Best DJ Equipment Review – Top Rated Models with Buying Guide
If you are tired of searching the internet and analyzing all the DJ equipment reviews, this quick guide will help you find the best DJ equipment on the market. Our team took the time to have a look at all the most popular devices and after intense consideration, we found out the OneOdio Over-Ear Headphone, Wired Premium Stereo Sound Headsets are the ones that will help you in any situation. They come with share port technology, which means that you can string more of them together so others can listen to what you are listening too. They are compatible with many devices from iPhones to Android phones or tablets. Made of quality materials, they will prevent overheating, will disperse the heat, and give you an exceptionally comfortable listening experience. If you can’t find them for sale, look for the PreSonus Eris E3.5-3.5″ Near Field Studio Monitor (Pair).
Our Top Choice
Helped by the share port technology, these headphones will let you chain many of them together to allow your friends to listen to your music. The headphones are compatible with a wide range of devices and can work with iOS and Android phones. Made using quality materials, they will be strong.
The sound volume isn’t great, especially if you are using them in a nightclub.
Superior bass sound and comfort is ensured by these headphones. Hi-Fi and stereo sound is offered by them with the help of a large 50-millimeter speaker and unit drivers that use neodymium magnets.
You can feed audio to them with the help of a mixer, or a media player, an interface, or any other line-level source. The headphone amp placed in the front will allow you to listen to it without disturbing the neighbors. The sound is an accurate one, and the frequencies are smooth and rounded.
When connecting headphones to them, they produce sound interference.
Sound engineers worldwide love these because they allow them to hear every little detail in their mix. These are also great for gaming or video editing, which makes them highly versatile and a complete choice.
Also To Consider
It’s more than just a controller, as it also provides you with a light show that your guests are going to remember. The on-board audio interface makes setting this up a fast and easy task. It comes in such a compact form, but it can still pack a punch and has plenty of controls.
You need to control it through a virtual DJ, otherwise, it will bleed sound.
Every DJ setup needs a controller and coming with all the essential needed for making your DJ-ing task easier, this one is a great choice. The effortless connection is what recommends it in this era.
10 Best DJ Equipment (Updated Reviews) in 2020
The following products form a list of DJ equipment pieces that we consider to be a good choice no matter the event you are planning on having. We wanted to include products for everybody, and although some of them are affordable DJ equipment, they also offer some great quality.
- 1. OneOdio Over-Ear Headphone, Wired Premium Stereo Sound Headsets
- 2. PreSonus Eris E3.5-3.5″ Near Field Studio Monitor (Pair)
- 3. Numark Party Mix | Beginners DJ Controller for Serato DJ Lite
- 4. Rockville Pair Dual 15″ 2000w Powered DJ Speaker (RPG225K)
- 5. Audio-Technica AT-LP120XUSB-BK Direct-Drive Turntable
- 6. Numark DJ2GO2 Touch – Compact 2 Deck USB DJ Controller
- 7. Pioneer DJ Controller, Black, (DDJSB3)
- 8. Numark M2 BLACK | Professional Two-Channel Scratch Mixer
- 9. Hercules DJControl Compact
- 10. Crosley C200 Direct-Drive Turntable
- Our Comprehensive Buying Guide
- Frequently Asked Questions:
1. OneOdio Over-Ear Headphone, Wired Premium Stereo Sound Headsets
With these headphones, you will be able to enjoy superior comfort and an accomplished full bass sound. They come with large 50-millimeter speaker unit drivers, that are combined with powerful neodymium magnets to provide a Hi-Fi and stereo sound. The bass is powerful, the vocals are clear and the high tones are crisp, so you can have an excellent balanced sound.
Made in Germany, the memory-protection earmuffs are designed to disperse the pressure of the headphones and to prevent heat from building up. The soft leather headband coming across will give you increased comfort and good isolation.
You don’t need an adapter with these headphones, as they come with a long 10-foot cord that can reach your gear from afar. Thanks to the standard-sized plugs (that are both completely detachable so you don’t overuse them when not needed) included you will be able to connect it to most devices.
With the shareport technology, these headphones allow you to chain more of them together if you have the need to do so, so others can listen to what you are playing as well.
The headphones work with many devices, including iPhones, iPods, iPads, Android devices, and others.
They are made of quality materials and designed to offer you a comfortable experience while in use – the earmuffs will disperse the pressure and prevent overheating.
Good isolation is offered by the leather headband coming across. It’s got a band that is made of strong materials and is also comfortable.
The sound is really well balanced, with cristal clear and crisp highs, strong mid-range tones, and solid bass.
The volume is unimpressive, and if you are using these to play in a club where the sound volume is intense, you will have a hard time using them effectively.Buy from Amazon.com for ($37.99)
2. PreSonus Eris E3.5-3.5″ Near Field Studio Monitor (Pair)
Used worldwide by professional sound engineers who need to hear every little detail of their mixes, these near field monitors are a great choice in any studio. They are also good for gaming or for creating videos, as they use the same technology as their bigger brothers. Studio-quality sound is provided by the monitors and the frequency response is smooth and accurate.
Given how powerful they are, the monitors are also compact enough to fit in any setup. The low-frequency driver uses a woven composite, and this gives the 3.5-inch woofer a constant sound dispersion pattern in all frequency ranges. The overall result is a cleaner sound. Furthermore, the product comes with a silk-dome tweeter measuring one inch across, and this is capable of producing impressive sound.
It accurately reproduces high frequencies and transients. This tweeter is made to have a wide dispersion pattern as well, and that helps with creating a sweet spot for listening.
There are 3 different types of audio inputs that you can have for these monitors and this helps you to feed audio to them with the help of a mixer, a media player, an interface, or any line-level source, including smartphones or tablets.
It comes with a headphone amplifier placed in the front and this will let you play it in stealth mode without disturbing your housemates or neighbors.
The monitors offer a consistent listening with accurate sounds and a smooth feel given by the even all-round frequency response.
They come in a compact and lightweight design which makes them popular for tightly-packed studios.
If you need more low frequencies you can always pair these monitors with other PreSonus devices for a powerful blast.
While working great on their own, the monitors don’t do that well when you connect headphones to them – you need to find the perfect spot to avoid electrical interferences in the sound.Buy from Amazon.com for ($99.95)
3. Numark Party Mix | Beginners DJ Controller for Serato DJ Lite
Packed with all the tools you would need for a DJ-ing performance, this highly portable controller will let you do whatever you want. It comes with effortless connection capabilities that you can use to couple it with a PC or Mac device. This will allow you to browse and mix your favorite songs with the help of the included software, the Serato DJ Lite.
What makes this starter DJ equipment different from others is the light show that it can put off. It comes with a room-filling array of LED lights that auto-sync to the music to give you an awesome atmosphere. The device also comes with a built-in soundcard and all the essential controls that a DJ nowadays requires.
This Numark DJ equipment has 2 jog wheels, buttons for sync/cue/play, 4 responsive performance pads, a crossfader, and onboard headphone cueing. That is why it’s a great beginner DJ equipment for those looking to learn everything about DJ-ing.
The dazzling light show will help you get your party to the next level and impress your friends with your DJ-ing skills. The light auto-syncs to your music and that is a great plus.
Complicated DJ setup ideas are a thing of the past with this device – with the help of the on-board audio interface and the dedicated inputs and outputs you will be able to keep the mix on point with little to no physical connections.
The DJ controller is packed with all kinds of controls, and with the aid of a crossfader, two channels, jog-wheels, and pitch faders, you will have access to critical settings right at your fingertips.
Despite coming in such a compact size, this device can still pack a punch and provide you with controls that will enhance your performance.
Using this for live events isn’t as enjoyable, because the knobs bleed sound and you will have to control the device through virtual DJ.Buy from Amazon.com for ($96.88)
4. Rockville Pair Dual 15″ 2000w Powered DJ Speaker (RPG225K)
Being a complete all-in-one dual 15-inch PA system, this product will offer you everything you need to get the sound out to your listeners. This system includes 2 separate speakers, one that is active and measures 15 inches and comes with a built-in amplifier. The second speaker is a passive one and is 15 inches as well.
You can customize the sound to whichever genre you want with the 5-band master graphic equalizer. Thanks to the incredible accurate reproduction of low frequencies, these speakers are a great choice for DJs and live events. To help the speakers with giving out preciser tones, the engineers added a 1.75-inch compression horn driver that will deliver clear-sounding highs.
It has a continuous power output of 500 watts, and with so much power you are sure to make this system an ideal one for large-sized rooms, for big events, whether they are indoor or outdoor.
Given its impressive power, this system can fill a room that can measure up to 20,000 square feet – it’s one of the most powerful systems in this category.
It comes with built-in Bluetooth communication which functions really well given that both of the speakers can play audio coming from a Bluetooth signal.
There are multiple connectivity opportunities, as the system can connect to other devices with the help of usual RCA cables, but can also use XLR cables, USB cables, or SD cards.
The speakers come with LED indicators that will let you know when you are pushing them too far making them overheat – as soon as the music starts to distort, the LED will light up.
Although the system comes with a remote, there are no instructions on how to use that remote or where to point it.
Furthermore, there are many cases in which the remote doesn’t work.Buy from Amazon.com for ($469.95)
5. Audio-Technica AT-LP120XUSB-BK Direct-Drive Turntable
Coming as an update to an already successful previous model, this turntable has a new DC servo direct-drive mother and other features that will improve its performance. It also comes with adjustable dynamic anti-skate controls and a preamplifier with selectable phono. Pay attention when using this turntable as it’s a fully manual one.
It is capable of playing 78, 33-1/3, and 45 RPM records and comes equipped with a USB output that will give you direct connectivity to your computer. To use it you will have to download the Audacity recording software on your Mac or PC (software which is free). This will let you record and convert your recordings to digital audio files.
In addition to the USB output, the turntable also has a detachable RCA output that has a selectable phono preamp that allows you to directly connect it to a stereo device.
This is a classic design, given the S-shaped tonearm that comes with an adjustable tracking force and a universal mount headshell.
Leading the phono cartridge design for more than 50 years, Audi-Technica has the expertise to design a versatile and high-performance cartridge like the one used here.
The turntable comes with many classic controls such as selectable high-accuracy quarts-controlled pitch locks and pitch change slider controls, a stroboscopic platter that has a speed indicator, and the mandatory start and stop button.
The design is am impressive one, and the removable hinged dust cover will give this device even more elegance than it already has.
You can use it right away after you download the required software on your computer and you will be able to record and transform your recordings into beautiful digital pieces.
While this is an awesome turntable, the setup documentation is weak and those less-experienced DJs will have a hard time making it work.Buy from Amazon.com for ($249)
6. Numark DJ2GO2 Touch – Compact 2 Deck USB DJ Controller
With this compact device, you will have a total mix control, thanks to the 2 DJ decks that come with a crossfader, the touch capacitive jog-wheels, and the pitch faders that give you access to must-have blending and scratching tools. It’s an ultra-portable yet feature-packed device. The compact controller comes with two channels, and the Serato DJ Lite software included.
Furthermore, the connectivity options are impressive given its small size, and the controller will let you use USB connections to couple it with a Mac or PC device. MIDI mapping can also make it usable with other DJ software such as Virtual DJ.
You get the ⅛-inch headphone output and the main ⅛-inch output and that gives you enough flexibility to add something like DJ mixing equipment, speakers, and a PA system to it. The device has iOS connectivity, and for that, you can use the Apple Camera Connection Kit (that you need to buy separately).
With this controller, you will be able to stream millions of tracks that include everything from the newest tracks you create to certified classics, and you will be able to do that with the help of the included Serato DJ Lite.
The four pad modes will give you absolute control of the cue points, while the auto or manual looping and sample playback will help you add flair to your live performances.
This controller has been created to allow you to play in different locations with it – the sleek and low profile and ultra-portable design will help you fit it on any DJ table.
It has a really nice design and comes with radiant backlit controls to allow you to have maximum visibility in dark conditions or under intense DJ lights.
Although supposed to work with existing Serato DJ software, that is not always the case and you will find yourself needing to buy a new software.Buy from Amazon.com for ($77.77)
7. Pioneer DJ Controller, Black, (DDJSB3)
Combining features of bigger and more expensive Pioneer DJ equipment with the leading Serato DJ controllers, this device will make learning DJ-ing an easier task than ever. It’s great DJ equipment for beginners to hone tier skills, given that it’s a 2-channel controller that is easy to navigate. The controller has an impressive layout inspired by the DDJ-S professional DJ equipment.
It comes with the Serato DJ Lite, and once you master that you can go on to the full version if you need more from the machine. The FX Fade feature will let you transition between different tracks with ease and will also let you experiment with scratch effects without having to use turntables in a classical way. The new Pad Scratch function will help with that.
This device has been developed in collaboration with DJ Jazzy Jeff and the result is that this controller helps you to add scratches to recordings at the touch of the Performance Pads.
The layout is an intuitive one, and all of the features have been designed and placed where you need them to be and when you need them.
You can add scratch effects to cued and playing songs without having to use the turntable with the help of the Pad Scratch functions, using eight of DJ Jazzy Jeff’s scratch patterns.
When making scratches or small adjustments the speed will automatically match the BPM and this means you won’t have to worry about breaking the rhythm.
No matter if you’re an experienced DJ or an absolute beginner, with the FX Fade feature you will have an easy time mixing, as this feature will smoothly blend the tracks together even when using clashing music genres.
Coming with only the Serato DJ Lite software, this product seems like bait to make you buy the full feature.
It’s made of plastic and that reduces its durability over time.Buy from Amazon.com for ($249)
8. Numark M2 BLACK | Professional Two-Channel Scratch Mixer
Known for always coming with new technologies and innovative designs, the Numark company produces a wide variety of audio devices, amongst which this well-made scratch mixer. This is a two-channel mixer that will get your job done in style. It comes with adequate features for a DJ mixer and offers a lot in a small frame.
Given that it doesn’t require such a massive investment, this product is great for those that are looking to start their DJ-ing careers. Its layout is a simple one, while the build quality is impressive. It only presents the essential controls onboard, and that is why the interface is not intimidating.
The device is lightweight so that you can take it to any type of gig. The mixer won’t disappoint when it comes to sound quality either, as all the beats and tunes have a satisfying feel and they seem like they come from a bigger mixer.
Thanks to the dedicated 3-band equalizer and the mic input, this mixer is great for small parties.
The only limit to this mixer is your skill, given that you have two separate channels with individual gain levels and a crossfader-reverse option.
Usually, such mixers have issues with adjusting to the right frequencies, but that is not the case with this one – it will self adjust to make sure that the bass is not too low or too high.
Thanks to the USB output the mixer will be connectible to any computer, no matter the operating system – this connectivity allowing it to record tracks and live performances.
Lightweight and compact, the mixer will be a good choice for those that travel a lot or want to hold parties at their friends’ houses.
The main drawback of this device is the basic DJ equipment it offers – although great for beginners, more experienced players will want more settings to play with.Buy from Amazon.com for ($99)
9. Hercules DJControl Compact
Designed to be one of the most portable but complete DJ controllers, this compact model from Hercules measures only 13.4 by 3.9 inches and weighs less than 1.23 pounds. This is impressively lightweight and small and means that it can easily fit into laptop shoulder bags or other small bags. It comes with USB connectivity that allows you to charge it fast.
It has all the essential DJ-ing functionalities in a highly-portable design. That is why it comes with two decks, two jog wheels of almost 3 inches in diameter, some mixer controls in the center, and individual deck controls on the right and left for each deck.
There are 4 modes that you can use on this device: Loop, FX, Samples, and Cue. Each of them for each separate deck, and you also have 4 pads per each deck, 2 EQ potentiometers for each deck, and 1 volume potentiometer.
There are 10 control buttons that include a Shift command that will let you double all the pad controls parameters.
This controller will provide the essentials of mixing at your fingertips, from the natural scratch of a vinyl record with the help of jog wheels, to quick navigation within the tracks.
Using this device is a highly intuitive task, and the features and effects will make the task of controlling the sound an easier one.
You will be impressed with how compact this controller is, measuring only 1.4 by 3.9 inches and weighing only 1.23 pounds – that is why it’s a good choice for those that travel a lot.
It comes with everything a beginner will need, and it will help you produce an enjoyable party.
There isn’t much in terms of information about how this thing works. You will have to figure most of it by yourself.Buy from Amazon.com for ($89.99)
10. Crosley C200 Direct-Drive Turntable
If you are looking for a turntable that can quickly get to play the records to your desired speed, this model, coming with a direct-drive motor will bring the music to your pace quickly and smoothly. You can choose to use its built-in preamp, or you can bring your own into the mix – either way, you will be able to create impressive mashups.
The built-in Audio-Technica AT-3600 moving-magnet cartridge can be adjusted to any preference. This will allow you to choose the beat that you want, and to balance the curves of the beautiful S-shaped tonearm with the help of the adjustable counterweight.
This device requires little to no setup – you just have to plug the DJ equipment speakers in and you’re ready to go. You can always choose to bypass the built-in preamp if you need to do so. Crosley has been producing turntables since 1992, and that tells you a lot about the quality of their products.
Always listening to its users, Crosley has been constantly making progress from the day the company was formed, and that means this turntable has a lot of things to offer.
This is a vintage model that, at the same time, comes with up-to-date technology that will allow you to have a fun experience while using it.
Unlike other models, this one can almost instantly switch the music to your desired pace, and this way you can keep your listeners entertained.
It comes with a built-in moving-magnet cartridge that allows for precise adjustments according to your preference.
The adjustable counterweight and the beautiful S-shaped tonearm will let you choose the beat that you want.
Working with this turntable is an easy task, as you just have to plug it in and it does its job.
Aligning the cartridge properly is not a straight forward operation, and unfortunately, the device doesn’t come with specifications on that aspect.Buy from Amazon.com for ($188.95)
Our Comprehensive Buying Guide
Choosing the best DJ equipment can be a hard task, especially when you don’t know what each device does. This DJ equipment review will teach you more about that, and we will also discuss a bit about what a high-quality product offers compared to a simple cheap DJ equipment.
The basics of an analog setup
Amongst the pieces of equipment that you will find necessary for a DJ, the turntable might be the most important. It doesn’t matter if you want to use vinyl, or to play the music using different methods, you will still need turntables to play your tracks. If you physically want to scratch cue albums you will need to get the vinyl player.
When using two separate turntables you need another piece of essential equipment – the mixer. This device will allow you to tie your music together, transition smoothly between tracks, and can also help you add a load of different features to the sound. Depending on your style, the mixer can make or break your music.
A good mixer will allow you to scratch the music via the slider, or you can use it to create mashups of your tracks, to adjust control levels, panning and FX. It’s also necessary so you can plug your headphones into, or connect your laptop, be it Mac or PC if you wish to have more options of recording and mixing. The mixer will be the best option for an analog style.
The digital setup
If you are, however, looking to develop a digital style of playing, a complete DJ controller will be of great use. This combines the turntables and mixer into one convenient and compact piece of equipment. The controllers are usually more portable, and they are really great for gigs where you have to travel a great deal.
Allowing you to use complex computer software as an essential part of your setup, the controllers come with everything the DJ needs to offer a complete listening experience. They have trigger pads, Midi controls, drum pads, connections for mix and amplifiers, and much more.
The built-in jog wheels will help you reproduce scratch effects, replicating the feel of a turntable. A controller will also let you import sounds and effects from your computer, much like a MIDI controller will let you do, and you can even customize certain settings on your computer software directly on the controller.
If you’re at the start of your career and you’re unsure what to get, a piece of affordable DJ equipment like a controller will be a great choice.
Although the aspects that we previously talked about are the basics a good DJ needs, there are some other things that you will need. Amongst these, decent software is a must, if you want to be able to operate your controller to its full capacity and make use of the music library. The software will help you put tracks together, add some effects, place different sounds, and assign them to a trigger pad, organize your files, and many others.
Most DJ controllers come with their own software, and if that’s not the case, there are so many out there to choose from. Serato, Traktor, Virtual DJ are some of the most widely used software and are a standard in the industry.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: What equipment do you need to be a DJ?
If you’re a beginner you will want to have a basic setup upon which to expand further into your career. The first element of the best DJ setup will be a DJ controller, as this will give you the most-needed features. On that controller, you also want to have a piece of software that will allow you to get the best out of it.
After you’ve got that covered, you will also need a laptop or at least a tablet that comes with a decent soundcard and that can transfer files to and from your controller. Headphones are a must if you are going to perform live for an audience. If not, a pair of monitors will be what you need, if you will be playing from home and you want to hear the true sound of your mix.
Let’s not forget about the central element – music, you need that too.
Q: Should my DJ setup be digital or analog?
Much of what you see being used by DJs nowadays is digital. Mixers nowadays include a lot more than they used to and they now come with sound cards, software-driven effects, different types of connections, and the ability to browse through and arrange your songs and playlists.
While things have moved on from the era of analog mixers, this doesn’t mean you should overlook them entirely. They can still be relevant and useful and relevant. The digital setup will be the best DJ equipment for beginners, as it runs like a computer entirely dedicating to helping the DJ. Using digital interfaces is often easier than analog models, and this makes them good as a DJ setup for beginners
Some believe that the job a DJ gets greatly reduced when using digital devices, while others advocate for the new era. Digital mixers, however, can be difficult to use when they come with lots of dials, and many settings.
Q: Who was the first DJ?
Launching a DJ dance party in 1943, radio host DJ Jimmy Savile played jazz records upstairs the function room of the Loyal Order of Ancient Shepherds, in England. This was the first time that somebody did something similar and it is considered the first DJ event. Furthermore, he claims that in 1947 he was the first person to use a twin turntable set up to allow for continuous play. In 1958 he started to be a DJ at Radio Luxembourg.
The first commercial disco (discotheque, coming from the name in French, meaning night club that uses recorded music) was in 1947 in a nightclub in Paris. There were artists there that performed on twin turntables starting with 1953, and that’s what made discos popular across Europe and then the United States.
Interestingly, the term disc jockey appeared much earlier, around the 1930s, and it only started to get popular after Savile started using it more often.