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Starting off being a DJ, whether it’s just as a hobby or if you aim to be professional, can be difficult as there are so many necessities you need to get to be fully prepared to take yourself to the next level.
From mixers to controllers to speakers and turntables, it can all be overwhelming trying to pick out pieces that will be best for your budget and skill level.
Another essential you need to become a DJ is good software. However, there is a long list of software out there suitable for various skill levels, but which one is best for beginners?
One of the most popular DJ software is Traktor, and some professionals on the DJ scene even use it. But is this software suitable for beginners, or is it better suited for someone with previous experience with a range of other software?
We’ll be delving deeper to answer this question so you’ll be able to find software that suits you best.
Is Traktor Suitable For Beginners?
When it comes to Traktor software, there isn’t just one used by all skill levels, but three available software called DJ 2, Pro 3, and Le 3 that vary in features and difficulty.
We’ll be giving a brief overview below of some of the features and how suitable this software is for beginner DJs.
Before you decide what software is best for you, you’ll need to make sure you’ve got decks, a mixer, and a MIDI controller to use with your software; otherwise, you’re not going to get very far.
Traktor DJ 2
Suppose you’re a true beginner who’s just looking to dabble their feet in sampling and mixing. In that case, you can try out Traktor DJ 2 completely free on your iPad and your desktop, but you will need a more recently updated operating system to be compatible with the software.
Traktor DJ 2 is also compatible with many of the Traktor controllers, so while you’re getting to grips with the software, you may be able to splurge some of your budget on quality hardware.
DJ 2 makes it easy for you to import tracks from your Apple playlists or even integrate new artists from your SoundcloudGo+.
However, DJ 2 is not without some flaws, including that the software is only limited to just four effects while previous versions of the software had more, but we cannot complain considering the software is free.
Traktor Pro 3
The Traktor Pro software has been revamped to improve clarity and to make it easier for users to operate by just a glance instead of having to linger your gaze on the screen for a few seconds while you locate the functions you need.
The new layout is also less cluttered than it used to be, making it less overwhelming for new users to get comfortable with.
Traktor Pro allows you to mix four tracks altogether and also features an effects and mixer section for you to play with. It has an improved audio engine, great singler mixer FX, good flexibility with controller options, and DVS included in the price of the software.
Pro 3 has been coined by music and tech experts as a top software for bedroom DJs while also for professionals who regularly play in bars or clubs to an audience.
There is also Traktor Le 3, which is the light version of Traktor Pro 3 and is only available with the bundle of Traktor Kontrol Z1, Traktor Audio 2, and Komplete Audio 6. It uses the same workflow and audio engines as Pro 3 while allowing you to mix across two decks.
Regardless of what Traktor software you’re using to create your mixes, we’d recommend disabling the keyboard shortcuts. It can become confusing to search for imported tracks or playlists within the software as Traktor automatically uses your QWERTY keyboard for specific shortcuts.
What About Traktor’s DJ Equipment?
Traktor doesn’t just specialize in DJ software but also offers a wide range of DJing equipment like controllers and mixers. Some of which are particularly well suited for beginners who aren’t confident with the tech yet or anyone who’s not looking to blow their entire budget on one piece of equipment.
The Traktor Kontrol S2 controller is highly recommended for beginners as it’s a plug-in and play type of controller with beginner-friendly features like beat syncing and looping to create some creative tracks without too much difficulty.
The plug-in and play controller also means you can use this controller anywhere you like as long as you’ve got access to your computer, which means you won’t need a massive set up in your home to practice your skills.
The controller’s user interface is streamlined and makes it incredibly easy to work out what does what and then be able to blend and match tracks to help perfect your sound vision.
Even though the Kontrol S2 is considered an entry-level controller, it still includes generous mixing effects and tools such as reverb, delay, filters, and EQ, which help you match your beats up and make transitions more seamless.
One great thing about the Kontrol S2 is that you’ll get the Traktor Pro software included for your computer to use with your controller.
This software can cost up to $100 on its own, so you are getting a steal for the budget-friendly price that you’ll pay for the controller and will set you in good stead for the early days of your DJing career.
As Traktor’s have their own hardware, this means you can plug in and play with your software without endless fiddling with mapping and setting up before each DJ session or gig you have, making it a low maintenance and beginner DJs dream.
What’s Better For Beginners, Traktor Or Serato?
If you’re not familiar with the industry, it can be challenging to know what brands to go for, Traktor or Serato, as both are commanders in the game.
Traktor is a stripped-down software that’s one of the easiest to use out of some of the leading software brands in the game and offers flexibility and functionality for both beginners and advanced DJs.
If you eventually become too familiar with Traktor and looking for more advanced DJ software, then you may want to branch out to use Serato as it offers more refined processing and is also ideal for scratching.
Serato has a free version (Serato DJ Lite) that you can use to see if you like the user interface, and then you can upgrade to the Pro version for as little as $9.99 a month or to the Essentials or DJ Suite version for some exclusive features.
Traktor DJ software is more middle of the range price-wise than Serato, so if you’re a beginner DJ looking to stick to a budget, Traktor will be the one to go for, especially if you’re looking to invest in additional hardware at the same time.
We’d recommend Traktor as they have more hardware products that can be compatible with their software, whereas you may have to look a bit harder and spend a bit more to find controllers that work well with Serato.
Concluding Thoughts: Is Traktor Good For Beginners?
Traktor as an overall brand is considered well-suited for beginners, especially those looking to progress with their skills and hopefully go on to make some sort of living from this.
Traktor offers both software and hardware that’s suitable for beginners. It’s just the issue of trying to find the right one for your skill level.
However, we have recommended some examples in the article above that are best suited for beginner DJs.
Some beginner DJs who are pretty comfortable using different sorts of technology may find Traktor relatively easy to use. Still, those who’re not used to various software and technical hardware may find it more challenging. It all depends on the user.
The fact that professional DJs such as Martin Garrix, Tiesto, and David Guetta use Traktor DJ software is a credit to the brand and also shows that even though you can be a beginner when starting to use the software, you can still grow to a more advanced skill level using the same software, so upgrading your software may not be necessary for quite a while.
So to answer the question, yes, Traktor is good for beginners, but it will take some time to adapt to new software and hardware if you are a true beginner, but in time you’ll become confident and fluent in using a range of the products Traktor has to offer.