Pioneer DJ’s new controller lets anyone perform complicated scratch routines

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Pioneer DJ has announced its new DJ controller, the DDJ-SB3, designed to work with the free Serato DJ Lite software (although it will also work with Serato DJ Pro). The controller is a successor to the DDJ-SB2, which also works with Serato DJ Lite, as well as Serato DJ Pro, Rekordbox and Melodics.
The DDJ-SB3 is a dual-channel DJ controller with a low-budget, entry-level mixer, but still emulates the functions found in Pioneer's top-end equipment. It has a design that mimics some elements of its DDJ-S series: there are pause / pause buttons, independent auto loop buttons and eight dedicated performance pads.
New in the DDJ-SB3 is a feature called FX Fade. This applies an effect and reduces the volume at the same time, which Pioneer says will help in the perfect mix of songs, "even those of opposing genres." There are eight FX Fade combinations to choose from, with two of each of these four effects: high pass filter, low pass filter, loop playback and backward rotation.

Image: Pioneer DJ

There is another new function in particular that draws attention in the DDJ-SB3. The company worked with DJ Jazzy Jeff to create what he calls Pad Scratch. Located on the bench of buttons under the plate, Pad Scratch allows anyone to experience scratches pro sound, from basic sounds to more complicated patterns. When enabled, each of the eight buttons below activates a particular type of scratch, which will play in tempo with any song that is currently playing.
Jazzy Jeff says in the product video above (jump to 1:27 to see Pad Scratch in action) that the goal is to get users to try to figure out how to replicate the scratches on their own. Surely some will simply use this as a shortcut, and there will be people who will not notice it and who will bite their nose by scratching automatically. But, if it arouses someone's curiosity enough to go through the struggle to practice on their own, then great!
DJJ's Pioneer DDJ-SB3 will be available for purchase in mid-March and will cost $ 249.

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