Numark 4TRAK DJ Controller Review

I finally got my hands on the brand new Numark 4 TRAK DJ controller which essentially is an updated version of the Numark NS6, build specifically for Traktor instead of Itch. so let’s have a look at what has kept the guys over at Numark Busy the last couple of months. Find my Custom Mapping for the Numark 4Trak here.


Below is a transcribed version of the video.

The Numark 4TRAK

It is a DJ controller and a standard 4 channel DJ Mixer combined in one, bundled up with a special 4TRAK edition of Traktor Pro. I kept my Traktor 2 running so I honestly can’t tell you too much about the Traktor 4TRAK edition, but from what I’ve understood, it is a lighter version of traktor – with a few less features then the Traktor 2 that I am running.

The controller has a really nice build. It has a Brushed Aluminum casing and a general rustic feel which really makes the makes the controller feel nice and rigid. The Faders feels nice and sturdy and even though I prefer bigger Rubberized EQ knobs (due to my long fingers), i think that Numark found a decent compromise with these knobs, which for some reason reminds me a bit of the Allen and Heath X-one Series EQ knobs. Maybe it’s actually the space in between the EQ knobs that reminds me of the X-One’s EQ knobs. the 4TRAK is Slighty less cramped then the X-One. And that I am happy about. The platters have a nice smooth feel to them. They run with 3600 ticks of resolution per rotation, so it does not only feel smooth rotating the platter, but it will also sound smooth within the digital world, meaning inside tractor. Lucky for me, I rarely scratch, so I can keep the platters setting off scratch – which will avoid incidents of me accidentally touching the platter when reaching for the Loop buttons up here, which I use a lot. Just something I noticed happening a couple of times during the last couple of days.

The pitch faders are nice and longhand have the feel of a technics 1210 i my opinion – if you are not too familiar with the 1210s, they are somewhat firmer then the CDJs faders.

The Mixer section features a 4 channel mixer, which works as a regular mixer while at the same time functions as a controller for the Traktor DJ software. The fact that you have a controller and a straigt up audio mixer is great for DJs who are looking for a flexible system. With this box you can easily inject 12inch vinyl and CDs into your laptop mixsets.  I really find it inspiring to be able to drop 12 inches into my otherwise majority laptop sets with such an ease. really great.

On the back we have the 4 regular inputs (4 line, 2 phono and 2 mics). We have the booth out as RCA. The master out as both RCA and balanced XLR. What we don’t see inside the box, is a 24bit audio interface that runs through the one and only USB cable that needs to be connected to the computer. All sound and midi controls runs through this cable. All midi send via the controller is 14bit (what some might call high resolution midi (normal midi is 7 bit), which gives a great smooth feel and better precision when using for example the pitch fader and the platters.

The controller comes with 2 maps, that loads up in Traktor 2. Since I was already running traktor 2, I am currently not running the Traktor 2 4Trak edition, I simply loaded up the maps within the controller setups menu in the settings. Press import and find the 4Trak Main map and the 4Trak FX map, make sure that they receive data from the 4Trak unit and sends it back to the 4Trak unit.

The FX console on the top of the unit slides and locks into place nicely. It connects into the main unit with a USB, so that you don’t have to use an extra USB slot. From this panel you control the 2 first effects in traktor as well as the highpass and lowpass filters on each of the channels. The knobs match the options in the traktor software, although I had to change one thing in the map. The button under the FX MIX knob was set to allow scrolling through effects – I prefer to have this button as an ON and OFF switch of the effect itself. Maybe this has been changed in newer maps, I don’t know, but it’s really not difficult to change at all. 3 clicks in the controller mapping and it’s all done.

The file browsing works really well and lets you browse seamlessly between favorite playlists, playlists in the tree and tracks within the playlists. You load the track either to the left or right channel with these buttons. Preview by clicking down on the Rotary knob.

 

45 Comments

  1. Dj leval
    March 5, 2012 at 10:54 pm · Reply

    Eng:

    hi Peter

    my Numark 4Trak comes tomorrow and i have a question. i have the traktor 2 full edition, that i would like to use. but how did you get the media map file into traktor 2..?

    Danish:

    hej peter min numark 4trak kommer imorgen derfor har jeg et lille spørgsmål til dig. jeg køre med Pioneer DDJ-T1 nu og har taktor 2 full edition som jeg gerne ville blive ved med at bruge. men hvordan fik du midi map filerne ind i traktor 2 i stedet for LE versionen

    Dj. Leval

    • March 6, 2012 at 4:13 am · Reply

      hey Dj Leval,

      Simple enough. In the preferences menu – go to the “Controller Manager”, click the “Add…” and choose the import. Find the 4TRAK maps that Traktor 2 came with or check the CD from the 4TRAK box. You have to load “4TRAK Main” map and set the in-port and out-port to the send and receive midi data from the 4trak. Next repeat the process with the 4TRAK FX map, also the in and out port.

      Thats it. Held og Lykke.

  2. Dj leval
    March 6, 2012 at 1:39 pm · Reply

    I will try my way out..

    thanks

  3. Marco
    March 7, 2012 at 12:56 am · Reply

    “What we don’t see inside the box, is a 24bit audio interface that runs through the one and only USB cable that needs to be connected to the computer.”

    My question is can the numark 4trak record inputs from your external sources ie: can i record the mic / cdj/ vinyl into the computer, Or does it only contain audio thru.

    Thanks!

    • March 7, 2012 at 9:26 am · Reply

      @Marco Yes you can. I did a quick test, and found that I could record anything that came in to the 4 channel mixer in Ableton Live. So if you are asking: “Can I record my vinyl or CDs to my laptop via the 4trak”, then the answer is yes. It would record the post-EQ signal, meaning, that if I boosted the highs on the EQ, it would be recorded as well into the computer.

  4. Dan N
    March 11, 2012 at 7:14 pm · Reply

    I have been mixjng since 1994 vinyl is always my first choice but lugging around heavy records is rally getting old. I am ready to move onto thr ddj banwagon. This seems to be the best on the market as of now and will take a load off my back with lugging around records. looking foward to this very much.

  5. March 18, 2012 at 11:09 am · Reply

    Can I use this product with Serato? Would that me silly since it was made for Traktor? I currently use the Numark Mixdecks with Serato and that works great.

    Anything else you would recommend to use with strictly serato? Thanks

    • March 19, 2012 at 6:25 am · Reply

      I believe so. Load up the Serato Map and I believe that it should work. Check with Numark before buying though :)

  6. Aidan Svencis
    March 27, 2012 at 11:14 am · Reply

    great review, im so excited to get this!
    just wondering if you know anything about preorders off amazon.com? I ordered it about a month ago from amazon and i still havent heard anything from them regarding this. i am so excited about getting it im desperate to know when it will arrive! (especially since im on holidays now)

    • March 28, 2012 at 9:15 am · Reply

      Hey there. I’m sorry, but I know nothing about amazon :) The units should start shipping in the US in may, I’ve heard.

  7. DJ Maxi Cosy
    March 28, 2012 at 8:05 am · Reply

    Hey Peter,

    Is it a good a the Traktor S4 or even better?
    Which of the two would you prefer?

    Thanks

  8. aidan svenis
    March 28, 2012 at 10:22 am · Reply

    thanks for getting back so soon! wow may i dont think i can wait that long! haha
    would you know any trustworthy online stores that can ship to australia that are shipping now? because i can cancel the order for amazon

  9. deedupdex
    March 31, 2012 at 12:01 am · Reply

    Any confirmation if the 4trak can be used with serato itch??? Would be nice to know if you have any confirmation!! nice reviews will keep in tuning in

    • March 31, 2012 at 4:34 am · Reply

      Good question. I honestly don’t know. Try asking Numark …

  10. aidan svencis
    April 1, 2012 at 4:49 am · Reply

    unfortunately i have contacted them and they haven’t responded, its been 3 weeks since then. Disappointed with them on that part to be honest. I guess i will have to wait!

  11. April 1, 2012 at 8:39 am · Reply

    I’ll try finding an answer for you. Give me a few days.

  12. April 2, 2012 at 4:06 am · Reply

    From Numark: “It is not possible for the 4Trak to be used with itch. The way Itch identifies the NS6 is through the USB ID, so Itch would not open fully when the 4Trak is plugged in.”

  13. Ay
    April 4, 2012 at 1:08 pm · Reply

    TO NUMARK/SERATO: IS NOT A GOOD CHOISE !!

    I must spend 1000 euro and I cannot use my hardware in my mode (4TRAK). Has no sense for me !! Is better that NUMARK made only 1 controller perfect for both systems, ready to go with both and other software. For a locked hardware the price is TOO HIGH!

  14. rebekah
    April 12, 2012 at 7:34 pm · Reply

    Hi Peter,

    Great review! I’m thinking of purchasing a new controller. What’s your thoughts on the Numark 4 Track compared to the Traktor S4? Which would you recommend?

    Thanks!

    Rebekah

  15. Marco
    April 23, 2012 at 9:49 pm · Reply

    I ordered mine off a big Canadian retail site axemusic.com , does anyone know when Numark will actually ship their product to commercial stores? Has anyone in canada or even the states received one yet? I’m urgently waiting for this thing! Thanks!

    • April 24, 2012 at 5:30 pm · Reply

      @Marco I think they will start shipping in May. Very soon… :) paitence.

  16. Montes
    May 12, 2012 at 7:03 pm · Reply

    Does this new Numark 4Trak do all the same things that the Traktor S4 does? Possibly does it do more?

  17. JG
    June 1, 2012 at 12:18 am · Reply

    Hi Peter. I’m deciding between the Pioneer DDJ-T1, the Numark 4Trak, and the NI Traktor Kontrol S4.

    I’m about to lose my mind. XD

    I keep hearing different things from different people but it’s hard to filter out the good from the bad. I get the feeling that alot of people assume that because it is Numark it is automatically for bedroom DJs when compared to the “professional” quality of Pioneer’s CDJ lineup, which is reflected more or less in the DDJT1 and S1. The lack of a booth out for the T1 is a bit of a turnoff but not a deal breaker. Overall, which of these three would you recommend? I’m starting to narrow it down tote T1 and 4Trak but would still listen to a convincing argument from any S4 fans.

    • June 1, 2012 at 5:31 am · Reply

      Wouw. That’s a tough one. Personally I would take the 4Trak. With an F1 on the side :) How much do you travel? If you do travel a loooot (as in 3 gigs a week) the 4Trak might be a little annoying – if not, go for it. It’s really built well.

  18. JG
    June 1, 2012 at 6:12 am · Reply

    I’m starting to emerge from being a bedroom DJ and am getting into the process of finding gigs. So I’m testing the waters really.. finding what I like and don’t like. But I would like something that would be capable and isn’t going to come up short if I need to use it for a while. Also compatibility with alot of different devices as I intend on expanding my equipment with remix stations, standalone mixers, turntables, etc. The whole “it isn’t professional” thing kinda got me… because doesn’t the 4Trak have better audio ins/outs than the T1?

  19. Aidan
    June 1, 2012 at 8:51 am · Reply

    Hey JG, i know im not a pro or anything but i know that for what you seem to want the 4trak would be awesome, it has 2 turntable inputs and 2 mic inputs which are switchable to 4 line inputs, plus it has booth, master (balenced xlr and unbalenced) and record outputs. Im not sure about the T1 but i know thats way better than the s4, which is why im getting a 4trak! And also the 4trak is just as professional as the T1 and actually has more capabilities, and just as good as the s4 except with a metal build instead of plastic which is definitely better.

  20. Mateo Polanco
    June 3, 2012 at 4:43 pm · Reply

    Hi peter, Does the N-I F1 works well with the 4 trak?

    • November 18, 2012 at 12:23 am · Reply

      sorry for late reply. Haven’t tried the F1 with the 4Trak – but I know that it DOES work. :)

  21. Dave
    June 26, 2012 at 4:22 am · Reply

    I had the ddj s-1 and could not bare the fact that I paid $900 for a plastic box. I just recently purchased the 4trak and you can feel the difference in the stability of the hardware; it is very well built. As a past owner of cdj 850, 900, and 2000 I think pioneer is way overrated. Ive had nothing but problems with pioneer and the support staff is so incredibly arrogant; they always take the stance that you are doing something wrong, not their product. Go with the numark gear, you won’t be disappointed

  22. SD
    July 9, 2012 at 1:04 pm · Reply

    You stated that it is possible to record inputs of the 4Trak such as mics, as a reply to Marco’s question. In addition, does this mean that the inputs are actually routed through the software? As in, could you directly use loops and effects on your recordings? I’m finding this quite interesting as I remember that the NS6 does not offer this ability. Is it possible to do loop recording on the 4Trak anyway (without mic, with/without custom mapping)? I really like this function on the S4; the rest of that controller just isn’t that appealing to me!

    • December 20, 2012 at 5:52 pm · Reply

      No – it just means that you can record a record into your laptop. Functionality wise, you can’t really do anything fancy with the “line in”

      • Lestitian
        May 13, 2014 at 4:55 pm · Reply

        regarding inputs to the 4Trak… or any other controller out there:
        Is it possible to have a line in source routed through the software at all? Specifically, hooking up an instrument (say a guitar) to the controller and being able to tweak that input, loop it, record it, etc?

        I know this is an old thread but if anyone knows a controller that can do this, drop me a line_____!

        thanks,
        Lestitian

        • May 13, 2014 at 5:06 pm · Reply

          Typically you need a preamp to get the signal from a guitar loud enough… I think you can use the Mic input on the 4Trak though.

          Currently you can’t really route things around from the 4Trak’s input. I do remember that I once recorded though the 4Trak (vinyl)… but OSX only detects 1 stereo input.. so it’s very limited what you can do. Get the RME Fireface 400 or some of the other great audio cards out there for that.

  23. Frandisco
    August 31, 2012 at 10:13 am · Reply

    Hi,
    this mixxer USB powered?
    I just bought 1 they have sent me a US version I live in the UK. The power is different to over there.
    I am having trouble starting the controller. It is not lighting up under usb cable only.
    Please help.
    Kind regards Fran

    • October 19, 2012 at 5:28 am · Reply

      No – you need to power the mixer/controller.

  24. daniel
    September 6, 2012 at 12:46 am · Reply

    Hi Peter,
    Just got my Numark 4trak. I bought the upgrade traktor pro download from NI, installed but found that all the FX knobs buttons at the top of the numark do not wrk. also, I cannot see them on the computer screen as I see on the traktor version that comes with the 4trak.

    Please help…. anyone out there !!! have a nice day !

  25. October 23, 2012 at 8:43 pm · Reply

    Hi Peter!

    Tell me please that if I have the original “Numark 4Trak Edition 2″ software, can I do anything change in my 4Trak controller “I mean mapping and set the assign buttons” or do I have to buy the Traktor PRO 2?
    Thank You for answering!

    BR.: SomyDee

    • October 23, 2012 at 9:12 pm · Reply

      Hey – Sorry, but I never installed the Traktor Numark edition. I only used the Traktor Pro 2…

  26. Dan S
    February 6, 2013 at 5:41 am · Reply

    Hi Peter. Just picked up a 4Trak. Is it possible to run two laptops into the 4trak at the same time for successful tag teaming? Thanks for your time.

    • February 7, 2013 at 4:22 am · Reply

      Nope – unfortunately not – not that I know of.

  27. Dan S
    February 6, 2013 at 5:47 pm · Reply

    Hi again Peter. Numark answered my question for me. Thanks anyway

  28. jorge
    July 16, 2013 at 3:43 am · Reply

    Hi i just bough the 4track and i wanted to use it with a singer how do i apply fx to a live input

    • July 16, 2013 at 4:03 am · Reply

      You can’t add FX on the Numark mixer unless you route the vocal through Traktor.

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