Controller Clinic #26: Traktor Or Serato After Learning On An iPad?

Phil Morse | Read time: 2 mins
ipad dj serato Traktor
Last updated 13 November, 2017


Traktor Serato
Traktor or Serato – which is it to be for our reader who’s upgrading from iPad and wants nicer waveforms?

37-year-old Digital DJ Tips reader Edelso writes: “I’m upgrading from a cheap Numark iDJ unit that I use with an iPad and Algoriddim’s djay app (this set up has given me the most fun I’ve ever had with $120, by the way!). I’ve got up to $500 to get a new controller. My current laptop should be fine for Traktor etc, and all my music is in iTunes. I’m mostly looking for better song analysis, more effects, and a better beat graph to visually confirm beat sync as well as with headphones/ears.”

“I play different kinds of music from electronic to salsa. I play at family parties and with friends, but I did a gig for a fifth graders’ party that may lead to others. I was taught the basics by an old school DJ who used records, so I use the jogwheels as well as the cues. I try to use sync only for BPM match, and I appreciate just how easy these programs make it to mix music today.”

“I was pretty much decided on a Traktor S2 but played with a Novation Twitch last night and now I am more undecided than before… (The Novation was pretty cool, but I did miss the jogwheels a little). So, which software would you go for in my position? As far as controllers go I’m between the S2, the Novation, and the Pioneer Ergo.”

Digital DJ Tips says:

Sounds like you want to change your software (waveforms…), but it sounds to me like there’s no real reason for going for Traktor over Serato, which has the superior waveforms of the two. Now that Serato is available for more controllers, look at them over on and factor in the price of the software when deciding. The Denon DJ MC2000 might be a good bet (well made, got all the basics including jogwheels).

If you do choose Traktor, I have to say I think the S2 would be best, as the jogwheels are better than non-NI controllers. The Novation Twitch can be used with Traktor too as you I am sure know, but the mapping isn’t as tight as the Serato mapping (and the unit doesn’t work with Serato DJ yet). Also with Traktor, you could use Traktor DJ on your iPad to prep your tunes – something Serato doesn’t offer.

Would you like to add anything? What would you choose in this position? Have you “graduated” from iPad to laptop DJing, and if so, which route did you take? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

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