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What is the Most Popular DJ Software: Traktor or Serato?

Digital DJs have a drastically different landscape than they did ten years ago. Instead of highly specialized tools, there now a handful of options that all have a near-comparable feature set. But which one is used by the most DJs? We try to find out in this article.

The main unknown here is the number of active users – a secret that Serato, Native Instruments, Pioneer, and others all keep closely guarded. Instead, we’ll have to look at data around the topic at hand:

What Does Google Say The Most Popular DJ Software Is?

One of the most fun – albeit not scientifically precise – ways to find out about relative popularity of DJ softwares is to use Google Trends. This is a tool that allows you to see how often a phrase is searched, and compare it with other terms.

For the graph below, I’ve chosen the most fair name, in quotes, for each DJ software – Traktor Pro, Rekordbox DJ, Serato DJ, and Scratch Live (for relative context). These are the two-word phrases that most people use when referring to each platform (more on Rekordbox’s issues on this front in the next section).

Here’s the graph for the most popular DJ software between 2004 and now: 

Here’s the same graph for the last 5 years: 

How Is Rekordbox DJ Actually Doing?

The youngest entrant into the DJ space is Rekordbox DJ. An issue here is that Rekordbox DJ suffers from a serious branding problem. Is it “Rekordbox DJ”, “Rekordbox’s Performance Pack”, or just “Rekordbox”?

This makes it difficult to look at it on macro search graphs, but you still can get a good idea. Notice on the one year graph above that Rekordbox DJ gets a big bump at launch, and then a very gradual increase in searches – but nothing crazy.

Pioneer DJ is likely playing the long game here in user adoption, but these charts make it abundantly clear why we just saw Pioneer announce a new Serato DJ controller, the DDJ-SZ2.

What Does DJTT’s Data Show?

Earlier this year, we polled DJs asking about their DJ setup. We got thousands of responses – and here’s the relative data that we have on software: 

Data from DJTT's survey compiled by Emily Barry
From DJTT’s survey, thanks to Emily Barry for helping to analyze the data.

As might be expected, our audience leans more heavily Traktor than the industry as a whole. Still, it give s a good sense of relative popularity – and gives credit to the smaller groups. Keep reading for more on them:

What About Virtual DJ (and others)?

One thing that’s really important to remember when discussing DJ software is that there are options beyond “the big three”. These tend to be applications that:

  • don’t have a lot of current companion hardware being released on the market OR their companion hardware isn’t selling a lot of units
  • are easier to buy (low price or piracy in some cases – plz don’t pirate software) or free
  • focus on alternative / unique use cases (like on mobile devices – where djay, DJ Player, and others are most successful)

Just because they aren’t in the graphics above doesn’t mean they don’t have more users. In fact, by unofficial reports that I’ve heard at NAMM and elsewhere, Virtual DJ has an incredible monthly download number that far surpasses any other software.

Virtual DJ has an unfair advantage in the Google Trends game because many people actually search for a virtual DJ without even knowing about the software by that name. But here’s that same 5 year chart with the term added all the same:

What About DJ Apps?

It’s difficult to tell which mobile DJ app is winning this race because:

  • The iTunes store doesn’t publish download numbers
  •  Many DJ apps have very ambiguous names (DJ Player and djay particularly)

However, when searching on the iTunes App Store, it’s clear from the first two results who is dominating the iOS market. It likely doesn’t hurt that Algoriddim seem to have a very good relationship with Apple:


Quick Poll: What Do You Use?

Have thoughts on other ways to measure the relative user bases of DJ softwares? Let us know in the comments below. 

  • Duben Defresh

    i tryed all and still prefer Serato DJ, but i have Traktor Pro and VDJ Pro as a backup. I think it is more about what are you just to it cos all of them are great dj tools no matter the statistics. And they all do amazings updates (and the gears too). So it doesn’t matter witch one, the important is witch fits you better.

  • Christian Turgeon

    I use Traktor pro…with an s4 mk2 Controler…i am very happy with it BUT you need a very up to date computer to get the software working at his top….mannnn this software is demanding!!!!

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  • AAFP

    Here a Traktor fan.
    But i think that NI is letting Traktor die slowly. Because they are just focussing to Mashine and all that production and live set stuff, that is great and very helpfully. But, Traktor need to upgrade a lot (maybe some video compatible for example), and the thing that the newest MacOS don’t longer support S4 MK1 and older controller, just kill us, because someones of their users can’t afford a new controller right now, so we are stuck in the oldest MacOS.
    I have the hope that NI improves Traktor..

    Greeting from Mexico!

  • Chuck Lehnhard

    they ask what is the most popular DJ software and then say this about VDJ…..
    Just because they aren’t in the graphics above doesn’t mean they don’t have more users….

    Doesn’t it mean that they are the most popular if they have the most users???? LOL

  • Matt Drachemann

    I think one reason that it’s difficult to measure the relative popularity of Serato and Traktor is because neither of them (or any of the alternatives) are clearly “better” than the other.. Have used them both (as well as Deckadance, Ableton, Virtual DJ etc) and at the end of the day they all do the same thing, mix 2 or more tunes together, just in slightly different ways. It’s fairly common to see people use a controller setup for home/practice/convenience and also use whatever is available at a gig, if you’re doing it right the basic skills apply to any setup, which I believe is a good thing and means you can be flexible about when/where/how you can play. Where it gets interesting is when you start to use the specific features of a particular setup to do something that the other ones can’t do.. but even then it’s futile to try and argue that one is better than the other, I reckon it comes down to whatever “feels right” for you, especially considering the majority of people will generally learn how to “mix” first and then (maybe) figure out all the other features as they go. I usually advise people who ask which one they should get to try them both and see what they find more comfortable to use and/or decide based on whatever controller feels best for them.

    Personally, I tend to use my Akai AMX + AFX (which work with Serato) for most gigs these days, they’re super portable and pretty damn solid, plus they have inputs for CDJs or turntables if I’m feeling that way inclined.. however I still use Traktor for the occasional impromptu DJ set straight off the laptop.

  • Mike Czech

    I just like seeing the “Christmas present” spikes for all the software, and how a month later, it drops back down to normal. 2014 & 2015 were growth years for Serato DJ, and it looks to have started to decline in 2016. It will be interesting to see the trend for the next 1-2 years. They have really slowed their pace of innovation while trying to unify under the SDJ tent, and while adding (way too) many nearly feature-identical controllers across numerous brands and price ranges, they have done little to push the platform forward (IMHO).

  • Noah Weinstein

    I use djay pro and I love it

  • Tony Mitchell

    Virtual DJ. Just bought a Reloop Mixon 4. VDJ8 recognized the controller no problem. Serato still isn’t working and the unit has “Serato” written on it. LOL! In fact I cant even find an area to configure the controller in Serato (1.9.5). Not that I use Serato anyway. Serato hasn’t figured out how to scale their app on high-res laptop displays. I left Traktor years ago. Algoriddim DJ is nice. Used RekordBox on my Wego 3 and its ok as well. Cross DJ has forgot about crossfader curves (option missing).

    The only app that I can use with all my hardware (Reloop TM8, Reloop Mixon 4, Wego 3, NS7III) and it work is VDJ8.

    • deejdave

      Serato added Reloop Mixon support back on Nov. 15th via SDJ 1.9.4.

      Furthermore Serato supports each and every device you mentioned

      Reloop TM8 –
      Reloop Mixon 4 –
      DDJ-Wego3 –
      NS7III –

      This has user error written all over it………………

      • Tony Mitchell

        Didn’t have the AISO drivers installed. Strangely enough VDJ8 worked without the AISO drivers installed. Serato does support the hardware but I believe that their license structure is a bit more expensive. Anyway… The main issue I have with Serato is that the application doesn’t scale well with high res laptop displays. You end up getting super tiny fonts and the app is unusable at that state. Switching the laptop down to 1920×1080 fixes it but I didn’t buy a 3200×1800 resolution laptop to turn it down to 1080p.

      • Tony Mitchell

        I downloaded and installed the AISO drivers and its still not working. I connect my NS7 III and Serato works fine. There isn’t anywhere that I can see where you can define the controller in Serato. And to be honest there really isn’t much to this stuff. It’s supposed to be plug-and-play and it isn’t. My NS7 III is plug and play, my MIXON 4? Not so much. So could you enlighten me on the possible user error that this could be?

        • Tony Mitchell

          Only thing it could possibly be on my side is that I still have the iOS cable connected while using the USB connection. The cable wasn’t connected to my iPad, just the Mixon, and the other end not connected to anything. VDJ8 worked fine with the controller setup like that. I’ll know for sure tonight when I try to get it going again. This isn’t user error.

          • deejdave

            Best bet is to contact Serato support or one of the other individuals using the controller with Serato. I have long since switched to Mac and I don’t troubleshoot Windows anymore so I won’t be much help to you. I know for a fact (personally) the controller works with my laptops though. Didn’t like the feel of it but that is another story.

            As far as defining the controller (or configuring as mentioned earlier) there is no such thing with Serato. Being it only works with Native Serato hardware there is no configuring to be done as there is with VDJ, Djay Pro, Traktor etc.

  • ghal gol hajt

    Mobile dj’s use virtual dj, turntablists use serato ,technical djs use traktor and club djs use on rekordbox. I personally prefer traktor. You can create insane mappings with more creativity.

    • I use Traktor and Virtual DJ and Rekordbox here and there when the venue has a CDJ setup and do very few mobile gigs. My gigs are mostly nightlife (Bars, Clubs, Restaurants, Bowling Alley) with a Sunday Brunch included. While I can see why you said this it doesn’t always hold true of the users of thee programs.

  • killmedj

    If Serato every pull their thumb out of their ass and add HID PROPERLY and not just to the very high end Pioneer gear then maybe this would be a much tighter race!

    • deejdave

      You WERE able to properly read the graphs above and such correct? I understand it does not portray a close race but it is in fact Serato in the lead…………. they are the ones in BLUE on top of the rest?????

      DJTT’s little poll shows different but last I checked this is DJTT AKA Traktorland. Even the writer of this article knows this and acknowledged it when eh said “As might be expected, our audience leans more heavily Traktor than the industry as a whole.” As in the industry as a whole is NOT leaning toward Traktor 🙂

      • Dubby Labby

        Put Ableton in the graph and let’s what happens…

        • deejdave

          Maybe. Keep in mind the graph shows actual searches but it does not separate pro’s, amateurs and those just curious. Ableton is not DJing in the sense a fan or music enthusiast would traditionally think and not for nothing these are the masses of people who really command data such as this. Plainly put DJ’s are dime a dozen yet for every dozen of “DJ’s” there are swarms of just everyday fans, hobbyists and starters searching for their potential DJ solution which lets be honest Ableton would not even be a blip on the radar. “Where are the wheels” would be question #1 and question #2 would be “what the hell am I looking at? Peeps speak of Traktor being to far into remixing/producing well……………… Ableton? Yeah.

          Again not judging just attempting to categorize properly is all as NOBODY gets to decide what a “proper” dj is but each of us. If you enjoy it, make money off it, or are striving to accomplish either then it is what it is.

          • Dubby Labby

            IMHO djing has entered in the “niche market” for pro segment and at the same time in comodity for amateurs. Live producing or mash could be next frontier for booth as seems point the Ableton disruption into DAW vs Dj gap and how it has evolved.
            I see lots of amateurs buying controllers but it seems “less jog” and “more grids” (or groovebox like volca) year by year. S8/D2 or Dj808 point that too, Apc, launchpad and finger drumming madness seems growing against ttablism or DVS mixing. Even the ToRaiz points towards this direction… right?
            So what’s most popular Dj software? Well let’s start for define “What’s djing in 2016?” and then make a poll with all the options involved.
            It seems the line between tables and beat mashers is blurring day by day where tables (and jogs) are the loser tools and software changing their interaction interface by new workflows. Better? Worst? Sign of the times nothing else.

          • deejdave

            Just going to put this out there. There is probably not a single Pioneer device WITH jog wheels that did not sell more than the D2/S8/S5 COMBINED…………….. In short N.I. is not the best way to gauge what is happening in the booth or out. While I certainly appreciate my S8 up and down I would be foolish to believe it even approaches the popularity of any Pio DDJ series device.

            Toraiz, Launch & N.I. S series devices absolutely point toward changes and shifts in trends and definitions…………. if these devices were really showing up in booths (in mass) then it would be a sign for sure. They have not yet though. Not here in states (NY/FL) at least.

            Grids are for SYNCing reasons with basic mixing nothing more. A sad reality but a reality indeed. I see the need for SYNC so trust I am by no means a purist or anything and I love solutions but I do agree there SHOULD be a path of some sorts to get to a proper destination. Otherwise you may be walking in circles and you would never know.

          • Dubby Labby

            Agreed again but you are missing the whole picture again (IMHO not ranting mate 😉 )
            Pioneer is the old paradigm too and not only in shape factor but also in business model.
            It means (to me of course) how the things were done vs how the things are being done.
            Let me show you an example (I was reading this before come to see your answer ;))

            In 2016 lots of people deal with things like this. From modded synths or modular to make them own arduino, raspi or FPGA solution for djing. 10 years ago some users carry electribe grooveboxes set (or Mc909), today volca series are a trend themselves.

            So the thing is are this people going to dj with pioneer gear in the future or it’s pioneer who has launched a groovebox to compite (or integrate) the maschine/Ableton workflow?

            Live producing and mash is the next frontier even if you dj in a yoga class :}

            In numbers I can argue there is most launchpad, Apc, monomes, volcas etc than pioneer gear sold (and not buyed all by the same person) but the internet reflection will be biased since this kind of things have exponential curves. It could seem Pioneer still rocks djing but in relative (% of the total newcomers which grow as technology is more affordable) numbers the old paradigm lose users day by day. Pioneer can’t evolve so fast as NI (and for the first time shown a non finished product ad with ToRaiz) and NI don’t see themselves doing hardware (as the stated on interview even considering embed system like NUCs)
            In the meantime look also how active are dj forums and how active is AudioBus forum alone.
            It will not happen from one day to another but it’s happen since Ableton come and growing since Korg decided release “hackable” gear (powered by Arduino/Raspi and 3D printing revolution).
            Djs will keep expending money on trusted solutions like pioneer sure but all of us get old soon or later and my nephews are playing lego mindstorm not weegos.
            Time will told us my friend.

          • Oddie O’Phyle

            LOL… I was one of those guys with an SH-201, MC-808, Live 5 or 6, with a UC-33e and a 1st gen launchpad (when they finally came out) about 10 years back. Those days were pretty fun… lots of cable salad though.

            Korg is awesome, I love the fact that they leave contacts for MIDI IN/OUT on their PCBs to do MIDI mods for their lower cost synths like the MONO line, I think they even have an M3 in them (if memory serves me right).

  • Flip

    Traktor was always a “real” digital DJing solution. Serato started as an digital simulator for analog DJing and kept it that way till they started to copy the ideas of Traktor – as all the others do. The paradigm-shift of DJing was made by Traktor. They re-invented the way of mixing and interacting with music. Even most of the new features on CDJs are copied from Traktor. And they are still pushing it with great ideas and new formats of music(!!!). There is absolutely no reason for me to change and I’ll always recommend Noobs using Traktor – that’s peak of science. And almost every Mac-OS Update I see the poor Serato users suffering… Big thanks to NI for continuous progression and reliable high quality Software!!!

    • Tony Mitchell

      Fanboy drivel. Turntable Dj’s abandoned Traktor years ago. Their hardware that isn’t over 5 years old doesn’t even have Jog-Wheels. Depending on your DJ style Traktor might be for you. But if you are into turntable’ism. The only NI hardware (and software) that I see anywhere near that scene is the Z2 Mixer. And I bet that upsets the hell out of NI that folks are still scratching and doing turntable tricks.

      • Flip

        You don’t understand. Scratching isn’t new. 4 Decks Loop-FX-Cuepoint-Juggling is a new way of interacting with music. With no need for jog or pitch you can focus on narrative…

        • Tony Mitchell

          4 Decks Loop-FX-Cuepoint-Juggling is a new way of interacting with music but not the only way. Different strokes for different folks and NI seems to be catering to DJ’s who perform like you just mentioned. There are other styles (old or not) that are popular and NI just doesn’t seem to give a damn about it.

          • Mb

            so you mean that NI should make a hardware for you otherwise they suck ? hehe maybe the way you want to play is not that big since NI dont give a damn abou it…lmao…you should know that they try to make so much money as possible and not to sell 5 unit a

    • Ramon Richie

      Well… I abandoned Traktor because of audio issues on MacOS, this wasn’t solved until the last MacOS update, so in my case (and fellow DJ’s) it was Traktor that was bogged by the OS. (One guy had to restart during a set and boy Traktor takes long to restart… VDJ launches in 2 seconds)
      After trying out Serato and RekordBox, I settled on VirtualDJ. Did a lot of remapping of my Traktor S4 and must say I am very happy with it!
      I started out in the past with Serato and a DDJ-SR, but when you unplug the controller the software becomes crippled making it difficult to “play/explore” with tracks and transitions on the road.
      In my opinion all the DJ software is pretty cool actually and it still seems personal preference (and DJ style) is the reason to go/stick with one.

      • Jeremiah Daniels

        I truly believe Virtual DJ 8 is the most underrated and joked on softwares on the market. I have never understood most djs demeanor about VDJ, but almost every dj around my area that I have shown the true potential of the software has had a complete 360 on there view points about it… and now that there is less of a negetive stigma around it, there are alot of local djs around here rocking out with VDJ. And honestly, VDJ has the BEST user community online…feeling much more like a family than I’ve ever felt with the other top softwares…and I own Traktor Pro 2, Serato DJ, VDJ8, and Djay Pro.

  • Danny Martin

    What about Ableton Live? I know it is mostly used for music production and live performances, but it can also be used as a dj platform, and I feel Ableton has been increasing their market share. Any thoughts anyone?

    • Oddie O’Phyle

      Ableton is a DAW, not a DJ platform even if you can launch clips in session view.

    • Dubby Labby

      Wrong site to point to moon, my friend. If it hasn’t jog or urntables it isn’t djing is a common mantra here (well until NI decided to go the same route and broke some hearts in the middle…)
      Good luck!

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  • Paul Huryk

    Having tried both Traktor and Serato before making the move, Traktor had the ability to run any interface, while Serato (at least at that time) was stuck with Rane’s hardware or compatible mixers. I’ve always thought or Serato as a hip-hop, top 40, wedding DJ type of system; while Traktor was what the big name club jocks used.

    • Tony Mitchell

      Try VDJ8

  • final scratch
  • Oddie O’Phyle

    My main software is Traktor, exporting history to an HTML file for station logging is just too convenient.

    My secondary go to is Mixvibes Cross as I can use it like Rekord Buddy for cross platform import/export and it’s stable. I use this when dealing with unstable updates from Traktor, instead of rolling back (I figure it helps NI with data gathering for bug fixes).

    Sometimes I use Rekordbox DJ at home, when I want to switch it up a bit. Might as well since the music is already prepped for export to USB. I also BETA test Serato DJ.

  • Envinite

    Poor Decakdance, never mentioned by anyone. :/

    • Oddie O’Phyle

      No mention of Cross either.

      • BoldFaceType

        Mixvibes Cross excels at:

        -Beat gridding (best in industry hands down)
        -Key finding (2nd only to MIK)
        -Soundcloud (original track selection, largely free)
        -DVS (open source)
        -Rekordbox DJ compatibility (of all the warez Pioneer could have emulated they choose Cross. There are very good reasons for this, and why it escapes people confounds me).

        I’m not saying Cross the best DJ software. Cross does have some short-comings, (FX for example). However, when you compare the quality of it’s *essential core features* to the top 3, it’s dumbfounding how often Cross gets over looked.

    • Spacecamp

      Acquired by Gibson/Stanton last year. There have been tiny support updates, but nothing major as far as I’ve seen. Would be great to see this software make a comeback 🙂

      • Envinite

        Yeah, I know. Last major update is back when IL Remote is introduced years ago. Now that Stanton bought that, Idk if IL Remote still supported, haven’t checked since I already moved to Traktor.

        It’s a shame, thought IL will beat the market since their free midi app is very easy to use and to map, and just as fast as TouchOSC, make it the easiest path for a starting to DJ like me back then.

    • BoldFaceType

      What’s ironic is that most Traktor users would really like Deckadance. Compared to other DJ warez, the two are more similar than different. VST client AND host?!! Midi scripting?!! Isn’t this how all DJ software should be made? As the natural extension of a DAW? Maybe it’s just me…

      • Roy Bear

        Deckadance is indeed the better choise, if your going that popular DJ/producer-fad, but Image Lines Softwre is sadly only availible on Windows… and windows sucked a heap back in 2011, when I was looking around for my new Setup.

  • Rolfski

    It has been my understanding that Traktor has always been relatively more popular outside the US.

    • Dubby Labby

      I feel it’s still that and the weird about it is Remix decks are what the Bridge should be in scratching terms and at the same time the funniest part of Ableton audio clips with DVS control. Link with Maschine will definetly blow up the NI side since you don’t need extra new hardware (Dj808 I’m looking to you) to have full scratchable groovebox setup.
      At last all the brands seems merging into one direction towards Ableton paradigm.

      • CUSP

        I haven’t played with the scratch functionality of Traktor Scratch Pro in a while, can you scratch the Remix Decks now or did you mean something else?

        • Ben W

          Yes you have always been able to. Pretty neat function

        • Dubby Labby

          Yes, they were scratch controllable since they come. Of course you should have dvs enabled version not only the one you get with F1.

    • Peter Principle

      funny how house music is a us creation, but so often not associated with it.

      It may come down to serato’s parent rane not having the strongest distribution in europe. NI, while based in Berlin, has an LA office. Rane was bought up this year, so we’ll see how that might change

      • Gavin Varitech

        Rane is not Serato’s parent. They are two completely separate companies.

        • Peter Principle

          my mistake, since all of the older serato hardware says RANE on it

          • Gavin Varitech

            Rane is a hardware company, Serato is a (little) software company (from New Zealand). Early on they partnered as hardware-software with Scratch Live. Now, of course, Serato partners with numerous hardware companies (Rane, Pioneer, Numark, Denon) as a software provider.

          • Peter Principle

            Smart move, although rane, numark, and denon are all owned by the same parent company

          • deejdave

            CRAZY how you knew Rane recently got sold to InMusic yet thought they were Serato’s parent company……………

          • Peter Principle

            I’m not a dj, so never had to look at seratos website, but I’ve only seen rane and serato on hardware at parties

    • CUSP

      I think it comes down to the fact that Native Instruments simply does not *do* elastic beat gridding, and will not allow the user to to display waveforms side-by-side (or over-under). Beatgridding is among one of the worst (albeit probably most important) pieces of their technology… if you require an accurate beatgrid to sync music, shouldn’t beatgridding be a strong feature in your program?

      I grow increasingly frustrated the more these companies refuse to listen to their customers and will not give a respectful 2-way communication with them.

      Anyhow, I like Traktor and I like Serato DJ, but I don’t use them for the same reason (as listed above)… it’s one of the reasons I’d been using my Novation Twitch for so many years.

      • Spacecamp

        >will not allow the user to to display waveforms side-by-side (or over-under).
        Amusingly, Traktor DJ on iOS has this layout by default (/necessity)

        • CUSP

          Yes, and it took a while to incorporate “Freeze mode” too. Sadly, Traktor Pro does not do a bunch of things Traktor DJ does, but it does more than Traktor DJ in many other areas.

          • Roy Bear

            and sadly this product is dead…
            was fun, thou. Made me think “Wow! This is the future! Awesome!”

            First they kill (also big thanks to Apple, great job!) the most intresting feature, the Dropbox Metasync, then they don’t develope nothing new, and don’t let us use external Hardware, or even their own Hardware.

            Thanks NI. Just bought Serato DJ Suite and a DDJ-SB2.

            Anyone interested in a S8? Shipping from Germany…

          • CUSP

            I just bought an S8… I really like it so far.

          • Roy Bear

            Don’t get me wrong, I love the stuff NI does, generally.
            But there are decissions made by NI which are not comprehensable.
            Like the death of the loop recorder on the second generation of their Traktor Controller. Or that metadatasync…

          • CUSP

            Yes, I’m right there with you. Some decisions just don’t make any sense.

      • Rolfski

        If anything, one program is not more popular over the other because the other one sucks. That’s just bullshit. Both are very solid and highly loved software pieces.

        • CUSP

          Didn’t I insinuate that by saying I use both?

    • I wish I had a dollar for every DJ I heard still describing the difference in these two software’s to people that ask. I have to laugh sometimes. When people say “Traktor is geared more towards Electronic Music” I say “I call B.S. on that statement.” I play open format using Traktor. It is a bit different than using VDJ which I also use as well however the principals are pretty much the same. Both are great and have their individual strengths and weaknesses.

      • deejdave

        You are welcome to say anything and have opinions but it is a fact that N.I. with its recent producing/live remixing moves is in fact marketing toward electronic music. Your using it with open format does not make this any less true. Is there any software out there that will shut down if the correct genre is not being played?

      • Rolfski

        There’s no denying that in it’s early years Traktor was definitely more geared towards house music than Serato though. Nowadays it doesn’t really matter any more, both are excellent for any style.

  • Machiel

    Google trends is not really scientific when it comes to ‘userbase’. What it does tell you is how many people are doing those searches, but it could also be growing due to a bug, some version not working on the newest osx etc. But it’s at least one data angle.

    Best way would be to contact manufacturers and blatantly ask them, or contact a few large distributors and ask them how they think the market is split up (is it 50/50, 70/30 etc.) – for simplicity I’m just counting Traktor and Serato here but you get the idea.

    Then doing some secondary research (think press releases, new management appointments etc.) and inferring some kind of growth or numbers from that. Maybe an executive of one of those companies did a presentation somewhere and showed some numbers etc.

    If you want to do it properly you do all that and also contact other companies in their supply chain. Ask them what they think. You’d be surprised how many people will talk if you have the right interest and ‘expert’ tone.

    In some countries you can find out through the export/import register how many units of certain products have been shipped. If you’re lucky, you get exact numbers, if you’re not you can get at least e.g. ‘DJ software’. But then, if you know the numbers of one company in that country, you can infer the others form that as well by making some estimates.

    Overall, probably not worth it just for the hell of it so Google Trends comes close enough 🙂

    • pixelbreak

      I concur it there are lots of nuances that should be taken into account and process the data with a grain of salt. Saying that, Traktor has been shifting focus over the recent year to be more Abletonesque by including more live performance feature as remix decks, sequencers, stems; that might throw more users off but also the fact some are moving back to CDJs/Turntables with no software. Whilst Serato is more focused on being DJ centric. I’ve tried both and both deliver, although after I got my laptop stolen, I will move away from software and go simpler with USBs…if stolen, they’re cheaper to replace.

      Rekordbox is a mix of Serato with a hint of Traktor; I has gain popularity due to time lock exclusivity with new Pioneer gear and quick updates, haven’t try Rekordbox DJ as the price is the barrier for me…wish it came as a bundle with CDJs (XDJ-1000mk2 cough cough) to try it out.

      At the end what matter is not which is more popular but which has the features that apply the most to your style and workflow. Alongside that, support from developers and stability 🙂

    • DOCENT

      Also, These numbers doesn’t discern MAC id’s from the number of search queries. It could be possible that a higher proportion of serato, or traktor users, search for multiple answers to questions pertinent to their software choice. and on the flip side, there specific users could also have an aversion to using google at any point in their process for gather information on their software of choice.

      So there is this risk of overcounting and undercounting.

      additionally, the survey in which you conducted that inquired about software choice is biased because the sample itself has self selected into the survey. which does explain why there is so much divergence between both data sets.

      But its an interesting point of reference, and as the gentleman said above me, the best way to find out sales is to just call up managment as ask them. A couple are publicly traded, so you can always just look at the 10k/q for that information.

      • Spacecamp

        What DJ software company is publicly traded?

      • Oddie O’Phyle

        NI and Serato are both privately owned companies.

        • DOCENT

          none of them, but there are a few retailers that are. AMZN & BBY. And up until a few years ago PNCOY could have been used to look at pioneers dj division.

          You can also get financials from private companies, although at a very high level, from various websites, like hoovers.

          or just call them them up.

    • Spacecamp

      I’ve asked manufacturers directly in meetings. They’re generally unwilling to share their own data on the record.

      The best secondary information is the dominance of the DDJ-S series on sales reports of DJ controllers/MIDI devices – which very much backs up the Google Trends results.

  • Per Jakobsen

    i use both equally, for different purposes, tech and house I use Traktor pro. Hip Hop and mixed I use Serato. Why? because I have different controllers, denon MCX 8000 (serato) and Kontrol S8 (traktor). the denon has jog wheels which i miss on the new Traktor controllers.

    • ShiftFunction

      Different music styles naturally lend themselves to different mixing styles I find. If I were mixing hip-hop, it’d have to be true to the style and be on vinyl/DVS whereas my usual techno I’m happier with my Traktor/Ableton/Maschine live setup

    • CUSP

      Meh, get a turntable and plug it in to your S8, problem solved. The Control Vinyl is there for that purpose. Now if you have live drummer stuff, I get where you’re coming from with elastic beatgridding. That makes more sense, but you can “tame the track” by dropping it into Ableton and then outputting a more beatgrid friendly track.

      • Tony Mitchell

        What if he only wants to carry around a single piece of gear? And please don’t recommend the S2/S4. Not having Jog-Wheels is a major omission. NI needs to get their heads out of their rear ends and make a current controller with all the bells and whistles, that has jog wheels.

        • CUSP

          I disagree with your assertion, jog wheels have always been stand-ins for turntables. If you want to scratch, that’s really the better option. To me, using touchstrips is actually better than a jog wheel because you can needle search and drop (instead of spin-spin-spinning the jog wheel), and the touch strip can be used as a two-point effect encoder.

          Answering your other question: what if he only wants to carry around a single piece of gear?

          I guess that all depends on what he wants to do. I can’t think of an all-in-one that does everything, so he’d have to pick what was important to him. I’ve gone with a solid base and added modular gear (like my drum machine and keyboard), but now my Kontrol S8 is so monsterous, it’s taking up all of my operating space. I might need to get another Crane stand.

          Basically what I’m saying is that if you want to go full out, you can’t be stuck in one box. You’re probably going to make a couple trips to the car, and you’re probably going to sub-mix all of your stuff before sending to the mixing board.

          Please tell me if I was off-base on this. I was trying to answer the question I think you meant to ask.

    • Tony Mitchell

      Why buy a piece of gear (S8) that is missing something?