If you are a beginner in music or a professional just trying new ideas, the best DJ controllers enable you to create new experiences and do multiple musical experiments. There are numerous DJ controllers present in the market. Choosing among a wide variety of sizes, software compatibility, prices, and feature sets makes it difficult for the customer to choose the best DJ controller.
There is no shortage of a wide variety of these DJ controllers. Some of the latest DJ controllers are in the market with features like Serato, Virtual DJ, Traktor and rekordbox, and many other options that attract customers. It becomes challenging for buyers to purchase a single DJ controller with such unique features. But there is always a single product that fills your requirement criteria. To help you choose one, I have compiled this list of the best DJ controllers.
Top 10 Best DJ Controllers
When buying the best DJ Controllers 2022 for beginners, selecting the right product is the primary concern. Different products are available in the market with almost similar specifications, making it difficult for the buyers to decide among them.
The compiled list took me a whole month due to a detailed review and analysis of each product’s features. Let us have a detailed look at their specs and features.
1) Pioneer DJ DDJ-800 Best DJ Controllers For Beginners
|No. of Channels||2|
|Sound Color Effects||4|
|Built-in||24-bit 44.1 kHz audio interface|
|Performance Pads||8 per deck|
Four months ago, I decided to buy a new DJ controller to mix songs and create a unique fusion. I stepped into the market and did quite some research about some best sellers. Pioneer DJ DDJ-800 caught my attention as it was one of the best sellers in the market and on the shopping website online. Let us have a look at some of its other features;
Pioneer DJ DDJ-800 is the best DJ controller pioneer and a good-looking DJ controller with a dual-tone finish. It instantly attracts customers and becomes an eye-catcher. The build quality of this controller is solid, with a weight of 4.7kg; this little weight makes it portable and easy to carry around.
Easy Setup for Beginners
The Pioneer DJ controller ranks top among the best DJ controllers for beginners and is relatively easy to use and setup. It is small, fits any table quickly, and has some fantastic features, such as a 2-channel mixer with LCD jog display; its 16 multicolor performance pads help change the music’s course.
Pioneer DJ Controller comes with an admirable connectivity option. It can work as a standalone mixer through you can use this controller without any other device to make your desirable music mix. You can connect vinyl to this controller, and its rekordbox technology with digital vinyl control will surprise you. You can also connect two mics with DJ 800, connecting MC and a vocalist to join your music mix.
Pioneer 800 has smaller jog wheels than its competitors, but the technology and features possessed by this controller are amazing. An LCD is on the center of the jog wheels, making the controller attractive. You can easily see the performance metrics on this display.
DDJ-800 controller has 16 excellent rubber-made performance pads; they have backlights and look beautiful in black light. These pads enhance critical shift, hot cues, beat loop, pad FX, keyboard, and sampler. These performance pads have many latest features that make the music mix easy and exciting.
- It has a professional and practical design.
- It has to input mics, both different in sound quality.
- Eight performance pads are there, each with different unique features.
- Jog wheels have an attractive built-in LCD.
- Not suitable for experienced DJs.
- You can only cue 2 out of 4 channels at once.
- FX engaging requires a rekordbox connection.
2) Pioneer DJ DDJ-REV7 Best DJ Controller For Virtual DJ
|No. of Channels||2|
|Motor Type||DC Motor|
|Performance Pads||16 per deck|
Mixing music is fun, and I started to do it more often. For this purpose, I bought Pioneer DJ DDJ-REV7, and I could not be happier. I bought it 3 months ago when I was trying different music fusions. It has many unique features, such as beat FX, 16 performance pads, and a 2-deck DJ controller with a Serato DJ with a magnified LCD. Let us have a look at its other features;
Intense Attention to Details
The build quality of Pioneer DJ DDJ-REV7 best DJ controller for Virtual DJ, is excellent, with its intense attention to detail. The performance pads installed in this controller are tremendous and easily pressed without extra effort. The feeders of this controller are of premium quality, and all the knobs are reliable.
Pioneer DJ DDJ-REV7 is the newest DJ controller, among other options. It has an eye-catching design; this piece saves you from moving your turntable to every gig. Its weight of 11kgs is easy to carry and makes it a portable controller. I found some connection points of this controller a little flawed such as the small plastic clips being of good quality. Beyond this, the overall design is fantastic with the mixer combo and gorgeous scratch-free jog wheels space.
Serato DJ Pro Software
Pioneer DJ DDJ-REV7 comes with Serato DJ Pro software; scratch DJs will find this controller one of the best options for scratch playing. The software feature is enthusiastic with hip-hop and other fast music. You don’t need any hardware if you have Serato Pro at your help.
- It has sizeable motorized jog wheels.
- The battle-style layout makes this controller unique.
- It has an instant scratch feature.
- The crossfaders installed are fantastic.
- The power supply is chunky.
- The split cue feature could have been better.
- Pads lack customer user groups.
3) Numark DJ2GO2 Mini Controller DJ
|No. of Channels||2|
|Software||Serato DJ Lite|
|Hardware Interface||3.5mm Audio|
|Performance Pads||4 pad modes|
I needed a backup controller for my other Pioneer DJ controller to work with, get the experience of multiple brands, and note the difference. While reviewing, I noticed many distinguishing features, including its software Serato D Lite creates Numark DJ2GO2’s best music mix and gets synced quite easily with my previous setup devices. Besides the software, it has 2 decks with crossfader, pitch fader, and jog wheels to add creativity to your mix.
The Numark DJ2GO2 is small in size and does not offer the layout as compared to the other competitors. The crossfader at the center is also short, but the load buttons on either side of the knob help load the tracks easily and quickly.
Numark DJ2GO2 is the mini controller DJ with Serato. It uses Serato DJ Lite; download this software from the Serato site. Thanks to Serato DJ lite, good fusion is accessible and contains many editing options to make your music more appealing and flawless.
The jog wheels attached to Numark controllers are small, and it took me some time to get a grip on them; the Numark touch enables you to scratch. This jog wheel is there to make you a scratch DJ.
Numark contains other critical pitch faders installed in them that help match the manual beat, and you can also use the sync functionality to use this software to help match beats. Pitch faders help you be prominent in the sound you want to highlight and fade the pitches that are too shrill.
- The interface audio is of high quality.
- Numark controller is compact and potable.
- This controller is economical and cheap.
- Serato software help in scratching.
- It does not involve any EQ controls.
- The size of the whole mixer is too small to grip.
- Not suitable for professional DJs.
4) Roland DJ-202 Top DJ Controller
|No. of Channels||2|
|Software||Serato DJ Pro Upgrade|
|Sampling Frequency||48 kHz|
|No. of Decks||4|
After setting up my workplace of music production, I decided to get one controller to use at home. I searched for a budget-friendly controller with a small size and premium-quality features and decided to buy the Roland Serato DJ Pro upgrade (DJ-202). This premium controller was precisely the size I wanted with all the fantastic features, and was budget-friendly. I instantly became my favorite due to its software Serato DJ Pro Upgraded with two channels and 4 decks. Let us look at its other features;
The Roland DJ-202 top DJ controller contains 2 channels with 4 decks and allows power with the help of USB; this controller is highly portable due to its small size and is straightforward to set up at a new place. Its compact, easy-grab knobs and lightweight design increase its portability, making it a go-to device for parties, beat battles, and mobile applications.
Drum Machine Legacy
The fantastic sound quality implicated by the famous Roland Drum Machine is unforgettable. This DJ controller has that drum machine legacy through which you can define each aspect of music, including techno, hip-hop, electro, and other music of the 80s and 90s.
Productivity and Performance
Roland DJ-202 lets you load your sounds into the Serato DJ Pro; you can create the best music collection. With the 16-step sequencer and performance pads and synchronizing them to your already generated music library, you can remix, produce and perform the best quality music in front of the world.
- The controller has excellent connection ports.
- FX feature of professional feature is a blast.
- The jog wheels of this controller are nicely weighted.
- The build quality could be better.
- The performance pads are hard.
- The drum pattern is not as good as it should be.
5) RANE ONE DJ Controller with Motorized Platters and Serato DJ Pro
|Connectivity||Dual USB laptop|
|Item Dimensions||4.9 x 13.6 x 26.5 inches|
|Software||Serato DJ Pro Scratch Bank|
My previous controller gave up last month, and I bought RANE ONE DJ Controller. Like everyone else, the first thing that caught my attention was the heaviness and sturdiness of this unit. I have been using a lightweight controller before, and this controller felt like a good option due to its weight. It is a perfect size, and its sound technology is impressive. Let’s have a look at the rest of its unique features;
Rane One is the best DJ controller professional and has a well-motorized build quality. The device is 120 mm, having a 674mm x 345mm chassis and 4 turntable style feet. When I first looked at it, I was convinced by its professional look. Rane One controller has all the premium quality parts installed with the motorized controller. The whole design of this controller is compact, heavy, and contains different technology.
The mag four XF crossfader and 45mm faders deliver an excellent balance; 3 bands of EQs and Omni filters are on all the channels to enhance sound mixing technology. The FX section in the middle of the controller is substantial and has buttons for access to the Serato DJ Pro scratch options.
Under each deck, you can see a wide range of performance pads; these pads are in a 4 x 2 pattern and make a set of 8 pads. The pad quality is soft but swift, and you can control the Serato technology with them. The loop controls, hot cues, loop rolls, and slicer are all present in these pads for better sound production.
- The crossfaders are of high quality.
- It has excellent build quality.
- It has expansive connectivity.
- The tactile platters are fantastic.
- The 2-channel mixer is missing.
- Secondary options are missing for loops.
- The microphone switches and buttons are tiny.
6) Pioneer DJ DDJ-1000 Highly Customizable DJ Controller
|Number of Channels||4|
|Performance Pads||16 Multicolor|
I have used many controllers in my career as a DJ, and I believe in changing these controllers when there is new and updated technology in the market. With the coming new technology, you get the chance to enhance your sound quality; Pioneer DJ DDJ-1000 has been my utmost favorite purchase due to its latest technology. Its customized color technology on the LCD and NXS2 setup makes this product unique.
Due to its fantastic sound technology, the DDJ 1000 gives a Nightclub DJ booth feel. The buttons and knobs arranged on this controller are swift and consist of premium quality material. The enormous size of this controller is what I like the most. Along with the size, it is portable and lightweight. This controller is pretty solid and reliable.
Pioneer DDJ 1000 gives away multiple connectivity options; one from the front face, there is a 1/4th and 1/8th inches XLR headphone port, and at the back end, it has its majority connection RCA ports.
This DJ Pioneer 1000 is a rekordbox DJ. This rekordbox exhibits impressive technology and contains a detailed tagging system; you can arrange your music categorically in alphabets or any other way you like. This software is pretty easily installed and easy to set up.
- It offers a complete club-style design and layout.
- The hardware FX gives you many options to choose from.
- The jog wheels are high quality and have a colorful jog wheel display.
- Pioneer-1000 lacks Serato software.
- Works on single rekordbox DJ software.
7) Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S2 Mk3 Best Dj Controller under $1000
|Number of Channels||2|
|Software||Traktor Kontrol S2 Mk3|
I originally got Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S2 as a backup/portable version of the S4MK3. I could use it at home to do preparation and record mini-mixes. I was not disappointed. The hardware build quality is excellent and lightweight. I’ve used it on the road when traveling and even in one of the biggest clubs in the USA with no problems whatsoever.
Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S2 Mk3 has a full version of Traktor pro-3; this software is unique and has a diversity of managing multiple tasks ranging from easy to complex tasks. Tractor Kontrol saves you some money you would spend on the features of upgrading controllers.
Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S2 contains a decent-sized jog wheel; usually, jog wheels possessed by its competitors are small and challenging to grip. This controller saves you from the time taken to adjust to hold the grip. You can enable reverse and flux modes with the help of buttons on these jog wheels.
The native controller best DJ controller under $1000, has accurate and precise pitch faders but is shorter. These pitch feeders have sync buttons to synchronize your beats with the sound just as you want them to be. You can also apply the keylock button to prevent losing the key.
- It has excellent built quality.
- The software installed is unique and complete.
- The jog wheels are of great size.
- The mixer section is diverse and complete.
- The compatibility between tractor pro 3 and tractor DJ 2 is restricted.
- The FX mixer is simple and lacks the required depth.
8) Denon DJ PRIME 4 Best DJ Controllers For Serato
|Number of Channels||4|
Denon DJ Prime 4 is among the best Dj controllers for Serato that I bought for testing. This unit has liberated me from the laptop and conveniently allowed me to keep the versatility of carrying my digital library while staying and looking professional at all times. Denon has made the best DJ console to date. Whether a pro, amateur, or studio DJ, this Prime 4 console offers all the tools to create your mixes and deliver every set with your unique style.
Denon DJ Prime 4 has a 10.1 inches touchscreen where you can view 4-deck and horizontal and vertical waveforms of your music. Through this touchscreen, you can search the music, select it and preview it to hear it before the performance. You can also load your tracks and create your customized playlist. It has all the essential DJ parameters and information.
Standalone DJ System
It enables you to entertain two types of audiences; rock the dancefloor in one room and the moving to the other location simultaneously. It offers a multicore processor in which you can always keep your gig ready and add your favorite customized rugged metal chassis and other Denon DJ pristine audio quality.
Denon DJ Prime 4 has 4 different channels, and each channel has a different crossfader installed to edit the sound quality. Every channel has a complete 3-band EQ with the gain knob. These knobs are in different colors that help you distinguish between them easily. The center section of the mixer has cue mix knobs to connect the channel via headphones.
- The massive 10-inch screen is excellent.
- It is affordable and economical.
- There are multiple connectivity options.
- It can stand alone.
- The engine is limited to prime soft.
- It is slightly heavy than its competitors.
9) Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S4 RGB DJ Controller
|Number of Channels||4|
|Software||Traktor Kontrol S4 MK3|
|Performance Pads||16 RGB|
I decided to review Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S4 due to its increasing popularity among other DJ controllers. It has some fantastic features, such as large motorized jog wheels that are easy to grip and an RGB LED ring that surrounds the jog wheels and gives a high-resolution color display.
Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S4 has an evolved and renewed design compared to its ancestors. It gives a sizeable bulky look and rock-solid designs; it also honors its turntable mode spin legacy and elegant high-performing spinning platters.
The hardware of this Traktor Kontrol S4 MK3 contains a motorized jog wheel, and it makes this controller attractive due to the jog wheel spin; this update is massive and a game changer. It also has a haptic feedback engine that makes you feel the cues and beats through tactile sensation.
Updated Sound Card
Traktor Kontrol S4 MK3 has an updated digital-to-analog converter and sound card; you get updated sound quality through this. This card is 24-bit and 114db cirrus logic DAC. The internal mixing software also has an incredible sound quality and update.
- It gives superb sound quality.
- The jog wheels are fantastic.
- Mixer sections feel utterly professional.
- This controller has a graceful design.
- It is smaller in size.
- Quite a heavier design.
- It lacks a standalone mode.
10) Roland DJ-808 DJ Controller
|Number of Channels||4|
|Performance Pads||8 RGB|
If you are a DJ trying to get into production or adding some DJ tools to your production process, this is for you. After trying many other options, I bought Roland DJ Controller (DJ-808) and found it excellent. That’s why I decided to review this product to help others out. This controller has an exclusive design with custom design Hendrix imagery on the earpiece shields. It also has 50mm, dual-diaphragm drivers to enhance the sound quality.
Roland DJ 808 has Serato DJ software and has full access to the pro version with pitch and time expansion. Serato software is one of the best DJ software known today, and it allows critical synchronization and loops and is better set compared to other controllers.
The Jog wheels of the Roland DJ 808 are of fantastic size, and you can easily grip and control them. They are not very big, but they are big enough to give you a comfortable scratch on the controller. The heft and weight of this controller are of the right amount. There are extra controls in the jog wheels to increase the controller’s functionality.
Productive and Long-lasting
Roland DJ 808 has many editing features and works for more than 14 hours. It has an elegant v-micro-USB cable to recharge 100% in 100 minutes. The battery life is long-lasting, and the sound quality is excellent.
- The quality of the drum sequencer is unique.
- It had 4 different channel mixers.
- The build quality is fantastic.
- The jog wheels are responsive.
- The learning curve with this controller is slow.
- It lacks a standalone mode.
- A little heavy than competitors.
Best DJ Controllers In World – Buyer’s Guide
When you enter the market to buy the best DJ controllers, you must look for some features before making a final decision. The best DJ controller has all the fantastic features that you should check before buying, such as; software should be excellent and compatible, jog wheels should be of perfect size, the latest technology, and many other features given below;
One of the essential qualities to notice before buying the best DJ controller is to check the installed software in your controller and if the installed software is compatible with the controller. There are different types of DJ software, such as;
- Virtual DJ
- Algoriddim DJ
- Pioneer DJ
- Rekordbox DJ
- Serato DJ
You have to be careful in whatever choice you make depending upon the type of music your want from these controllers. The DJs mentioned above with the Serato software are my favorite as it makes it easy for you to scrap music. I like scrap music and consider Pioneer DJ DDJ-800 one of the best controllers.
Size of DJ Controller
Another essential thing to notice is the size of your DJ controller; it depends on whether you want to set it up in your office and use it permanently or if you want to carry it around with you to different gigs and shows. You should consider buying a heavy controller if you want to fix it and want less movement and transfers. But if you want to move a lot with the controller, you should choose a lighter option.
Both types of controllers are available in this list; if you want a lightweight controller, you can buy Numark DJ2GO2; if you are looking for a heavier and more solid option, you can take the Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S4 home. Usually, lightweight controllers are for beginners as they can get more practice from them and take them with them wherever they go. Heavyweight controllers are the favorites of professional DJs who know what they want and how they want it.
Mixer Channels and their Features
There are 2 or 4 channels available in the controllers. Usually, people prefer 4 channels due to the extensive features involved in these channels 4 channels mean you can mix your songs in 4 different channels and play them at different locations.
Usually, beginners prefer using 2 channels because they are new and need practice. While professional DJs like to have 4 channels to categorize their music type. I recommend Pioneer DJ DDJ-1000 as it has 4 channels and fantastic sound quality. You can listen to 4 different channels and edit music on 4 different channels simultaneously.
The control features also vary with the changing controllers. If they are scratch DJs, they will have crossfader and make smooth and accurate music. The jog wheels would also be great, and the motorized platters and vinyl pieces will work perfectly. While the other controllers, such as native instruments, have much smaller jog wheels, and their control features are also separate.
Another thing to notice is the performance pads and pad modes. The sizes of the performance pads also vary with the changing models. Suppose you are looking for a controller with unique control features. In that case, you should consider buying Pioneer DJ DDJ-1000 because it has 16 RGB multicolor performance pads and its jog wheels are also available in the perfect big size.
No matter what genre of music you prefer, choosing a suitable DJ controller is essential to creating an inspiring tone. I hope you found the answers you were looking for to get the perfect DJ controller for your needs. In conclusion, the Pioneer DJ DDJ-800 has many unique qualities that attract you. It has Rekordbox DJ software, and along with this, it also offers a Nightclub booth vibe with fantastic sound quality. Its price is affordable, and you will also like its build design.Best Recommended Product
Both of these software have their respective features: some features one has and the other lacks, and vice versa. Pioneer DJ rekordbox has a vocal detection algorithm that shows your vocal waveforms, and with the Serato DJ pro, you have more DJ control over the controller.
Yes, you can use a DJ without a laptop; this means you can operate the controller without connecting it to the laptop through the individual screen on the laptop. This controller is called a standalone controller. You can connect them to the laptop if you want. Otherwise, they are good too.
Virtual DJ is compatible with many pioneer DJ controllers; the virtual DJ has more comprehensive support for the DJ hardware; this might not be compatible with every pioneer DJ controller, but it is compatible with the majority.