What It Is
Numark iDJ Controllers
What It Does
DJ controllers compatible with your iOS devices.
Where to Buy It
What It Costs
iDJ Pro: $649.99
iDJ Live: $149
Maybe you sing. Maybe you play an instrument. Maybe you’re really good with GarageBand. But there are other ways to make music, too, and they might be worth considering if you have a second job working at a club, or if you just want full control over the sound you use in your own shows. Numark has developed a full line of them—the iDJ series—which only need your ingenuity and your iOS device to make them work.
The newest, most feature-rich, and most expensive is the iDJ Pro ($649.99). Just connect your second- or third-generation iPad; download and install Algoriddm’s djay app (unfortunately, a separate $9.99 purchase at the App Store); and your tablet becomes the centerpiece of your own full-featured DJ controller. Stream songs directly from the cloud so you can start working with them right away using the dual turntables and mixer integrated into the handsome black brushed-aluminum device. Once you’ve got them, three-way effect capability, a dedicated filter knob, an assignable effect knob (with its own on-off switch), and an X/Y pad effect are among the tools at your disposal. There are also RCA and quarter-inch microphone inputs, and balanced XLR outputs, as well as a music-library scroll control for instantly finding the song you want. And once you’ve created your perfect mix, you can stream it wirelessly to Bluetooth or AirPlay speakers, an AirPort Express station, or even an Apple TV.
If the iDJ Pro is just too much for you—or if it just costs too much—Numark has other ways to go. For about $399, you can nab the iDJ3, which offers scaled-down versions of many of the same features in a package that works with your iPod and your Mac or PC. Virtual DJ LE mixing software comes included with this one, but the iDJ3 is compatible with most of the packages on the market. There’s even a power adapter for charging your iPod, so you don’t run out of juice just when you most need it.
Numark’s least-expensive option is the $149 iDJ Live. A small and light (and thus easily portable) controller, it’s designed for beginners and works with your iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad. It has the scratch wheels and a number of other basic controls for handling crossfades, bass, and treble, but it lacks the wider array of functionality you’ll find on its pricier brothers.
For smaller gigs or personal parties, it might be all you need. If you’re looking to burnish your reputation as an electronic musician in your off hours, either it or one of Numark’s other controllers should do the trick.