Pioneer DJ DDJ-1000 DJ Controller Review
Pioneer DJ doing what they do best…
Pioneer DJ’s DDJ-1000 DJ Controller has been gaining plaudits from many in the DJ world thanks to its smooth performance and professional-grade construction. Inheriting the layout from Pioneer’s flagship NXS2 models, the DDJ-1000 can handle everything from bedroom mixes to block parties. Making use of Rekordbox DJ’s many features the DDJ-1000 offers a seamless workflow to keeps your performances light and tight.
Time honoured layout
On a platter(s)
As noted above, the DDJ-1000 control layout closely adheres to that we’ve all come to know and love. Working your way across there’s a pair of platters that offer sumptuous tactility, making them a joy to perform on. If you favour the control of CDJ platters over touch-sensitive pairings found on many DJ controllers, then you’re going to fall in leave with these. Jog displays within each platter provide welcome information that includes BPM, waveforms, playback position, Hot Cue and Loop Points, etc.) for rapid visual reference during performances.
Key to the exemplary quality of the platters is the customisable capabilities Pioneer afford. You can readily adjust the tension of the platters to suit your playing style from heavy-handed DJs to those with the lightest of touches. Another bonus is the ability to change the colour LCD on each joy display screen and reveal only the information that you need.
At the base of each jog wheel you’ll find eight back-lit rubber Performance Pads for triggering Hot Cues, Pad FX, Beat Jump, etc. The response from each pad is as you would expect from Pioneer, reassuring and resilient. You could tap on these until the end of days and they’ll remain as dutiful as the first time.
Performing subtle scratches and other turntablism techniques wouldn’t be quite the same if the crossfader wasn’t up to snuff. Thankfully, the Magvel crossfader is more than proficient when it comes rapid fire movement. By refining the software processing between platter and crossfader control, the reduction in latency establishes a touch-sensitive response that can keep up with the most adventurous of DJs. You can scratch to your heart’s content before it will let you down.
At the heart of the DDJ-1000 is a mixer that borrows heavily from Pioneer DJ’s DJM-900. The robust feel of all pots and the smooth response of the faders makes it blissfully easy to tweak your tracks on the fly. Along with standard channel controls that we’d expect to see, Pioneer integrate FX controls seamlessly alongside.
There are Sound Colour effects that include Pitch, Filter, Dub Echo and Noise, as well as Beat FX with four new options to choose from. As if that wasn’t enough, ten of the most popular lifted directly from the DJM-series mixers for you to play with. If you have previous experience with a Pioneer 4-channel mixer then it will all feel like home. If you haven’t, you’ll take to it like a duck to water.
By integrating the effects into the hardware, itself, you can assign them to any audio source that you wish. Combine them with the seemingly endless wealth of Rekordbox software-based effects and you’ve got a universe to explore.
Across the rear of the DDJ-1000 there’s a plethora of connection to cater to all requirements. Master outs come in the form of XLR and/or RCA, with TRS stereo Booth outputs. Channels 1 and 2 accommodate RCA line inputs, whilst Channels 3 and 4 have Line/Phone switches to expand your potential audio sources. Naturally there’s USB connectivity (Rekordbox, right) and the there are two balanced mic inputs at your disposal. A trusty Kensington lock keeps things secure, this is a portable device after all. Last but by no means last, the headphone inputs are at the front. Pioneer haven’t gone overboard, they’ve included everything you need to get the job done.
If you’re looking for a Rekordbox DJ controller that offers classic Pioneer DJ NXS2 feel and performance, then the DDJ-1000 DJ Controller is a must. The ability to communicate seamlessly with Rekordbox is at the core of the DDJ-1000, but the tactile control and liberating workflow afforded by the CDJ/DJM-style layout is where it’s at. Everything is within easy reach and – just as important – customisable. If the feel of the platter is too heavy or too light, you can adjust it at the turn of a dial. Too much information on the LCD screen? Trim the fat for a cleaner display.
Whether you’re an old dog or a newcomer to the world of DJing, whatever style of music you wish to perform, the Pioneer DDJ-1000 is a welcome bridge between digital DJ controllers and professional-level CDJ/DJM setups. From honing your skills to step up to club-level or simply kicking off the party in style wherever you go, the DDJ-1000 is ready for anything.