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Best DJ Controllers Reviewed & Rated for Quality

last updated: Apr 22, 2019

Buying yourself a DJ controller might be the next step in your music career. They are a great way to give yourself an easy way to control how you want to play your music. By being the perfect mix between an old school turntable and a control station, these bring the best parts of the old and new school in music to one place. There are lots of things to keep in mind when you are buying one, though. What kind of price range are you looking at? How easy should it be to bring around with you? What kind of options do you to control? This guide will help you make an informed choice so the product you buy is the perfect fit for what you want. This list has ten of the best options on the market. Find one you like!

In a Hurry? The test winner after 14 hrs of research

icon
Pioneer XDJ-RX
98.4/100 our score
Adjustability
99
Responsiveness
99
Portability
98
Fit
98
Value
98
Pioneer XDJ-RX
Why is it better?

Ability to hook tons of extras to it

Gives you tons of options

Ready for the club

Top of the line turntables

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Pioneer XDJ-RX
Test Winner: Pioneer XDJ-RX
Amazon Link
Researched Sources
13
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
3299
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
14
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
10
Products Evaluated
Sorting Options
Adjustability Responsiveness Portability Fit Value By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
98.4
Adjustability
99 %
Responsiveness
99 %
Portability
98 %
Fit
98 %
Value
98 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$1,699.00
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
97.2
Adjustability
98 %
Responsiveness
98 %
Portability
97 %
Fit
96 %
Value
97 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$1,199.00
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.4
Adjustability
96 %
Responsiveness
95 %
Portability
95 %
Fit
95 %
Value
96 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$329.99
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
93.8
Adjustability
94 %
Responsiveness
93 %
Portability
94 %
Fit
95 %
Value
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$99.00
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91
Adjustability
92 %
Responsiveness
91 %
Portability
92 %
Fit
90 %
Value
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$783.20
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89
Adjustability
89 %
Responsiveness
89 %
Portability
89 %
Fit
89 %
Value
89 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$1,227.98
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87.2
Adjustability
87 %
Responsiveness
87 %
Portability
87 %
Fit
87 %
Value
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$599.99
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
85.6
Adjustability
85 %
Responsiveness
86 %
Portability
85 %
Fit
86 %
Value
86 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$900.00
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83.2
Adjustability
84 %
Responsiveness
84 %
Portability
83 %
Fit
83 %
Value
82 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$89.99
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
80
Adjustability
80 %
Responsiveness
80 %
Portability
80 %
Fit
80 %
Value
80 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (15.08.20)
Amazon Link
$979.99

10 Best DJ Controllers

1. Pioneer XDJ-RX

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
98.4
Pioneer XDJ-RX
Amazon Link
Adjustability
99
Responsiveness
99
Portability
98
Fit
98
Value
98
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$1,699.00
Pros:

Ability to hook tons of extras to it

Gives you tons of options

Ready for the club

Top of the line turntables

Cons:

Most expensive option

The XDJ-RX is the top of the line option. It has so many quality of life features, and it gives you the ability to control anything that you could think of.

Premiere DJ Controller
The Pioneer has everything that you could hope for in a DJ controller. It is designed so that it can work at any serious show, and would fit right in at the club. It comes with multiple displays so you can tell everything that you need to know right off the controller itself. The turntables are also very large and give you the ability to fine-tune your mixes.

Other Features
The XDJ has tons of other features worth mentioning. It has multiple hookups in it, which means that you can attach multiple computers, or multiple songs, to the controller. It also comes with the ability to be hooked up to more turntables so you can keep track of even more tracks if you would like to. It is also packed with ways that you can control your music.

Cost and Value
The XDJ-RX is designed as an all in one DJ controller that lets you do everything from its interface. This does mean that it will cost a pretty penny to own it. On the other hand, if you want the best DJ controller that you can find on the market, then look no further than this entry from Pioneer. It will have you ready to work like a professional in no time.

2. Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S8

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
97.2
Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S8
Amazon Link
Adjustability
98
Responsiveness
98
Portability
97
Fit
96
Value
97
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$1,199.00
Pros:

Lots of customizable knobs

Vivide displays

Comes with great software

Touch bars are intuitive

Cons:

No turntables

The Native Instruments is unique on this list because it foregoes the turntables for smaller, more intuitive tracking bars.

Unique Design
The Traktor Kontrol S8 is designed so that everything is easy to access and control from one place. It uses small touch bars that interface very well with Traktor's software for a simpler and easier experience. These controls will make it easy for you to keep up to date with where you are in each of your mixes.

Other Features
There is a lot of other things to love about the Kontrol S8. It comes with Traktor's software, which is the most intuitive way to use their controllers. They will make your life much easier when it comes to getting the controller to work with all your pre-existing software and sounds. Traktor also uses some pretty displays that will make it easy for you to see what is going on right on the controller.

Cost and Value
The Kontrol S8 is a well-designed DJ controller. It will make your life much easier when it comes to having full control over your live mixing. It has tons of changeable knobs and dials that mean that you can set everything up just the way that you want it. It also costs a lot less than the Pioneer deck above. The only thing you lose is the feeling of spinning those tables.

3. Hercules Djcontrol Jogvision

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.4
Hercules Djcontrol Jogvision
Amazon Link
Adjustability
96
Responsiveness
95
Portability
95
Fit
95
Value
96
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$329.99
Pros:

Easy to control tables

Hands free manipulation

Clear controls

True to life turntables

Cons:

People have trouble installing the drivers for it

The Jogvision is a well-priced DJ controller that has the claim to fame of letting you focus on working the turntables, instead of worrying about all the extra fluff.

Turntable-Centric Controller
The Hercules is designed so that you will have an easy time working with your jog wheels. It does this through the use of lighting on the turntable itself. It will let you know where in the track you are at, so you don't need to focus on LED displays that are somewhere else on the controller. This makes it easier for you to concentrate on timing your tracks just right.

Other Features
The Hercules has lots of other things going for it, too. The jogwheels are designed to be a little larger than usual, and they also have very textured surfaces that make it easy for you to keep a grip. One of the cooler things about the Jogvision is that it comes with Air Control, which lets you change setting sin the controller without touching the controller itself.

Cost and Value
The Hercules is designed so that you can have it easy when you are working. It means that it will let you focus on working the turntables while you are DJing. If you enjoy the art of the DJ, then these are a good choice for you. This is a good deck for showing off for crowds and friends. It also doesn't cost too much either, which is always a bonus.

4. Numark Party Mix

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
93.8
Numark Party Mix
Amazon Link
Adjustability
94
Responsiveness
93
Portability
94
Fit
95
Value
93
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$99.00
Pros:

Easy to use

Comes with software

Portable design

Great price

Cons:

Knobs feel loose

The Numark is the perfect controller for someone who is just getting into the hobby. It is easy to understand, and cheap to own.

Starter DJ Controller
The Numark gives you lots of opportunity to hone your craft if you are just starting out as a DJ. It comes with two turntables, which is enough to control all your shows from the controller. It is also a fully featured controller that will make it easy for you to see everything that needs changing. The many options are also very easy to understand.

Other Features
The Numark has lots of other things that make it a good choice for a beginner. It is designed with portability in mind. It is a bit smaller than the other options on this list, which is great for fitting it into your crowded life. It also comes with software that makes it very easy to control the controller, and to add other software onto it.

Cost and Value
All the previous points definitely makes this a good choice for any newcomer to the scene, but the true selling point of the Numark is the price. Where all the other options on this list cost in the triple or quadruple digits, the Numark will cost you much less than that. This can be bought by just about anybody, which is great if you only have a passing interest in the hobby.

5. Reloop Mixon 4

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91
Reloop Mixon 4
Amazon Link
Adjustability
92
Responsiveness
91
Portability
92
Fit
90
Value
90
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$783.20
Pros:

Compatible with everything

Easy to set up

Well-designed knobs and tables

Lots of options for beat making

Cons:

Durability issues

The Mixon 4 is designed so that you will have the easiest time possible setting up your gear. This makes the Mixon a good choice for the DJ on the go.

On The Go Design
The Mixon 4 is a cleverly designed piece of equipment that makes it easy for you to set up. Maybe you like the idea of being able to plug your equipment and then getting straight to work. This is a great controller for moving from the home studio to the gig at a moment's notice. This is aided by this controller being compatible with every kind of OS under the sun.

Other Features
The Mixon gives you tons of options for how you want to play, too. It is designed with multiple modes of play, so that you can use the turntables to change the song in multiple ways. Another great thing about this controller is all the options it gives you for cutting up your songs, too. It also comes with tons of inputs and outputs so you can attach a full studio to it if you want.

Cost and Value
The Mixon is a great choice for someone who wants a single controller to do all their work on. The Mixon will make it easy for you to be able to do work at home, or at an event. The best thing is that ti will be easy to set it up, no matter what you are trying to connect it to. This is a mid-range controller that doesn't cost as much as some of the other options on this list.

6. Denon DJ MCX8000

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89
Denon DJ MCX8000
Amazon Link
Adjustability
89
Responsiveness
89
Portability
89
Fit
89
Value
89
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$1,227.98
Pros:

Doesn't need a computer

Great displays

Sets itself up

Four channel design

Cons:

Screen can freeze sometimes

The Denon is a premiere DJ controller that comes with its own software that can interface with any programs that you are using.

Built-In Software
The Denon is one of the only DJ controllers that come with its own software. This means that you won't have to spend any of those tricky hours learning how to get the software to work, or assign all the knobs to different things. The Denon means that you will have a hassle-free experience while you are setting up your controller with anything.

Other Features
The Denon has tons of other features, too. It is designed with four different channels, which gives you tons of options for making and playing your music. Another great thing about the Denon running its own software is that you don't even need to use a computer to use the Denon. This is aided by the high definition screens that will make it easy to read any information.

Cost and Value
The Denon is a great choice for anyone who has become used to using the DJ controller. Not needing to bring a computer with you wherever you go is a freeing experience, and it is made easy with the Denon. It is a great fit for anyone who feels completely comfortable on a DJ controller, and wants everything that they need at their fingertips.

7. Reloop Beatpad-2

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87.2
Reloop Beatpad-2
Amazon Link
Adjustability
87
Responsiveness
87
Portability
87
Fit
87
Value
88
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$599.99
Pros:

Compatible with everything

Easy to bring along

Designed for mobile devices

Great for mixing quickly

Cons:

Not as many options as others

The Beatpad-2 from Reloop is specifically designed so that it can easily be attached to phones and tablets so that your DJing can become truly mobile.

Cross Platform DJ Controller
The Beatpad-2 is designed to be much smaller than the other options on this list, but sometimes that is all you need. There are tons of situations where you could benefit from a DJ controller that is easy to bring around with you. Even doing a quick set with some friends for fun can be aided by having a controller that can be carried in a backpack and worked through a phone.

Other Features
The Reloop has more things going for it than that, though. It is designed so that it is compatible with all kinds of pieces of equipment. It works for Apple, Android, and everything between. It works very well for designing loops, too. It has tons of modes that will make it easy for you to cook up a beat in the easiest way possible.

Cost and Value
With a smaller size comes a smaller price tag. The Beatpad-2 isn't cheap by any means, but it is much cheaper than the other professional options on this list. The Reloop is perfect for those who find themselves needing to make music at a moment's notice. The ability to bring your gear along with you everywhere is a freeing one.

8. Denon DJ MC4000

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
85.6
Denon DJ MC4000
Amazon Link
Adjustability
85
Responsiveness
86
Portability
85
Fit
86
Value
86
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$900.00
Pros:

Keeps you in control

Great price

Comes with software

Great for beginners

Cons:

A little small for some

The MC4000 is designed so that any DJs using it are totally in control of their work. It focuses on giving you a practical experience for when you are working.

Practical Design
The best thing about the MC4000 is that it will make it very easy for you to get all your work done without any slip-ups or mistakes. The first thing that helps with this is the extra long faders on this controller. This makes it much easier for you to get anything that you want just right, without the need for extra effort or work. The other thing that will help with this is the touch-activated jog wheels. This means that the wheels will only turn on when you want them to.

Other Features
There are tons of other things to get excited about with the Denon. It comes with Serato DJ Intro, which means that you will be set up with the best program that you can find in the DJ world. This will make it easy for you to get right into your work, without needing to worry about how everything is going to be set up.

Cost and Value
The Denon is great for another reason, too. This is one of the cheaper options on this list. This is a two-channel controller, which gives you a little less wiggle room. On the other hand, this controller is designed so that any beginner can feel confident that their set will go the way they want it, due to all the clever features meant for clumsier hands.

9. Hercules DJControl Starlight

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83.2
Hercules DJControl Starlight
Amazon Link
Adjustability
84
Responsiveness
84
Portability
83
Fit
83
Value
82
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$89.99
Pros:

Small enough for pockets

Has all the most important features

Great price

Has its own sound card

Cons:

Much smaller than other options

Speaking of smaller DJ controllers, the Hercules Starlight is designed so that you can bring it with you everywhere.

Pocket Controller
The Starlight is designed as a smaller version of the other controllers on this list. It gives you a lot less in terms of fine-tuning, as it removes many of the sliders and knobs that will let you have such a personalized experience with the other options on this list. It makes up for that by keeping all the most important parts of a DJ controller, but just in a smaller package.

Other Features
The Starlight is great when it comes to buying a feature-packed DJ controller. This product will make it much easier for you to bring your DJing along with you, and without needing to sacrifice much in terms of features. The Starlight has beat pads, jog wheels, and all the most important features for coming up with your own set on the fly.

Cost and Value
The Starlight also holds the honor of being the cheapest option on this list. The reasons for this is obvious, as the Starlight doesn't have nearly as much real estate on it as the other options. It makes up for that with things like the huge amount of portability it carries, as well as the number of things it does include at its size.

10. Pioneer DDJ-SX3

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
80
Pioneer DDJ-SX3
Amazon Link
Adjustability
80
Responsiveness
80
Portability
80
Fit
80
Value
80
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$979.99
Pros:

Lots of options for sound

Four channels

Well-designed jog wheels

Comes with sound pads

Cons:

Issues with defective units

The SX3 is another option from Pioneer that costs a little bit less, but doesn't sacrifice much in doing so. Perfect for those looking for a mid-range controller.

Four Channel Controller
The SX3 is a four channel controller with two decks, which gives you lots of options for the sounds coming out of your system. It lets you control two channels at once, while also having two other channels moving at the same time. This means you can have a dynamic barrage of sounds coming from your controller at all times.

Other Features
The SX3 comes with lots of other features, too. It can be used with your own software, but it also comes with Serato software, which is widely considered the best DJ software that you can find on the market. It also comes with tons of effects designed right into the controller, which gives you lots of control over the sounds that you are producing.

Cost and Value
The SX3 is a very well-made DJ controller that will give you all the control you could hope for over your music. It is a little less prestigious than the other option from Pioneer, but it has all the functionality you could hope. Combined with the software it comes with, the SX3 is a great addition to any musician's library.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Adjustability

The amount of options that you have with your controller will determine the amount of things that you can do with it. In this way, there is no such thing as too many sliders and dials. Each of those dials can be assigned for a different effect. There are things that you can sign to your tracks like delay, reverb, and pitch shifting. The more dials, the more in depth you can get. It can get quite daunting when you look at some larger DJ controllers. They will be packed with sliders and features that make it difficult to know what does what. The ability to assign these knobs how you want will depend on the type of software you buy. The higher the rating in this category, the more you can be assured that you will have enough options to set everything up just the way that you want it.

Responsiveness

Having a lot of options is important, but it is even more important that those options are responsive and designed to react accoridingly to your touch. This is important so that the things that you are trying to do with all of your tweaks and twists turn out to be exactly what is happening. You want your controller to be able to listen to you, and this is done through the pieces of the controller adjusting just how they should. The sliders and dials shouldn't feel too loose, so you can be confident that they will stay where you put them. Another important thing to look out for is the jog wheels, which should have a natural feeling to them as you spin them. They should feel like spinning some classic vinyl, and take just the right amount of effort. The higher the rating in this category, the better the individual pieces of the controller are.

Portability

Another important thing to think about when buying your DJ controller is how easy it is going to be to carry it around. This is an important one to keep in mind if you are the sort of person who wants to bring all their gear to the show. This is especially true if you are going to be doing all the carrying on your own. Some DJ controllers are utterly massive, which is important for having complete control over your set up, but it can be difficult to bring it anywhere. Think about buying a smaller set up if you will often be travelling, and especially if your travel is going to be something less serious, such as a jam session with some friends or a more informal event.

Fit

The DJ controller is the center of your world when it comes to establishing all your equipment as a DJ. This means that it is very important that your controller is a good fit with your other things. This could be your other physical pieces of equipment, or it could be the software that you use to play out your sets. As any musician who uses electronic equipment knows, you will be handling a lot of both of these things. Make sure that the software that you are downloading is compatible with the controller that you are using. Another thing that is important is to look at all the different hook ups that come out of the controller. You are going to need somewhere to hook up your laptop, and all the extra pieces that you want, like extra jogwheels and speakers.

Value

DJ controllers are one of those products that vary wildly in their price. There are controllers that you can buy in the quadruple digits. On the other hand, there are definitely lots of options that can be bough in the triple digits and under. What you are going to get in a more expensive controller is something that you can use for a long time. It will last you for the long haul, and will be packed with features and sliders for everything that you need. You will also end up with more audio channels, too. The cheaper options on this list are probably more in tune with the amateur DJ. These options will give you everything that you need. More importantly, they will stop you from getting confused by giving you too many options at once. If you are just starting out, think about buying one of the middle-ranged options. The category's rating is based on how much enjoyment you will get out of each dollar.

Expert Interviews & Opinions

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expert tips icon
Get With The Program

There are more than a few programs out there that are designed to help keep your DJing organized and efficient. Trying to find one that works for you will be difficult. The most popular these days is definitely Serato, which is a good place to start.

Schlepping About

You are often going to need to carry all your gear around with you. This is an important thing to keep in mind before buying a DJ controller. The perfect size is whatever will fit in the trunk of your car. You are going to need to carry it in and out of gigs, so try to keep this in mind.

Other Factors to Consider

Apps

Something to keep in mind when buying these products is what DJing program you are going to end up going with. Serato is the most popular and has been mentioned before, but there are tons of programs to think about. The most important thing to look for in a DJing program is that it is compatible with everything that you already have. This will make it much easier for you to get everything set up without too much hassle. Many of these controllers are designed for a specific program, such as Traktor or Serato, and some of the controllers will even come with a copy of the program, which will save you tons of money in the long run.

Durability

All those knobs, dials, and sliders mean that there are tons of opportunities for your controller to break in some way. This is one of the bigger reasons to buy something a little more expensive. The quality of the knobs can vary wildly from product to product. Look out for controllers that come with some kind of warranty so you can get specific pieces of the controller replaced. It can be hard to troubleshoot a controller, due to the large amount of pieces. On the other hand, it should be very easy to switch out a broken knob or slider. Another thing to keep in mind is that these controllers will make it much easier for you to really go all out when you are DJing, so stronger controllers will let you have more fun.

Visibility

Another interesting thing to think about when buying your DJ controller is the quality of the visuals that are right on it. This could manifest itself in the useful design of the displays, or more subtle things like how the controller lets you know what effects are engaged. Because a DJ controller is designed as something that can replace having to do all your work on the laptop, the best controllers will make it easy for you to ignore the laptop altogether. More often than not, you will need a device to hold all your tracks and sounds, but look for controllers with in-depth displays that let you know what track is playing, and to even let you peruse your library and see where in the music you are. There are other useful features, like the controller on this list that stops you from needing a computer at all, which could be helpful.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: What kind do I need?

a:

When looking at this list it can be difficult to find the option that works best for you. The best way to decide on the one you want is to ask yourself some important questions. The first is what you plan on using it for. If you are going to be using it for big gigs at clubs or large events, then it is a good idea to go all out and buy the biggest, baddest one you can find. If you are just looking for something that you can have some fun on, then think about buying a controller that is a bit smaller and simpler. This will make it easier to take the controller out to use, which will make you want to use it more in the first place. Another thing to think about is what kind of software you are using. This will often have a vast effect on what options you have before you. It can be annoying trying to get software not designed for that controller to work. It is probably best to find one that it designed for that controller.

q: What are turntables useful for?

a:

DJ controllers will usually come with jogwheels, which are small circles that you can turn like traditional turntables. They are a digital answer to the impracticality of bringing your vinyl collection to the club and trying to put two tracks together. Jogwheels have some advantages that make them a good choice for any DJ. They usually come in much smaller sizes than turntables, which is useful for being able to transport your DJ controller around with you. It is also much easier to use jogwheels, because they make it very simple to attach tracks to them without needing to find the specific record with that one specific part in it. The reason jogwheels exist at all is that it is just tons of fun using turntables to move through a track and get everything timed up just right. It might be less easy than using your mouse, but it feels great when you get it right.

q: What's a good way to learn how to use my new set-up?

a:

The best way to learn how to use your DJ controller is to look around online for a guide. All those knobs and dials are associated with a specific thing that you are modifying. It can be fun to screw around with your controller for a bit, but it will end up becoming more difficult to know exactly what you are doing without a guide. There is a basic guide down in the sources section of this page that should make it much easier for you to get started so you know what it is exactly that you are modifying. A lot of what you will be doing when you start out is looking up guides online for what it is exactly what you are doing. If you persevere, then you will be making live mixes like a pro in no time.