Get ready to leave your laptop behind: Pioneer’s first NAMM 2015 news is in, and it’s a big one: The Pioneer XDJ-RX is a standalone, all-in-one DJ system, that reads music files prepared using rekordbox on a USB stick, or via the Rekordbox app on your mobile device.
It’s got an onboard single 7″ high-resolution display right above the two-channel mixer section, which is flanked by two jogwheels that look similar to those found on a Pioneer DDJ-SX. It can function as a standalone mixer, having two switchable phono / line inputs for connecting a pair of turntables or CDJs, two microphone inputs, a master and booth output, and two headphone output jacks. It’s got a second USB port, which can be used to plug a second USB stick for recording mixes and sets. Finally, it’s got a third USB port that you connect to your computer if you want to use it as a Midi controller.
The XDJ-RX has four “Color FX” (Noise, Gate, Crush, and Filter), as well as eight beat effects (Reverb, Delay, Roll, Echo, Spiral, Trans, Flanger, and Pitch) with respective knobs. There are also four pads under each jogwheel that can be used for hot cues, beat loop, and the new Loop Slice function. Beat sync, loop buttons, and library browse and load buttons round out the controls on this device. Indeed, it looks like a miniature CDJ/DJM Nexus set, to which it owes much of its features and functionality to.
The future for all-in-one devices?
We loved the XDJ-R1 when it came out last year, and the XDJ-RX is the next step in the evolution of all-in-one controllers from the Japanese giant; gone are the old jogwheels and limited-data displays that felt more like DJing on an ageing pair of CDJ-350s. Now, we’ve got updated jogwheels and a high-resolution display that caters to the modern controller DJ market.
Interestingly, the XDJ-RX deviates from the dual screens of the Numark NV and Traktor Kontrol S8 (and the XDJ-Aero, too!), and instead opts for a single large one: This allows for stacked waveforms a la Serato DJ, which some users are highly accustomed to using, along with displaying other pertinent data that you’d normally find on a CDJ Nexus series screen.
Rekordbox is at the heart of this entire system: You download songs on your laptop, and preparation happens within the Rekordbox software, the results of which are exported to a USB / thumb drive for use with the XDJ-RX. It isn’t clear whether the XDJ-RX will read files that haven’t been prepared in Rekordbox, which might be unlikely since this is being positioned by Pioneer as a total “Rekordbox solution”. There are also no CD slots here unlike the XDJ-R1, although the presence of a USB port for connecting it to your computer opens up Midi-mapping possibilities for other DJ apps.
Check out the gallery and video below to see more of what the XDJ-RX is capable of.
Are we headed for a laptop-less digital DJing future, thanks to modern all-in-ones like this? Do you think standalones will be the next big wave of DJ controllers? Let us know what you think in the comments below!