For DJs who still vouch for classical DJ setups, the feel of a turntable simply gives a level of satisfaction and connection of a DJ to his craft with the plus benefit of having it wherever you want to go. The need for a turntable in this day may be an irony since the music and sound quality can now be achieved by a digital setup and can simply be through online platforms such as Spotify or in a handheld device. And with the purchase of a turntable, as many have thought, it also costs extra.
On the contrary, with decent and portable turntables (and no, we’re not listing here the best of the best), you won’t need to sweat much on the budget, and there is a degree of freedom in reinventing the use of your portable turntable.
1) Monster Go DJ Portable Mixer Digital Turntable
It’s almost unbelievable how Monster has been able to compress all the features of a turntable into a compact handheld device. The Monster Go DJ Portable Mixer Digital Turntable is both innovative and ingenious turntable is a 0.6 lbs standalone DJing device that lets you do everything—from listening to tracks on-the-go, storing tracks to mixing songs.
It also includes two LCD touchscreen, volume knobs for each side, function buttons, effects selector, a crossfader, and 2gb internal storage. You can also customize your settings to adjust the precision and sensitivity and add a 2tb external memory in a card slot located at its side.
The Monster Go DJ can be said as the handiest portable mixer and can literally be fitted into your pocket and can be taken anywhere.
Going for a long drive? It has 12 hours of battery life, and that’s not all, it has a special feature called ‘Auto Feature,’ enabling you to automatically mix the tracks by itself, while you’re doing something else.
2) Denon DJ MC4000
Deemed as an audio giant and also built like one. If you tend to “use and abuse”, the Denon DJ MC400 can take you on. It is affordable, durable, and its quality has been vouched for ages from beginner to professional DJs.
This model is produced midline between the MC2000 and MC6000; it is built with a metal finish made for the DJ on-the-go who needs a reliable mixer with no frills.
They were designed to be user-friendly with its interface so one can get to know the device quite quickly and handle the features. It has 2 channels, touch-activated jog wheels, 100 mm pitch faders, EQ, and FX controls that lessens the use of supporting devices.
It has a steel chassis making it quite robust. It also comes with a Serato DJ intro software (which can be upgraded to full version), and it has input/output ports for the microphone, master, Aux, and Booth.
It is also compatible with other software with MIDI mappings like virtual DJ 8 and Traktor Pro 2.
3) Reloop SPIN Portable Turntable
For something so compact, this device comes in a clamshell-shaped case and with a 7-inch vinyl Spin and Scratch sounds Reloop Vinyl, which includes your phrases and tone on one side, and beats on the other.
You’ll need a USB connector to use this turntable, which also enables the user to direct USB recording. Though upon its purchase, it doesn’t include the lithium batteries or a power bank.
A versatile turntable with changeable preference, it’s also user-friendly turntable for both right- and left-handed scratch DJs. It has a belt-driven motor and can play modes at 33, 45, and 78 rpm speed. It features a +/-20% pitch knob, tone control, Aux input volume, and volume control knob. Its plastic stylus and cartridge are quite comparable to the Numark PT-01 Scratch. In terms of integration, this is the only portable turntable that has Bluetooth audio streaming. It also has headphone output, RCA line output, and line input. It has built-in speakers. Thus, you can scratch and create your DJ music even without headphones or external speakers.
There are some issues with this model that requires replacing and modifying some parts like the tonearm and its preinstalled crossfader, which many DJs find terrible and commenting that it ‘bleeds’.
4) Numark PT-01 Scratch
A turntable made for portable scratching is considered quite similar to the PT01 USB, though it comes with certain upgrades catering to DJs who don’t do scratches.
It comes with a new built-in scratch switch (an alternative to the external fader). You may take some time adjusting to this part, but you’ll make clean cuts and easier manageability in scratching when you do.
It also has a 1/8″ line input, which enables you to connect to your phone and eases your way in handling the functions like streaming and scratching. This is customizable if you want to add the external faders or upgrade the switch.
As much, its stylus is ranked only as satisfactory for scratching and listening though it is changeable for a more significant upgrade. It also has a special non-slip cartridge and removable slipmat.
So, what stayed? It makes use of a 12v adaptor for its battery, Numark has retained the USB port from its predecessor to rip vinyl tracks (along with the free EZ Vinyl Software for conversions), headphone and RCA line outputs. It still has a built-in speaker, but it still advisable to get external speakers to boost the sound quality. And yes, it can play at 3 speeds–33, 45 and 78rpm and has +/-pitch controls. Just like the “Reloop SPIN”, it also comes with the built-in speakers.
With portable turntables, one of the most significant milestones for DJing, DJs have become freer in their expression and passion for music. Learning DJing as a hobby, or especially if you want to start serious into this profession, has never been easier and more accessible, especially with these affordable, handy turntables. The portable turntables mentioned above are what we concluded to be ‘smart buys,’ which balance the budget and functionality, which is made for working DJs and serious beginners who want to earn money. Don’t forget that the preference for your gadget will depend on your style. Now, it only takes for you is to choose the gadget you’re going to start with.