The Affordable Tier [Entry Level]
Upgrading With A Small Budget
Maybe you aren’t just starting out, or maybe you just want something tangible and intuitive to learn with. In this section, I will cover some options you have for gear around $400 or less. Keep in mind you will also need to supply your own computer/laptop (in most cases) and an audio system.
Some popular picks as of 2019:
- Numark DJ2GO2 [~$80] – Basically a pocket 2 channel mixer that comes with Serato DJ Lite. Choose this if you want an extremely portable solution, and just really looking to try something basic out.
- Numark Mixtrack Pro 3 [~$200] – Simple and intuitive 2 channel controller that comes with Serato DJ Lite. Choose this for a relatively inexpensive introductory controller to test the waters with.
- Pioneer DJ DDJ-SB3 [~$230] – A very popular choice, modeled as an introductory controller after the “industry standard” pioneer CDJ models. A 2 channel controller for Serato DJ, that will have the feel and features of widely used Pioneer equipment, so it will allow easier progressing through other setups. Choose this if you want an good entry level Pioneer controller running off Serato DJ.
- Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S2 Mk3 [~$320] – Decent quality and features for the price. Is the introductory controller from Native Instruments, being a 2 channel controller with their own Traktor Pro DJ software. The latest MK3 model updated the on controller screens as well as added motorized jog wheels, among other features. Choose this if you want to DJ with Traktor software, and only need 2 channels.
- Denon DJ MC4000 [~$400] – Great quality and features for the price. Is basically the premium introductory 2 channel controller from Denon, ready to use on Serato DJ Lite or any other software that supports midi mapping. Choose this if you want a competitive mid range quality 2 channel controller, and might consider upgrading to their latest All in one controller or other players down the line.
Obviously this entire list is dominated by 2 channel setups. This is because having only 2 channels vs 4, does keep the price down quite a bit, and I was just not comfortable recommending any 4 channel mixers within this price range. To also be fair, it really is not required for beginners or even intermediate DJs to be needing 4 channels to mix with right off the bat. If I come across any 4 channel controllers within this price range, I will gladly update the list!