Numark NS6 Digital DJ Controller Review
Overview: The Numark NS6 is a 4-channel Digital DJ controller with complete built-in mixer and four decks of software control. The Numark NS6 is now on store shelves EVERYWHERE! Before you go out and purchase your NS6, check out our full VIDEO review brought to you by yours truly, DJ BLAZE. We have a complete product breakdown and Demo to share with you all in this 22 minute review video. Check inside for the full video review and summary page.
American Musical Supply is the
Official Pro Audio Retailer of DJBooth
Review Video & Demo
Setup & First Impressions
The Numark NS6 Digital DJ Controller is a complete Professional DJ solution with four decks of control and four channels of mixing right at your fingertips. The NS6 is built with superior quality in mind and will easily be able to withstand the harshest of environments. The Faders, knobs, switches, and buttons are all sturdy and durable and really built-to-last.
The Jog wheels found on the Numark NS6 are possibly the best ever found on an all-in-one four-deck controller. They are the best I have used thus far and they are also built super sturdy with the same build quality of the entire unit. The jog wheels do not tilt when pressed excessively and they remain constant in every way throughout usage. The Crossfader and Linefaders are also built tough. The Crossfader is similar to the fader found on the Numark DXM-PRO (review here), which also has a great fader right out of the box. The Crossfader and Linefaders are both curve adjustable. The Crossfader can be adjusted using the knob on the front of the unit in real-time; while the line-faders' curve control can be adjusted within the Serato Itch software.
The Serato Itch software that comes bundled with the Numark NS6 is very stable and it works perfectly with no issues whatsoever. The Numark NS6 also has an innovative new feature called the Split-Cue that will allow a DJ the opportunity to allow one earphone of the headphones to play the Master output, with the other earphone of the headphones can play the Cue tracks (the tracks that no one but the DJ can hear). This means you can essentially play a entire set without the need of mixing with a master output.
One of the main selling points of the Numark NS6 is that it can also work as a stand-alone mixing console for all those DJ's out there that want to use a set of analog or digital (CD) decks with the NS6. The Numark NS6 can also be used in conjunction with the Serato Scratch Live software and an audio interface such as the SL3 in order to control 2 of the 4 digital decks with analog timecode decks. For Example, the user will be able to connect two analog timecode decks (vinyl or CD) to an audio soundcard like the SL3 and then connect the SL3 into the NS6 in Phono/Line RCA inputs. Then, the user will have to set the Serato Scratch Live software to through mode and then switch the channels back to PC mode and 2 of the four decks will now be manipulated through the timecode decks.
This feature actually brings me to my first gripe that I found with the Numark NS6 unit. The Numark NS6 cannot use its RCA inputs in conjunction with its internal soundcard like the Traktor Kontrol S4 can. With the Numark NS6, you actually have to purchase an additional software (Serato Scratch Live) and hardware unit (SL3 or SL4) in order to use the setup with timecode to control the digital decks within the software. (Note: To date, only the Traktor Kontrol S4 users can simply plug in the RCA inputs directly from the timecode decks to start controlling the digital decks within the software.)
My next minor issue with the unit is the lack of actively spinning platters. When I first heard of the NS6 before actually seeing any images of the product, I definitely thought that Numark would be the first ones on the block with a four-deck controller with actively spinning platters. I came to this conclusion because Numark's NS7 and V7 products have excellent spinning platters that would have worked nicely within the NS6. I suppose the price of the controller would have possibly doubled, but never-the-less, it would have been hard for anyone to ever pass up on an NS6 with such a feature.
My last and final minor gripe with the unit is that the crossfader, even though scratch-worthy in every way, could have had a slightly shorter cut-in time or even an adjustable cut-in time so that when the fader is set to the sharpest curve, the distance the fader travels before sound is activated could have been about 0.5mm shorter. The distance doesn't sound like much, but the scratch veterans will easily notice the difference when pulling off crabs, transformers, and other complex scratches that require sensitive timing. Either way, if you are a true expert, you will be able to pull off all the scratches your heart desires with a bit of practice.
Conclusion / Recommended For
In conclusion, the Numark NS6 is a great controller and definitely one of the top-three choices on the market today when it comes to all-in-one four-channel controllers. DJbooth.net recommends the Numark NS6 to beginner and expert DJ's alike and just about everyone in between from performers to bedroom DJ's. There is something here for everyone. If you need a good four-deck controller than can act as a standalone mixing unit, then the Numark NS6 is probably the Best Choice for you.
-The Numark Team has announced that they will be providing owners of the NS6 with a free user-installable replacement fader plate to address the crossfader cut-in time issue for those who want it in the coming weeks. NS6 owners can request their free ‘tricked out fader plate’ by visiting www.numark.com/trickedoutfaderplate.
-Traktor mappings are now available from Numark at http://www.numarkns6.com/support
Pros & Cons
- Excellent Build Quality (Sturdy and Durable)
- Great Jog Wheels (top of it’s class)
- User Replacable Crossfader
- Great Quality Crossfader and Linefaders (Curve Adjustable)
- Good Custom Serato Itch Software designed specifically for use with the Four-Deck NS6
- Can work as a Stand-alone Mixing Console (with or without DVS Software)
- Innovative Split-Cue Function
- Cannot use analog/digital timecode decks to control decks on NS6
- Lack of actively spinning Platters
Written by djblaze on 05/31/11
Features & Specs
* Built-in 4 Channel DJ Mixer that works with or without the computer
* Inputs for 4 line, 2 turntables, 2 microphones
* Serato’s Itch 4 Deck DJ software included
* Built-in professional 24-bit audio interface with balanced XLR outputs
* Touch sensitive illuminated wheels with 3600 ticks of resolution per rotation
* Strip Search with track position indicator
* Channel assignable effects controls
* Mouse-less library navigation with view options
* Deck Controls include: Key Lock, Pitch Control, Manual and Instant Looping, Hot Cues and Beat grid
* NS6’s uses standard MIDI protocols enabling DJs to use it with a variety of MIDI software
* NS6 Controller
* Power supply
* Serato ITCH
* Quick start guide
Purchase the Numark NS6 Digital DJ Controller
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Official Pro Audio Retailer of DJBooth
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