While there’s a market full of MIDI controllers with very specific purposes, sometimes you need a controller that is adaptable and doesn’t quite fit the established paradigms given to us by the manufacturers. And that’s where Ivo Glanzmann and his 4MidiLoop controller business fits in — once again working with Faderfox, a collaboration with Magda and NYMA has created the VERSUS controller.
Words for stuff about the controller:
Magda and NYMA’s first tech collaboration, a handmade and customised DJ controller called VERSUS, is soon to see the light of day. Developed together with Faderfox and Glanzmann DDS, the unit’s functions are aimed at further bridging the gap between live and DJ performances, at maximising creative possibilities and at making the process as smooth and practical as possible. Features include: a uniquely laid-out ‘V Section’ that allows for track selection without looking at the computer, 32 fader commands, versatile and easy midi integration and an endurance-built, aluminium design.
In recent years, the concept of DJing has changed a lot. Mixing can now be composed of much more complex structures and layers. Our goal was to design a piece of gear which allows us to connect the studio and live environments; something with the versatility to adopt easily to modern standards. Through our daily work as DJs and engineers, we see endless creative possibilities to integrate into our performances. We faced a real challenge, between simply playing music and embracing technology. We wanted to balance and merge these two worlds without losing any of the fun in our performances. The main focus from the beginning was to build a high-quality controller with a practical layout and a clear design that has enough functionalities to go deeper if needed. An instrument you appreciate playing rather than a quick, exchangeable solution. What you see is the result of passionate people collaborating with the aim of getting the best out of their performances and believing in creative expression.
We want to thank you for supporting our idea of the Versus controller and hope you will enjoy it as much as we do.
Magda vs NYMA
- Easy integration of external equipment any outboard gear that receives midi can be controlled
- No USB hub needed both units are powered through one USB cable simultaneously
- 2 bus designUSB and midi ports have their own separate bus routing
- Master section with LED display master clock, deck assignment, tree and favourites list
- Fader FX section 8 ALPS 60mm faders and 8 push buttons in 4 groups, 32 different commands in total
- Potentiometer FX section 4knobs and 4 push buttons in 4 groups, 16 different commands in total
- FX assignmentseasily accessible push buttons with LEDs
- Ergonomic layout «V» section browse, load and play without looking at your computer
- Loop sectionwith LED display adjust loop size, intuitive looping, loop mode
- 8 hotcue buttons direct access to your most important cue points and loops
- 4 pitch/bend buttons allows you to manually pitch or nudge the current bpm time
- 3 push buttons quick access to beatjump (bwd), playback, loop active
- 2 shift buttons use one hand for all double-functions
- LED bar shows the current position of the playing song
- Compact design based on experience from years of being on the road and built with endurance in mind
- 4 Potentiometer FX
- 8 Fader FX
- 64 Push buttons with double-functions (shift button)
- 92 LEDs different colours to display various informations
- Rubber knobs for best tactile feeling
- 3 Displays Master Clock, Loop Size
- 1 Jack input for expression pedals
- 1 DIN Input / Output Midi and Power supply (link)
- 1 DIN Output Midi
- 268 Midi commands
- USB bus powering power supply via USB, consumption less than 200mA
- USB interface class compliant, no driver necessary
- Special controller for DJ Software (optimised for Native Instruments, Traktor Pro 2)
- Indication of each relevant state by feedback data from software
- System modefor different basic settings and external midi programming
- Dimensions 7.28“(185 mm) x 2.36“ (60 mm) x 14.17“ (360 mm)
- Weight 2.2kg System requirements:
- Windows® XP (latest Service Pack, 32 Bit), Windows Vista®/Windows® 7 (latest Service Pack 32/64 Bit), Intel® Pentium 4® 2.4 GHz or Intel® CoreTMDuo or AMD AthlonTM64, 2 GB RAM
- Mac OS® X 10.6 (latest update) or 10.7, Intel® CoreTMDuo, 2 GB RAM
- General Monitor with 1024 x 768 screen resolution, USB 2.0, 500 MB free disk space required
- CNC shaped case Aluminium from Swiss aircraft industry (Avional)
- Compact and ergonomic
- Eloxalprint scratch proof layout, clearly designed
- 1500 EUR excl. MwST/ VAT
What is the VERSUS controller?
At first glance, it’s a controller best suited to Ableton. But on closer inspection it seems more suited to DJs that performers. The basic layout is divided as if the VERSUS is two controllers stuck together, with dedicated effects and loops control too. And in light of recent announcements, this could be a very useful way to play NI’s new Stems format files too.
I tend to look at controllers like this not from a fixed perspective (although the usage is implied), but from how it could be mapped to fit a number of uses. The VERSUS controller is after all just a box of mappable controls, so within reason you could do what you wanted with it.
Like the new Traktor Kontrol D2, the VERSUS looks to be an excellent replacement for decks. Granted, there’s over €6K’s worth of gear in the picture above, but having used the Rane MP2015, this setup could be amazing. And yes, I too feel your pain on the price too, but it is explained in this footnote on the VERSUS site:
Note: This piece of gear is not meant to be mass produced at this time. Our idea was to build a high-quality controller for our own use without cutting any corners. By letting the controller grow we decided to make it accessible to others. Each unit is hand made in Switzerland and Germany by Faderfox and Glanzmann DDS. For these reasons, the cost of materials and production is high. This is a product done purely out of love and not for profit.
So you’ve absolutely got to crave a VERSUS controller, even if you only buy one of them. But it could well be jack of all trades controller that fits a number of uses, such as being used entirely on its own with an audio interface, or the replacement for CDJs or turntables that tames Traktor better than anything.