A few questions on using CDJ's

Completely new to DJ’ing, relatively. I’m just curious as to how
different using a CDJ is to a controller. I’ve read up alot and
basically there isn’t much other than a few minor things like the lack
of sync button - so you must learn how to beat match. I’m practicing
that the best i can on my Traktro S2. Could someone also tell me, are
all CDJ’s entirely the same? If you learn how to use on one, you can use
all of them? If so, what makes the CDJ2000 NXS better than say a CDJ
350 or some model by a manufacturer other than Pioneer.

I’m also abit confused as to how the UI looks on CDJ’s, are there ways
to see how many bars before the next drop like you can on Traktor for
example? Or is this more down to knowing the individual tracks and
having loads of practice? Also, what about cue points, can you set them
and how many can you have? Another thing, how helpful is having a laptop
when using CDJ’s? I know the phase metre and all of that can be a great
help, but are all CDJ’s compatable to work with such software, like
Traktor pro (I know there’s software which works with it, i’ve just
forgotten the name for it)? Furthermore, are you even allowed to take
your laptops with you to events? is it considered abit like cheating to
use a laptop?

I’d really appreciate answers to these because it’s driving me nuts! I
want to start practicing on them as soon as possible so if anyone could
reconmend a good starting pair that would be great, maybe second hand
(Preferably around the £500 mark, though i don’t mind going over if its
worth it.), or maybe a good pair to just rent for 24 hours and use at
home. Thanks

Woah load of questions

But tbh most of them you don’t really need answers to rn. The main thing you need to focus on is learning to beatmatch. And to answer one of your questions, yes this is better if you know your tunes. Once you can beatmatch, practice mixing tunes that go well together (this goes back to knowing your tunes). Once you got those two main things down you can think about sequencing a whole mix together and practice mixing speeds, etc…

Things like difference between CDJs aren’t really relevant to you rn so there’s no need to worry about it

Good point, thanks alot!

If i were you buy some cdj800s, i bought mine for £550 from a cash converters (uk version of a pawn shop), they are 90% the same as the 1000s which are the club standard (all the better ones are also pretty much 1000s with more bells and whistles).

Trust me - you do not want your laptop in a club. They cause so many problems (and technical problems are embarrassing in a club environment). Look shit, and a lot of people wont take you seriously.

I personally found using a controller it was very similar to using a CDJ, most UIs are pretty intuitive but you do everything manually on cdjs, cueing etc. You can set up cue points (w Rekkordbox) but really you dont need that shit for a mix, if you can learn to beatmatch well and get your track selection down - you will be ready for playing out (and will enjoy it).


On the topic of CDJs and how they work, do you guys think the translation from vinyl to CDs is pretty easy or does it require its own practice? I’ve been DJing vinyl for a while now but haven’t tried CDs on their own.

if you can mix vinyl you can def use cdjs, the only thing getting used to is how much the jogwheel pushes the tune and getting used to the pitch fader. A lot of people see all the buttons and get intimidated but really all you need is the play button, pitch fader, and track selection buttons. Everything else is for setting loops, cue points etc

1 BigUp

I’ll check them out, seem to be about £500 a pair + mixer on ebay so I’ll get on that. Thanks a lot! And yeah, I never actually see laptops in clubshowever i tend to see big artist use them so its a little confusing - guess thats because they’re relatively new to DJ’ing and need the help.

For some reason i thought you were american (thought you said $500)

Most people will turn you away from pioneer mixers but i hugely rate Pioneer DJM-250, can pick one up for a ton.

get the Allen & Heath Xone:92 instead. same price, good sound.

The Xone:23 (i assume you mean ) isn’t as good tho imo. I have owned both.

The higher £ Allen & Heaths are far far better than the equivalent Pioneer mixers though (like the Xone:92 vs DJM900)

Yeah the A&H 22/23’s have awful build quality. Most of em have problems after a year or so of regular usage.

@op: keep your eyes peeled on your local classifieds for good deals, I got a pair of cdj 1000’s and an A&H xone 62 for $900usd from my local classifieds.

Can you explain more why the DJM250 is better than equivalent A&H but not so with the more expensive models?

Like, which features?

No. I mean the Xone:22.

I have a Xone:22 ive been caning for the last 4 years and had no problems

For sure, I’ve personally seen 5 of them need repair after the first year of relatively light use (used at home, not taken to gigs etc). I know that both of our viewpoints are purely anecdotal.

For the record I’m a massive A&H fan, just not a fan of the 22/23 mixers.

That’s the thing its not got many features but everything you need, the sound color filters are the only ‘different’ thing it has which is sick (better to have one thing that works well than loads that don’t). but except that its got everything for a normal set up and the sound is good (which for some reason isn’t the case on some other pioneers - particularly the older ones)

The Xone:22. i have heard from other people has problems with filter pops sometimes, the budget A&H seem much more flimsy and cheap than their higher tier ones, which can cause problems (not always though) whilst pioneer apparently use mainly the same parts as their more premium mixers for the 250 (i think it was smokeybeanz on here who works in that industry who told me when i visited his shop.) and to me feels better than the budget Xones

Also Wolf was surprised how good the 250 is when he used it at my house and said usually Pioneers were shit so there’s that.

Allan & Heath are generally better though, so happy when a mixer is A&H in a club not Pioneer. TBH i’d get whatever you can get cheaper.

I was gonna say “why all the Allen & Heath hate??” Their mixer/controller solutions are pretty nifty (like Xone 4D, expensive af though) but their full mixer consoles are absolutely astonishingly wonderful. Clean pre’s, great EQs.

The only A&H gear I’m not ultra familiar with is their DJ mixers, so maybe they’re just lacking in that department.

Yeah youre right actually, when you turn the filter function on it can pop. Never been a problem for me though cause i dont use the filters. Though if you just left the filter on you wouldnt have any issues, and the filters do sound lovely.

I definitely don’t think it feels flimsy though.

Just to clarify, I use the xone 62 ( mine was made in the UK before they switched production to China) at home, absolutely love it.

my qualms are just with the 22/23.

That’s right I forgot they moved production to China, probably contributes to a decrease in quality of product (at least in terms of components)