Is Pioneer’s Rekordbox DJ Plus Pack a Serato-Killer?


It looks like Pioneer is making life a lot easier for DJ’s these days, which is, after all, in their own best interests as well, no? With the advent of their rekordbox dj Plus Pack, which can be gotten as an in-software purchase from rekordbox 4.0, DJs can do everything they need in terms of getting their sets together right there in rekordbox. Cues, tags, loops, you name it, you’ve got it without having to move your tracks into some other platform. The same library you use for set prep will be the one you use for performance.

Starting on October 1, rekordbox can be downloaded free, and from there you can access the 30-day free trial of rekordbox DJ or purchase the rekordbox dj Plus Pack. And rekordbox dj will be bundled with the DDJ-RZ or DDJ-RX controller, depending on which version you want. Both controllers have new features like beat parameter buttons and Sampler Cue and Sequencer modes. The DDJ-RZ also includes a magnetic crossfader, large jog wheels, an OSC sampler, and a pair of USB sound cards. And in case you’ve got a hankering to see this stuff in action, the rekordbox dj tour will be kicking off on October 20.

Pioneer Unveils DDJ-SB2 Controller for Serato DJ


The folks at Pioneer have been keeping themselves — and DJs around the world — pretty busy lately. It was only a few days ago that we were filling you in on their new DJM-S9 two-channel mixer for Serato DJ, and now here comes another new machine rolling down the pike. This one’s got a much more accessible price tag, because it’s being marketed to a more entry-level user, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a serious piece of equipment, so don’t pass it by without giving it the once-over. The DDJ-SB2 is controller for both Serato DJ and Serato DJ Intro, and the two-channel machine has got all the same things a lot of people loved about its predecessor, the DDJ-SB (filter fade, performance pads, et al).

But of course, the SB2 adds a few tricks of its own, like level meters, trim pots, and the Pad Trans beat effect and four-deck control. It even comes with Serato DJ Intro, for self-starters who want to hit the ground running. We’re looking a September date for this particular piece, and a pretty damn attractive price of around $285.

If you’re intrigued enough to investigate further, you can get some more detailed info on the SB2 on the website. Or if you’re feeling especially lazy on this late-summer day, you can always just look at the video intro below.

Pioneer DJ’s Gold HDJ-1500 Headphones: Donald Trump Would Approve


Earlier this year Pioneer DJ unveiled its limited edition gold DDJ-SZ controller for Serato DJ. Only 1,000 were made available to the public and it wasn’t cheap. Retailing for €2,199 (roughly US $2,596), the controller seemed to be marketed as a vanity statement for the baller DJ who rolls like Donald Trump, a tycoon who owns a gold-plated private jet. Pioneer DJ’s fascination with gold continues as the brand has announced a warm gold model to its popular HDJ-1500 headphones series, which for the more conservative among us is available in black, silver and white.

The HDJ-1500 promises to deliver superior audio quality thanks to 50 mm drivers, rare earth magnets and 38 μm thick diaphragms, while high output levels ensure pristine sound at loud volumes. A sound chamber blocks background noise, and the lightweight build, hinged ear cups and interchangeable foam ear pads give DJs a comfortable fit, even over long periods. The HDJ-1500-N gold headphones are available in August for a measely €199, including VAT, or US $220.

Would you wear gold headphones? Perhaps the specs and product video below will help you to decide.

Available in gold, black, silver and white
50 mm driver units
Proprietary soundproofing chamber
Lightweight, rugged magnesium alloy headband and hinges
Low-resilience urethane memory foam ear pads (can be changed for HDJ-EP01 open-cup leather ear pads, sold separately)
Replaceable cable
Carrying pouch included
The HDJ-1500-N gold headphones are available from August at an SRP of €199, including VAT.

KKR’s Purchase of Pioneer DJ Is A Done Deal

Pioneer DDJ-SZ

In September private equity firm KKR bought Pioneer DJ, reportedly for $550 million. At the time Pioneer had been selling off non-core assets to focus on its automotive electronics business, later selling its home audio-visual business to audio equipment maker Onkyo Corp.

Today we learned that the purchase of Pioneer DJ is now complete and both firms “will jointly leverage their respective business resources, brand power and technological capability, as well as global technology and media industry investment experience and networks to together aim for the further growth of Pioneer DJ.”

There’s no word yet whether there will be any changes in Pioneer DJ’s product line or staffing, but the company’s top brass are putting the proverbial good foot forward and painting the picture of a happy future.

Pioneer President and CEO Susumu Kotani, said, “KKR has a wealth of experience in the technology and media industry globally, and we are confident it has the expertise to drive Pioneer DJ forward. Pioneer will retain 14.95% of the voting rights in Pioneer DJ, and we will work with KKR to ensure the future growth of the company.”

Hiro Hirano, Member of KKR and CEO of KKR Japan, said, “We are delighted to have successfully completed this transaction, which is the first step in a promising future for Pioneer DJ. Pioneer DJ has built a leading position in the market based on its powerful brands and excellence in matching product development to market requirements. Over the long term, by working together with Pioneer DJ’s innovative management team, employees and Pioneer, KKR can provide support for the further growth and global expansion of the company.”

Yoshiaki Ide, Pioneer DJ President and CEO, said, “With the support of KKR, Pioneer DJ is embarking on a new journey as an independent company. We aim to leverage KKR’s global network and management expertise to grow our business. As an entertainment creation company we remain committed to the development of products and services that exceed customer expectations, and through the efforts of each employee we will strive to further improve customer value.”