DJ + Production Gear at NAMM 2016: Rumors + Speculation
We’re just a few weeks away from NAMM 2016, one of the biggest industry conventions and often the hub of new product announcements for DJ and production gear. We’ve got a few clues and ideas of what the convention might bring, read on to see who might be working on new gear and about to make big announcements – including Denon DJ, Pioneer DJ, and even Richie Hawtin.
New Top-Of-The-Line Gear from Pioneer DJ
DJs excitedly contacted us a few months back with a purported leak of a new mixer from Pioneer appeared, but the image was quickly removed from most places online. If the photo was real or not, what makes sense from Pioneer DJ at NAMM 2016 would be a refresh of all of their (aging) top-of-the-line models.
The DJM-900 NXS was introduced five years ago in 2011, and the CDJ-2000 NXS came out in October of 2012 – old enough that it still has a “DVD ROM” compatibility badge on it:
Hardware Project From Richie Hawtin/ENTER
Richie Hawtin has always been on the cutting-edge of production and DJing – so it stands to reason that he’d eventually start entering (pun intended) into the gear industry itself. We know that something is coming very soon from Richie and his Enter camp, but the details remain sparse. We suspect it could be a piece of gear that makes the hybrid live production style DJ sets he plays (see Dubfire’s very similar DJ rig as an example) a bit easier.
New Hercules Jogwheel-Free Controller
Things have been relatively quiet at Hercules in terms of new gear that isn’t yet another digital DJ all-in-one controller – but based on two teases so far, it looks like they’re poised to launch a new product that will buck that trend. The teaser video above gives a few brief glimpses at a jogwheel-free DJ controller, but based on comments on the recent finger drumming video contest we held, it looks like that controller is being used by Victo in the video below:
Roland Maschine-Style Sampler
We take rumors from internet-based “industry insiders” with a huge grain of salt, as often people who claim to have inside knowledge on the industry make such a claim just for internet karma. However, over at Gearslutz, user “The Knoq” made a name for himself by first correctly predicting the MPC Touch from Akai that was announced in October of 2015.
His most recent NAMM 2016 claim is that he’s seen an upcoming sampler product from Roland that directly competes with Native Instrument’s Maschine and Ableton’s Push 2, that will use their Analog Circuit Behavior first introduced in the AIRA line. See the complete archived post on Native Instruments’ forums here (the original has since been modified). The sampler will allegedly have modes built into it that emulate classic samplers like E-mu SP-1200, the Ensoniq Mirage and Roger Linn-era Akai MPCs.
Teenage Engineering: New Pocket Operators?
Teenage Engineering knocked it out of the park last year at NAMM 2015 with the introduction of their Pocket Operators, and apparently sold out of the first run of units to distributors within hours of the NAMM showroom floor opening up. It makes logical sense that we’ll see a new model or two in this line as they’re pretty simple devices, and we suspect TE is itching to make a few more similar products available for a new year of sales.
Denon DJ Revival At NAMM 2016
There’s not a lot of detail here so far, but suffice to say that prior to Native Instruments’ Kontrol line, Pioneer’s biggest competitor in terms of standalone DJ hardware was historically Denon DJ. Now with over a full year under new ownership, the brand has teased 2016 as being one of the biggest years for new products from them yet.
The specific direction of Denon DJ is still vague – but I’ve written a bit of basic lay-of-the-land speculation on the above teaser video in this article from last week.
Traktor Pro 3? Kontrol Z4? (Don’t Hold Your Breath)
A new product from Native Instruments has to be around the corner, right? Don’t get too excited, Traktor and Maschine fans, as historically doesn’t attend the NAMM show or launch any new products at the show itself. However, they have been known to launch products in the surrounding weeks (Traktor 2.5 and the Kontrol F1 were announced the week after NAMM back in 2012).
But has NI spent too much time and energy in Stems over the last year to have anything new on deck? We’re hoping that they’ve got some surprises in store for DJs and producers in the coming months, but so far we haven’t heard any rumors to support that.
Do you have NAMM 2016 wishes, rumors, and theories to share? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.