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Best DJ Software: Which DJ App Is Right for You?


Best DJ Software  · 

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Pioneer DJ

Confused by all of the different DJ applications on the market? We break down the best DJ software, from paid to subscription to completely free.

Best DJ Software

Things used to be a lot simpler for DJs. Back in the day, you bought a pair of 1200s if you could afford them, a mixer and some headphones and that was that. Now that everything has gone digital, there are so many different DJ apps to contend with, it’s enough to do your head in. Not to mention things like subscriptions, expansions and hardware unlocks

Before you hang up your headphones in frustration, let me say that the DJ software you choose will largely be dependent on the hardware you go with and – to a lesser extent – your chosen genre. If you have a DJ controller in mind, the decision may have already been made for you. 

For those of you still on the fence or just taking your first steps into the world of DJing, here are the best DJ software applications available now.

Best DJ Software: Pioneer DJ rekordbox

Pioneer DJ (sometimes known as AlphaTheta – yes, it’s confusing for us too) is a leader in DJ technology, with many of its mixers and other gear standard in clubs all over the world. If you buy Pioneer DJ hardware like a controller, CDJ or other device, you’re probably going to be working with rekordbox.

AlphaTheta rekordbox 7 GUI
rekordbox 7 GUI · Source: AlphaTheta

Now up to version seven, rekordbox is a full-featured DJ software solution. It’s free to download and offers a number of subscription plans, from free to $360 a year/$30 a month. This is before adding on cloud features, which offer from 1TB to 5TB of storage for your tracks.

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rekordbox is the industry standard for clubs and good across a variety of genres. If turntablism is your thing, you can get by with rekordbox’s DVS (Digital Vinyl System) but Serato, the next entry, is really the one to look at.

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Best DJ Software: Serato DJ Pro

What is a DJ if he can’t scratch? If this question from LA’s finest (that’s the Egyptian Lover, of course) applies to you, then Serato is probably going to be the best DJ software for you. A pioneer in DVS technology, it’s still the standard for scratch DJs and turntablists.

Serato DJ 3.2.0
The new features are available in Serato DJ Pro and Lite · Source: Serato

Serato DJ Pro is available for purchase ($249) or via a subscription ($9.99/month), with Serato DJ Suite adding a number of expansion extras (including DVS) for a higher price ($449 or $14.99/month). There’s also the free Serato DJ Lite to try out. However, some hardware (from manufacturers like Denon, Rane, Numark and even Pioneer DJ) may include a Serato license as part of its price so you could be able to forego paying for a separate license.

Now up to version 3.1 (with the public beta of the FX-packed 3.2 now available), Serato is the way to go if your DJ activities involve needles. For the more hybrid-inclined, check out the next entry.

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Best DJ Software: Native Instruments Traktor Pro 3

Native Instruments’ Traktor has been around since the year 2000, making it a solid contender for the best DJ software. It’s especially popular with folks already involved with the NI ecosystem, like techno producers and those pushing boundaries with hybrid DJ/live setups.

Native Instruments Traktor Pro 3
Native Instruments Traktor Pro 3 · Source: Native Instruments

Traktor Pro 3 is affordable, with a one-time purchase price and no pesky subscriptions. If you go the NI controller route, you’ll get Traktor Pro 3 included and they’ll even throw in two months of free Beatport or Beatsource streaming. If you like the software but not the hardware, Traktor works with a number of different controllers and is even DVS-ready when using certain mixers.

Now that Native Instruments is discontinuing support of Traktor DJ 2, your iOS DJing options are limited. If you’re an iPad or iPhone jock, then read on.

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Best DJ Software: Algoriddim djay Pro

There are all kinds of DJs, from the hardcore lifer to the weekend hobbyist. If you just like mixing songs together and enjoying music, Algoriddim’s djay Pro could be the best DJ software for you. 

Algoriddim Djay Pro
Algoriddim Djay Pro · Source: Algoriddim

Designed primarily for the Apple ecosystem of Mac, iPad, iPhone and even Vision Pro (it integrates with Apple Music right off the bat), djay Pro is convenient and free – at first. To unlock all of its features, including DVS, you’ll need to subscribe for $7/month or $50/year. 

If DJing from your phone sounds appealing, give djay Pro a try. There’s a free seven-day trial period. If you own certain controllers, you may already have it.

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Best DJ Software: Hercules DJUCED

You may not have heard of DJUCED. That is, unless you’ve purchased a Hercules DJ controller. Designed primarily for beginners, Hercules devices are affordable and easy to use – and that extends to DJUCED. 

Hercules DJUCED
Hercules DJUCED · Source: Hercules

You can download the basic version for free or unlock the more full-featured option with compatible hardware.

Best DJ Software: Atomix VirtualDJ Pro

VirtualDJ Pro from Atomix is a long-running DJ app with – as you’d expect from a piece of software so long in the game – a lot of really great features. They include DVS, real-time stem separation, video mixing, lighting control and more. Best yet, it’s free!

Atomix VirtualDJ Pro
Atomix VirtualDJ Pro · Source: Atomix

Well, kind of. VirtualDJ Pro is free to download but if you want to use it with any kind of controller, you have to pay. Also, if you plan to make money using Virtual DJ Pro, you need a license, which costs $19/month or a one-time purchase of $299. The VirtualDJ Home Plus license for entry-level controllers costs $49 or $99. There are also business licenses.

Best DJ Software: Mixxx

The last entry in our list of the best DJ software is Mixxx. Unlike VirtualDJ Pro, Mixxx is 100% free. It’s also open-source and works on Windows, Mac and even Linux.

Mixxx
Mixxx · Source: Mixxx

It offers a variety of features, including BPM detection, DVS timecode, effects and support for a variety of controllers

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Best DJ Software

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John Smith

My John Smith is a seasoned technology writer with a passion for unraveling the complexities of the digital world. With a background in computer science and a keen interest in emerging trends, John has become a sought-after voice in translating intricate technological concepts into accessible and engaging articles.

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