Fast FactsApplications: Live reinforcement, installation
Key Features: Three-band EQ; look-ahead peak limiters; digital output
Contact: Numark at 401-658-3131, www.numark.com.
+ Digital outputs
+ VCA Faders
– No digital inputs
– Slope and reverse functions confusing for a layman
Overall a extremely versatile well rounded piece
Technics SL 1200s turntable; Yamaha M2000 24-channel mixer; QSC amps; dbx DriveRack 480 processor; Teac CD 1400 CD player; Apple iPod; EAW KF 850, KF 300 speakers.In the wild world of DJs there are hundreds of products out there from mixers, turntables, CD players, hard drives to wireless mics. So how does one determine what one needs and which is the best product for their money? This is why Numark has been a name and force in the professional DJ market for such a long time. Now, with the release of their DXM Pro mixer, your world is open to even wilder things.
Numark’s DXM Pro is a digital mixer. That is all mixing functions within the mixer are done within the digital realm. This allows for some nifty scratch and effect manipulations. Additionally, all faders are VCAs — there is no actual analog signal held within each fader, only a control surface and all faders can easily be swapped out or replaced without having to throw away a good mixer. The inputs and outputs are standard as with any DJ mixer, with left and right allocations for two turntables and up to three CD players or other line level devices. Numark has also integrated two digital outs, one in optical format and one in coax format, both sampled at 48 kHz, 24-bit S/PDIF.
The DXM Pro has incorporated some interesting features like “look-ahead” peak limiters on the master, booth and headphone outputs to avoid clipping. Each fader is also equipped with a variable slope control and a reverse function that allows total functionality to whatever style you are mixing. Both input channels feature a gain (level trim) control, a three-band EQ and an input selector switch. Each channel EQ has its own “kill” switch for instantaneous comparison of EQ settings. There is a separate output control for the master, booth and headphone cueing. The cueing control also features a variable tone control for those out there who would like to adjust for various headphones. Instead of the standard selector switch for cueing the various inputs, Numark has incorporated a fader for fast, variable cueing from one channel to another.
For DJs out there that like to speak/rap/intro over the spinning platters, Numark has given you a mic input (1/4-inch), mic gain control and two-band EQ. All faders (except the mic) and meters have a neat reverse function that allows up to be down, down to be up, right to be left and vise versa. This is a function of the VCA-type faders that works quite well in a scratching environment.
I had the opportunity to use the DXM Pro on a couple of gigs this summer and found it to be very roadworthy and durable. I mention this first since I have had some really poor experience with DJ gear on the road. There is nothing like the disappointment of showing up to the next gig with a piece of gear that won’t even power up due to its lackluster design. The DXM Pro is built like a tank, with some amazing functionality that you might find in a more fragile piece. The versatility throughout the input structure and the all digital use of the VCA faders makes sense for whatever style of DJing you might be doing on any specific night.
There were two different style DJs on two different nights for a disco I was working in Rehoboth Beach, DE. The first DJ was spinning 1970s disco on vinyl. The second DJ was more techno-based, using his laptop and the Mac-based Tractor program to output into the DXM Pro. Both DJs were pleased with the performance of the DXM Pro. Since neither DJ was a scratch-based DJ, the slope and reverse controls were only a confusing element. The latter of the two DJs did remark at the nice addition of the digital outputs, to which he used to record his session that night, but also wished that there were digital inputs. Since more and more of the industry is moving to laptop, iPod, or other MP3 formats I have to agree. A truly digital, yet physically manipulated, mixer is needed on the market for just such evolving situations.
With those few notes, the DXM Pro preformed flawlessly. Two polar opposite DJs and one extremely picky audio engineer were happy. Any night that all that happens is a truly magical evening for both the performers and the audience. Numark has produced the “Diva Neutralizer” of mixers.
In the gigs I used it on, the Numark DXM Pro did extremely well. Thanks to the DXM Pro’s versatility I would recommend it to anyone looking for a well-rounded DJ mixer.