Best DJ Mixer 2016
Trying to name the best DJ mixers of 2016 isn’t an easy thing to do. Back in the day, a mixer was just that – a piece of equipment that let you mix two or more different audio inputs together.
And though the same basic concept applies, the latest generations of DJ mixers have an incredible amount of features, bells and whistles.
All of the new technologies being developed make them powerhouse machines capable of creating musical experiences beyond anything your parents have ever witnessed. Of course, with all this new technology comes a new price tag. The top-of-the-line DJ mixers we feature can run you a few grand – but WOW are they incredible.
Don’t worry, if you’re just starting out in the world of DJing or don’t have the budget for one of the below behemoths, we’ve still got you covered. We also feature the best DJ mixer on a budget and some mid-level options as well.
Take a look at our take on the top mixers for DJs in 2016.
Native Instruments Traktor Control Z2 DJ Mixer
This is definitely our top pick when it comes to power-house DJ mixers. And the reason for that is the new native instruments STEMS technology. It’s ground-breaking stuff that will let you do amazing things with you DJ sets, allowing on-the-fly music production, instrument isolation and other super creative stuff.
You won’t just be mixing two records together with this beast, you’ll be creating an entirely new musical experiences for your audience. Of course, you need to be using the Traktor Pro DJ software and hardware to take full advantage of something like STEMS, but it’s well worth it to explore these options for your entire DJ setup.
The mixer also features 2 standalone and 2 separate remix deck channels. The design is pretty sturdy using aluminum finishes and patented innofaders. And don’t think you absolutely need to go ALL IN on Native Instruments gear to take advantage of the Traktor Z2 – it works perfectly fine with standalone turntables or CDJs.
It also boasts a number of on-board effects to help make your mixes unique and controls for remixing and even improvising on-the-fly. You can launch loops, samples, and set cue points on 8 color coded trigger pads. But once you combine it with the Traktor Pro 2 software (included w/ mixer) and other hardware controllers, that’s where the real magic happens.
Here’s the rundown:
- 2+2 channel DJ mixer/controller
- Functions as a 24-bit audio interface
- Ergonomic layout for fast and intuitive use
- LED Loop display, multi-colored trigger pads
- One Knob macro FX controller
- Expandable w/ other controllers
- Midi via USB
RANE Sixty-Two Performance DJ Mixer
A very close second to the above Traktor Z2 is the Rane professional DJ mixer. This thing is another BEAST and pairs perfectly with Rane’s Serato Scratch Live system. It is truly a plug-and-play mixer supporting digital vinyl simulation and software controls.
The biggest selling point to this mixer is its seamless integration with Serato DJ (included with mixer) and Scratch Live software/hardware. You get instant control over 40 functions in the software in an extremely intuitive way. But you don’t have to use it with Rane’s own software – the mixer includes Rane’s ASIO compliant audio drivers for use with other software.
Oh and you also get 2 time-coded vinyl and CDs for use with the mixer/software combo and a bunch of loops and samples you can use in your mixes. The fader is magnetic and light as a feather at the same time. It’s very slick and the mixer also sports two USB ports, which allow you to connect to two computers at the same time. Pretty crazy.
Finally, the mixer also boasts 10 quick-access trigger buttons and 32-bit audio processing – far beyond many of the other audio interfaces and DJ mixers out there. In addition, there are a bunch of on-board effects and even full EQ and filtering control. It’s a great choice for anyone looking to up their turntable game.
Here’s the rundown:
- Bundled w/ Serato DJ software and time coded vinyl/cds
- 2 channels + microphone input
- 4x stereo RCA line inputs, 1 XLR combo mic input
- 2 XRL and 2 ¼” analog outputs
- Acts as 24 bit/48 khz USB audio interface (4 inputs, 6 outputs)
- 10 quick trigger pads
- Magnetic light-touch fader
Pioneer DJM-2000 Nexus DJ Mixer
The Pioneer DJM-2000 Nexus DJ Mixer is a four channel professional mixer with a full color, multi-touch display for on-screen effect and sampling functions.
It is equipped with the ability to link multi-DJ terminals for Pro DJ link functionality. This means that you can connect up to four multi-players and two PC’s at the same time. Computers connect easily with the USB audio interface.
The computers must be equipped with Pioneer’s rekordbox music management software. One of the benefits to this is allowing for two DJ’s to transition between performances. Another benefit that it makes for easy sharing of music files on an SD card or USB storage device.
Another feature includes the Beat Slice. When it is activated the beats per minute of the song are automatically synced and a short sample, or slice, is saved temporarily on the DJM-2000nexus. The resulting waveform then appears on the display panel and is shown in eight parts. By selecting these parts, the DJ can create a whole new sound for the song and beat of the sample music.
The Sync Master is used to automatically sync the beats of tracks playing on multiple devices that are connected via the Pro DJ Link. This is done through the master clock on the DJM-2000nexus.
Yet another feature includes the INST FX which allows the user to apply affects intuitively by simply turning a knob. Playback tempo, and the beats of songs, can be adjusted with the touch display. This allows for rearranging tracks with ease and without having to synchroni. This mixer has plenty of power and many options built into it that greatly improve performance.
Allen & Heath Xone:DB4 DJ Mixer
The Xone:DB4 by Allen & Heath is one of the most sought after DJ FX Mixers on the market. In case you didn’t know, Allen & Heath is a historic UK based mixer company.
This company got its start building mixers by hand for the likes of Pink Floyd and The Who in the 1960s. Today, they are used by professional bands, clubs, and DJ’s all around the world.
The Xone:DB4 is run on a Quad FX Core DSP engine. Every channel has its own unique FX bank and BPM system. It is very clear that this device was built with the DJ’s craft in mind. With this product you will have full creative freedom to explore and develop your own unique soundscapes. The five FX types you can play with on this device include delays, reverbs, modulators, resonators, and damage.
One special feature of The Xone:DB4 is that it is set up with BPM conscious parameters. You will be able to easily create unique grooves with this mixer because all of the loops and FX synch automatically with the tempo of whatever track you are using.
Also, the lightweight chassis Allen & Health provide is a nice touch. This aluminum chassis makes traveling and setting up this machine hassle-free.
Currently this product has received rave reviews. For example, DJ Mag gave this mixer a 8.5 out of 10. Many customers on sites like Amazon have also given this product high ratings. If you are interested in purchasing The Xone:DB4 DJ FX Mixer you can expect to pay around $2,000.
Stanton M.203 DJ Mixer
For those budding musical geniuses with aspirations of digital fame and fortune (that don’t have a ton of cash to burn just yet) we present the Stanton M.203 DJ Mixer.
With its mega-rugged steel design, no-nonsense aesthetics (seriously, it looks like something you would find built into the wall of a nuclear submarine’s control panel), and host of “kick-his-ass-seabass” features – the Stanton M.203 DJ Mixer won’t disappoint any established or up-and-coming DJ looking for a near-professional/studio quality mixer that isn’t looking to spend several hundred dollars to achieve audio nirvana. In fact, at its listed Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price, you could even afford two of these monsters.
The Stanton M.203 DJ Mixer has a super clean, intuitive layout that was actually designed by real club DJs so it will become instantly familiar to anyone that spends even a minimal amount of time churning out tunes. Considering the feature-set and the price, the Stanton M.203 DJ Mixer is an extremely solid mixer and provides one of the most “quacktastic” values in its price-range.
Featuring full rotary 3-band EQ per channel, a super tough alpha crossfader with an uber-accurate FET-isolated cut setting and fader starts, this piece of kit provides DJs with the features they want and a price that even your little bro could afford with his paper route tips.
The bottom line, even though this is supposedly Stanton’s “entry-level” DJ mixer, the combination of price, robust build-quality, and features make this mixer the one to beat in this price range. For any beginner looking to build up their collection of kit or even an established club DJ looking to replace an older model without breaking their bank account, the Stanton M.203 DJ Mixer is our top-choice for 2016.
Behringer DDM4000 DJ Mixer
The Behringer DDM4000 Mixer is simply a DJs dream come true. There are 4 channels, 2 mic inputs, 2 main outputs, and 1 sub output. The sub output allows low frequencies to be routed separate from the highs and mids.
The display screen is easy to read and navigate when setting up preferences. The MIDI in/out and thru allow the mixer to be used to control recording software. This is great for recording live mixes and demos. The kill switches on the crossfader are really convenient.
One main thing I love about this mixer is it’s unparalleled usability and set-up. The DDM4000 allows me to set up parameter preferences (eg frequency bandwidth) for each channel and the main outputs. For example, I can have channel one playing high frequencies of a track and have channel two playing low frequencies from the blended track. Each channel has three buttons that allow me to drop or bring in any frequency band at any given time. There’s also a multi-band EQ for each channel. This feature alone is enough for me to pay double the price for this mixer!
Up to 32 seconds of high quality audio can be recorded with the sampler. The source buttons lets me quickly select which channel I wish to record from, and the best part about that is the source can be changed while recording the sample. The sampler duration selector ranges from 1 bar to endless, assuring the user that the sample will playback perfectly in sync.
The DDM4000 is highly proficient and equipped with features that allow for unencumbered creative freedom, yet it’s suitable for all levels from the beginner to the professional. I started using mine straight out of the box.