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Setup

Well, being the supposed bedroom DJ that I am, I figured I should post a few pictures and other details about my setup.

As you can see from the pictures below, I’ve got two new Pioneer CDJ-400’s and a Numark DM950 2-channel mixer. All in, they came to around £900 and came with headphones, leads and a microphone too, courtesy of Decks.co.uk.

My Pioneer CDJ-400s

The CDJ-400’s are the latest in the popular line of CDJ’s offered by Pioneer, the leading CDJ equipment manufacturer in Europe. Not only do they have the ability to play CD’s, they also include the scratching functionality of other high-end CDJ models (such as the CDJ-1000) to allow them to emulate the scratch effects of vinyl decks.

Talking of effects, there are six different effects that can be applied to the tracks – three while the unit is in CD-mode, and three while it is in Vinyl-mode. The three vinyl effects change the sound of the scratching effect on the fly, whilst the CD-mode effects include a flanger, bass/treble filter, and what’s called ‘roll’.

Another pic of my CDJs

On top of the awesome features that I’ve already mentioned, the CDJ’s some complete with MP3 compatibility. The units will play MP3 CD’s, and allow the DJ to use all of the other features of the unit in the same way that they can with traditional audio CD’s.

But the thing that I love the most is the USB connectivity. On each unit is a single USB slot located in the top left-hand corner, which allows the DJ to connect a multitude of USB-enabled storage devices to the CDJ. (So yes, you can connect your iPod to the unit and play tracks from that!)

As shown in the pictures above, I’ve got a USB memory stick connected to the right-hand unit, which is loaded with MP3’s that the unit can read and play, just as it would with a CD. And again, you can apply all the effects and filters to the MP3’s that are playing, and you can also pitch-bend the MP3’s up to +/-16%.

Speaking of pitch bend, the unit has 4 scales: +/-6%, +/-10%, +/-16% and Wide (+/-100%). So in effect, you can mix anything with anything as far as beatmatching goes. There’s an excellent beat counter on the digital display, which is perfect for steady-beat music, but not so hot for certain other types, such as breaks or ambient. I, myself, tend to rely too heavily on the beat counter instead of beat matching by ear, but that’s something I’ll try and work on in the future.

There are a whole host of other cool things that they can do too, from looping samples on the fly to changing the colour pattern on the jog wheel. Some are useful, and some are just cosmetic, but they’re certainly the best, high-priced, glorified CD players I’ve ever had the privilige to spend my benjamins on. I’d highly recommend!