Money Can Buy
1. Pioneer DDJ-1000 – Best Professional DJ Controller
Pioneer DDJ-1000 is one of the best controllers available in the market. This is an incredibly sleek looking four-channel controller. It comes with an AC adapter and a USB cable. It also contains a manual inside it which serves as a guide to beginners.
Its width is around 708mm with a height of 7.34mm. The best thing is that despite its volume the approximate weight of this controller is 6kgs. It is a sturdy controller and is very reliable.
This controller is quite compact and people can easily carry it to clubs. Just like other high-end controllers it has a led screen attached to it. This helps to monitor the sound waves and pitch of the audio. This makes DJing extremely convenient and exciting.
It is capable of giving a stable performance. Pioneer DDJ-1000 offers a frequency range of 20-20000 Hz. This pioneer controller has the best ratings. If you are someone who loves to modify their equipment then this is highly recommended.
Another great feature of this variant is its Magvel Fader. Around 10 million movements can take place fearlessly without having the need to maintain or replace parts. This also gives a really smooth and glitch-free experience.
The performance pads installed in DDJ-1000 are very efficient. You can switch between various modes in literally no time. Amazing beat loops can be created with a variety of 16 pads just by some hits on the trigger.
Not only this, but its smart design has made it user-friendly and suitable for clubs. All of the four amazing sounds namely Pitch, Filter, Dub Echo, and Noise are installed in its FX. Additionally, it includes beats from DJM-series mixers which is again a plus.
Pioneer DDJ-1000 is a great value for money. Pioneer has been serving with the best quality in this domain for several years now. The smart FX, performance pads, outstanding design, portability, and most importantly its durability is what one can ask for.
The best thing about DDJ-1000 is its Full-sized jogs. These jogs are designed to provide the utmost comfort while producing mesmerizing mixes. Another great thing about this controller is that it can be easily connected with any equipment and DJ system. A number of people prefer this model over others just because it has great connectivity and operates conveniently.
If you plan to buy this controller just make sure it is compatible with your system. The requirement of DDj-1000 is Windows 10/ 8.1/ 7 or macOS High Sierra10.13, macOS Sierra10.12 and OS X 10.11/10.10. These all should be updated to the latest version.
Overall the pros of DDJ-1000 clearly outweigh its cons. This controller is highly recommended if you are searching for professional use. Pioneer is offering a great deal as DDJ-1000 to all the DJs out there. This is definitely the Best DJ controller because it offers a wide range of specs with incredible quality.
2. Pioneer DDJ-SX3 4-channel – Best Serato DJ Controller
Pioneer DJ-SX3 is famous for its professional look. This 6.1 kg controller has a height and width of 70.4mm 664mm respectively. A USB cable, power plug, AC adapter, and operational guide comes along with this controller. Another great thing you get with this is the DJ Pro Expansion voucher.
This controller offers stability and quality performance while maintaining its portability. It is not very bulky which makes it easy to carry from place to place. This particularly has an extremely smooth transition. DDJ SX3works best for rapping and hip hop.
DDj-SX3 allows the user to operate 3 microphones at a time. This just not makes the experience better but it adds to its efficiency. Many people like its enhanced vocals the most.
There are two built-in USB ports installed in the controller. You can easily attach two systems with them. This is best for backup purposes. Moreover, there are 16 performance pads in this controller. All of them are so vibrant and changes colors smoothly which makes it aesthetically pleasing.
This controller gives a very smooth scratching experience. It is made possible with DDj-SX3s low latency Jog Wheels. Moreover, DJs can mix different tapes and beats easily with their expansion packs.
The sound color FX in this variant includes various filters from DJM series mixers. Another amazing feature is its Slip mode. It let you modify and edit the tracks conveniently. The needle search feature is great if you want to switch from one track to another.
You can buy DDj SX3 if you want a good professional controller with extraordinary performance and a user-friendly interface. Today it is a very popular model amongst famous DJs just because it has great specifications.
The basic requirement for this controller is Windows10, 8.1, 7 with Intel processor Core i7, i5, i3: 1.07 GHz or above, and at least 4 GB of RAM. If you use mac then the requirement is at least macOS High Sierra 10.13, macOS Sierra 10.12, or OSX 10.11.
If you are comfortable using Serato DJ this option is the best for you. On the other hand, if you want to play with new software available then you should consider other options too.
Overall it offers much at a very reasonable price and works efficiently. It is convenient to carry because of its portable style and compact composition. It is also highly recommended for professional use.
3. Denon DJ MCX8000 – Best Standalone DJ Controller
Denon DJ MCX8000 is an eight kg controller with a four-channel mixer. It is basically a standalone Dj system. This feature makes it capable of working alone even without a computer or laptop.
For its proper functioning, you are required to download specific software offered by Denon. Once the software is downloaded you can easily import different tracks in your library.
The LED screens attached to it have a really good resolution which gives great visual effects. Moreover, it has 2 USB ports installed already for attaching external hardware.
You can enjoy a variety of features from amazing deck controls to efficient performance pads if you snap up this controller. While DJing it allows you to switch between four line inputs.
The jog wheels of this variant are very beautiful to look at. They have pretty vibrant blue lights attached to them. Alongside this beautiful look, they also perform very well. Many DJs claim to have really smooth scratching with DJMCX8000’s jog wheels this enhances the experience greatly.
Another great thing about this controller is that it gives immense control to the DJ while playing. The control options are incredibly useful and easy to switch. This equipment also lets you monitor the frequency and pitch of desirable audios.
This product caters to all the needs of mobile DJs and this is why this is their best choice. The backup USB ports increase its reliability. It is a thin yet sturdy controller that looks absolutely perfect. Another plus point is that this version of the Denon controller is upgradable.
4. Pioneer DDJ-SR2 – Best Portable DJ Controller
Pioneer DDj-SR2 is a perfect portable piece. If you are someone who preferably wants a highly portable controller then you should definitely consider buying this. Its overall weight is only 3.7 kg which results is great mobility.
Originally the software of DDJ-SR2 is Serato Pitch n Time DJ. It is also compatible with Unlocks Serato DJ Pro. Both of these softwares work perfectly with this model.
Its frequency range is 20-20000 Hz. The performance pads installed are multicolored. They change their color according to the trigger action. It operates well with both AC and USB power.
DDJ-SR2 lets the DJ create great new mixtapes and catchy tracks. The built-in jog wheels are relatively large. The size of jog wheels allows easy scratching and produces accurate sound waves.
It is an amazing controller for anyone who travels more often. It is compact and great for mobile Djing. The XLR outputs are perfectly balanced which enhances the experience.
It is compatible with Intel processor Core i7 and i5 1.07 GHz or higher. It works smoothly with macOS Sierra 10.12 or OS X 10.11, 10.10. Windows 10, 8.1, 7 is good for this controller.
5. Traktor Kontrol S2 (MK3) – Best Affordable DJ Controller
This S2-MK3 Traktor Kontrol is one of the Best DJ controllers, it is basically a two-channel mixer. It meets the club-standard and its layout is finely designed. This is an extremely affordable controller which people on a budget might prefer to buy.
It helps to unleash your creativity by proving you with every feature needed for the creative mixing of several tracks. It includes remarkable attributes that make it no less than a professional controller.
Some of its professional-level specs include Mixer FX, Hot Cues, and loop controls. These contribute greatly to leveling up the whole vibe and musical experience. It fully supports USB power.
Many people admire S2 MK3’s interface. It is designed ideally to create great mixes. It has all the essentials one might need while playing in a club or party. All the transitions and effects are easily accessible. This accessibility allows playing smoothly without any breakage of flow.
If you love nudging and scratching then this controller is perfect for you. Its jog wheels are something worth the hype. They are extremely touch-sensitive and very efficient to use. Jog wheels alone enhance the whole experience and are capable to instill the love of this variant.
One can easily create various loops with this controller. What’s more surprising is not only creation but the editing of these loops is also very convenient with Traktor Kontrol S2.
Its mixer Fx gives the user an edge over other DJs. You can choose over eight effects which are all club-grade. Moreover, you get three filters and amazing transitions to pop out your music and make it catchy.
This is an amazing Controller for anyone searching for anything that offers great value for money. Its amazing design and convenient functioning make it a favorite of many DJs out there.
This controller supports a system with windows 10. The preferable operating system is Mac OS X 10.12 or 10.13. This works great with Intel Core i5 but any processor with similar specifications will do the job.
Read About: Best Budget DJ Controllers
6. Traktor Kontrol S4 MK2 – Best For Beginners
Traktor Kontrol S4 MK2 is a four-channel and 4 deck controller. It is recommended for beginners since it is easy to operate. It is easy to carry because of its mobile design.
S4 MK2 weighs around 10.12 pounds. Further, if we talk about its dimensions these are approximately 25 x 5 x 15 inches. It is constructed in a compact style so that the portability is not influenced.
The jog wheels are made up of aluminum plates covered in silicone. It has an amazing feature for creating multiple loops and soundtracks. These loops can be modified when needed.
It has different colored eight RGB buttons. These are used in the creation of mesmerizing remixes. A low latency audio interface is another amazing feature that contributes to its efficiency.
It has two incredible Fx units each with a good amount of different effects and transitions. With the help of this, you can easily switch between different effects and amazing filters.
All the smart audio feature of Traktor Kontrol S4 MK2 together makes it reliable by providing optimal sound quality. Pretty bright LED lights are attached to it which makes it look astonishing. These lights also serve as an indication at times.
The best thing about this particular controller is that the interface is not loaded with many buttons. It is kept simple so that beginners can use it without having any difficulty. It is great for practicing and learning together with having a great experience.
This controller operates well with Windows 7,8 or 10. It is the basic requirement to have a system that supports Mac OS X 10.9 or higher, Intel Core i5, and should at least have 4 GB RAM.
Read about: Best Beginners DJ Controllers
7. Traktor Kontrol S8 (Traktor Pro 3) – Best Glitch-Free
Traktor Kontrol S8 is an amazing controller. It overcomes all the loopholes and drawbacks in the preceding models of Traktor Kontrol. The weight of this equipment is 11 pounds and 24 x 5 x 15 inches are the dimensions.
It has four decks and two high-resolution displays to monitor performance. It is great for mixing and creating beats. There are 30 knobs and faders in total. It provides a comfortable experience with its convenient design.
It has 16 different colour performance pads. With the help of these pads, one can easily create remixes and various soundtracks. This variant also includes touch strips.
It has a sync option moreover one can switch between different features easily. Traktor Pro 3 is very durable. It is sturdy yet pleasing to the eyes. The controller specifically has professional-looking buttons all over the interface which are extremely convenient to use.
The best thing about this controller is its strip pad. Overall it is not very easy to perform with this controller. You need to learn about its features and functions before diving right into DJing. Once you get familiar with all the options it offers this will become your go-to equipment.
8. Numark NS6II – Best 4-channel
Numark NS62 is a four-channel controller. It has a solid design and firm composition. The weight of this is around 9.2 pounds and it has dimensions 22.4 x 13.8 x 2.6 inches.
There are two effective jog wheels. Each one of them is six inches in size and has a 2-inch screen display on it. The LED on jog wheels helps to monitor the pitch and performance of the controller during DJing.
It has 16 performance pads which offer great efficiency. You can easily create beats and loops by just hitting the hot cues with the trigger action. One can conveniently switch from FX mode to single effect mode or three effects mode with this controller.
On the other hand, if you want to create loops you will have to use the performance pads. This is because it does not have any separate features or options for creating loops.
Many rubber knobs are attached which lets the user enjoy various effects. The knobs are capable of activating the FX mode on the first hit. However, on the second hit EQ knobs are activated.
Numark NS62 has mirror decks. If we talk about its pitch faders they have the perfect positioning and performance. Unlike other controllers, the pitch faders in this model are relatively large which greatly adds to one’s convenience.
This controller has much to offer that too at a very reasonable price. Additionally, there are two USB ports and it includes good connectivity options. The best thing about this controller is that it is highly efficient and looks professional at the same time.
It is compatible with Mac OS X 10.6 or mac OS 10.13 High Sierra. Moreover, all Intel i3, i5, and i7 Processors are supported. Windows should preferably be Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10, or Windows Vista.
9. Numark NVII – Best Quality Controller
Numark NVII is a professional controller retailed at an affordable price. It promises high-quality performance and portability at the same time. The actual weight of this product is around 7 pounds. This controller has the dimensions of 13.4 x 21.6 x 2.1 inches.
It is symmetrically designed and includes two LED screens for high-resolution display. NV2 has compact jog wheels of about 5 inches but their efficiency is incredible. These jog wheels allow the user to have a remarkable scratching experience.
You can play around 10 amazing modes with the help of its performance pads. This deck controller has sixteen of these performance pads attached towards the extreme sides of the controller.
Toolroom remix is one of the best features of this model. This feature is capable of producing catchy remixes by merging several beats and tapes. If you love mixing things up then this can be a great pick for you.
Furthermore sorting is made really easy with this controller. All the options are divided smartly into five different columns. This means a user can easily sort and select from various options like key, bpm, song, artist, or album.
All the different buttons on the interface are touch-sensitive. They are placed in an organized way so one can use them effectively. Beginners can also use this model since the operation is extremely easy and does not require any advance moves.
10. Pioneer DDJ-SB3 – Best Lightweight
Pioneer DDj-SB3 is one of the affordable controllers available in the market. This is an extremely lightweight controller. It is easy to carry as it weighs only 2.1 KG. The height of this controller is approximately 58.5 mm while its width is 482.6 mm.
Manufacturers use sturdy aluminum material for its construction. Its durability is incredible and its glitch-free performance makes it reliable. It gives a frequency range of 20-20000 Hz. Despite being beginner-friendly it has an extremely professional look.
Pioneer DDJ-SB3 is a two-channel controller that offers accurate navigation and great performance. Many users claim that its interface actually makes DJing experience quite convenient and way too manageable.
This controller comes with fill sized built-in jog wheels. The large size of jog wheels allows stable scratching and smooth mixes. Another good thing about the jog wheels is that they are quite flexible and very durable.
Moreover, this controller provides the user with the best effects. It offers great transitions and FX effects. The transitions are capable of making the fade effect extremely natural and catchy.
This model beautifully inculcates all the transitions and filters together in order to produce creative masterpieces. It lets the DJ play around with music and different audio which levels up the vibe.
The controller connects to various devices easily just make sure the devices are compatible with it. It has default USB ports for attaching additional hardware. The major advantage of this model is that it has a built-in sound card.
It also supports Serato DJ Pro. You can easily upgrade by switching to this software if you wish to move further in DJing. This controller provides optimal sound quality which is pleasing to ears.
It offers a great set of features that are mostly included in high-end professional controllers. Pioneer is a trusted brand that never compromises in quality and performance. DDJ SB3 provides incredible features that are easy to use and suitable for beginners.
11. Hercules Dj Control Jogvision 2-Channel – Best Hercules DJing Controller
The Hercules DJ Control Jogvision is a portable 2 channel controller. It is incredibly lightweight. The total weight of this equipment is 2 kg. And its composition of 17.9 x 10 inches makes it compact.
The main feature of this controller is its full-sized jog wheels. These are highly efficient and have an astonishing look. They have LED indication for several functions and helps to monitor the level of performance.
Jog wheels of this Jogvision controller are none less than jog wheels installed in professional high-end equipment. The mixer itself is compact but the major part is covered by these jogs.
There are four performance pads on each side of the controller. These are capable of indicating the activation status. The vibrant LEDs in these pads eliminate any visibility issue in the dark and make the club experience way better.
Moreover, the FX and EQ controls in the mixer sections display high efficiency and great performance. You can easily change filters and incorporate a number of different transitions conveniently that too in no time.
Hercules Jogvision also lets the users create and modify multiple loops. You need to practice this feature quite a few times to get used to it before actually playing in the club.
For stable performance, you need to have 2 GB RAM or more and Windows 7, 8, or 10. It is compatible with the operating system 32-bit or 64-bit and Mac OS 10.7, 10.8, 10.9 or 10.10.
12. Numark Party Mix – Best DJ Controller Money Can Buy
So, we’d finally be wrapping our review section with the Party Mix DJ Controller from Numark. This controller, first of all, features a compact shape, is durable, and is loaded with multiple features. In fact, it can rock your party with all the peripherals it has got.
Starting with some initials:
One of the best DJ controllers for the money comes with a prebuilt lighting system. Not only that, but it can automatically sync lights with the type of music you are playing for your audience. Therefore, one can experience full aesthetic musical vibes from the DJ.
Adding to that, multiple connectivity options are available on the best portable DJ controller. This includes an input for a headphone set along with PA systems, DJ speakers, and DJ mixers respectively. So, you won’t have to worry about compatibility at all.
All mixing controls are available on the front display, which makes it easier for you to mix different songs, mashups, and party music, etc. Having this kind of setting is simply exceptional from the manufacturer. It’s the main reason, a beginner can easily use this controller.
Last but not the least, four different pad modes give easy control to cue points, adjusting the playbacks, or simply managing different music variations. Each pad is backlit with a specific light to ensure an easy adjustment system.
Essential features to consider before buying a DJ Controller:
You should be watchful if you are looking for decent controllers and do not want to risk your investment in the imprudent purchase. A number of these are retailed across the world at different prices. Unfortunately, not all of them are worth buying.
You need to muse over some important things before deciding on a controller. These have different features and perform differently.
Below are all the essentials you need to look for before actually buying a controller:
The software platform is one of the most important features of a mixer controller. Nowadays, DJs have numerous software to play with. These software allows them to mix and match different waves and produce unique music.
However not all the controllers in the market support all software. At the time of purchase just make sure your desired controller is compatible with your preferred software.
The type of gigs
One should never neglect the type of gig because there are different controllers to cater to different needs. Manufacturers have created various controllers specifically for different gigs.
There are compact controllers for DJs who travel a lot. Portable controllers are best for DJs in clubs. If you conduct research before making a purchase you will surely find a suitable controller for yourself.
The prices of different controllers may vary according to their specifications. The starting price of a basic version is around $ 140. On the other hand, professionals preferably invest in a controller which is retailed for a price as high as $ 3000.
You may select an appropriate version that best suits your interest and is quite easy on your pocket. If you are on a budget don’t worry there are many amazing controllers in the market that are surprisingly affordable.
Connectivity mainly includes the ease with which your controller can be connected to various systems. If for instance, you wish to operate in clubs you have to consider the compatibility of your controller.
It is a feature that can never be ignored when buying a controller. You have to make sure that the controller you are going to select includes effective and functioning connectivity options.
Some people make their decision just on the basis of portability. Oftentimes you invest in an expensive controller ignoring its overall weight and volume. However, this can later turn into a nightmare. The equipment will lose its value if it is not portable.
Many people prefer their controller to be well built and strong yet portable at the same time. This type of controller enhances the experience and is extremely convenient to carry.
Different variants of controllers have various features which differ from each other. You may consider the set of features or the package offered for the controller you are willing to buy.
It is advisable to make a list of preferable features and then compare all the available options with your list. This will help you to choose the best one amongst all.
If you are a professional DJ you might want to buy something that has sufficient internal memory. DJ controllers are mostly customizable and additional memory can be installed alongside the basic built-in memory.
Buying additional equipment can be a hassle for many people so they rather prefer to buy controllers with a good memory. Prices of different versions of controllers sometimes vary on the basis of internal memory and other features.
A number of channels
Both 2 channel mixers and 4 channel mixers are readily available in the market. There can be several inputs for each built-in channel of your controller. You can choose to buy either of the two types.
4 channel mixers are generally believed to be more flexible and efficient. However many people go for a 2 channel mixer and it works absolutely fine for them. Now it totally depends upon you that which one to select and which one to leave behind.
The control surface is that part of the controller which actually allows the DJ to control audio. Pads, Jog wheels, knobs, faders, buttons, audio interface, ports, and screen are all the components of the Control surface.
Each and every component of the control surface plays a significant role in producing a smooth output of digital audio. Knobs are used to set the volume according to the vibe and need. Jog wheels are used to adjust the speed of audio to desirable levels.
Moreover, the control surface has pads which help in composing different beats and modifying sound waves. Then comes the faders, as the name suggests they help to adjust the signals according to the audio.
Some upgraded versions of controllers do have screens in them. These screens are purposely built to monitor the performance of the controller and the audio that is being played.
Another extremely important component is the audio interface. This is a smart tool that gives DJ the idea about how the vocals and beats with interact with each other.
Together these features enhance the overall djing experience to a great extent. All these components of the control surface make it an important consideration while purchasing a controller.
The controller options discussed above are manufactures by trusted brands. You can safely choose the best DJ controller for yourself from all the available options.
When different people use different equipment it does not works the same. Some people like one thing while others like something else. Today there are a lot of options in the market which are capable of satisfying different needs. It is advisable to select a controller that suits you the best.
If you are a beginner you should go for cheaper versions with sufficient features so that you can learn fearlessly. On the other hand, professionals may preferably go for high-end products for an enhanced experience.
Make sure you go through the buying guide before making your purchase. This will indicate the important features you need to check before buying a controller. With the help of this guide, you can make an informed decision and you become less likely to choose the wrong models.
The two best-recommended controllers by our team are:
This is by far the Best DJ Controller to date. Pioneer DDJ 1000 is the highest quality controller in the market. It is an extremely promising controller and the features it offers are remarkable.
This controller has everything from a high-resolution LED screen to portability. It is a whole package one can ask for. It has 16 performance pads, full-sized jog wheels, amazing connectivity ports, and much more.
If you are looking for an extremely affordable controller for yourself. It has all the features one would want to have in his controller.
It offers a wide range of effects and transitions at an exceptionally low price. The best thing is that it is portable and the quality is great. Moreover, it works well with USB power which is a plus. Another surprising fact is that it has an amazing audio interface and the performance is excellent.