The Future Is Here! Can The Traktor S8 Be The Future Of Djing?
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The Future is Here! Can the Traktor S8 Be the Future Of Djing?

Traktor S8: Will this DJ controller change the way we play?

It is finally here. Native instruments has just released Their newest controller to replace the S4. The Traktor Kontrol S8 is being called the “flagship all-in-one DJ controller”. With a hefty price of $1200, this left a lot of people wondering if this is all hype or if this is really the future of DJing.

I personally think that the S8 will change the way DJs perform. In the past, if you wanted to DJ, beat-matching was a necessity. Now all you need is Traktors handy-dandy beatgrid and there you go! Many DJs think that this is cheating. Especially old school DJs. I think that this is ridiculous! If someone invents a more efficient way to do something, why not take advantage of it. This is like some farmer from the 1800s yelling at some 21st century farmer saying that he isn’t a real farmer because he didn’t have to use a whole fleet of slaves to plant his seed. All he needed was a few traktors(get it? Traktors? nevermind...). Not having to beatmatch can open up so many worlds to you. When I eventually get an S8, I’m going to have Ableton running in the background. Since the beatgrids will free up time beat-matching for me, I can play keyboard in the background or even use my launchpad for drumming. Get what I mean? If you like beatmatching and truly think that it is helping your performance, good for you, don’t buy the S8. Just don’t be so closed-minded to new ideas.

Let’s talk about features. The S8 is packed full of them! The most noticeable new feature is the two beautiful screens. The screens display the tracks waveform, effect options, and can even help you browse through your music library to select tracks. The one thing about the screens that I love the most is the ability to freeze loops. This is great! When you make a loop, it will show the waveform gridded up. You can jump to each slice in the loop for a great effect. The faders are said to be improved. The part I like about this is that this improvement makes it much harder for some drunk idiot to spill his drink on your $1200 baby and break it. This is because the faders are more water resistant. Just like the S4, the S8 has 2 phono/line inputs so that you can still add multiple turntables to this for timecode. The S8 has touch strips. The touch strips double as a way to skip through a track and also as a way to nudge the speed.

There are no platters on this controller. YIKES. This might seem like a downside but this is the reason I believe that this will change the way we DJ. Moving away from the platter can be a great way to innovate the way music is mixed. I can't find any reason someone wouldn’t love this controller. If you miss having a platter, there is still the phono/line inputs. Don’t let me forget to mention that this controller also features a mini and full sized headphone jack. I feel that using the larger headphone jack is an outdated method and most headphones today are mini. I’m tired of losing my headphone adapter and having to dedicate a whole day trying to find it.

In conclusion, I think this controller is a great innovation that could possibly change the way we DJ. There is a big emphasis on remix decks, which I love. Remix decks can be a perfect way to add creativity and individualism into your mix. Native Instruments is a great company that has made a great impact on electronic music with their wonderful virtual synths, their dj software, and not to mention their DJ controllers. Or should I say Kontollers. :)


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