Traktor DJ 2, the new beginner-focused DJ platform from Native Instruments that we first revealed from the NAMM Show in January, has finally arrived.
It is available for Mac, Windows and iOS, and is currently a free download. It integrates with SoundCloud Go+ for access to many millions of tracks. SoundCloud is also free for 30 days via an in-app trial, after which it is a subscription service.
While the new app has obvious limitations at this time against Traktor Pro 3 (it’s only two deck, no Remix Decks or Stems decks, no metadata editing or Midi mapping, only works with Traktor Kontrol S2 Mk3 and Kontrol Z1), it also has features that Traktor Pro 3 doesn’t such as track recommendations, Retina support, and of course streaming (expect more streaming services in the future too).
It’s an intriguing angle from Native Instruments (see our thoughts in the box below), and at launch, it looks and feels like a solid first attempt – we’ve been playing with it here on the iPad as we craft this piece.
We’d say that the biggest omission at launch would be auto playlist mixing, something people who dabble with DJ apps and streaming certainly value – maybe that’s coming in a future. What is coming very soon is our review, so watch this space…
Why two DJ apps from Native Instruments?
Native instruments is pushing the beginner friendliness of Traktor DJ 2. The company says: “Whether it’s a few friends at a house party, or a few thousand in a warehouse, we want to make mixing tunes and playing sets something everybody can do … it’s free, SoundCloud Go+ integration means you have access to an endless track collection, and Traktor’s song recommendations help you choose which one to play next. All you need is a laptop or iPad.”
But there’s another reason, too. The “old” Traktor, Traktor Pro 3, is indeed old – and has been increasingly creaky over the years as Native Instruments has grappled with its antiquated codebase in an attempt to keep it up to date. Traktor DJ 2 on the other hand, while taking its name from the (now unavailable) Traktor DJ app that was the company’s first foray into iOS DJing, is actually a brand-new app and codebase.
It is not hard to see the long-term thinking here: Develop Traktor DJ 2 so that eventually, it will replace Traktor Pro 3 – solving the issue of updating Traktor Pro 3 being practically impossible for Native Instruments’ coders in recent times.
To be clear though, Native does say that “Traktor DJ 2 and Traktor PRO 3 will therefore be developed and updated in tandem in the coming years” – so current Traktor Pro 3 users need not worry just yet.
• More info over at the Native Instruments website.
What are your thoughts of Traktor DJ 2? Let us know in the comments!