Best DJ Controllers for Serato – Complete Reviews With Comparison

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Serato is one of the best DJing programs out there. It comes with a range of features that allow you to mix tracks exactly to your liking and is a fantastic tool to have with you when you are performing at gigs. 

While it is compatible with most DJ controllers, it works better with a select few. In this review, we’ll take a look at some of the best DJ controllers to use in conjunction with Serato and give you a breakdown of what they offer. 

Read on for more information.

Comparison Chart

Numark Mixtrack Pro FX – 2 Deck DJ Controller
515MRtifELL. SL500
Roland DJ-707M Four-Channel
41YHgTav61L. SL500
RANE ONE – Complete DJ Set and DJ Controller for Serato
41WlO3Xf5ML. SL500
Pioneer DJ DDJ-REV1 2-deck Serato DJ Controller
51EW2evvdWL. SL500
Denon DJ PRIME 4

Best DJ Controllers for Serato Reviews

Numark Mixtrack Pro FX

Starting us off is the Numark Mixtrack Pro FX, which is a two-channel, beginner-focused DJ controller that is specifically designed to be used with Serator DJ software. It’s a great choice for getting started in the world of DJing and gives you a lot of bang for your buck. 

Review

The first thing to note about the Mixtrack Pro FX is that it is an entry-level controller designed to be used by beginners. This means that it has more of a consumer build quality, but that’s not to say it’s not well built. On the contrary, there are many construction improvements compared to its predecessor, and it’s one of the more durable starter controllers on the market. 

It is slightly larger than the original model because it’s slightly deeper to accommodate larger jogwheels. The decks are laid out identically rather than being mirrored to one another, and Numark even added a number of conventional loop buttons to save using the pads, as opposed to the previous edition of this model. It is a definite improvement in our books. 

Numark has included all the basic inputs you would need to complete a successful DJ set, such as a mic input, headphone sockets, a USB socket to connect your computer, and more. The company does include a USB cable with this model, but if your laptop uses a Type-C connection, you will need to pick up an adapter. 

The Mixtrack Pro FX has a simplified version of Serato called Serato DJ Lite pre-installed. Upgrading to the pro version is going to cost you a bit extra, but it’s certainly not a necessity, especially if you are just starting out in DJing. Simple mixing on this controller is easy and intuitive. With the excellent jogwheels and the light-up buttons – you won’t have a hard time learning the basics of this controller. 

One downfall is the cost of upgrading to the Pro version of Serato DJ. While it’s not necessary, it’s going to cost you a pretty penny, which can be frustrating to anyone working on a tighter budget. 

Pros

  • Great for beginners
  • Good range of features
  • Easy and intuitive to use
  • Beautiful appearance
  • Comes with larger jogwheels

Cons

  • Upgrading to Serato Pro is expensive

Roland DJ-707M Serato DJ Controller

515MRtifELL. SL500

The Roland Serato DJ controller is next and it comes packed full of all the features any professional DJ would want for an affordable price that is difficult to pass up. It’s not just a great option for anyone in the DJ business but content creators as well, making it one of the most versatile options out there. 

Review

The Roland Serato DJ controller is an incredibly versatile controller, not only for mixing and scratching your favorite tracks but also for content creation, live streaming, event production, remixing, and even karaoke. It comes with all of the features you would ever need to make any event special, whether you’re in charge of the music or not. 

For content creators and live streamers, the abundance of outputs and inputs easily allows you to run microphones and other audio devices directly to your speakers, recorders, and other streaming equipment for a seamless content creation experience. You’ll find 16 hardware vocal effects and pristine EQs that help you improve the sound of your vocals or even take a more creative approach with Auto Pitch and other special effects. 

If you’re a DJ who favors production above all else, you’ll appreciate the onboard drum machine packs that are constructed from Roland’s comprehensive collection. These patterns are sent to the MIDI clock for syncing any instruments connected to the controller, allowing you to patch them into one of the many audio inputs easily. 

The Serato DJ controller is also second to none with its ability to route any input to any output. It applies separate multi-band compressors or EQs to outputs for system tuning. You can also add anti-feedback to your mic and even save your custom settings into 10 ‘scene’ slots to use later at the push of a button. 

There’s nothing that the Roland controller can’t do, which is what makes it perfect for professional DJs. The one major qualm we have with it is its price point, which is fairly high. If you are not a professional or are looking for a controller to help you get started in DJing, definitely consider looking for a cheaper model. 

Pros

  • Highly versatile
  • Works well for DJing and content creation
  • The abundance of inputs and outputs
  • Allows you to save custom settings for later
  • Comes with onboard drum machine packs

Cons

  • The high price point puts it out of reach for most beginners

Rane One Complete DJ Set

41YHgTav61L. SL500

If you’re looking for a truly professional DJing experience, look no further than this complete DJ set from Rane, which comes with all of the features you would expect from a pro DJ controller. While it might not be the most affordable model on the market, its excellent quality more than justifies the asking price. 

Review

The Rane One set has plenty to offer to the right type of DJ. One of the highlights for us is the Mag Four crossfader, a high-quality fader suitable for some of your more aggressive scratch routines. What’s more, you’ll find that there is plenty of space available around the fader, so you’ll have a good range of motion to take advantage of.

You can also adjust the curve to your preference using the dedicated knob on the front panel, which is a definite bonus. Right above the crossfader are two-channel faders which, while not of the best quality, are usable and offer you some nice resistance. Two central cue buttons near the faders are also used to send channel signals directly to your headphones. 

The Rane On features a standard EQ setup, with a three-band EQ alongside Level control and a Filter – the standard hardware you need from a DJ controller, but highly effective nonetheless. The knobs themselves feel great to use and are a great size. On the center panel are line switches that control both decks, below which are meters for both channels and the master VU meter. 

Of course, the Rane One makes use of Serato DJ Pro software, which is the natural option for a controller of this caliber. Installation takes no more than a couple of minutes, allowing you to get to mixing right away. The motorized jogwheels are a pleasure to use, and you’ll have plenty of fun mixing and scratching away with them.

One thing we’re not too keen on is just how heavy this DJ controller is. If you’re a mobile DJ who needs to move quickly from one gig to another, you may want to consider using a smaller, more lightweight model that’s easier to transport. 

Pros

  • Premium quality
  • Comes with Serato DJ Pro
  • Mag Four Crossfader
  • Has a professional feel to it
  • Installation only takes a few minutes

Cons

  • Heavy and difficult to transport

Pioneer DJ DDJ-REV1 Serato DJ Controller

41WlO3Xf5ML. SL500

Pioneer DJ is one of the most popular and trusted brands in the DJing industry, and for a good reason. Their controllers are some of the best on the market, and their Serator DJ controller is no different. Let’s explore its features now. 

Review

This Pioneer DJ controller is a bold new entry-level controller that works excellently with Serato DJ – it even comes with the Lite version of the software. One of the first things you’ll notice about this model is that the decks are laid out with the play and pause buttons at the bottom right, while the pitch sliders are horizontal at the top. 

Pioneer really knows what they’re doing when it comes to making DJ controllers, and they know how to make their models truly fun to use. The jogwheels on this particular controller are quite large in comparison to a few others, and they feel good in the hands. There are no in-jog displays, and while they are not motorized, they are definitely enjoyable to use. 

You will find a few simple, effective looping buttons just above these wheels, and it’s here that you’ll also find buttons that allow you to switch to the 3rd and 4th decks. Even if you’re using the limited, free version of Serato DJ, you will have full control over all four software decks. While it might be a bit finicky to use, it works. 

The mixer section on this Pioneer DJ controller is much larger than usual for controllers of a similar size, which gives the entire board a spacious feeling to it. While there is plenty of space on the crossfaders and faders, the performance pads have to be smaller, which can be a little frustrating. 

You’ll get the standard two effects engines on this controller and the ability to choose three effects per channel from the controller itself. You can also alter the effect cycle value, which is a nice bonus. 

The only real significant issue here is that, because of the unique layout, it can take a while to get used to this controller, especially if you are already comfortable with more conventional layouts. But, after a few hours, you should have the hang of it. 

Pros

  • Comes with Serato Lite
  • Unique layout
  • Quite affordable
  • Suitable for pros and beginners
  • Simple and effective

Cons

  • The layout can be challenging to get used to

Denon DJ Prime 4 DJ Controller

51EW2evvdWL. SL500

Finally, we have the Denon DJ Prime 4 controller, which takes DJing to a whole new level thanks to its high-tech interface and stunning appearance. It’s got pretty much any feature you could ask for and is the perfect upgrade for any pro looking to improve their setup. 

Review

The central mixer on the Denon DJ controller offers a more refined layout while still managing to provide you with a host of features. It comes with four channels, each of which offers crossfader assignment options. You’ll also find a full three-band EQ along with a gain knob for each of the channels, and to make life easier, Denon made the gain knob a different color to allow you to distinguish it. 

There is a dedicated filter knob, and you even have the ability to assign three other modes to the filter to customize your layout further. The center section of the controller features headphone volume controls, as well as a cue/master mix knob. You can cue any of the channels to your headphones using dedicated cue buttons, which can be found on top of each channel fader. 

We like how loose the crossfader is, as it is perfect for scratch routines and quick cuts. You can also replace the crossfader and adjust its curve using a dedicated knob found on the front panel. 

Of course, we couldn’t review the Denon Prime 4 without mentioning the massive 10-inch screen that dominates the mixer. It provides you with a full overview of your current mix and also allows you to operate the software that the controller comes from, giving the controller a high-tech, futuristic feel to use. 

However, the software is also where the controller falls short. Denon includes the Engine Prime DJing software with this controller, which is not the best on the market, and certainly does not compare to Serato Pro or even Serato Lite. However, it is constantly evolving and being updated, so perhaps one day, it will be good enough for professional DJing sets. 

Overall, the Denon Prime 4 is a great professional controller that works well for DJing pro gigs. 

Pros

  • Stunning appearance
  • Futuristic feeling
  • Comes with every feature a DJ could want
  • Premium build quality
  • Perfect for professionals

Cons

  • Integrated software could be better

Conclusion

While all of these controllers are great, our favorite is the Roland DJ-707M Serato DJ Controller. While it is pricey, it works well for DJing and content creation as it is highly versatile. It has plenty of inputs and outputs. The onboard drum machine packs are great for making beats and loops, and the controller allows you to save your custom settings for use later on.

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