Category Archives: Knobs & Buttons

Pioneer announces their new Pro-Grade Turntable PLX-1000

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Here it is then. A lot of people were asking why we needed another Technics like turntable on the market and Pioneer have answered that question with the all analogue PLX-1000. Building on the tried and tested layout of the iconic 1200 and the 1210 the PLX-1000 will be a welcome addition to any turntablists arsenal.  Expected RRP is around £450.


You’ll be hearing a lot more about the PLX-1000 in the coming weeks but for now check out the following video:


Traktor Kontrol F1 Announced (For real this time)

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You may have seen that poorly shot phone cam movie a while ago taken at the Native Instruments get together where they announced the F1 and the confusingly named Traktor Pro 2.5? Well, its official. The sucky part? It’s not out until May the 30th.

You can expect a flurry of videos from NI as they build up to the release but in the meantime get your peeping balls around this:


And here’s some shpeel:

TRAKTOR KONTROL F1 is the definitive hardware for controlling the powerful Remix Decks™ in TRAKTOR PRO 2.5 – the flagship DJ software included with the F1. Finally, you can launch clips in a perfectly intuitive, DJ-centric way – control Remix Decks just like regular track decks, switching between up to 64 tracks, loops and one-shot samples on each deck. With your signature sound at your fingertips, it’s time to blur the line between DJing and live performance.

Get started in seconds – the KONTROL F1 includes around 4 GB of premium grade sound, pre-loaded as Remix Sets. Or you can import your own samples, and even capture loops and sounds live, using the controller’s stylish multi-color pads and ergonomic faders. Expand the creative potential of any TRAKTOR set-up – with or without timecode vinyl – and transform your DJ set into a dynamic live performance.

Personally, I can’t wait. I’m all up for pushing the boundaries of DJing and this is something I’m going to be snapping up as soon as possible. What do you think? Let us know below.

Joey Negro – Essential Accapellas (Free Sample Pack)

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Z Records and Juno are giving away an album full of classic Z Accapellas so you can lock yourself away and produce your own remixes and dj mixes.

The album contains accapella’s from legendary vocalists such as Diane Charlemagne, Taka Boom, Pete Simpson, Fonda Rae, Karla Brown, Katherine Ellis, Dave Clarke, Gerideau and more…

The album will only be available for a limited time so don’t delay, download your copy now.

Important Stuff:

The accapellas are free to download and for you to use in your productions and mixes but if you want to use them commercially please contact Z Records to gain prior approval:

The Smithson Martin KS-1974

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Old meets the future on this touchscreen controller from Smithisn Martin. It looks like it has been ripped out of the Millennium Falcon’s dashboard. 22″ of strengthened touchscreen loveliness set in a wooden stand for that vintage feel.
Oh you want one? you’re looking at about £1,500

Behringer CMD STUDIO 4A

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Looks like Behringer are trying to up their game with the release of their new CMD series of DJ controllers. Some of you may be cowering in the corner at the idea of this and I’d be inclined to agree. However it all depends on where they choose to position themselves in the market. If Behringer are thinking of going up against some of the big boys here such as NI’s S2 and S4 then they may have their work cut out for them. Personally I’d hope to see these priced alongside Reloop and the lower end Numark products.

Other than that these look pretty sturdy, I’m liking the matt black finish but those buttons look like they could get stuck down if they’re made of rubber. And we all know my thoughts on jogwheels.

Moving on, specs are as follows:

  • Highly integrated 4-deck controller with built-in 4-channel USB audio interface
  • Powerful 4-channel USB audio interface with 24-bit converters and ultra-low latency operation under Windows and OSX operating systems
  • Large 6” touch-sensitive high-resolution control platters for precise control
  • Class-compliant MIDI protocol enables DJs to use the CMD Studio 4A with any MIDI software
  • Professional 100 mm pitch faders and 60 mm volume faders for ultimate feel and resolution
  • Complete mixer section with crossfader and 2 channel faders, 3-band EQ, EQ kill, FX assign, cue and track load buttons
  • Full-fledged deck sections including key lock, pitch control, auto looping, 8 hot cues and full control over 2 FX modules
  • Backlit buttons responding to the application – no need to look at the computer screen
  • MIDI-reactive controls take your eyes off the computer screen
  • Slim tabletop design for ultimate portability
  • Compatible with other BEHRINGER CMD controllers for full expandability
  • High-quality components and exceptionally rugged construction ensure long life
  • Conceived and designed by BEHRINGER Germany

More details can be found here:

New Traktor Controller Sneak Peek

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What’s this? Native Instruments have setup a new Twitter account just for Traktor and they’ve released this image as a sneak peek of their next new controller. If I’m not mistaken I reckon we’re looking at NI’s version of Twitch. And if it is then I’m all over it like a nasty amazon rash. I use a VCI100 and as good as it is, I never use the jogwheels. They should only be found on two items when it comes to DJing: CDJs and Turntables. Until of course someone creates an exact USB / Midi version of the Pioneer 1000, and only then should it have a jog wheel. If you think different then let me know using the comments box below.

Anyway, here’s hoping it is what I think it is. For more information, connect with @Traktor over on Twitter.

CES2012 – Gemini Firstmix USB DJ Controllers

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Bit strapped for cash? Looking for something to have a play around with at home but don’t want to fork out for the mid range kit? Then these might be the things for you. Coming in at $129 and $199 respectively (I know, they’re in USD, I have no idea if they’re coming to the UK as yet).

Welcome to a digital DJ world made easy.

FirstMix offers a comprehensive and innovative feature-set that allows any user to explore the world of DJing in the most intuitive way possible.  Whether you’re an aspiring DJ interested in performing at parties and clubs, or just a music lover looking for a creative way to enjoy your own song library, FirstMix makes discovering a new realm of digital music easy and fun.

Everything you need to DJ with your iTunes Library.

Boasting many of the best features from Gemini’s professional DJ products, FirstMix interfaces with your PC or Mac via a standard USB connection, so you can easily use the included MixVibes Cross LE software to choose songs and sound files from your existing collections, even your iTunes Libraries. Offering an impressive level of dynamic control, MixVibes Cross LE acts as a natural complement to the FirstMix hardware with integrated iTunes browsing, automatic BPM detection and manual/auto beat loop capabilities.  You can even use the software to record your mixes then share your creations on SoundCloud or Facebook.

Classic feel with contemporary features.

For a natural, familiar feel, FirstMix employs the popular tried-and-true setup of two decks and a mixer.  The central mixer provides independent features for each deck, allowing you to tweak the Gain, Treble and Bass for individual tracks.  FirstMix also offers a variety of effects, which can be incorporated with fine-tuned control for additional creativity.  Plus, professional features like Reverse and Preview help you become familiarized with the arsenal of functions used by world-class DJs.
Thanks to its clever design, FirstMix lets you easily navigate folders and tracks using the Browse function.  Once a file’s been loaded, use the touch-sensitive jog wheels to simulate the effect of scratching or alter the pitch of a track.  You can also use the Sync feature to combine two separate tracks and match the tempos for a unique and professional-sounding mix.

Value and versatility for the aspiring DJ.

With support for a variety of digital music files including M4A, AIFF, WAV, MP3, FLAC and OGG, FirstMix ensures seamless functionality with all your favorite music and sound samples.  Plus, with an entry-level price and an intuitive design suitable for any learning curve, FirstMix offers outstanding control and professional features for any would-be DJ or general music enthusiast.

  • Includes everything you need to DJ with your computer
  • Use your Mac or PC to DJ parties, events and even clubs
  • Use your digital music library with support for M4A, AIFF, WAV, MP3, FLAC and OGG audio files
  • Traditional mixer/CD player layout w/ crossfader
  • Two-deck controller with volume, 2-band EQ, effects, and jog wheel for each deck
  • Large, touch-sensitive jog wheels provide a natural vinyl feel for scratching, cueing, etc.
  • Easy-to-use MixVibes Cross LE DJ software included
  • Works with other popular DJ programs such as Traktor, VirtualDJ and Algoriddim Djay


Gadgets! CES2012 – Line 6 unveils Mobile Keys™

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Line 6 has announced a duo of keyboard-style controllers at CES2012. Mobile Keys connects directly to your iPhone’s 30-pin port or via USB straight to your computer, which is pretty snazzy. The controller features velocity sensitive keys, two 1/4-inch jacks for sustain pedals, and it’ll interface with any apps that support CoreMIDI. We’re looking at around $150 to $200 for this version.

Here’s the bumph from Line 6:

Line 6 Unveils Mobile Keys™ Premium Keyboard Controller for iPad – iPhone – Mac –

Available in 25- and 49-key models, each with full-size keys, iOS and USB connectivity, and compatibility with iPhone®, iPad®, and iPod touch®.

Las Vegas, Nevada, January 10, 2012 – Line 6 (booth 6819), a pioneering company in the music technology field, is proud to announce the release of Mobile Keys 25 and Mobile Keys 49, a pair of new, lightweight, ultraportable keyboards designed to control iOS music apps that do double duty as USB MIDI controllers for Mac® and Windows® computers. Both models have full-size keys and solid keyboard action. The keys are velocity sensitive, allowing them to accurately interpret the nuances and subtleties of a keyboardist’s playing. Both Mobile Keys models are compatible with any iOS app that supports the CoreMIDI standard for input, including Apple GarageBand® and numerous drum machines, synthesizers, and virtual instruments.

“With Mobile Keys 25 and 49, not only do you have two extremely portable options for playing and recording on the go with your iPhone and iPad music apps,” says Line 6 co-founder and digital audio innovator Marcus Ryle, “but you can move seamlessly between your iOS music apps and your Mac or PC, as well.”

The keyboards require no additional hardware to function-they plug right into an iOS device’s dock connector. They’re bus powered, so they need no external power supply or batteries. The two keyboards are equipped with pitch bend and modulation wheels for additional sonic control, and they also have a pair of 1/4-inch TRS jacks for plugging in sustain and expression pedals. Both keyboards also have USB jacks and are USB class-compliant, allowing seamless connection with Mac and Windows desktop and laptop computers. Suggested retail price for Mobile Keys 25 is $149.99, and Mobile Keys 49 is $199.99, and both are shipping early 2012.

Line 6’s innovative products have been at the cutting edge of digital audio development for musicians since the company pioneered the digital modeling guitar amplifier in 1996. Before they formed Line 6 in the mid-’90s, Ryle and co-founder Michel Doidic were responsible for developing the software for the Alesis® ADAT®, the digital multitrack recorder that revolutionized the recording industry. Today, Line 6 produces a wide variety of hardware and software products including POD® multi-effect processors, POD Farm® software plug-ins, Spider® guitar amps, a range of professional digital wireless instrument and microphone systems, the Mobile In™ digital guitar interface for iOS devices with Mobile POD app, and the MIDI Mobilizer™ II MIDI interface for iOS devices.

Mobile Keys 25 and Mobile Keys 49 are compatible with iPod touch (3rd and 4th generation), iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPad 2 and iPad, as well as Mac and PC computers.

Apple, iPod touch, iPhone, iPad, Mac and GarageBand are trademarks of Apple Inc, registered in the U.S. and other countries. Apple is not responsible for the operation of this device or its compliance with safety and regulatory standards. Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and other countries. Alesis and ADAT are registered trademarks of Alesis, L.P. Line 6, POD, POD Farm, and Spider are trademarks of Line 6, Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. Mobile Keys, MIDI Mobil

Partially stolen from Engadget:

Livid Instruments – CNTRLR

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I’ve just spotted this on Facebook courtesy of Music Radar. If, like me, you’re a fan of technology and controllers when it comes to DJing and performing then you’re going to love this. Not keen on the price though. Almost $700!

CNTRL:R is a contemporary MIDI performance instrument for creative music production. Housed in a lightweight aluminum body, this controller is ideal for live performance and studio production. Create rhythms, sequence and perform drums, launch clips, mix tracks, and have complete control over your performance with CNTRL:R’s advanced set of features. High quality faders, push button encoders, rotary knobs, expression pedal inputs, and keypads backed with RGB lights give you all the controls you need for an interactive performance. With scripts available for Ableton Live and NI Traktor, the CNTRL:R meets the needs of anyone looking to perform electronic music. CNTRL:R is designed and hand crafted in Austin, TX.

For more info on this and other Livid products, check out their website.

CNTRL:R from Livid Instruments from Livid Instruments on Vimeo.

Bleep: Filtered – An unsigned competition

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 was launched in January 2004 by independent music and film company Warp, and have since cemented a reputation as the best download boutique store catering for passionate music fans.
Bleep: Filtered is a brand new Unsigned Competition and Compilation offering unsigned artists a unique chance to have their tracks A&Red, mastered, released, promoted, marketed and sold to the public. Bleep are partnering with their sister company Warp Records as well as SoundCloud and Transition Studios to throw a spotlight on the un-tapped electronic musical and production talents from around the World.

The competition is now open and they will be taking music submissions from producers and musicians for three weeks. Once these tracks are collected, the music will be ‘filtered’ by Bleep and the Warp A&R team. Throughout this judging period, Bleep will be posting updates on their Facebook page of some of the best tracks alongside feedback and commentary from the judging panel.

The final tracklist (between 10-12 tracks) will be revealed at the end of October, and will be mastered by world renowned Transition Mastering Studios in London, who will work closely with the winners to ensure best results. The compilation will be released and sold exclusively on Bleep. All winning tracks will receive a 50% share of profits generated by the release.

You can submit your tracks until September 9th 2011

Click here for everything you need to know to enter