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The Itchy & Scratchy Show

With its high torque motorised platters and rock solid software, the NS7 feels like the ultimate next generation DJ controller.

There's certainly no shortage of DJ controllers available right now. Almost every taste and preference is catered for - from professional all-in-one twin deck consoles, down to cool homebrew DiY kits for the electronically able. But one key element remained unexplored until the birth of the NS7 from Numark - high torque motorised platters.

This might seem like a simple feature to implement in any Midi controller, but somehow we haven't seen it until now. With motorised platters you get all the tactile feel of pushing and pulling in the mix, just like a real set of turntables, which will no doubt be a major selling point for the NS7.

That's the whole ideology behind it - to bring the real feel of pinpoint control and realism to the digital DJ, in one easy to install system. Instead of the usual cable mess of audio, midi and power leads, the NS7 handles every function within the console and has just one cable to connect it to the computer and one for power.

The clean layout features a two-channel mixer with additional audio inputs to integrate more decks into the mix. Three-band EQ, long throw channel faders and a crossfader adorn the surface, while all the controls for effects, sampling and looping are housed on the decks, keeping it clean and streamlined to use.

DJs will be able to completely customize the controller so that each user can assign them within their software to control the different features that are essential to their mixing style.

The NS7 is tipped for maximum build quality. Initial specs suggest an all steel casing with a polished black top and silver edge trim. Ruggedness and portability will be two important considerations for mobile DJs looking for a roadworthy digital DJ set-up that will last.

On the software side, Numark have teamed up with Serato, who are known for their industry standard 'Scratch Live' DJ software. The new software has been cheekily named 'Itch' and has been specially designed to work with only two controllers so far - the NS7 and the Vestax VCi300.

Instant mapping of all parameters means it will work straight out of the box with zero time wasted in configuring. One major difference between Scratch and Itch is that Itch has horizontally scrolling waveforms, in contrast to the vertically descending waveforms in Scratch. Other than that, they have some interoperable features, including colour waveforms, cue and loop points, auto-tempo matching and beat sync, while collections and crates can be imported between the two programs with ease.


PRICE: £899
OUT: October