NAMM 2017: Denon DJ SC5000 player — exclusive pics

Denon DJ SC5000 prime media player NAMM 2017 (6)

#ChangeYourRider is a seriously ballsy hashtag to put out there when teasing product, especially when it’s clear from said teaser video that you’re putting out a next level desktop player aimed squarely at replacing Pioneer CDJs in the world’s booths. And due to an unsurpassed number of leaks, it’ll come as no surprise that this unit is called the SC5000 Prime, and it’s an absolute corker.

Denon DJ has prepared some words, after which I’ll write a lot more.


Unit shakes up competition with onboard beatgrid and musical key analysis, HD multi-touch display for gestures and swiping and exclusive Engine Prime music organization  software.

Cumberland RI, USA (January 9, 2017)—Denon DJ (, a leading manufacturer of premium DJ products and solutions, today announced the introduction of its new SC5000 Prime DJ media player with a high definition, multi- touch display that enables gestures and swiping for the ultimate DJ expression and immediacy of interaction. The SC5000 analyzes music files on the fly, it has dual-layer decks with dedicated outputs, a multi-touch screen with easy and fast navigation, and an 8” rugged jogwheel with central display that shows current playing track or custom artwork.

This is the first media player to fully analyze both beatgrid and musical key onboard the  unit,  delivering  an  unprecedented  level  of  immediately-actionable  information to the DJ. Plus, the SC5000 is the first media player in the world to use the all-new Engine™ Prime software. Engine Prime is an innovative music librarian and analysis system that lets the DJ organize, categorize and import music, either directly from iTunes® and Serato® DJ or via drag ‘n drop from existing music folders. Using the SC5000’s on-screen alpha-numeric search facility, DJs can quickly find, load and play what they want on the fly, without distraction or hesitation. A LAN output makes it simple to link up to four players at once, offering music file, digital networking and communication capability for the most high-end of  events.

The SC5000 Prime media player also has hard features and engineering innovations that give it unmatched capability and performance. The unit’s highly responsive, 7- inch capacitive touch and multi-gesture display enables quick access to searching, filtering and sorting music, as well providing real-time song information and ultra- smooth moving waveforms. Very significantly, it also has a secondary ‘performance layer’ with its own separate output feed to the mixer. Never seen before on such a Pro performance DJ media player, the SC5000 has eight multifunction trigger pads for cues, loops, slices and rolls. Illuminating and personalizing the DJ’s performance, the lighting around the platter is customizable to various RGB colors,   and  the  wheel is topped  in aluminum  for a  cool, stylish appearance.

The audio outputs themselves are 24-°©bit/96kHz for the very highest sound quality. The SC5000 Prime plays all uncompressed audio formats, including FLAC, ALAC and WAV plus all popular compressed music file  formats.

Key Features

  • 7-inch HD display with multi-touch  gestures
  • 24-bit/96kHz digital audio outputs
  • Dual-layer playback with individual audio outputs
  • Plays uncompressed audio formats (FLAC, ALAC, WAV)
  • 8 multifunction trigger pads for Cues, Loops, Slices and Rolls
  • 8-inch rugged metal jog wheel with HD central display
  • Customizable RGB color around the jog   wheel
  • (3) USB and (1) SD input for music playback
  • LAN output to link to up to four  players

“The SC5000 Prime media player combines brand-new software and hardware innovations and features in a way that is absolutely unmatched by any other media player on the market,” said Ross Goodwin, Product Manager for Denon DJ. He   added, “Professional DJs will find the SC5000 Prime perfectly anticipates their needs and becomes a seamless, indispensible partner, delivering the best performance imaginable.”

Retail pricing for the SC5000 Prime is £1,499.99 Availability is Q1 2017.

For more info, visit

Watch this video too

It will answer a lot of your questions:

We had them in The Worxlab

Some of you may recall my attempt to go to inMusic UK HQ that was curtailed by crippling back pain. Well those very nice people decided that it was worth the trip ooop north to visit the new Worxlab with the new Denon DJ goodies. Luckily they let me take pictures to supplement the one that got leaked:

Forgive me Denon DJ, but my recollection of every detail from a many weeks ago while doped up on pain killers isn’t as good as it should be. But I’ll do my best to relay the important details. Nutshelling, it’s a media player i.e. you can use SD or USB and play music directly, and have the SC5000 analyse the music on the fly to generate BPM, key, and waveforms. But it’s a much better experience if you push everything through Engine first.

A very important thing to make you aware of that’s not in the PR, is that the SC5000 Prime will in time be compatible with both Serato DJ and Traktor. It’s clear that lesson have been learned from Pioneer DJ’s walkabout in the exclusive rekordbox wilderness. If you want succeed in the booth in the digital age, you MUST support the major software players. I can’t see this ever supporting rekordbox, but no doubt Rekord Buddy will be your friend here. And I imagine that Virtual DJ support is just around the corner, because that’s how they roll.

A few key things to point out:

  • The centre display is for album art, but can also be customised with your own graphics. And it’s static too, but there’s an outer ring indicator.
  • It’s a dual layer deck, so instead of having to buy four, you can happily use two. And each has its own output.
  • The build quality is excellent. I performed my shake test and not a single rattle was heard.
  • The pads feel great. I hammered triplets out them without an issue, and found they they didn’t interfere with the jog wheel.
  • The static metal jog wheel feels amazing. I did my best to make it cue slip and failed. And for scratching, it’s as good in my hands as any controller jog wheel too.
  • The screen is vibrant, smooth and responsive to the touch, or multitouch as it turned out. And the way the information is displayed is beautiful.
  • The media slots are at the very front of the unit, neatly recessed to keep them safe.
  • It has a USB hub, which really should be a standard feature on everything these days. EVERYTHING.
  • There’s an LAN port for hookup with the X1800 mixer (next story), or I assume via a hub too.

If I have a first impression it’s one of taking controller goodness and putting it in a media player. I’ve always found CDJs to be lacking features in a controller world, and Denon DJ just put them right inside a media player. And this makes it useable with Serato and Traktor too.

It was interesting to read comments in the previous SC5000 stories along the lines of “no motorised platter — fail”, a sentiment that I strongly disagree with. The vast majority of users don’t want motorised platters, and are quite happy with 7-8″ static jog wheels. And sales of other motorised platter media players have proved to be less than stellar. As much as I love the NS7 controller range, I’m becoming of the opinion that if you want spinning wheels, get turntables and a DVS. That said, I would love to see what Denon DJ would do with a 9″ motorised SC5900 prime. 😉

I spent an hour with the Denon DJ guys, and bar a couple of minor suggestions for improvements, I was deeply impressed. It’s a balls out unit that should turn many heads. Granted it lacks a CD slot, but it’s designed for this decade. And if CDs are your thing, then the SC5000 Prime is complete overkill for you anyway.

I know there’s a lot of detail I’ve forgotten, but all I know is that after playing for a while, I had a cheshire cat grin from ear to ear, and wanted a pair. And I can’t say I’ve ever felt that way about CDJs.

Denon DJ SC5000 prime media player NAMM 2017 (4)

Bringing technology to a culture fight

What I’m about to write will come as no surprise to Denon DJ as I said the same thing to them when they came to The Worxlab. The problem is not price — Denon DJ has delivered cheaper and arguably better units than CDJs for years. And it’s not the technology either, as those units have outperformed CDJs in key areas too. So the issue is something else, and it’s deeper than either of those two key issues. It’s all about the culture of DJing, and the utter domination of the world’s DJ booths of the Pioneer DJ brand.

Like Technics before them, CDJs became the booth standard. It was a mixture of being such a completely revolutionary unit combined with a marketing budget that allowed Pioneer to lavish them upon DJ VIPs and booths around the world. Before anyone could delivery a viable alternative, the CDJ was cemented into the hearts and minds of DJs, and has been ever since. Denon DJ in particular has brought out a string of competitive units showcasing genuine next level thinking, but none have become fixtures in booths.

So it’s quite clear — it doesn’t matter how good the SC5000 Primes are, it’s going to take a different approach to fulfil the #ChangeYourRider hashtag. And that approach is all about marketing. And by marketing I don’t just mean a heap of glossy promotional videos and a wealth of tutorials — it’s going to be about giving away a substantial number (think hundreds) of units to key people — to the taste makers and influencers in the clubs, rental, and retail chain.

Let me underline this — being a better price with better technology isn’t enough. Denon DJ doesn’t have the time in this market to have a slow burner — they’re aiming for the top spot, and that’s going to take a shock and awe approach. The scene needs to see the SC5000 everywhere it goes and access to try them out — full casino mode where there are no other distractions and they only look at the SC5000.

Denon DJ SC5000 prime media player NAMM 2017 (8)

Can they do it?

From a technology perspective, absolutely. From my time with the SC5000s, I’d take a pair over any CDJ or XDJ. And price wise, in the UK aka the land of spiralling prices, they’re pitched at £1499 (US retail price is $1899), about 75% of the top end CDJ and about 25% more than the XDJ-1000 from a UK point of view. So in the areas of price and tech, the SC5000s are a winner for me.

It’s a matter of perspective — if you just want to play tracks back to back with little in the way of tricks, then there’s a world of devices out there that will do it. But if you want GAS satiating next generation players crammed full of stuff, that plays in standalone as well as with Serato DJ and Traktor across 2 layers per player, then the SC5000 Prime is the most capable out there right now. Time, and frankly a lot of marketing money, will decide if that’s enough.

I’ll finish with my overall feeling of my time with the SC5000 Prime — having played with every shape and size of nextleveleness that has hit the DJ scene in the last decade and a half, it’s hard to impress me anymore. But impressed I am, deeply impressed indeed.

  • Scott Frost

    These don’t look like the Denon DJ from the precvious D&M Holdings. Denon had their following, and a lot of them won’t touch them now that they have been sold. So you may as well say this is like a startup, they aren’t proven yet so who’s going to dish out $1800*2 + $1800 for the X1800 when they could be plagued with bugs and issues. They must not be allowed to use previous Denon features like “alpha” track or even the rubber buttons. These look like a lego mashup of Numark and AKAI.

    Hopefully D&M Will see the light and start making great gear again.

    • Mark

      Mate, you need to put your axe away – this product isn’t even out yet.

      How can you honestly call inMusic Brands a start up?
      They’ve been around since the 70’s.

    • New team, new organisation, new funds, give them a chance…
      Not a bad start from what I see. Let’s hope that the firmware/software side won’t put them to shame again. #fingerscrossed

    • Jerr1233

      D&M sold Denon to InMusic years ago. Apparently, this is just what Denon DJ needed. D&M wasn’t willing/able to give Denon DJ the support it needed to properly go after Pioneer. Just like all the other companies, it had to settle for the more profitable low & mid-level markets. Now because of InMusic, they have the resources to go after Pioneer without regards to profit.

      As with any hi-tech product, bugs may be an issue. But I believe knowing this product can make or break them and how long it took for them to develop it, it’s probably been tested thoroughly…

  • ju_flo

    Anybody spotted the “Layer A” / “Layer B” outputs on the back ? Can we play two tracks simultaneously with SC5000 ?

  • djartical

    Mark thanks for the info on the sc5000 cant tell from the pics so are they metal or plastic…

    • Metal faceplates and jog wheel. Plastic chassis. As I say in the article, I shook them hard, and they didn’t rattle or creak at all. I though the Denon DJ guys were going to pass out when I started shaking it. 😉

  • Adding a motor and larger platter adds to the price. And it’s not a premium that most people really want to pay.

    • Viikk

      In fact, a bigger motorised platter is a turntable.
      And by working in the industry, i can tell that motorised should be really more expensive. (need more space, heating issues, the product is “moving” so can cause “damage” to people etc…)

    • Scott Frost

      The motor and platter tech were already developed and flawless, and it didn’t take that much more space. Maybe that tech was not sold to in music.

      • As far as I know, all IP was in the deal. It comes down to sales, and in my experience people who want motorised jog wheels are passionate about them, but in the vast minority.

  • Tony Mitchell

    Where’s the dude that said that Jog-Wheels will go away in a couple years?

  • Simon Kennedy

    as i pioneer cdj 2000 owner, i’m saying, wow these are amazing!

  • Kevin Basher

    Oh, I want these so badly!

  • Simon Kennedy

    looks like a brand new denon mixer aswell?

  • Just to let everyone know that the Denon DJ website is being hammered at the moment, so you may not be able to get on. The direct link to the prime range is here :
    In the meanwhile we have a facebook group for Q&A should you wish to ask specific questions :

    • Facebook? Meh. Anywhere else we can ask questions?

      • Maybe just perhaps ask them here? They’re watching…

        • OK so… size. Is it a direct replacement for a CDJ/XDJ in a flightcase?

          Are all three USB and the SD searchable as one, without needing to switch between them? Observation: When in a flightcase, front/back mounted media = not such a good location.

          Will a pair network with a single LAN cable between the two – no hub? Access to all media slots of both when networked?

          Can the pads be used as “hot starts” like e.g. the HS5500 where tracks other than the loaded track could be started from each hot start button? So you could basically have three different tracks all ready to play (loaded one, hot start A1, hot start A2).

          • David De Garie-Lamanque

            normally don’t CDJ flightcases open up in the front… for the CD slot? 😉

            • Ross Noir

              Hey GroovinDJ,
              Ross from Denon DJ, Good to e-meet you!
              1. The SC5000 has different dimensions than the CDJ, Our screen is angled differently making our instrument a bit deeper than a CDJ, so depending on which model road case you have you may need to cut foam/purchase a new case.
              2. Search is drive specific. This keeps other connected DJ’s drives from being a part of your search.
              3. SC5000 can be networked with a single cable, no hub needed. When connected all drives connected to both SC5000s are accessible from either player.
              4. Hot Starts was not a feature brought to the SC5000, although it would be possible to add that function some time in the future.

              • Thanks for the info Ross. I hope Denon have allowed plenty of room for firmware expansion this time. Previously there have been issues where further updates cannot be added due to lack of space.

    • So you’re the new Denon DJ figure ? Nice to meet you sir, welcome to our world ! 😉

  • Simon Kennedy

    pioneer dj really rip dj’s off, currently a cdj 2000 nxs2 is just a shade under £2k, Denon DJ can do a player with a better screen, more feature’s and It’s looks like better construction with metal plates etc for a lot less money?

    my cdj 2000’s are going on ebay,

  • Boba

    Lets hope for the best. For me (!) a motorized platter is a must and I´m more than willing to pay the extra money for it. Yet I believe the unit is pretty packed underneath the top plate so maybe adding a motor in a forthcoming edition is not possible with this design.

  • Jose Sanche

    My big question is:
    Does it support Hot Cue Bank lists like rekordbox does..?

  • gusset scratch

    love the UI/UX. is traktor pro 3 ever coming out and how might it compare?

  • Anyone else seen the video where the IEC cable is pulled out but the deck keeps working? WTF!

    • That’s one of the cool things I forgot. There a buffer, and I might be mistaken, but I think it loops too.

      • Oddie O’Phyle

        Anything in the press package about the DACs? Cirrus/Wolfson or Burr/Brown?

        • I always post everything I get. It’s important for me to deliver the facts and supplement it with my opinion.

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            Koo, was just wondering.

            • There seems to be a general lack of specs at this point. Lots of features, but no numbers for those that like them.

              • Oddie O’Phyle

                I noticed that too, last night. Finally got onto the Denon DJ site specifically to hunt down the wow/flutter on the VL12 and found that it wasn’t listed.

          • Chris Roman

            When power is pulled, the unit safely keeps your drive from corrupting. The operating system in the SC5000 is smart enough to sense the power loss, then continues to play for 10 seconds and if no power is recovered starts a safe shut down.

            • Oh dear. Only 10 seconds? It looks great on the video, showing it still playing with the power pulled, but if it’s only 10s then not much to shout about.

              • I can’t tell if you’re being serious or not. Denon DJ delivers what I think is a unique absolute life saver of a feature that potentially saves the day and kept the party going, you’re unhappy about it?

                • Yes I’m serious. When I saw that video clip, I was expecting it to be an actual useful feature, but 10s is nothing. Keep the party going? For ten seconds?

                  I mean if it flashes the screen or something to draw your attention to it, then maybe you can reinsert the IEC in under 10 seconds (if you’re lucky) but it doesn’t give you much time to sort out a backup source etc does it?

                  A few minutes (at least) would be much more useful. You know, stick a battery in there. Tablets can run for hours.

                  The idea is great, but could have been much greater. Maybe in the next model, eh?

    • DJ Kurve

      Yeah i was just about to comment on that EDC video. What kind of wizardry is that!?

    • Mark

      Yep, the units have a small buffer that enables the unit to keep playing for a short period of time if a power cable is actually yanked…. pretty cool!

  • WTF is uncompressed FLAC or ALAC?

  • That price O_O. I could nearly pick up a Roland DJ808 for the price of one.

    • Mark

      But why would you?

    • Mark

      You’re comparing apples and oranges

      • I’m comparing the prices.

        • Mark

          Pretty obvious, mate. You’re comparing a controller with a media player. I really shouldn’t have to tell you that.

          • I’m comparing a unit that controls music to another unit that controls music. It’s amazing how they basically perform the same functions. Anyway, this unit’s not for me personally. I’d probably bat an eye if it had something like a 7″ motorized platter and no screens.

            • Chris Roman

              When you compare the features usually left to a controller that has a $3,000 computer connected, to this unit that has no such requirement, it’s a valid point to be made. The controller at the end of the day is far more expensive for anything that can perform the functions the SC5000 can perform. Furthermore, the unit does all the analysis onboard, no computer needed. Of course if you want to use it as a controller, you will be able to do this as well.

  • Ajack

    I think the new player looks awesome to be honest. Best new gear release in a while.

  • Jayson Joyce

    Like the look..features are innovative..looks the part..agree 100% with the article..have to give away units..have big discounts for clubs etc..if they can get 30 or 40% of RA Top 1000 to change then clubs will install them or have them on hand..

    Honestly as a mid level pro traveling DJ I can’t buy them unless that happens because I have to practice/prepare on CDJs…that’s what the clubs have..

    But if a decent amount of the top 1000 DJs change then it will enable the rest of us that would like them to invest the $6000 needed for new players/mixer..

    Simple as that

  • Oddie O’Phyle

    Personally, I feel that the design team did a decent job… a bit conflicted about the loss of an optical drive as a few of my friends still use CD’s. Dual audio out and front load USB and SD ports are a nice touch.

    • David De Garie-Lamanque

      The thing about people who moan the end of the optical drive is they should just buy one or two USB keys and put their music on those… they’ll have no problem playing their files from USB just the way they would from CDs, without having to burn a shit ton of CDs and having the luxury of playing anything they want at a whim…

      • Oddie O’Phyle

        I’m not moaning about it. Personally, I carry around a couple of USB drives as a back up for running Traktor HID over CDJ or I just use DVS (depends on how much weight I want to carry that night). Exporting HISTORY to HTML is too convenient for station logs, but I have a few friends that have 15 years of music burned to disc that show up with a bunch of wallets. Being able to accommodate guest DJs is what I’m concerned with, you don’t tell a DJ what to bring. They usually supply you with the rider and let you know what they need.

        • Kyle Bondo

          Question…. whats stopping someone from plugging in a USB Optical drive to the back of the SC5000. Software maybe is all?

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            It would depend on microkernel support for optical drives.

            • If it’s possible, then they should make it work, if it doesn’t already.

              • Oddie O’Phyle

                Agreed, most microkernels are Linux, Unix or QNX based. If it’s either Unix or Linux based, the modular nature of these 2 OS would make it easier to implement. Flexibility is strength.

              • Oddie O’Phyle

                Hey Mark, completely off topic here… Have you seen the press release for the new A&H DLIVE console yet? Badass!

          • Jerr1233

            That would be cool. A CD drive accessory. That way the 10 people that want it doesn’t jack the price up for everyone else.

            • Oddie O’Phyle

              Why would it have to be an accessory? You can buy external DVD drives at any computer shop.

              • Jerr1233

                Because an accessory ensures that it will work through testing. And it will make them money.

                • Oddie O’Phyle

                  As stated lower in this thread, if the microkernel is either Linux or Unix based it will use a uniform optical driver after it recognizes and mounts the drive. The modular nature of these 2 OS don’t need a specific driver pack.

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            Thank you for that comment, it definitely gave me something to think about.

        • Jerr1233

          Just point them to the Denon 2500 next to the cassette recorder…

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            At that point I’d have them use my 2KNXS

        • David De Garie-Lamanque

          I agree with your points, and i definitely don’t think you’re moaning 🙂 i’m just talking about people bemoaning the loss of optical drives pretty much everywhere when the last time many of us bought a CD was probably more than 3 or 5 years ago

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            To be honest, I got rid of my old all-in-one (S4) and my Z2 in favour of a modular set-up. Switching to the 2KNXS and 850 combo that I have is so close to what many ask for in their rider and makes it much easier for booking. These days I find that I can use pretty much any set up that is put in front of me, I find I’m more concerned these days with what other people are willing to play on.

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            As stated lower in this thread, if the microkernel is either Linux or Unix based it will use a uniform optical driver after it recognizes and mounts the drive. The modular nature of these OS don’t need a specific driver pack.

    • Tony Mitchell

      Tell your friends to get with the times.

      • Oddie O’Phyle

        To be fair, the pool of Dj’s that you can book tend to dry up when you tell them that they are “doing it wrong”.

        • Tony Mitchell

          You book the DJays. The Dejays do not book you. No one looking to book a gig is going to be forced into any type of DJ if they don’t want to be. DJ’s are a dime a dozen. The person who’s booking the gig decides what he wants. Not the DJ that he is booking. I’m trying to think of the last time I saw a DJ wrestling with a CD? I cant. They need to get with the times or relegate themselves to being a nostalgia DJ.

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            Ok, then please explain to me what a DJ rider is for? Considering Denon DJ press team came out with #changeyourrider

            • Tony Mitchell

              What the heck is a DJ Rider?

                • Tony Mitchell

                  I don’t see the relevance. Help me out here 🙂 That link doesn’t explain what a DJ rider actually is.

                  • A rider is a list of things that a DJ (or any performer in any industry) would like to see on their arrival at a venue, both in the dressing room and technology wise on stage.

                    • Chris Roman

                      I’ve heard artists asking for M & Ms with all the brown ones removed. If the venue had this detail correct in the dressing room, then the details about what gear and how it might be setup on stage was also followed. Top artists no longer just use the gear that’s provided, they dictate the gear they want to use.

                    • Not just that but also precisely where the gear is to be positioned in the booth. If you open before them, you can’t even move or touch anything unless you want the sound guy to come in and bop you on the head.

            • Tony Mitchell

              What’s the relevance between DJ rider and your buddies still playing music from CDs?

              • Oddie O’Phyle

                Most of us started 20+ years ago, many of my friends have riders. They are willing to drive up to an hour and a half for no pay to play a set on the radio show, for the simple reason that my kit is close enough to what they list in their riders. The ones that have riders are all club DJ’s and have been club DJ’s for the past 15 years being either residents or local headliners.

    • D.N.A.

      Hey Oddie,
      Ross from Denon DJ. Thanks for the good words! We spent lots of time with DJs from all over the planet, from festival stages to clubs. Not one of them questioned not having an optical drive. So many of them were happy to get more accessible features and a fresh new instrument to jam on.

      • Oddie O’Phyle

        The more I look over the press release, the more I’m impressed with the design. I was just thinking of the flexibility of the unit. If you read a bit lower, instead of complaining about it I’d rather help by brainstorming with a low cost solution. To be honest, variety is the spice of life and competition helps with innovation. I’d like to see these units succeed.

      • Oddie O’Phyle

        Feel free to correct me if I am wrong or just plain talking out of my arse, but I’m assuming that the microkernel that you are using is either Linux or Unix based and covered under the GPL. I figure this would be case to keep cost down as your coders can be in-house instead of contracting out to QNX or paying for the code itself.

        That being said, all mass storage devices are recognized as SCSI, whether it be USB, SD, SATA or optical. The drives are then mounted by an autodeamon. Due to the modular nature of the OS; in theory; wouldn’t the team be able to implement the uniform CD-ROM driver for any external CD/DVD ROM that would be plugged into the unit?

        • Oddie O’Phyle

          It would be a low cost way to add increased flexibility to the unit.

          • I’ll add my un-educated $0.02 here. What you’re describing would mount the CD as a data drive which is not what most people would probably expect as a use for a CD drive.

            In order to use Audio CDs you would need to have a data path inside their software for redbook CD audio coming straight from the drive and not coming from audio files like everything else they seem to support. My guess is that’s the rub here.

            • Oddie O’Phyle

              I’m also assuming that they would be using mpg321 as the player as the USB and SD is decoded to audio instead of data.

              • Decoded data is still data. The difference with red book is that you’re dealing with a stream, so you need to buffer it accordingly because the CD is not going to stop spinning for you.

                Either way you’re making a bunch of assumptions here. The bottom line seems to be that whatever they needed to do to implement that, it wasn’t worth it base on user interest.

                • Oddie O’Phyle

                  Personally, I thought it may have been overlooked. My thought was that loops tend to be buffered in volatile memory. At that point it would depend on how much the unit has access to and how much of that volatile memory is used. Thank you, I enjoy brainstorming like this. Very constructive.

            • Oddie O’Phyle

              BTW, thank you for the input. It’s appreciated.

        • Ross Noir

          More people that have had a genuine need for a CD drive wanted to play Audio CD’s something we obviously designed to not include. That doesn’t mean something in the future like you have suggested isn’t possible.

  • Fredrik Yngström

    I think the price is too much in comparison.
    Unless the actual retail price is below the XDJ-1000MkII I think it will be hard to compete. Sure, the SC5000 is an impressive unit, but if the price is too close to, or more than, the price of the XDJ-1000 people will most likely go with the “industry standard”.

    • David De Garie-Lamanque

      thing is, the SC5000 has a ton more features that make it WAY superior to any Pioneer media player… and since practically no ones uses CDs anymore it’s just ridiculous to put a drive in them and would rack up the price a lot

      • Fredrik Yngström

        I agree with you. But what I am saying is that the Pioneer brand is so well established now that you need to seriously undercut their pricing while also delivering a much better product. I think it will be hard to compete if you only do one of those things.

        With the XDJ-1000 MkII, which is a similar product in the sense that it has dropped the optical media, costing less than the SC5000 Prime (unless the actual retail price drops more than £300) I think most people will spend their money on the XDJ.

        Denon has out-featured Pioneer before. And to preempt anyone thinking I am biased in Pioneer’s favor – I started DJing CDs using the Denon DN-2000f, owned the DN-2500f, DN-2000f MkII and later a pair of DN-S5000 and now I’m settled with a pair of turntables. The only Pioneer DJ product I’ve ever owned is an EFX-500.
        I really like this product, but it still got me thinking “why should I have this at home when I would still need to prepare my tracks for Pioneer equipment if I ever play out?”, and this goes the other way too – why should the night club owners invest in gear that most people don’t have?

        • Jerr1233

          As I stated in another post, because this player can handle 2 tracks at once, it’s almost like buying 2 XDJ1000mk2. You can play a whole event on just one of these. Which makes it $500 cheaper that 2 XDJ1000s.

          Also, as I and Mark pointed out in the other article, Denon doesn’t intend for this player to compete with the XDJ1000mk2 but rather the CDJ2000nxs2. To do that, you have to be priced accordingly. In actuality I think the might be priced a little too low as is. I would have gone with a solid $2k. The problem is perceived value. If you are priced too much lower than your compitition people won’t take the product seriously. Also, expect Denon to give a ton of these away to influential people and companies. This is the revival of a very long war. I can gaurentee Pioneer DJ has had several meetings about this product already.

          • Fredrik Yngström

            I still think it’ll be hard for Denon. Dual track features were available on the S5000 as well as the D9000, but still most people bought two of them. Granted, it was a bit more cumbersome and with more limitations than on the SC5000, but still – most people prefer dual players.

            Denon might intend to compete with the CDJ and not the XDJ, but whether that is what happens or not time will tell. An SC3000 with single track and most of the other features, priced below the XDJ-1000 is needed, I think.

            This is only my assessment, and time will have to tell how it goes. I was intrigued by the unit, until I saw the price. I’d be more likely to drop money on the XDJ-1000, or more probably for my purposes the XDJ-RX, if I was to buy gear. And that’s not because I think they’re better products. It’s because they’re basically everywhere.

            I had a small gig a couple of years ago, and that was actually the first time I had some serious time with the CDJs at all. No option to get used to the gear beforehand, and even though I managed to perform decently it would have been nice to have some more experience with the gear, which is why I’d lean towards the Pioneer stuff.

            • Nevson

              How on God’s earth do people pay the kind of money for Pioneer cdj. Their jog wheels I can’t get beyond,
              ”GRURRRRRRR”!!! it sounds and feels like those jog wheels are broken.

              On the other hand the jog wheels on their flag ship all in one controller is quiet. What a RIP-OFF.

        • David De Garie-Lamanque

          most people still can’t afford Pio gear, but i understand your point… although a lot of DJs have controller with identical features, it’s just a case of watching a short youtube tutorial to see where thhe features they want are placed on the unit.
          i just hope their marketing campaign will work, cuz the Pio monopoly needs to end. 🙂

          • Fredrik Yngström

            If they can afford the SC5000, they can afford the XDJ-1000MkII with features similar enough, which is my point.

            If Pioneer gear with features close enough to their top-of-the-line models is cheaper than whatever you’re introducing to compete with their top-of-the-line, it’ll be hard to change the de facto monopoly that Pioneer is enjoying. And that is precisely due to the aforementioned monopoly.

            I think you need to have a wider strategy. Go for the mid tier as well as the top tier. The mid tier (or even low tier) is what bedroom/startup DJs buy/can afford so they get to practice on equipment similar enough to the top tier stuff that’s in clubs.
            This causes a vice versa situation – bedroom/startup DJs buy Pioneer because that’s what’s in the clubs and clubs install Pioneer because that’s what the DJs are used to and requesting.

            • Jerr1233

              This thinking and strategy is why nobody has been able to take out Pioneer. It’s logical but flawed. Nobody (not even Denon) has been willing to go up and challenge Pioneer at the top. People buy Pioneer because that’s what the people at the top use. They think world famous DJ uses it, it must be the best brand. This is exactly how Pioneer took the market…Not with the CDJ500 or 700 but at the top with the CDJ1000. I have no doubt that Denon has mid tier products to be released, but you don’t start with your “meh” stuff…You start with shock and awe…The amount of talk this player is getting definitely shows people are shocked and awed.

              • Fredrik Yngström

                I also think, and hope, they have mid tier stuff as well, and are able to turn the tides. But….However logical but flawed the thinking/strategy is, it still is what it is and that is the big hurdle to get through. To change people’s thinking, so that you choose the tool(s) you prefer and not the tools others use.

                But it’s a massive hurdle and the question is whether it’s possible to pass it or not.

  • ace

    Looks amazing, I’m sure the build quality is tops too.
    Sadly it looks like it only supports 44.1khz (like all other older units).
    So “IF” this unit was in a dj box & the next dj comes along with some 48khz tracks…
    If after all this time they couldn’t get the old version of engine right, whats to say the new “Engine Prime” is any better than the old engine?
    Which ironically only supports this new unit. WTF!!
    I remember promises of the 1700 mixer getting Traktor support………
    Sadly I feel that once all the hype over this unit is done & the dust settles,
    it’s just gonna be another Denon purchase regret.

    • Jerr1233

      Remember, software support comes from the software manufacturer. If they say no, there is nothing the hardware manufacturer can do. If you remember Denon’s solution to not having their spinning platter supported was hybrid mode where the platter sent DVS tone and the buttons sent midi.

      • The issue is that most of these support need specific coding that come to a price. Denon wasn’t willing to pay for this in the past…

      • ace

        Native Instruments didn’t say no.
        The 1700 never got Traktor support coz Denon didn’t want to pay!

    • D.N.A.

      Hey Ace,
      I’m Ross from Denon DJ.Thankfully, the SC5000 is 24bit/96kHz and crisp, otherwise playing uncompressed audio formats wouldn’t sound as great as it does. Check the webpage for our supported audio formats!
      Engine Prime was built from the ground up to support the SC5000 Prime. Stay tuned for news later this year on further support. I think you and everyone will be quite impressed by the new gear and software.

      • ace

        Hi Ross, this unit supports various file formats, but (from what I can see) they are all limited to a 44.1Khz Sample Rate.
        That is a really big problem for anyone stepping up to this from cdj’s.

        • I’m curious. Where do you get your 48khz tracks from?

          • Daniel Ventura

            this is no Problem: for example i Play more and more 48 or even 96khz material. it is also very interesting for Producers to Play their material in Studio Standard 96/24

            • Yeah I imagined that people playing their own stuff would find it interesting. I just didn’t know about commercial sources for tracks. Cool.

        • Ross Noir

          Hi Ace, the software and the SC5000 take files from 44.1-96kHz 16 or 24 bit.

  • Headtrick

    Colour me impressed. Well done Denon DJ. I’m rooting for you.

  • Borislav Petrov

    My first players were denons and I still have a lot of love for them, even if I play on turntables now. But this is f*ckin amazing!!! EVERITHING about them is amazing!!!

    I really hope that Denon DJ will make motorised ones.


    Not pro enough, I don’t see “sync” button 😀

  • Jerr1233

    For everyone comparing this to an XDJ1000mk2, stop it…It blows it out of the water specs wise and price wise. You see with the layer function, you can buy one of these and DJ a whole night by switching layers. You NEED two XDJ1000s to accomplish this. At $1200 each that’s $2400 for two XDJ1000s (and you still don’t have all of the additional goodies that this brings) vs $1900 for one SC5000. Or $3800 for two SC5000 or $4800 for 4 XDJ1000mk2 for 4 decks of goodness.

  • Kevin Basher (yes, I finally got there!) announces Serato DJ support.
    I wonder how long it will take for Traktor support…

    • Nevson

      Are you really expecting a 1:1 jog wheel resolution with Traktor? If you are don’t hold your breath. Traktor has never done this for any third party controller except for Numark 4 Track. Anyway who said you care about 1:1 jog control.

      • Kevin Basher

        I think it will be coming soon. Don’t forget NI made it possible with the CDJ-900/NXS, CDJ-2000/NXS/NXS2 and XDJ-1000.

        • Nevson

          I really don’t think those pioneer jog has a1:1with Traktor.

          If the jogs on the SC5000 gets a1:1 resolution with Traktor in straight midi mode and the display function the same as in stand-alone mode then I would say the price is reasonable.

      • Kevin Basher

        @disqus_R1RvT1SJw4:disqus from Denon DJ confirmed it will be coming 🙂

  • deejdave

    Can anyone here comment on the Serato DJ support. Is this traditional support as in natively an Official Serato DJ Accessory (OSA) via HID or MIDI or as Denon mentioned “Engine Prime is an innovative music librarian and analysis system that
    lets the DJ organize, categorize and import music, either directly from
    iTunes® and Serato® DJ or via drag ‘n drop from existing music folders.”

    ?????? Thanks

    • Mark

      Not currently supported by Serato, that should be coming, but you can import music directly from Serato into Engine.

      • David De Garie-Lamanque

        Rekord Buddy style… like Engine will import your Serato Cue Points, Loops, Key info, everything

        • Or we could make things even easier and add support for Engine in Rekord Buddy then you don’t just get Serato but everything else too.

    • Ross Noir

      Hey Dave,
      Ross from Denon DJ. While we offer import from Serato and iTunes, we do have a controller mode that is compatible with Serato/Traktor coming soon.

      • deejdave

        Thanks for that. Exactly what I was looking to hear 🙂

      • Daniel Ventura

        how about using Traktor metadata (cues/grids/etc)? any Chance to get this implemented?

        • Ross Noir

          A lot is possible. We should have further news over the next few weeks.

  • Luke Peter Annett

    Yep. No way I’m buying a deck with a static platter. The VL12 looks fricking amazing though. I really have high hopes for it.

  • Jeremy

    My initial thoughts:
    1. Pricing is good at £1500 v nearly £2000 for cdj2000nxs2 – it’s cheaper but not massively cheaper and the build quality (at least superficially) looks top notch.
    2. The jog wheel with brushed metal almost looks a bit like vinyl. I don’t know if that was intentional but with the artwork in the middle it looks great.
    3. The SC5000 needs to do everything that the cdj2000nxs2 does as well or even better to start with. The extra features won’t mean much if it doesn’t do the basics properly. Looking forward to the review to find out!
    4. There is a lot of overlap with Pioneer cdjs here, including layout. This is a good thing. If Denon want to convert pro DJs it needs to be familiar and not feel like a leap from Pioneer.
    5. It will need to be plug and play with Serato DJ and Traktor (I’m sure it will be in time.)
    6. Engine probably needs to work just as well as rekordbox for to give the sc50000 a chance.
    7. I wonder what the benchmark of success is for Denon DJ. I think completely supplanting Pioneer in the DJ booth will be virtually impossible but if the SC5000 can start sharing space with the cdj 2000nxs2 in booths because more and more DJ s demand it, they have a chance.

  • MagNet

    With rekordbox support this would be amazing, without I feel they’re gonna have a hard time.

  • Jose Sanchez

    Could somebody PLEASE tell me if they support hot cue banks??? Just like XDJ’s and NXS does???

    • DJ STU-C

      When you say hot cue banks you mean able to save cue points?? in that case they have 8 cue points that can be labelled with text

      • Jose Sanchez

        I’m aware of that 🙂
        What I mean is triggering cue points from different tracks saved in a bank / list.

        • DJ STU-C

          Ah you mean like a sample bank?? hmm that would be an interesting feature.

          • Jose Sanchez

            Well, pioneer has it since the first NXS came out. This feature is the only thing thing that would not make me change my rider..

            • DJ STU-C

              Do they?? how do you go about doing that?? something I’ve never noticed, although I’m mainly a Serato user

  • DJ STU-C

    Wow Denon, i really hope you do knock that over priced crap off its perch once and for all, i love Pioneer and i love my Pioneer controller but the so called flagship units are just not good enough these days.

    This Decks is perfection, i literally can’t think of anything i would change from watching this, a true future proof piece of kit.

    Lets look at one single thing, if you want 4 decks and a mixer from Pioneer you are looking at 10k, with this setup you can do it for 5, that multi channel output is a stunning feature.

    • Kevin Basher

      I first thought that dual layer is not an important feature. But it seems to be well integrated (unlike alpha track on older Denon players). And additionally, people are used to switching decks from their 4 channel controllers these days, which wasn’t a common workflow back then.

  • DJ dVo

    Can this still be called CDJ if it lacks an optical drive? I think a motorised platter would hit home with the concept of a digital waveform approach.

    Truly love the “Dual-layer playback with individual audio output” – as said by many, this alone is the Pio killer for functionality and price!

  • “I imagine that Virtual DJ support is just around the corner, because that’s how they roll.” I laughed out loud at the office. Co-workers looking at me all weird.

  • AEK

    There are a lot, and I mean A LOT of good ideas here. But Engine Prime is going to make or break this setup. As it is right now, Engine is horrible IMO. It didn’t recognize any of my mp3 files (does it need the LAME encoder?), it’s extremely basic-feeling, and the UI is anything but user-friendly. Engine Prime needs to be on the level of Rekordbox Free for Denon to stand a chance against Pioneer.

    • Jason Parker

      I think they know and knew this clearly and im quite sure they sill match or beat rekordbox. They took their time.

      • AEK

        Actually I have a question. I wonder if the SD card slot supports SDXC cards, allowing MicroSD cards (with an adapter of course) bigger than 32GB.

        • I would hope so. A 32Gb limit these days is a bit old hat. I’m still waiting for the manuals and specs to be released.

  • Should all watch this — Mojaxx’s first look video is up:

    • Kevin Basher

      So it can read the Serato metadata from the file alone (without the data base, just from the tag). I’m really curious if it can do the same thing with rekordbox files / data base. Well I guess I know the answer already 🙂

  • Ian Williams

    Ok, so one player has two sets of outputs & can play two tracks simultaneously.
    I know it’s unlikely to happen as it would cannibalise sales, but how about introducing another cheaper product, which is just a control surface & display that’s linked to the main deck by ethernet ( the main deck handling all the playing / processing for both decks).

    • CUSP

      Are you looking for the more traditional player-mixer-player layout then?

  • Maiki Vince

    The wealth of knowledge that one acquires from the comments section of a story is priceless. When I started DJing around 15 years ago I knew nothing about pro gear. When I stumbled upon skratchworx (and soon other DJ oriented sites) in 2008, I was intrigued by the tech and amount of knowledge that was freely being spewed on the comment threads. The much (or little) I know in DJing today, 85% I have learnt, through the years, from active threads like these.
    It amazes me how much I still learn every time when a new post is made and the masses pour their hearts out to discuss the topic.

    • Kevin Basher

      True. And this (among other things) has always set Scratchworx/DJWORX apart from most other sites.

  • old in colorado

    as v7 holdout (have your fun, they are great!) the more I look at these the more I realize are the same workflow that we have been using for years and these are the natural progression. I wish, wish they had moving platters. I want to play with the hub and see if I can plug a big external hd into it

    • CUSP

      I think nothing is really stopping you from doing so as SD cards read as hard drives do (albeit much faster due to being-solid state), but you might want to use that large hard drive as a backup plan because (as many controller users have come to understand) digging through thousands of viable songs in just a couple of minutes tends to put a person in “analysis paralysis.”

    • swif

      I was also holding out for a v7 replacement and these just might make me ditch the spinning platters. at first I thought the price was way to high but as you see all your getting out of it, its worth it.

  • CUSP

    Since this is a stand-alone media player (not a CDJ), how would you rate it against controllers like the Native Instruments Kontrol S5/S8? I’d think that the biggest difference is that one has the computer onboard, while the other has it outside, but the NI kits can play twice as many songs, and has a mixer included for it’s price. The difference being that you need to buy a computer for the NI controller and you need to buy a mixer for the Denon media player.

  • Skratchin Jackson

    If they don’t update the “non-prime” Engine software as well, and soon, I’m selling my MCX8000 and buying a Roland. Engine is garbage, and if they’re ditching their still fresh flagship controller already, I’m not sticking around, and I’m damn sure not buying anything else from them.

  • DJ dVo

    If the links on this work with non-Engine mixers then this unit would be gold!