When it comes to midi mapping, Trakor Pro 2 is the most diverse DJ software out there. It allows willing souls to get a fully customisable setup with minimum amount of effort and a simple midi controller. The possibilities are endless. This is one of the reasons that I’ve stuck with it for so long. I personally decided to bundle it with my CDJ400s in order to get that “standalone”, high end setup feeling in my studio without having to spend a pretty penny to achieve this. Keep reading to see how I’ve customised my setup.
This is the second time I am publishing this article. After the initial post, my website was hacked and a lot of the content that was uploaded had to, unfortunately, go. But thinking positive, this gives me an opportunity to share the developments in the mapping that I’ve done over the past years.
THE MIDI MAPPING
With this version of the mapping I wanted to introduce some more visual feedback to the players and limit the need for my computer screen as much as possible. By using the setup regularly I also noticed some ways that I can improve my workflow by simply moving some of the buttons around. In retrospect, I can say that I now use my computer screen solely for browsing and looking at the waveforms. This is why this setup gives me that “standalone” feeling. I don’t need to stare at the screen constantly, which reminds me of djing with CDs or with something like a Pioneer DJ flagship setup. In that sense, my workflow stays relatively similar regardless of weather I play at home or on flagship setup installed at the club. For the readers that may be sceptical, of course there are differences. But there are also differences between CDJ2000NXS and CDJ 2000NXS2 setups – yep, every player is different in its own right. That is why I have chosen to focus on the bigger picture here and work with what I have available. Hope that you will agree with my way of thinking.
So what is new in version 2.0 of the mapping. Below you can see a graph explaining all the functions, which will hopefully answer this question.
If you’re a user of the version 1.0 of the mapping you probably notice that the changes are very minor, yet they increase my comfort behind the decks and speed up my workflow tremendously. It is worth noting that functions like quantise and snap are global in Traktor Pro 2. This is not a problem as the visual feedback is reflected on all decks. For example, if I disengage the quantise function on deck A I can easily see this on deck B without taking my eyes off the player. The same applies for 3 and 4 deck setups as well.
So let’s say you want to give the mapping a chance. Here is how to set it up:
- Download the file from here.
- Connect your CDJs to your computer.
- If you are on a Mac you will need to create an aggregate device in your Audio MIDI Setup. Then, in Traktor you need to select the aggregate device you create as your main output device. If you are on Windows you need to download and install an Asio4All driver. Then, select that for the main audio output.
- Once your decks are connected successfully, navigate to the “Preferences” window in Traktor and then to “Controller Manager”. In the “Device Setup” click on “Add > Import TSI > Import Other”.
- Change the “In-Port” from “n/a” to one of the CDJ400s – you should have as many options as CDJs you have connected to the computer. I have 3 decks so I can see CDJ400, CDJ400-2 and CDJ400-3 in Traktor.
- Leave “Device Target” to “Focus”. This will automatically change once you have selected deck A.B,C, or D directly on the CDJ.
- Repeat this process for every CDJ that you have, making sure to select a different “In-Port” setting for each. You can use the same file and will only need to set this up once. After the initial setup everything is plug and play as Traktor remembers your settings.
- In case the audio comes out of the wrong channel on your mixer, use the “Routing” settings in the “Audio Setup” section to adjust the output.
The CDJ400 is a great blend between price and functionality and is a perfect candidate for a customised setup like this. Of course, this is only one example of what functionality can be unlocked using only the decks themselves. The mapping can be customised to .utilise the software functionality the you are most likely to use in the heat of a dj mix. If you’re not a fan of hot cues, then map loops or effects. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.
Are you using the mapping in your setup? What do you think about it? What is your favourite feature and is there anything you would do differently? Let me know in the comments below.