Need help on products...

Discussion in 'General DJ Forum' started by theladycoder, Dec 1, 2011.

  1. theladycoder

    theladycoder New Member

    My son began deejaying over a year ago. He now performs at clubs and does contests. This is something he does on the side while in the military. He mentioned opn FB about wanting a couple of CDJs. Not knowing his preference or what will work with his set-up, I hope that the folks here can help guide me, so please forgive my ignorance in this area. Any help would be appreciated.

    He does techno, so I am not sure how much scratching he will do with the CDJs if any. I know he is using Traktor (but not sure if it is a mixer).

    I would like to surprise him with CDJs for xmas because he would not be expecting it. Price point, I don't want to spend an obscene amount of money on his first set, but want them to be solid, stable and provide him with what he needs. Also let me know if there is anything else that needs to be purchased with the CDJ's.

    Do I need to think about compaitability with the equipment he has now or would they be considered stand alone. What about software? He does a lot of mixing.

    I am including pics with hopes that will help in guiding me to the right equipment. I have looked at a lot of user reviews on various brands/versions and it is so confusing.

    Thanks in advance to everyone for their help.
  2. DJ Freshfluke

    DJ Freshfluke Traktor Mod Moderator

    the software on the computer is not traktor, however, the S4 controller in the last pictures is from NI.
    unfortunately, i dont know much about CDJs at all, but i hope someone else is jumping in here...
  3. djefx

    djefx Forum Member

    Hey first post here. I look forward to participating in the discussions on the forum.

    Well I'm sure he has traktor given that he has the S4, unless he didn't buy it new. It looks like the software on the desktop monitor is FL Studio (maybe). Did he mention "CDJ's" specifically or CD tables/Players? CDJ has become shorthand for CD tables made by Pioneer given that the line of tables that they produce is the "CDJ" line and they range from the CDJ200 to the CDJ2000. I'm guessing that he may want to use the CDJ's as midi controllers for his dj software, but it is a guess. The CDJ's that have this capability are on the upper side of their price range and would include the CDJ850, CDJ900 & CDJ2000. If you're interested you can check Pioneer's website...I'm not sure that I'm allowed to post it here but it's not hard to find.

    As a DJ who recently moved from a full Pioneer CDJ setup (800mk2s & DJM mixer) to a Traktor Kontrol S4 earlier this year, I can tell you that there isn't really anything that can be done on the CDJs that cannot be done on the S4 (scratching is easier due to the bigger platter IMO). Plus the S4 makes everything (except scratching) easier than on the CDJs.

    If he in fact is wanting to use the CDJs as midi controllers for Traktor I may recommend that you find a nice set of turntables (technics, stanton & numark all have good models that you can find new or used at prices that won't break the bank) and buy the Traktor Scratch Pro upgrade for the S4. He can then use the turntables as his main control for his main decks and either keep the S4 mapping as is or remap the S4 to control the software to his preference.

    This is just a recommendation. It is what I would do given that I've used the equipment that he has and the equipment that you are wanting to buy...I think the turntables with traktor scratch will give him more flexibility and be cheaper on your wallet. I'm sure others will chime in and give their 2cents. Good Luck!
  4. theladycoder

    theladycoder New Member

    Thanks for the input everyone. It is FL Studio that he is using and yes he mentioned he would like a couple of CDJs, but were so expensive. Then again, a couple hundred would be considered expensive for him as a young single guy on military pay. I presume he will be working from cd's possibly or I do I totally misunderstand the concept?

    I know his main thing is the mixing of music.

    When you say turntables are you meaning like a record player? Sorry for being so dense here, LOL, I'm a computer person not electronics.

    Again I appreciate all the help as I work through all the lingo.
  5. djefx

    djefx Forum Member

    Lets see where to start...

    There are a few different ways to use CDJ's, as true cd tables where you put an audio or mp3 disk into them and play tracks off of the disk, as a Digital Vinyl System (DVS) for a computer software where all of the music is digital and the cd tables are used to manipulate the digital file via timecoded signal or as a midi controller in which the functions of a dj software are mapped to buttons on the controller deck.

    The difference between the last two are the method by which the digital file is manipulated. With a dvs a timecoded cd or record is used to generate a signal from the deck/table and is routed thorough an ASIO/Core compliant soundcard into a computer where the tone is read and basically replaced with a digital music file that resides on hard disk somewhere. A midi controller uses no timecoded signal and is connected to a computer via usb, the buttons on the controller are mapped to different functions in a dj software and the two communicate via Musical Instrument Digital Interface (midi), your son already has a midi controller in the form of the Kontrol S4. For an example of a Digital Vinyl System (DVS) check out Traktor Scratch Pro 2 on the products portion of this website.

    With that being said I can only offer my suggestion. It seems as though his music collection is probably all contained on his computer so it would seem to me that he would not want to burn cd's to play out on his cdj's if he can just carry his laptop. The Kontrol S4 comes with Traktor Pro 2 software so I'm guessing he is already using it (but can't be sure). However, if he is, he will probably get the most flexible (not to mention cost efficient) setup by upgrading his Traktor Pro 2 software to Traktor Scratch Pro 2 (~$150) and getting a set of real turntables (record players ~$500 & up) and use a timecoded record giving him the ability to use the turntables as a DVS. This setup will give him the ability to play records, use the turntables as a DVS and have the S4 to use as a midi controller.

    If he is set on CDJs, there certainly is nothing wrong with it. It is just more costly really. The options that I mentioned in my previous post already have midi control built in so he could use them as midi controllers or as cd tables. It is also possible to buy the Traktor Scratch Pro 2 upgrade and use them as a DVS (just with a timecoded cd instead of a record).

    There is always a debate on CDJs vs turntables but if the dj is using software as the core component of his setup then it really is a matter of cost and preference as they both have the ability to do the same basic things when used as a controller for the software.

    I am making an assumption based on his current equipment that he will want to play off of his computer rather than burn cd's for his gigs/shows, but I could be completely wrong. It may be worth it to ask him so that you have a better frame of reference.

    Definitely look up Traktor Scratch Pro 2 on this website and you will have a much better idea of the way that a DVS works.
  6. gonzo.pete

    gonzo.pete Forum Member

    I would take a look at the Pioneer CDJ 1000mk3. They are the industry standard and chances are he would/will use them when performing outside of home. Not the cheapest of CDJ's-granted, but without asking him and knowing for sure, you won't go far wrong with them.
    If he has mentioned "CDJ's" then chances are these are what he was referring too.
    He already has a competent mixer in the form of the S4 for midi control so the CDJ's can plug straight in and give him audio CD & timecode CD functionality.
    Not sure if you work in £'s or $'s but expect to pay £700 upwards for a pair second hand, eBay, Gumtree, Craigslist etc.