It’s as if the digital revolution never happened. If you’ve got US$999 / £599 / €499 to blow and you’re not DJing with software yet, Pioneer’s new RMX-1000 Remix Station aims to bring some of what you’re missing to the party for you, as demonstrated in the video below.
With a host of high-quality effects sharing similarities with those found on Pioneer’s higher end mixers such as the new DJM-850, plus a simple sampler, this device is built to add an extra later to a DJ’s performance. As far as Pioneer’s range goes, it’s also a replacement for the severely dated EFX-1000.
It’s designed to be plugged in to the send/return from a DJ mixer, or failing that, simply across the master output. (Pioneer also interestingly says it will provide a software VST version, which the unit can then control via USB.)
Pioneer has, to be fair, pushed hardware effects to the limit on its mixers, and so you’d expect the same in a dedicated unit that gets you no real change out of US$1000.
Probably the most exciting section are the scene effects, designed to allow progressive building over time. The big blue-lit knob controls these, and Pioneer has divided them into “build up” and “break down” effects which are designed to add to the sound and take away from it respectively – reverbs, echoes, filters and so on.
The release FX are wet/dry on steroids. Wet/dry is usually the knob that lets you mix between the effected sound and the clean signal, but these allow you to do trigger that using echo, vinyl brake or backspin.
The isolate FX allow you to choose a mix of low/mid/high frequencies for the effects to do their thing on.
Finally, there’s a simple sampler, called X-Pad FX, with a touchpad for triggering four samples. Pioneer supplies kick, snare, clap and hi-hat, and you can load samples via SD card, but it doesn’t look like you can sample on the fly.
Who’s going to buy it?
With effects being built in to more and more mixers, there’s definitely a case for hardware effects, and a standalone unit means your own effects setup can always go with you to gigs. The fact that there is software that lets you customise setting show just how advanced effects have become, and promises the ability to customise your own personal effects “sound” – although it remains to be seen how good that software turns out to be.
If you’re a non-software DJ and so don’t have easy access to effects, this may well all be good news for you – as long as you’re pro enough to even consider such a spend. After all, most DJing software innovations are passing you by – at least here’s a chance to play catch-up in one area.
However, digital DJs already have access to some pretty complex effects, and frankly most DJs are happy with some decent filters and maybe a bit of vinyl emulation. And nearly all current DJ software has better sampling capabilities than this. Those four triggered samples, loaded from SD card, are probably not going to have sample deck engineers quaking in their boots.
For digital and hobby DJs, the price and the fact that you can do similar stuff in software is going to rule out buying the Pioneer RMX-1000. But if you’re a pro, analogue DJ looking to add top-grade and seemingly great-sounding DJ effects into your set-up, this could be for you. As a performance unit, it certainly looks like it packs in great deal of fun.
Due date: June 2012.
Have you been waiting for Pioneer to update its ancient EFX-1000? Would you pay this price for a dedicated state-of-the-art hardware effects unit? Please share your thoughts on the new Pioneer RMX-1000 Remix Station in the comments.