News: Serato DJ and Pioneer DDJ-SX Announced

Big news for DJs has arrived just before BPM 2012 kicks off in UK. Serato announce Serato DJ - promises the best feature set for all-in-one Controllers. Pioneer announce DDJ-SX: first for Serato DJ.  

Here at MPVHub we've been keeping a close eye on the goings on for a variety of different DJ controllers that support Serato and Traktor. In fact, you'll find the DJing section of MPVHub is about to become a whole lot more populated with tips and reviews over the coming weeks too…

So, it feels timely that just prior to BPM 2012 (the largest event dedicated to DJing and electronic music production) Serato have announced the next major evolution of their DJing software solutions: Serato DJ.

Also announced yesterday was the new Pioneer DDJ-SX, the first controller designed for Serato DJ. More on that later… (video included).

Serato DJ

It's so new, that Serato list only the main features on their site here. Highlights include:

  • New software layout with 2 and 4 deck view modes
  • FX provided by iZotope
  • MIDI Mapping (allowing DJs to create unique workflows)
  • In-software recording
  • Auto Looping
  • Four deck mode with supported controllers
  • Smart Sync (for seamless grooves)
  • Serato Video Support
  • Support for Scratch Live, ITCH, DJ Intro and iTunes Music Libraries

Serato DJ is coming...

Serato DJ is coming...

Check out the Serato site for a breakdown of controller support and more info about the software as it emerges.

Pioneer DDJ-SX

To add to the excitement about Serato DJ, Pioneer have stepped up with their latest all in one controller with performance pads. Both these big guns have evidently been working closely to sync up this promising announcement...

Here's the latest info on the DDJ-SX our friends at Pioneer provided us with:

The Pioneer DDJ-SX in all its glory.

The Pioneer DDJ-SX in all its glory.

“Serato's newest software lets DJs be more creative with their music, so we've built a dedicated controller that enables them to access the software's features with a precision similar to that in our Pro DJ gear,” said David Arevalo, senior marketing manager, Professional Sound and Visual Division for Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. “The DDJ-SX is the first controller in the industry that is designed to take full advantage of Serato DJ's powerful new capabilities.”

Mixing with Serato 

Sold as a complete system that includes the controller and new Serato DJ software, the DDJ-SX provides additional features to provide direct, tactile control of the software's capabilities, which include a four deck sampler function, dual deck control, slip mode, FX mode and more.

  • Dual Deck – The DDJ-SX enables two tracks to be controlled at the same time, allowing scratching or setting and recalling hot cues on both tracks as if they were performed on a single track. 
  • Slip Mode – While activated, Slip Mode silently continues song playback during a performance loop, scratch or hot cue and resumes audible playback when the loop, scratch, or hot cue operation is ended, creating smoother and more seamless transitions. 
  • FX Mode – Provides access to two types of effect modes, Multi FX and Single FX Multi FX Mode – Allows multiple effects to be applied simultaneously. Single FX Mode – Allows a single effect to be controlled with numerous parameters.
  • Additional Functions – Up to eight hot cue points can be set for each deck. Vertical waveform display for fast tempo syncing.

Customized Control Layout Works as Great as it Looks

The DDJ-SX can quickly access the multitude of features Serato DJ offers through its buttons, knobs, sliders and performance pads. Thoughtfully laid out to deliver the best DJ controller experience, its buttons and knobs are designed to match the applicable software functions perfectly:

  •  Performance Pads – Pioneer added eight “performance pads” located below the jog wheel for four different functionalities – HOT CUE, ROLL, SLICER and SAMPLER. Each soft-touch rubber pad illuminates in blue to enable users to quickly tap the pad(s) for each effect, with the output volume varying depending on the strength of each tap.
  • Large Jog Wheels – The jog wheels on the DDJ-SX are enlarged for more precise scratching and mixing. The resistance for each jog wheel was fined tuned to provide users with the best “feel” and the shortest latency. The unit also features an “On Jog” display located on the center of each wheel to provide instantaneous visual feedback of playback status and the position of playing tracks. 
  • 4-Channel Mixer – The DDJ-SX features an independent 4-channel mixer that can be used with other external sources such as turntables. Its master level meter provides instantaneous sound level adjustment as well as independent output controls with a display indicator for each channel when used as a standalone mixer. 
  • Aluminum Finish – The DDJ-SX sports an aluminum top panel and a brushed aluminum finish for the jog wheels for optimal look and feel.

Additional Features

  • Serato DJ Software – The new Serato software is bundled with the DDJ-SX for an easy out-of-the-box experience.
  • Multiple Connection Options – The DDJ-SX offers dual CD and phono/line inputs for external devices as well as two microphone inputs, two master outputs (XLR and RCA) and a booth out terminal.
  • High Quality Audio – A low-jitter clock and high-performance digital-to-analog converter (DAC) are used for accurate audio playback. 
  • Built-in Sound Card (audio interface).
  • Needle Search – Users can immediately jump to a specific part of a music track with a simple touch of the Needle Search pad.
  • Adjustable Cross-fader Curve to suit any type of mixing style.
  • Channel Fader Start – Enables the use of the channel fader to control and play/cue tracks. 

The DDJ-SX will be available in November 2012 with a suggested retail price of $1,199. 

The first 10,000 units of the DDJ-SX sold worldwide will be bundled with a free license for the Serato Video plug-in (worth $149).

Find out more on the Pioneer site here, and stay tuned for a full review on MPVHub.

Rounik is the Executive Editor for Ask.Audio & macProVideo. He's built a crack team of professional musicians and writers to create one of the most visited online resources for news, review, tutorials and interviews for modern musician and producer. As an Apple Certified Trainer for Logic Pro Rounik has taught teachers, professional... Read More


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