Traktor 2.7

Those of you subscribed to the Traktor newsletter should have just received an email from Native Instruments letting you know about the update to Traktor 2.7.0 that has just arrived in the Service Center [sic]. For those who are out of the loop, you can read the body of the email below, which gives an overview of some of the changes:

TRAKTOR PRO 2.7.0 is now available for free download in the NI Service Center. In addition to overall performance and stability improvements, here’s what’s new in this version:

  • Full support for TRAKTOR KONTROL S8
  • Freeze/Slicer mode (an integrated feature in the S8, and mappable to other controllers using the Controller Manager)
  • Several enhancements for iTunes Library integration
  • TRAKTOR SCRATCH PRO 2: Now compatible with both MK1 and MK2 timecode media
  • Numerous other bug fixes

We recommend all TRAKTOR users keep their software up to date to ensure the best possible user experience.

To install the update, please start the NI Service Center. Open the ‘Update’ tab, make sure the checkbox for TRAKTOR is checked, and click the ‘Download’ button. When the download is finished, just click the ‘Install’ button.

With such an ambiguous bullet-point as ‘Numerous bug fixes”, there must be a proper changelog somewhere? How about the Native Instruments forums?

New

  • Support for the new TRAKTOR KONTROL S8 system controller.
  • Freeze/Slicer mode (native functionality for S8, mappable to any controller via the Controller Manager)

Bugfixes & Improvements

  • This version is now compatible with both MK1 and MK2 timecode records for all TRAKTOR SCRATCH PRO owners.
  • SYNC automatically enabled for Remix Decks when launching TRAKTOR.
  • The full waveform to the left of the playhead in a Track Deck will now be rendered – eliminates blurry waveform when using HotCues or BeatJumps.
  • Beat Ticks enabled in any Decks are automatically turned off when quitting TRAKTOR – prevents accidentally-enabled Beat Ticks on Channel Outputs in External Mixer mode.
  • When browsing through the iTunes Node, you can now edit tracks which have been imported into the Track Collection.
  • When browsing through the iTunes Node, the full context (right-click) menu is now available for tracks which have been imported into the Track Collection.
  • When browsing through the iTunes Node, Cover Art is now shown for tracks which have been imported into the Track Collection.
  • When browsing through the iTunes Node, analyzed Key is now shown for tracks which have been imported into the Track Collection.
  • iTunes Playlists now show cumulative time and disk usage in the Status Bar.
  • TRAKTOR now automatically chooses the newest iTunes Library version if multiple versions (old and new) are found in the iTunes Folder.
  • Mix Recorder level is no longer dependent on the Main Out volume.
  • Undesirable filter sweep when enabling the Z Filter on a channel is now fixed.
  • Canceling the “Delete from Collection” dialog still deleted the tracks from the Collection – fixed.
  • TRAKTOR crashes when moving effects around in the Pre-Selected Effects list – fixed.
  • Fixed an issue with the ID3 “Year” tag when non-standard date formats where written by other programs.
  • When creating a new Playlist, the cursor is now automatically placed into the Playlist Name box.

My Take

So, with such a few small fixes and features, why is this news? Several reasons… The main bit of news is that the update brings with it compatibility with the very-soon-to-be-released Traktor Kontrol S8, along with a couple of new features on the controller, the Freezer/Slicer. The surprising part is that Native have been upfront about the fact you can remap these functions to other MIDI devices using the Traktor Controller Manager. If you remember the drama surrounding the launch of the Remix Decks, the only controllers with access to those functions was the Kontrol F1, S2 and S4.

Fixing the playlist cursor issue is welcome, but only addresses a small part of the issue with browser usability. I’m still waiting on one of the frustrating bugs in the software to be fixed. As it stands, when you’ve searched for a track in the browser, clicking the X in the search box clears the text. Unfortunately, clearing the text doesn’t reset the cursor in the search as tends to be expected in standard UX. Not only is this annoying as it adds time and inconvenience to the workflow, it’s also dangerous (in a DJ context) with Traktor defaults set up, as typing will activate keyboard shortcuts, including ones that stop music playing. I’ve done it before, and had to delete the keyboard controls to be safe.

There are quite a few fixes to the iTunes playlist integration. Reading through, it feels a bit like the code for this was never properly finished, and they’ve only just got round to it now. It looks like many of the features in the standard browser are now working in the iTunes node, bringing it up to date.

One fix that’ll make a great many people happy is the blurred waveform issue. Previously, when you scrubbed through or jumped around a track, the waveform behind the playhead marker would be blurry, which was infuriating, much less a ridiculous problem that has stayed ever since Traktor Pro 2 launched. How this wasn’t fixed as soon as possible, I don’t know… but now it is!

The next step for us at DJWORX is to await the arrival of the S8 to test out and review. There are a couple of us that may well explode with anticipation before we get them. Keep an eye out!