The controller and laptop combination is extremely common in today’s DJ scene. The combination of excellent software with the affordability of controllers has helped spark a new era of DJing. But, there are occasions where you either need or want a controller that doesn’t need a laptop.
Pioneer XDJ-XZ – Best All-In-One DJ Controller
If you’re looking to ditch the laptop, the Pioneer XDJ-XZ is their current flagship all-in-one DJ system that is intended for professionals. It can also work with Sarato and Rekordbox DJ software with a laptop plugged in too.
Even DJs who use a regular CDJ and mixer setup are starting to use this. It’s very similar to having a pair of CDJ-2000NXS2 units and DJM-900NXS2 mixer – except it will cost you way less!
The only downfall for the Pioneer XDJ-XZ is that while it has a 4 channel mixer, 2 channels can be used in standalone mode. The other 2 channels are intended for external sources like CDJS / turntables. If that doesn’t bother you, the Pioneer XDJ-XZ is the best standalone all-in-one DJ unit available at the moment that’s hard to rival.
This is a solid investment that will last years and is currently on sale for a low price. Perfect for mobile DJ, clubs, large events and home DJs. In general, Pioneer equipment can practically be found at every club and outdoor event – which will make it an easy transition once you start getting bookings.
Denon Prime 4 – Best All-In-One DJ Controller /w Storage
While Denon has always been the underdog, the Prime 4 is a fantastic all-in-one DJ system that features a massive 10-inch screen and 1TB built-in HDD – making it an easy transition away from laptops. This unit also features a ton of input and output connections.
The Denon Prime 4 can connect to the internet via Ethernet or built-in Wi-Fi, and is supposedly one of the only third-party devices that have Spotify integration, after they revoked support for many others. Plus, you can play on all four channels with 2 USB sticks – something the Pioneer doesn’t do.
The Denon Prime 4 also works with TIDAL, Beatport LINK, Beatsource LINK, and SoundCloud, which gives you access to millions of tracks and really allows you to ditch the laptop.
Numark Mixdeck Express – Best Budget All-In-One DJ Controller
If you’re looking for a cheap all-in-one solution, the Numark Mixdeck Express provides the most bang-for-buck option with a decent amount of features onboard. It looks similar to its Mixtrack Pro DJ controller range, however it’s standalone and supports CD and MP3 playback.
If you’re a beginner or mobile DJ who wants something that is easy-to-use, definitely check out the Numark Mixdeck Express as its currently available for under $500.
While the Pioneer XDJ-RX2 is a slightly older model, it features the popular Pioneer DJM-450 mixer style with a 7-inch screen and works well with Rekordbox software.
It’s got a ton of inputs and outputs that should be sufficient for any DJ. If you’re a mobile DJ, this unit is a little more compact making it easier on-the-go.
It’s pretty clear that there are some limited choices when it comes to all-in-one DJ controllers, however that just makes the selection a bit simpler. Even a basic laptop will cost you $400, and paired with a budget DJ controller or DJ controller and you”re already above $1000.
Something like the Pioneer XDJ-XZ will allow you to have a completely independent system that will last years. And if you’re a beginner, you won’t have to worry about upgrading your equipment along the way. Overall, it’s a really fantastic investment into your DJ career.