UNBOX: Numark Orbit hits the worxlab

Numark Orbit unboxing (7)

This year’s NAMM was alight with Numark‘s Orbit wireless hand-held controller. We were all over it with an exclusive first play. It’s a smart little device aimed at giving a little more freedom to DJs who want a performance piece, or just a little multipurpose box of tricks to add a little extra into their setups. Or it’s a total toy that only fake wannabes would ever use apparently. Whatever your viewpoint or use, the Numark Orbit finally about to hit the streets — one has arrived at the worxlab, and in true online blog style, I decided to unbox it… and take pictures… sorry I couldn’t resist.

There is an ulterior motive besides the social media sharing and subsequent shameless web traffic. As it’s such an unusual piece, I want to get some idea of what you want to know about it. We can make the usual observations about quality etc, but the function is a different matter.

Do you have a specific use in mind for it? And what would you like to see in the review? Do you have any specific questions that haven’t been answered before? We are planning am extensive detailed review of this so the more questions the merrier.

One last thing — the Simple Simon wisecrack and many others have been done to death, and frankly aren’t even relevant or funny. So just don’t.


  • John Varela

    I see this as a secondary controller to a full DJ setup. It has no headphone jack and no user interface to browse tracks on your main device (i.e. laptop, tablet, phone etc…) I guess it could also be used as a performance controller or a remote controller for mobile DJs who must cue tracks from a remote location (i.e. a wedding DJ who is handling microphone duties / intros and needs to simultaneously play tracks as well) How easy is this device to use compared to the practicality of a Kontrol X1 or F1 (or any similar desktop / wired secondary controller)?

    • John Varela

      …and supposedly you can have multiple orbits in use? Does this affect performance?

      • Simon Bangs

        You can have as many as you like, that depends on the software used and how it handles mutlichannel midi

  • Mark Stewart

    My two concerns are
    (a) under multi-button triggering / juggling what is the latency like?
    (b) NI advises all it’s users to turn off wifi as it generally causes DPC spikes that it’s audio processing engine doesn’t like (glitching as some call it).

    When you do your trails, can you keep an eye on the DPC side of things with something like this ?(http://www.thesycon.de/deu/latency_check.shtml).

    looking forward to the review, but even if you say it’s not that good, I’ll probably still buy one, they are cheap enough to have a bit of fun around the house, rather than at the club.

    • Simon Bangs

      This uses high quality RF with a USB dongle provided. It wont affect your latency and the response time is very fast.

      • Mark Stewart

        With the greatest respect Simon, I’d like to hear that from someone not connected to Numark …I trust Mark’s honest reviews and I’m looking forward to his user experience. As I said in my post before, I’m already sold and I have a place for it next to my 4Trak, in the same way as I have an F1 next to my S4 (hopefully not for much longer if the Orbit does what I hope it does).

        The main issue if that NI state CLEARLY to disconnect wifi when using Traktor, i’ve spend months creating perfect windows 7 and 8 partitions avoiding any chances of glitching. It may not be the fault of your dongle, it may simply be a laptop wifi issue ..hence the question about monitoring DPC’s.

        • Jared Helfer

          Hey Mark. I played with the Numark for a bit in my apartment when it was in development, and had my hands on it at NAMM (we recorded a video there). I experienced no latency issues using the USB dongle. The biggest issue, in the end, is you have to use another USB dongle, but that’s not different than any new USB controller.
          NI says to turn off your WiFi, and your WiFi can still be on. The WiFi connection is controlled exclusively by the dongle.

        • Simon Bangs

          Hi Mark,

          Understand your point of view while Numark is may passion my main passion is being a computer Geek 🙂
          The dongle uses an existing USB IRQ so wont cause any conflicts which are not already there. If your computer works fine now with usb devices you wont have an issue. Often enough laptop makers dont think about IRQ conflicts when purchasing parts they buy what ever is cheapest to put into their computers. This means that devices can conflict and cause latency and other nastiness the biggest culprit is usually your wifi card. However this uses its own USB dongle and wont cause that affect.

          • Mark Stewart

            Being a computer geek (like myself) you know not all computers are equal :).

            I haven’t seen an IRQ conflict since the days of w2000/xp when it only had 16 to choose from, but now we have 100’s to choose from (okay slight overstatement). So i’d still like to see the effects it has at system level and it’s DPC response times.

            I love Mark’s reviews, as he calls a lemon a lemon and has no (visible) brand loyalty …except his perfectly understandable Vestax fetish.

            These days it’s hard to find fair and honest reviewers as they all seem to blow smoke up the companies backsides in the hope that get more kit to play with and I guess to keep. In fact there’s a reviewer based in the same country as me I would happily slap in the face with a wet fish, he’s so sycophantic …and what’s worse the kids believe the hype.

            Don’t worry though, The Orbit has been on top on my want list since I saw the preview pictures many months ago, I would have loved to review this myself before buying, but i am happy to trust Mark’s word.

            Just hurry up and release it …….my itchy fingers are waiting.

  • Ron Maran

    I would be interested to see the jog-wheel implementation. My ideal use for it would be some sort of effects rack/ macro FX unit. I’d like to see if the touching of the Jog triggers any midi, as well as if it’s possible to toggle the behaviour of the Jog to on/off based on touch, or to assign an on/off button with it. I’m thinking something like a reverb/space building effects rack which is turned on with touching the platter, similar to the DJTT VCI-100 platters.

  • Audun Notevarp Sandvold

    Would be cool to use something like that controlling visuals only.
    Although Id switch the centre jog for faders or knobs in that case.

    • Audun Notevarp Sandvold

      Although I use Lemur on Ipad, tactile feedback is nice…

  • Should we compare the Orbit to the MF3D? It’s the natural competitor.

    • Jared Helfer


      • Mark Stewart


  • Jacob Stadtfeld

    I’d really like to see an exploration of the MIDI behavior and quirks which I’m sure are present. For example, my Denon 6000 has some controls that work as midi, but also double as controls for internal, non-midi functions that I can’t adjust. So basically any behavior notable to a chronic midi mapper such as myself.

    • Mark Stewart

      the Denon is a hybrid mixer thats why some buttons are not available, same as the DJM-T1, the Berry DDM4000, the 4TRAK, and many may more. This has no audio processing, therefore (as I see it) it should all be MIDI only, after all it’s a controller not a mixer.

      • Jacob Stadtfeld

        I don’t mean specifically audio/midi behavior; obviously there’s no audio to speak of. With a device such as this, there’s sure to be some unique midi architecture that someone mapping it would like to know before committing to a purchase. I’ve returned products because of odd choices by the programmers/manufacturers in their implementation of midi, usually in the form of a third software like DaRouter for the Stanton SCS.3 system, python scripts for the Ableton Push, or internal layering with the Xone K2.


    I’m impressed the NUMARK ORBIT is fast and the quality is outstanding. A must have product!

  • White Wulfe

    I’m curious about Traktor support – just how far in depth it goes (bonus points for remix decks)

  • Raji Rabbit

    It’s dope! Demo’d it with the rep the other day , it’s an enhancement piece if u are doing a show .

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