DJ Gear From Yesteryear — the Numark NS7

As we continue our meander down the memory motorway, one of my personal favourites has made it to the top of the pile. The Numark NS7 series all in one motorised controllers left such a lasting impressing that I’m yet to find another controller that would take its place in my heart. Yet.

Here’s the review where I give my heart to the NS7 and then get accused of obviously being paid because I’m supposed to just hate things even if I don’t.

Being as old as I am and utterly entrenched in a vinyl background, the NS7 ticked all my analogue boxes plus every digital one I had too. While I enjoyed the smaller controllers, the meaty goodness and heft of the Numark NS7 made me feel safe while spinning. Everything was solid and just worked.

Importantly the scratch performance was exactly as I needed it to be. Well, it was in Serato ITCH and subsequent Serato software. While we were in the grips of the controller age where expectations were that everything would work with everything because of the MIDI gods. But that clearly was not the case.

Numark NS7 Serato controller (38)
Still one of my favourite pictures.

Almost everything could be mapped, but the platter was a different matter. DJ Quartz kind of sort of got it working in Traktor, but it wasn’t the best experience, and pretty indicated that the days of MIDI-based interoperability were over. And these days it’s only VirtualDJ that continues to make sure that anything that comes out works with their software. Well almost — some tech is just too proprietary.

More than anything, through all the Numark NS7 versions, it delivered the most fun I’ve ever hand in DJing. And even though the Denon DJ SC5000M and 6000M offer what the NS7 range had and more, somehow being in an all in one unit delivered a completely coherent experience.

Now, make me a standalone Rane Ninety Seven (definitely that name) with 6000M platters, a four-channel Rane mixer, and a big touch screen in one big bulletproof box, and that’s my forever controller right there. I should really mock that up and let it go viral for shits, giggles, and market research purposes.


Did you own one of the Numark NS7 family? Float your boat or just break your back? Should I start a clichéd petition on asking inMusic to make a new Rane branded all in one controller because that always works, doesn’t it?