With the announcement yesterday that Pioneer DJ’s recent runaway success XDJ-XZ DJ system now works with Serato DJ Pro, you may be asking, “But why would I want to do that? Isn’t it designed to work without a laptop? Isn’t that the point?”
While it’s true that the XDJ-XZ is indeed designed for DJs to play from a USB device, just like Pioneer DJ’s pro CDJ-2000NXS2 units in clubs, there are several reasons why you may still want to use it with a laptop and software.
And even though it works fine with Pioneer DJ’s own Rekordbox DJ software, there are still cases where you’d want to use it with Serato. Here are some:
4 Reasons To Use Serato With The Pioneer DJ XDJ-XZ
- You can DJ on all four decks – This is the big one. With the XDJ-XZ, you only get to use two of the decks when DJing from USB. True, you can link in CDJ-2000NX2 or other Pioneer DJ media players to it to expand the number of decks, but with Serato DJ (and Rekordbox DJ, Pioneer’s own DJ software), you can play with and from four decks on just this unit
- You can use Serato DVS – When you buy the correct Expansion Pack for Serato DJ Pro, you can plug turntables into the XDJ-XZ, and use them to control Serato. Again, you get this with Rekordbox DJ too (although Pioneer DJ hardly ever mentions this fact, curiously), but of course the vast majority of DVS DJs are happy with Serato, and you may well be one of them
- You can DJ with an additional streaming service – Currently, unlike with Denon DJ’s Prime series of devices, you can’t DJ from any streaming services directly from the Pioneer DJ XDJ-XZ without a laptop/software. While Rekordbox DJ offers Beatport Link (which is something Serato DJ Pro doesn’t currently) as a streaming service, Serato has Tidal (both apps offer SoundCloud Go+ streaming)
- You may have to! – We can see many venues buying the Pioneer DJ XDJ-XZ as a single unit for all of their DJs to use. After all, it works with club-standard USBs, and now with Serato, Rekordbox DJ and Virtual DJ – indeed Traktor is the only mainstream software it doesn’t yet work with. Venues that previously may have bought two CDJ-2000NXS2 units and a DJM-900NXS2 mixer may just buy one of these, so if you’re used to plugging your laptop into pro Pioneer gear out and about, you may just find yourself using being presented with this instead at smaller gigs…
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How to prepare yourself
It is easy to be ready to use one of these with Serato, and you don’t even have to own the software. Just download it from Serato’s website; plugging in the unit will activate it and allow you to use it on the XDJ-XZ.
Do bear in mind, though, that to work with Serato, the XDJ-XZ itself needs the latest firmware, and from your point of view, you’ll need to ensure you have the drivers installed for the unit on your laptop (the Serato software will prompt you to install them if you plug in and you haven’t – not something you want a few minutes before a gig).
• Want to see this unit in use with Serato DJ Pro? Take a look at our Tuesday Tips Live show where I talk you through it and answer viewer questions live.
Do you own a Pioneer DJ XDJ-XZ? What will you use it with? Let us know your thoughts below…