30 July 2012

Track Prep Tools for S2 and S4

Setting beatgrids, cuepoints and making them ready for playing in Traktor is important to always know that your track is ready to go when you're gonna use them. In know that I'm not good enough to do this my self and mainly that is because it's a hassle and there is a lot of things to take in to account and the parameters isn't easily available.

DJ Techtools made this cool mapping for Traktor that will put all the controlls that you need on the deck controls of Traktor Kontrol S2 and the Traktor Kontrol S4.

Take a look at this video to learn how to use it:

Read more here
Get the mappings

Further prepping

After that is done you might want to go ahead and prep your sets. I might make this available as a macro set for the S4 and S2 my self (don't get your hopes up), but in the meantime you can visit my post on how to make preparation of sets quickly in Traktor.

Read it here

26 July 2012

Update: Traktor Pro 2.5.1

A new update is available and it fixes a whole lot of stuff that was wrong in the 2.5 release. Some of them I haven't even noticed or wasn't that much of a fuzz, but some are pretty important. There's a lot done with the integration to Pioneer CDJ's utalizing the HID integration to a MUCH larger extent.

All of the updates are listed below, but I took the time to highlight the important ones and the cool ones. :)

  • Pioneer CDJ Advanced HID display integration
  • Browser (CDJ 900 / 2000)
  • Cover Art (CDJ 2000)
  • Stripe (CDJ 2000)
  • Cue Points (CDJ 900 / 2000)
  • Improved General CDJ Integration (CDJ400 / 900 / 2000 / MEP7000) in order to match original CDJ behavior
  • Play / Cue Button behavior
  • Loop In / Out Button behavior
  • Track Search Button behavior
  • Implemented CDJ Mode

  • Changing BPM Range in Preferences does no longer affect ongoing Analysis job

  • FLAC year tag is now preserved when importing files to collection
  • "Select All" entry now available in Context Menu of Playlists and Folders
  • Browser view switches back to source list after drag & drop
  • Tracks can again be moved to Playlists via drag & drop from deck into browser window
  • M3U export now again exporting file names and paths
  • "Load Previous" now again working in conjunction with Preferences option "Only load into stopped Deck"
  • Remix Set now displayed on top of contents list for faster loading via drag & drop
  • Fixed saving of Remix Sets containing identically named samples

  • Modifier condition "Hotcue Type" fixed

  • FX snapshot no longer ignores first FX knob

  • Keylock Eco mode fixed
  • Fixed crackling audio and syncing issues in conjunction with Keylock

  • New preference option for Remix Decks "One-Shot Samples Ignore Quantize Mode"
  • Drag & drop of Remix Sets now possible on entire area of Remix Decks, including Micro Deck View
  • Dragging a sample on waveform of sample deck now replaces the sample
  • Fixed prelistening of Remix Decks

  • Software Hotcues and CDJ Cue button can be seamlessly used side by side
  • Dropping needle into lead-in now again jumps to start of track
  • Improved drift prevention for Relative Vinyl Timecode
  • Random switching from Absolute to Relative Timecode does not occur anymore
  • Fixed cue point drifting for Relative CD Timecode

  • Tempo Tapping precision and robustness (TAP) improved
  • Synchronization no longer ignores second and following grid markers
  • Fixed Cue Point inaccuracy visible in zoomed in Waveform

  • New preference option to swap F1 Mute and Stop behavior

  • Channel Clip LED on S2/S4 now again working


23 July 2012

Native Instrument supergroup: Mostly Robot

So what do you get when you put a whole lot of Native Instruments "super users" together and tell them to play some music?

Mostly Robot consists of:
Jamie Lidell - Vocals (Traktor)
DJ Shiftee - Turntables (Traktor Scratch)
Tim Exile - Effects and Loops (Reaktor)
Mr. Jimmy - Keyboard (Komplete)
Jeremy Ellis - Beats (Maschine)
Pfadfinderei - Visuals

Read more about Mostly Robot

14 July 2012

Numark 4Trak Review

The controller has been on the market for some time now, but it intregued me enough to take a closer look when I recently stumbled uppon a review by DJ Worx. So without getting my hands on the controller I'll take a shot at reviewing the controller based on the information that is available online and give you my reflected thoughts on the matter.

Traktor version:
It comes with a special edition of Traktor. They have cut down the effects section and removed a couple of the full version effect algorithems. It's a smaller version of the full, but you can upgrade and use this with full Traktor.

Build and structure:
The controller looks to be pretty solid in the brushed aluminium finish. It might remind a little about what Vestax deliver in casing build quality. If it is anything like the NS series the knobs and buttons are descent, but not at the top of the class.
Solid construction

Anglede FX unit:
The "FX Kommand Console" seems to be sturdy and easy to reach. It's placed above the other controller with an angled mounting bracket that is screwed in place. I'm used to the S4 and having the Filter buttons close to the fader. However it might look visually more appealing when performing to reach for them.
Optional FX/Filter unit

Also a mixer:
A great thing about the unit is that it doubles as a standard audio mixer as well with a midi controller. There are 4 channel inputs (Line/Phono/Mic) and you select the source on the switch right next to the fader. It also has an interchangeable cross fader with curve and channel assignment, both balanced and unbalanced master output as well as a booth output with dedicated knob at the surface of the controller.
Front view: Cross fader and monitor control

The controller has a fairly good built-in soundcard that can be compared to Rane SL 4 on the analog side, but has only a 24 bit/44,1 kHz digital range. The frequency range is pretty standard for mid-class soundcards. It doesn't say anything about the number of inputs on their webpage though...

Click the image to see a full overview of the connectors.

Controller layout:
The layout is what we've come to expect of a 4 channel mixer with two transport controls, meaning it's really built for 2 decks, but you can switch from A/C or B/D which I think is a hassle. You need an extra controller to manage the transport of the C and D decks if you want to use them effectively; and then the four channels make sense.
When it comes to button layout and control features the Numark 4Trak controller shines and sticks out! The general layout is tailored to Traktor Pro with a lot of special functions and with dedicated buttons that many other controllers don't really give enough focus.
Looks  busy, but it's actually pretty well organized!

The surface of the controller is packed with buttons that do all the normal stuff that you would expect, but I would like to point out a couple of things that caught my eye.

The strip search is a feature I've never tried, but if you need to jump quickly in to a song it would come in handy. I normally use the beatjump feature to do this. At the top of the strip there is an indicator that probably is used to indicate the position in the track. I think that is pretty nice to have.

Key adjustment feature isn't found on a lot of controllers and the 4Trak even has LED indicators on the encoder. If you are in to key mixing this is a pretty neat thing to have. I seldom use it myself, but when I need to adjust the key it's a big hassle because I haven't got this available. If it was available on the controller I would probably use it more often though and be able to play a lot of other tracks together then I normally do.

Other features that I often use like Cruise (early in the evening) and Record are available as dedicated buttons.

The weakest point of the controller is that it does not have a designated section for the loop recorder and that they only could fit five hotcue buttons as opposed to the full eight.


To sum up what this controller has that the other ones on the market:
  1. Strip search with  progression indicator lights
  2. Dedicated key adjustment contols with value indicator
  3. Browse type buttons (Tree/Songs/Favorites)
  4. Dedicated View mode button
  5. Dedicated Tap button
  6. Multiple instant loop buttons
  7. Record button
  8. Cruise button
  9. Pitch bend buttons
  10. Cue marker buttons (Set/Delete)
  11. Jump to start button
  12. Assignable buttons??!!
Non assigned buttons??!!
It has one encoder, one fader and a small button that is not assigned for each deck! As well as three assignable buttons in the master section. In my opinion this is AWESOME! I would use this to control the club lighting! :)

This is a total package controller. It doubles as a mixer and has a button layout to die for. Assignable buttons that are free to use for anything that you imagination might offer! The price point isn't too bad, but in my they could have priced a bit higher and put in a better sound card to make this a high end controller.

+ Great button layout
+ HID interface with Traktor
+ Doubles as a standard audio mixer
+ Sturdy build materials
- Poor soundcard
- No loop recorder features

Check it out at Numark
Read more at DJWORX
Read more at digitaldjtips.com

Digital DJ Tips video review:

Another detailed video review of the controller:

03 July 2012

Traktor Pro 2 In Depth at Kosmic (feat. Zeke)

This one is for the newbees!
Pretty nice video from Zeke where he runs through the features on Traktor Scratch Pro 2.
Even though it's pretty old by now it's very informative and not much has changed in 2.5... The sample decks are changed somewhat. Other then that. It's almost all the same.