How To Find the Best Cheap Beginner Dj Equipment: The Definitive Guide
If you are like me, you probably are tired of reading promotional articles and pagers out there that only try to endorse that a particular dj controller is the one and only, the best on the market or that it will make every single one of your wishes come true.
And, guess what? Every single post is going to say they are the best.
Why should you trust them?
Because they say they are the best based on reviews someone else did?
Or should you rather try to take a different approach at this whole matter?
After a long search and many failures, I got to a point where I was sick of all the so-called-advice those articles gave me. And, yes, I arrived to the conclusion that one product can be good for me and terrible for my neighbor, and that it is the person who buys it who should acquire information on more than one product and then decide which one is truly the best for him/ her.
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And, in my search for my perfect dj controller, after researching and reading a lot of customer reviews, I narrowed it down to 3 products that offer true quality for their price:
Top 3 Best Dj Controllers for beginners
If you want to make the best choice for yourself, then you must take into consideration both the pros and the cons of a certain product and see what weights out the other. Believe me, there’s nothing out there 100% perfect, but some of these controllers get pretty close.
Top 3 Beginner DJ controller Reviews
Here are our short reviews on the top 3 products:
We wanted to choose a DJ controller that gave us all of the needed features in a DJ controller that can give beginners an all-in-one experience without making it too complicated. Firstly, Numark DJ equipment is one of the biggest names in the DJ industry so we get confidence in terms of reputation. They own a big majority of the market in terms of DJ controllers and popularity, and the Mixtrack II is one of our favorites.
We have the two units for scratching to emulate turntables. They’re of very nice quality and you can also stop a track by touching the top of the platter. You’re also able to adjust pitch and tap into the loop, sample and hot cue modes to play around with your sounds further. The center mixer is also solid although not too fancy with crazy features: You get a cross-fader (the landmark of a DJ setup), 3-band EQ to play around with the filters and levels, and a huge plus we love is the library navigation in case you want to do it all from the controller and not use your mouse to browse through tracks and songs.
This DJ controller has everything and maybe even a lot more than a beginner may like, but you can always learn these great features later— it’s a nice investment while still giving us the mandatory features of a controller. Lastly, the software is great for beginners.
If you don’t have DJ software to go along with your controller yet, the Mixtrack II comes with Virtual DJ LE to try out. This allows you to start scratching and mixing right away. It’ll take some learning of course, and if you’re into the software after trying it out and want to keep using it, you’ll have to upgrade to the full version but in our opinion it is a great software for DJ’s. An overall solid choice and we’re proud to say it’s one of the best DJ controllers for starters.
Main features and specs of the Mixtrack II
- Weight: 4.5 lbs
- Dimensions: 10.4″ x 18.3″ x 2.0″
- Compatible with Mac and PC
- Touch-activated platters for scratching
- 16 rubberized pads (backlit with loop, sample and hot cue modes)
- Mixer section (with library navigation)
- Cross-fader and 3-band EQ
- 16 effects controls (8 on each side)
- Communicates to computer via MIDI
- USB-powered via your computer
- Software included: Virtual DJ LE, Numark Remix Toolkit
Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S2 MK2
We can’t even manage to count how many controllers NI has out for their Traktor software, but we wanted to provide this option in case you wanted to go this route. It most importantly comes with their famous Traktor DJ software which is one of the best softwares you can use, but also gives us some really nifty hands-on control with it. The performance pads are phenomenal quality, you get a microphone input, song management with direct iTunes integration and more. Dont forget it works well with iPad and iPhones if you’re interested in that.
It would be a long term plan if you choose on purchasing one of Native Instruments’ pieces of gear and Traktor DJ software (although this comes with it). Once you’ve bought this package you can always add on to the setup with their other various controllers and add-ons. A lot of people swear by Traktor while others like Serato DJ, but if you’re a beginner grabbing a controller we’ve listed previously and trying out their trial software is probably your best bet.
- Weight: 5.7 lbs
- Dimensions: 43.8 x 30.8 x 6.7 cm
- 2-deck controller
- Pro-grade mixer with multi-effect units
- RGB backlit buttons (trigger cues, loops and samples)
- 3-band EQ
- Two high-res jog wheels
- Built-in audio interface (two high-gain stereo outputs and master/monitor control)
- Interface is 24-bit/96 kHz sound quality
- Microphone input (gain control and mute button)
- Front panel headphone controls
- Direct iTunes integration
- Connects via USB 2.0
- Comes with full version of Traktor Pro 2
We love Pioneer equipment because of the long lasting quality and build they provide. Here’s a higher end DJ controller and if you’re able to learn the features you will be better off long term. It’s USB powered and has a built-in sound card and it gives us some extras like a filter fade function, hot cue, manual loop and sampler functions. We also love it (can’t you tell our fascination?) because of the performance pads built-in, although only four of them on each side. Lastly, we love the fact that it comes with Serato DJ intro, so you can try out one of themost popular DJ software on the planet.
- 2-channel mixer (can be used with four decks)
- Comes with Serato DJ software
- 16 Large performance pads (rubber, illuminates in blue)
- Pads can also control: hot cue roll, trans, combo FX and sample roll
- Crossfader reverse
- Large job wheels for easy mixing
- Channel fader start
- Integrated grip handles for travel
- Built-in audio interface
- Build: Steel top panel\aluminum jog plate
How to Find the best Beginner Dj controller
You don’t have to take my word for granted regarding these 3 Beginner DJ controllers. You can find your own top 3 products by using the criteria I used for making my own list. Some of the most common aspects you may want to include in your search are the following:
- Dimensions/ sizes
In my opinion, the most important 3 factors are price, weight range and settings and the satisfaction shown by other customers.
Moneywise, people tend to look for the cheapest product on the market. However, this should not be the case, since there are some Dj Controllers out there whose real worth is close to 0.
The customer satisfaction should be a trigger for you as well, regardless of whether you are buying an ashtray or the best beginner dj controller. Looking for Amazon reviews will help you gain a better understanding of the products, so that you can make the best decision in the end. What other people say about the product is an essential step you shouldn’t miss.
Looking at the rating only may not be the best thing to do though. On the other hand, looking at each and every review made by customers might take a lot of time, and you may not be able to spend it so much on simply reading reviews.
When time is running short on you, the best thing you can do is to look at all the 5-star reviews and their value. Be careful, though! If something is simply rated with a 5-star, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s also the best.
Look at the exact number of ratings and reviews.