The Beginner DJ Blog
Top 5 DJ CD Turntables under $500
Are you in the market for CD DJ turntables but don’t have a ton to drop for super expensive gear?
CD turntables are a great middle ground for DJ’s because you can play CD’s and tap into digital gear using Traktor or other tools to play your MP3′s.
Here is BeginnerDJ’s list of the top five CD turntables under $500; guaranteed to avoid burning a hole in your wallet.
DJ CD Turntables: A Basic Buyer’s Guide
DJ CD turntables can be a bit tricky when picking out because there are two criteria to remember if you’re debating a purchase:
- If jog wheels are your preferred method of mixing.
- If CD’s are the right format for you.
The CD turntables on this list will be quite similar in form and function so it’s less about which brand you want and more about whether or not CD DJing is right for you.
You see, jog wheels can be a little off setting at first because they are so far removed from the classic vinyl feel but haven’t gone to the extent of being just a button to push like on some midi gear.
Additionally, the CD format is starting to die out in place of MP3 and other digital distributions. You’re far more likely to find newer music on websites like Beatport than you will in music shops these days simply because that’s the way the industry is moving.
The upside is that programs like Traktor, Serato and Torq helps to bridge the gap between CD and digital as they offer up time coded CD’s that let you fully control DJ software with the touch of the turntables. This use of time coded CD’s give you a ton of flexibility in your mixing which can become one of the main factors when you purchase DJ gear.
Finally, CD turntables have an inherent advantage over vinyl gear because of the built in effects and controls which can often be mapped out to DJ software. This flexibility keeps you on the edge of any current releases and updates on DJ software but also lets you build a massive CD collection which is perfect for classic releases that haven’t been put into digital formats at this time.
The Top 5 DJ CD Turntables under $500
To make it to the list, I’ve compiled the criteria (from above) of the top five DJ CD turntables that fit within the budget of being under $500 while making sure to have all the “essential” elements for DJing; take here at the list:
#1: Pioneer CDJ-200
The Pioneer CDJ-200 tops our list because Pioneer has proven, time and time again, that they know how to create great DJ gear. You won’t go to a club in the world and find CD decks that aren’t Pioneer which is why a pair of CDJ-200’s are perfect if you’re in the market and need them to be under $500.
Learn more: Read Pioneer CDJ-200 Reviews, Specs and More.
#2: Denon DNS1200
For less than $500, the Denon DNS1200 is cram packed with tons of features for DJing; you’ve got built in effects like echo, loop, filters, brakes, reverse, dump and much more. This CD turntable is right up there with the Pioneer CDJ-1000’s in terms of offerings but at nearly half the price.
Learn more: Read Denon DNS1200 Reviews, Specs and More.
#3: Numark NDX800
Rounding out at number three, the Numark NDX800 puts up a great fight against Pioneer and Denon. The NDX800 brings all the features you’d expect; full digital music support, USB, effects and jog wheels. At a little over $300, this CD turntable will make you think twice before choosing the others.
Learn more: Read Numark NDX800 Reviews, Specs and More.
#4: Stanton C.314
The Stanton C.314 tips into the fourth place of our list as an affordable CD turntable complete with the usual wiz bang features that you find in others. Nothing entirely too special but that’s not a bad thing because it certainly gets the job done. Only downside is the lack of newer features like USB.
Learn more: Read Stanton C.314 Reviews, Specs and More.
#5: Gemini CDJ-600
Bottoming out the list is the Gemini CDJ-600; a CD turntable that has all the basic features that you could need in DJing but not much else. That’s not to say that Gemini didn’t do a great job on this turntable but there’s a lot more to be wanted; it works perfect for a super tight budget.
Learn more: Read Gemini CDJ-600 Reviews, Specs and More.
As you can see, the list fills out quite nicely and will be perfect for any beginner DJ that wants to get started with CD turntables without destroying their budget. Overall, I would lean toward a set of Pioneer’s since they have long since been regarded as the best when it comes to CD turntables.
CD DJ turntables are remarkable workhorses that fit right between the ages of vinyl and digital; it’s no wonder why they have become standard in clubs across the world. You can get the best of both worlds if you choose to use CD turntables; the best part is that you don’t need to break the bank when buying them.
About the Author - Muxx
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