Using Traktor & Controllers in a Live DJ Booth - Please post your best tips

Anomyst Member Posts: 1 Newcomer

Hi legends,

I've scanned quite a few pages in our forums and searched online for best info/best practice for getting the best results when performing live using controllers and havent found alot of good intel, so I'd love to know what you all do in the booth, for the following:

  • To get the best sound quality on the club / festival rig
  • preferences and settings you use, currently im using Traktor Pro 3 Plus
  • What youve got in your kit when you set up, next to traditional / pioneer DJ booths.
  • What is best practice?

From my recent gigs, i've wanted to start bringing my traktor / NI gear out to perform with, i cant stand rekordbox, however, I am still finding the best quality sound, and best performance on the PA will come from using the in house mixer/cdj's as a traditional DJ / via rekordbox USB. Most commonly, the booth will have:

DJM900 Nexus 2 Mixer

2 or 4x CDJ 900 NX2 units, linked via hub or directly

Sometimes even the CDJ3000's 2 or 4x

Recently ive brought my Traktor S4 Mk2 controller out and set up next to the pioneer console ready a little while before my set, and most commonly the sound tech would advise me to just run either an RCA line to a channel on the DJM mixer, straight out of the S4, so here are my thoughts.

With all limiters off on my Traktor software, and soundcard set to ASIO / 48, with a 128 buffer - i would assume this would yeald the best possible sound quality (and performance) as a signal to the mixer, which would be 'zero'ed' and vol I/O managed so there's no clipping or issues on either device.

Sounds like poo on a fully flown Martin Audio line array. (next to the quality of the output from the dj either side - using the pioneer rig / CDJ / USB Traditionally)

The rig was beautifully tuned, so I was annoyed the Traktor output was so cringe, set up like this. Assuming the S4 has some internal audio management that I couldnt access, and then doubling that audio management with that of the DJM900 NX2 on that Line channel, caused phasing and just an aweful sound..

Is the right method, to connect the controller directly to the DJM900 via USB?

Will this attain the quality I am looking for? What do you do in the booth.

After hearing the sound so poorly during another one of my sets last weekend, where i tried the same setup in a club environment, I decided to ditch the traktor, and jump over to using the Pioneer rig, as a traditional dj, which provided instant fullness, and a hugely better sound.

I have D2's an MPC Live, an X1, a Z1 and an S4mk2

Id love to explore using these more in my sets and performances, but not with the quality of sound ive experienced recently, it wouldnt be worth it, and would seriously down play my sets.

I know they can be better and know the traktor community can assist, what do you do to get the best performance, and results in these live environments?

<3 Ben


  • pARty_bOy
    pARty_bOy Member Posts: 59 Advisor

    Midi Fighter 3D + Kontrol D2 + Kontrol Z2 + Vestax PDX

  • c0nsul
    c0nsul Member Posts: 199 Pro

    Use the CDJs as sound interface in the club. 😉

  • Trigitaliz
    Trigitaliz Member Posts: 1 Newcomer

    Use the Nexus mixer as a sound card / and controllers or and cdj as a controller "not " sound card " cuz its ofte fuckes upp when doing change owers... :)

  • Oxy
    Oxy Member Posts: 76 Helper

    Suggest to invest in a external mixer.

  • Onecell
    Onecell Member Posts: 1 Newcomer

    Personally I've found using Traktor itself to mix (internally) doesn't sound NEARLY as good (through a decent PA) as mixing externally! :)

    I've used Audio 10 (or MOTU M4 - for 2 decks), with the venue's mixer - when I HAVE to use it...

    Or preferably my Allen & Heath Xone96, which has it's own 12 channel D-A - and performs the ACTUAL mix in analogue - adding wonderful depth & warmth to the digital music.

    But of course we all have a preference! I just don't like Pioneer! lol

  • LordByron
    LordByron Member Posts: 3 Newcomer

    What hardware do you use the Traktor S4 or CDJs? I'm just looking what's best to start as a DJ. The original post that started this question seems to suggest just to go Pioneer if these issues are going to be common. I don't get what you mean when your saying ''Personally I've found using Traktor itself to mix (internally) doesn't sound NEARLY as good (through a decent PA) as mixing externally! :)'' can you explain it as if you explaining to a complete beginner?

  • LordByron
    LordByron Member Posts: 3 Newcomer
    edited May 29

    Did you find the solution or is there no point in going the Traktor route, if so what pioneer gear should I get for a beginner which I can eventually just hook up to the mixer in the club, without laying out £1000s on CDJs? Is a DDJ-400 a waste of time, will it sound rubbish? I was going to go Traktor because I like NI but if these issues are going to be common then there is little point; does the S4 not have a mixer built in, can you not just bypass the clubs mixer straight out of the S4 or bring your own NI mixer would work, no?

  • olafmol
    olafmol Member Posts: 123 Pro

    Phasing??? Are you sure you weren't playing 2 sound sources at the same time, ie through USB audio, and through line outs?

    Maybe you can try to use the CDJ's as the DA convertors for Traktor by connecting them with USB to your Traktor laptop.

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