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How To MIDI Map Traktor VU Meters To A DJ Controller

A number of readers have written in asking how in the “Stage Principle” tutorial the VU meters of each deck show up on the Kontrol X1 – so today we’ve got a tutorial explaining how anyone with any MIDI controller can map VU meters in Traktor! Watch the full tutorial after the jump and get mapping.

Traktor's VU Meters
Traktor’s VU Meters


  • Quickly see where audio is coming from (which deck): in the video, Ean has two X1s with four channels across them – meaning that the controls for a certain deck are actually lit by that deck’s behavior
  • Associate active audio with certain types of controls: For example, on a lot of Flashflooder’s more recent Midi Fighter mappings, the cue/pause/play button has a VU meter mapped to it so you know it is active).
  • Larger / More room for detail: For those of you who pay close attention, the Traktor internal VU meters take up a pretty small amount of screen real estate – on larger controllers (like the APC 40) you could have a much more dynamic VU meter mapped out
  • Light Show! We’re not beyond listing the visual satisfaction as a big reason to do this – having your controller flash in time with the beat often looks really awesome – especially if your controller has a wide range of color options (like the Midi Fighter Spectra in the video!)

Additionally, controller DJs often find VU meters unsatisfactory in the default mapping for a lot of controllers and not necessarily a good reflection of what the actual levels are that are being pushed out (people had this complaint about the Kontrol S4 MK1 quite often). Use the same instructions in this how-to in order to make your meters behave more reasonably.


Have more questions about mapping VU meters or LEDs? Ask in the comments and we’ll answer them as best as we can!

  • Gary O’Connor

    Cant seem to get this to work on Control X1 Mk2, I can get it to ‘learn’ on the cue and flux buttons but it won’t map to the hot cue buttons, Any help would be appreciated

  • DJ legion

    Thanks for showing me how to do this. I am working on teensy modules with these new adafuit rgb strips and it was a so easy to get them working together.

  • Emiliano Galván

    Hi! I have a question. The VU within Traktor doesnt show you whenn you are in the red!? Im talking of the VU meters above faders. How do you can set up to know how much gain level you have to increse if you dont see the red lights?

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  • kp

    wich version minimun required of traktor?

  • kp

    Wich version of traktor minimun ir required for this?
    i use 2.1.3 because is stable for me and dont want to upgrade at the moment


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  • Fayek Helmi

    So since i have built an apc80 now i have launchpad that I’m not using for DJing so i decided to make a L&R VU meter for the 4 decks playing and just have that as my monitor device, having the spread divided on 8 buttons is really great and also it looks pretty badass too 😀

  • Jecba N Dyk

    I mapped it and it works perfectly, but every time I pause a Song, the “Sync” button’s led turns off, and I’ve always seen in your videos that when your decks are paused, the Sync Button is still turned on.
    How can I fix it?

  • Evan

    I don’t see Meters, in my menu

    • kp

      i think is the version we have…:/ update or nothing i suppose

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  • felix

    Hello out there if some have a 4 deck mapping for x1 mk2 would you please give me a info
    about that ….thx a lot u all

  • Dennis Zurlinden

    i try to do it with my x1 mk 2 but i press learn and then the button but it won’t learn anything, why?

    • Chris Rhumor

      had the same problem myself. If you havent figured it out yet, I’m assuming its because you’re mapping under a newly mad “generic MIDI” instead of under your already made “Traktor Kontol X1 MK2”. Try that and it should work.

  • boxxed

    …and Ean’s custom x1 mapping is….. where????

  • nicky

    help here please, it wont work on my maschine mikro mk2

    please help me

  • MP

    Could this be done with the 2 banks of 4 hotkeys on a Z2 – for no real reason other than to look pretty damn cool?

  • Sean

    so read the article about the vu meters, and was wondering if you would be able to map the left hand side of the vu meter to deck A and the right with deck B on the vci 400 se?

  • Stefan

    This made want to create a dedicated MIDI VU meter!

  • sligon

    I use two x1 mk2s and I can only seem to map it to one and when i try to map the 2nd it just triggers the first two desks

  • SilkySmooth

    Love it. Im desperately trying to map this with remix deck control mapping you made awhile ago… possible??

  • Dario De Lima

    Where can one download Ean’s custom x1 mapping, could someone steer me in the right direction.

  • bono

    possible to use the maschine display for traktor vu meter or trackdeck amp. too?

  • DJ See

    That was hot Ean. I used your Maschine mapping for traktor for use with my S4. Now I have the Mk2 and i was wondering were you going to do another or similar mapping for maschine mk1 for the s4 mk2. I don’t know its worth a shot.

  • derpaherpa14

    This tutorial is awesome, I had trouble mapping LEDs to buttons before. Just mapped my X1 Mk2 for the VU meters and FX buttons to custom light up when active.

  • Carlos Zamora

    Is there any way to map 4 x 4 pad controller to blink pad 1 then pad 2… sincked with the phase meter

  • Traktor Tips

    Cool Idea – hadn’t thought of mapping the LED VU meters – thanks for the tips!

  • This is pretty cool, but what happens when you start to push buttons? Do the selected buttons override the light show?

  • Dave Uv Frey

    tried this on my MF3d, works for a bit then goes to a solid color, not sure why it isn’t working.

  • Efrazable

    Just playing with this idea, but could I use the behringer bcf2000’s motorized faders to kind of act as vu meters? Would be cool to watch.

  • criss

    My x1 does not response to “learn” … What i can do for this ?

    • DJ Possess

      This happens to me at times. Make sure you have the latest Traktor updates from Service Manager. Close Traktor, restart, connect your devices first then launch Traktor. Try going thru the wizard in traktor that sees and configures devices. Check the In and Out in Mappings.

  • Jason Karriker

    Good stuff Ean!

  • DJ Dan

    I’m using this on my numark Orbit. It’s great having the visual feedback. I miss having the pre-programmed RYGB progressions in the original MF firmware. It made this trick a lot easier to show song progression.

  • fader

    ean golden’s “jokes” make me cringe

  • eduardo

    i use touch OSC for this , a 16 LED template for each channel and mixer

  • Filippo

    thanks DJTT…

    K2s 4 decks led feedback… Added 😉

  • DJ Possess

    Can someone verify (Ean) that this works with the F1 before I dive into it. A few comments suggest it may not.

    • DJ_ForcedHand

      This works.

  • N8R0ck heres a screenshot. im doing this with a launchpad. whats the problem?

    • Carlos Zamora

      Controller Range, try using .70 .75 .80 .85 .90 .95

  • Lylax

    awesome….something blinking in my face when im djing to extend the hype to my dj booth crowd.

  • Faibo Xellent

    finished! thank you for this djtechtools!

  • JP

    How do you do this with the F1? I tried using these instructions but was unable to learn from the F1.

  • mkl

    show how to map vu meters on launchpad with ableton (without m4l)

  • calgarc

    😀 i did this to map the VU meters to my launchpad s.

  • k.c

    can this be done with the kontrol s4??

    • Bart Reding

      Doesn’t the S4 and S2 allready have VU meters at the right side off every channel fader?

      • Oddie O’Phyle

        yup, stumbled across this sub menu on the weekend while remapping the off-set buttons on my MK1 to the MK2 style FLUX mode.

  • Mert

    Nice Tutorial! But the FX units have to be in Insert mode to show the Levels at the LED Meters – in post Mode this dosen’t work!

    • wyo

      Lol..i was saying the same thing

  • killmedj

    Just mapped my F1 to within an inch of it’s life. I may have a seizure at my next gig!

    • DJ Possess

      Does this work because another comment said that it won’t.

      • DJ_ForcedHand

        This works. It’s in the meters section and it’s something Native Instruments has pre-made for you. Unfortunately, this is about as easy as they can make things for you because they can’t know what results you want, they can just provide you with tools.

        • evan

          i can find Meters when i pull up the menu

      • killmedj

        just make sure that you have the output from traktor in the controller editor directed to the F1.

        It took me a few tries before I worked this out =(.

  • Chris

    That’s a great idea, gonna map my F1 this way

    • Traktor Tips

      This would be a great one to map due to the different colours too