Akai’s New AFX and AMX Controllers for Serato DJ

Akai is launching two new controllers for Serato DJ that have a small form factor but unlock full control of the software. We’ve got details on the AFX, an effects and cue point focused controller, and the AMX, a two channel mixer with a soundcard.


When Serato DJ launched, it was clear that the formerly digital-vinyl centric company was finally starting to take a controller friendly approach to their DJ software. But unlike their major competing software, Traktor, most of the controllers that came supported in Serato DJ have been all-in-one devices that incorporate jogwheels, a mixing section, and effects control – if not many more control surfaces.

Akai’s new controllers fill a clear gap in the Serato controller world, modular controllers that are akin to the Kontrol X1/F1/Z1 lineup, suitable for use next to a variety of other controllers or just by themselves.


Akai’s AFX controller – not too unlike the DDJ-SP1

The AFX takes a secondary controller approach to Serato DJ, much like the DDJ-SP1 subcontroller from Pioneer. This controller has a 8 velocity-sensitive pads with RGB feedback backlighting, allowing for control of cue points, loops, slicer, samples, or even the just-announced Serato Flip feature (read more here).

Flip Mode controls pictured on the Akai AFX controller

There’s also browsing/loading control, a strip-search touch strip at the top of the unit, and of course, 6 knobs for controlling FX levels, assignment, rate, and dry/wet levels. The FX knobs are touch sensitive, just like those found on the Numark NS7 II, allowing the FX to be activated quickly with a tap, or permanently with a twist.

The AFX will be available “this fall” for an expected price of $199.99 / £139.99 / € 179.99. That includes codes for unlocking Serato Flip (normally $29) and the Back Pack FX pack ($20).


A MIDI mixer for Serato DJs – click to zoom in on the Akai AMX

We’ve long heard digital DJs clamoring for more options in low-cost MIDI mixers with integrated sound cards. Native Instruments had their crack at it with the Kontrol Z1, and now Akai is bringing the same level of functionality to the Serato DJ world with the AMX controller.

The AMX is a two channel mixing controller with a 24-bit/96kHz audio interface – two sets of RCA Phono/Line inputs for Serato DJ timecode control, as well as a pair of RCA output ports. Conveniently the AMX comes with the full version of Serato DJ – yes, that means that the software will run in a fully-functional live mode with just this controller plugged in.

The controls on the AMX are fairly standard – two line faders, gain/EQ/filter knobs (also touch sensitive), and a mini innoFADER resting in the crossfader position. Browse and loading controls are also prominent on the controller, as well as basic transport controls (cue/sync/pause/play) – something that the Kontrol Z1 was sorely missing.

The AMX will also be available this fall, with an expected price of $249.99 / £179.99 / € 229.99. This includes a full version of Serato DJ, but if you want to unlock DVS control, that will be sold separately as an additional update.

Think that Akai’s new offerings are worth picking up? Let us know your thoughts in the comments. 

akai afxakai amxControllerismfx controlserato DJserato flipslim controllers
Comments (85)
Add Comment
  • Pedro Estrela

    In short, the AMX can be the combination of the Z1+X1 with the right traktor mapping.
    it supports 4x decks, 6x hot cues, Loops, 5x insta-FX pages, “super cross fader”.
    Also, my own upcoming extension adds Beatjump, Loop roll, Selectable FX control, Zoom + Layout changes, Library adv browsing.

  • Karl Watson

    Does anybody know if this mixer has a midi clock send?

    • Karl Watson


  • Dystinct

    I picked the AMX up yesterday and will be returning today. The main problem for me is that serato dj will not support pass through audio with this mixer. The line and phono input can only be used as time code. I have too much vinyl that I would like to 1) play through the mixer or 2) rip to serato. Can’t do either with the AMX.

    I also noticed a lot of pops through the audio. Not sure what the issue is there. The touch sensitive knobs were fun for about 20 minutes and then got annoying.

    • Gaseous Clay

      Good grief I missed this brutal fact on the spec list. No pass through audio???? Fack me this is a deal killer. I’m a vinyl guy looking to make the transition. Specifically I want to jam my old records – record the breaks, then quick swap to the time code records and jam what I just recorded. Damn.

      Thanks for pointing it out. I will be cancelling my preorder tomorrow morning.

      • Daniel Cracknell

        My AMX supports pass through audio, which you can also record. Just select Thru. I was really surprised as I had read that this wouldn’t be possible when I first pre-ordered but I was willing to suffer that when thinking about the price of the unit.

        Also, I never actually heard that it wouldn’t pass through audio from Akai. This was something I had read on forums before the unit had actually shipped. Have faith and get involved.

        • Gaseous Clay

          Thanks for the reply. After I read buddy’s comment above I searched the Akai AMX site. In the FAQ section in plain print it said you can only run time code through the RCA inputs… No audio thru at this point, or something. That was 3 weeks ago, I’m sure of it.

          Now, it’s changed. Here’s the direct quote from the site, “The Akai AMX is a fully intergrated DVS system. You can plug in your phono turntables, or line level CD players to send Serato DJ time code. The DVS plugin can be purchased separately from Serato.

          These inputs can also be used to pass audio from any line level audio input by selecting THRU in the DVS drop down menu within Serato DJ.”

          This is a development from what it said 3 weeks ago, but still isn’t truly clear because turntables do NOT send out line level… They send out phono. Big difference, and is why every mixer has a switch for whether your inputting phono or line (I’m sure you know this, I’m not trying to patronize you or anything but I’m really hoping for clarity from somebody)

          So you’re saying you can put a real record on and pass the audio thru the AMX? There would have to be a phono/line switch at least… Maybe in the software?

          Again, thanks. Hope I’m not sounding like a dick I’m just a bit suspicious at the changing of info on their site, and it’s not 100% clear.

          • Daniel Cracknell

            Hi. Sorry about the delay. You are correct. There is a line/ phone switch by each of the gains.
            I’m glad you pasted the new release information in. As I said, I bought the mixer under the impression that their was no audio pass through as i had read this on the Akai website. It was only when I purchased the DVS Expansion that the Int, Rel, Abs and Thru options appeared on the software. I was stunned and thought I’d best try it out and as a result was very pleased. I used to have a Rane TTM 57SL and didn’t think it sounded as punchy passing audio thru but I will try again with a new stylus and repost. I like recording vinyl using Serato as it is easy fro me to name files whilst recording rather than post recording.

          • Gaseous Clay

            That’s f*ckin awesome! I will re-order it once and for all!!

          • Daniel Cracknell

            Enjoy! It is a bargain so far!

  • Serato DJ 1.7.1 Release: Akai AMX Support + Routine | NUTesla | The Informant

    […] We covered the AMX back in August but it is now confirmed that it is fully supported by the release of Serato DJ 1.7.1. This controller is a dedicated 2-channel mixer that sits as an affordable solution for DJs who need a native mixer for their set-up. It is compact like the Kontrol Z1 and features the much appreciated mini innoFADER. The controls are what you expect to find on a mixer and this controller is definitely one to consider for Serato DJs looking for a compact mixer. You can read more about the AMX and its sister product, the Akai AFX. […]

  • Serato DJ 1.7.1 Release: Akai AMX Support + Routine | DJ TechTools

    […] We covered the AMX back in August but it is now confirmed that it is fully supported by the release of Serato DJ 1.7.1. This controller is a dedicated 2-channel mixer that sits as an affordable solution for DJs who need a native mixer for their set-up. It is compact like the Kontrol Z1 and features the much appreciated mini innoFADER. The controls are what you expect to find on a mixer and this controller is definitely one to consider for Serato DJs looking for a compact mixer. You can read more about the AMX and its sister product, the Akai AFX. […]

  • DiiSiiMO

    The Akai AMX seems like the perfect solution to my live setup since my Novation Nocturn started to give trouble. I was thinking about buying the APC40 MK2 mainly for the fader and its simplicity, however, the AMX will give me a great innoFADER to use alongside my Ableton Push to do beat and vocal cuts during my performances.

  • Anonymous

    Anyone know if Akai will release some kind of stand/platform riser so you can put the AMX/AFX at a height that is flush with your turntables/CDJ……???

    It would be great if they can provide a platform/riser just like what NI did for the X1 and F1.

    Of course…if they do….it will be considered an upgrade and therefore will be a extra cost/accessory you would need to buy if its something you need/want.

    Saw most of the NAMM 2014 youtube vids for the AMX/AFX and in the vids…Akai has them sitting on platforms/risers.

    From just video alone…I can not tell what the dimensions and materials that they used to make those platforms for the AMX/AFX.

    Even if Akai does not release a platform/riser….In the end..if you really need some kind of platform…you could probably just DIY one yourself with plywood/foam or whatever materials you deem good =)

    • D.N.A.

      Yes, there is a case that doubles as a stand coming out for the AMX and AFX.

  • ????? ????????

    Just wonder if AMX has two dedicated stereo outputs (or four monofonic) one for master other for prelistening. Only two stereo outputs were mentioned. If built in audio is 4 at 4 then its a great interface not only for serato but for ableton also. PS: at my opinion.

    • D.N.A.

      The AMX has Master out, headphone out and 2 stereo inputs!

  • Greg

    and put some chroma caps on that thing its naked !!

    • Anonymous

      I don’t think you can put chroma caps on the Akai AMX/AFX. They are touch sensitive and therefore probably have a proprietary technology that renders them unreplaceable.

      DJTT…correct me if I am wrong….??? When I first saw the Akai’s…I too wanted to see if chroma caps can be put on them but than remembered that they are touch sensitive knobs.

  • Greg

    I wish there were a Traktor version Just maybe?AKAI is one of my favorite companies
    yea and I’m also Traktor CRAZY!

  • Michaeld

    Can we take this and just plug it for activate Serato dj and use an other table with soundcard like the djm750 ? Thank you

    • JWiLL

      Yes, the AMX unlocks the Serato decks, and can be used without any additional hardware.

  • tr4gik

    Damnn Pionner DDJ SX2 for serato, now this akai controler. Plus new feats in serato dj, NI WHERE THE FUCK ARE YOU????

  • Viirusone

    Companies keep coming out
    with the best gear for Serato. This sucks when you love using Traktor! I know
    you can edit the mapping and everything but who wants do that all the time. IMO
    Traktor software takes the cake but Serato has the best dedicated gear by far.

    • CUSP

      Have you tried using Serato? It’s actually a pretty good interface.

  • Viirusone

    Companies keep coming out with the best gear for Serato. This sucks when you love using Traktor! I know you can edit the mapping and everything but who wants do that all the time. IMO Traktor software takes the cake but Serato has the best dedicated gear by far.

  • toni

    Anybody knows the dimesions of this controllers?

  • DJ Tripp

    Wow. Another controller with ZERO thought to Serato Video. What’s the point?

    • lokey



    (AMX) 249 + 99 to work with serato dj dvs = 348 + 199 for AFX = 547 lol

  • angelo nasso

    why cant native instruments have a built in sound card as well thats a great idea

  • Keys

    No Mic input?

    • Anonymous

      Thats what sucks about this new mixer from Akai for Serato DVS DJ’s.

      Even though its a great midi mixer for serato DJ…it comes with some sacrifices that analog mixers have…like a mic input/channel, Balanced outs, record out, and aux in/out.

      Sacrifices had to be made somewhere and you are going to have to decide which features are most important for you in the long run.

      I am in a pickle between this mixer and a Pioneer DJM 250 paired with SL3 to compliment (2) Pioneer PLX-1000’s and a Macbook Pro.

      I don’t know about you….But I am gonna have to go with the Akai AMX as its the cheaper option. I don’t have to go out and buy a SL2/3/4. Plus…going with the Akai is a better option for me in the long run since I already know I am going to save up for a Pioneer DJM 900 SRT.

      Akai AMX all the way if your planning to upgrade to something WAY BETTER in the end.

      Forgot to mention…there are other ways around getting extra ins/outs/mic channels if you go with the Akai AMX. Just get a small 4-6 channel PA mixer. Should be able to give you the ins/outs/aux/mics/record that you need that a analog mixer has.


  • elry

    really interested in de small mixer.
    not really into dvs systems anymore and just might sell my SL3 for this compact solution.

  • Michael Gasca

    Is the Akia AFX controller midi mapable too ableton lite live 9 for studio use specifically mapping too ableton too control specific things you went too control in ableton

  • coolie ranks

    the afx has no browsing track and playlist function also no loading function. the shape of it is great it can fit between my tech’s and mixer. the ddi sp1 is jus big and inconvenient. might jus get the sp1 because of browsing, and loading functions.

    • D.N.A.

      The AFX has browse and load to deck.

      • Anonymous


  • Sketch

    If that was a 4-channel mixer, I’d be alllll over this. I wouldn’t be surprised if they did release one eventually. But NI really needs to watch its back, Serato is currently leaping ahead (in my books anyway)

    • CUSP

      Would you be all over it if it was a 2+2 mixer?

      • Sketch

        That would be better, but I’d still prefer a 4-channel. There’s always the Rane Sixty-Four I suppose, but we shall wait and see. I’m surprised Akai’s coming out with DJing equipment at all, so who knows what else I should expect, haha

        • CUSP

          Yeah, I speculate that the AKAI brand is better received than Numark and they’ll probably phase out the Numark brand.

          • Sketch

            Numark’s chance to turn around is with it’s current products I think, the NS7 II and the NV. If they don’t go down well you might be right. It is good to see Akai grow again though

    • D.N.A.

      Yes that is possible to do with AFX. AFX supports as many decks as the connected Serato enabled Audio Interface, Mixer or controller will support. So if you have a 4 Channel Serato Mixer, Controller or Interface, AFX will support all unlocked decks. SL3 you have control for 3 decks and so forth.

      • Sketch

        Thanks DNA! I was thinking of using these AFX units with a Numark NV or Rane Sixty-Four.

  • floorfiller

    Something like z1 with DVS outs and NI has nothing to worry about ,because if you allready own TSP pro and bunch of NI gear i have no will to go to serato just because of this and paid for something like dvs upgrade ? But other than that cool stuff from akai and serato.

  • Fohrenbach

    Very impressive. Can’t wait to see if NI responds with new products of their own before this year is finished. X1 MK3 and Z1 MK2? Something even better? Can’t wait to see the technology continue to evolve!

    • Notanon

      Bit too soon for them, IMO. Took a few years for the X1 Mk2 to be released after the Mk1, can’t see a Mk3 being rushed out in a faster time-frame. Same with a Z1 Mk2.

      A F1 Mk2, on the other hand, might be more likely.

    • Chaser720

      Only response I see from NI will be something along the lines of, “YOU WILL GET NOTHING… AND LIKE IT!!!”

      • Rob Ticho,Club mU

        I think NI is definitely cooking something up, hence the recent Pan Pot video talking about the f1 and future of djing. I’m with @Notanon in betting on an F1 MKII.

        I bet they announce something before the end of August, it will be in stores at the end of October and help their holiday sales numbers. We’ve seen that in the past.

        • endaghoor

          we don’t need more over expensive traktor controllers.. We want bugfree software, that’s what we need.

          • Rob Ticho,Club mU

            What software is buggy for you? Traktor has always run like a champ for me. Ableton still crashes on me but I only use that for production.

  • Mike

    It’s good that other company other than NI started making this type of controllers, now NI won’t have the whole market of compact controllers and its good for low budget djs or someone who want something compact with a lot control and even someone who want to add controller with specific features (i have reloop mixage and its missing proper fx section so now i can buy the AFX instead of X1). Also there is not many all-in controllers without jog wheels so its good if you dont need them. one last thing, NI made Z1 without many features so you have to buy the X1 Ni sure know how to make money.

    • lob

      NI designed the Z1 as an iOS controller for Traktor DJ. It’s a minimalistic approach, as it only takes over the functions that are not better or equally good done on an iPad. Mixing, Cueing, Soundcard on the controller. Transport control, FX and browsing on the iPad.

    • Oddie O'Phyle

      ??? novation has been making them for years, the nocurn and the “twitch” come to mind.

    • Marco Hooghuis

      They don’t have the whole market

    • Jacob Stadtfeld

      Honestly, the Behringer CMD line is a huge step up in quality from what they used to put out, I had a lot of fun testing them. They’re not indestructible, but they work well and make sense in their MIDI implementation.

      • lesterhein

        I second this, I use the MM1 alongside 2x X1 units, and it’s pretty damned solid. And now, almost 2 years after release, I still can’t find another compact 4 deck midi mixer that includes a USB hub. It’s a small detail, but very important if you’re using a Macbook with (stupidly) only 2 USB ports.

  • Luis Lopez

    that mixer is so dope i love that it has x fader reverse and curve adjust for us scratchers! this is way better than the x1 because it supports dvs, im gonna cop this fur sure!!!

    • Toontown

      It’s a replaceable Innofader too! Unheard of in an out-of-the-box budget controller.

      • Mark Smith

        The DVS upgrade is $99.00 additional though 🙁

        • regend

          the original SL1 box was $599 when it came out. with this kit you get a mixer, software, and an innofader all for $250. an additional $99 for DVS is a good deal for everything. there are decent analog DJ mixers that do nothing but provide mixer features that cost more than $350.

          • Toontown

            Right – it’s really wallet-friendly for somebody just starting out on DVS. One thing I want to know: will it work as a standalone mixer? Doesn’t seem like it would.

          • Mark Smith

            It has RCA in’s and out’s so yes it would work as a stand alone mixer however it will not work without your laptop

          • Nicholas Polydor

            Yes, @disqus_kGoTBEUbWj:disqus , it is powered by USB.

          • CUSP

            Yeah, not even an option to power it with a wall wart.

          • Rob Ticho,Club mU

            I wouldn’t assume it will work as a stand alone mixer even when powered with a laptop. most midi mixers do the mixing in software and can’t work in stand alone mode. the s4 is a prime example.

          • Steffen Schulz

            It won´t work as a stand alone mixer. The amx is not able to process audio signals exept the serato noisemap, so you can not play standard vinyl or cd on that damn thing so it´s absolut worthless.

          • Ragman

            Why do you think it cost $250 ?!?!?

          • Nicholas Polydor

            $250 + $100 DVS upgrade is *very* competitive for a 24-bit/96kHz audio interface.

            “Controllers able to take advantage of the DVS Expansion Pack are known as “DVS upgrade ready” devices, while hardware that supports DVS natively are called “DVS ready”. Check out the first list of DVS upgrade ready controllers below:

            Akai AMX
            Numark N4
            Denon MC6000mkII

            In terms of other controllers that have hardware mixers – The Pioneer DDJ-SX will not support DVS Expansion Pack as the hardware is not technically capable of this. The Vestax VCI-380 and VCI-400 require firmware updates from before support can be developed – when these are available we can add support in Serato DJ.”


            Numark N4
            “Sample Rate: 44.1 KHz
            Bit Depth: 16-bit”

            Denon MC6000mkII
            “This unit only supports 16 bit.”
            “This unit only supports 44.1 kHz.”

            Vestax VCI-380
            “The built in high quality 24Bit/48kHz audio interface based on technology developed with the critically acclaimed Vestax VCI-400… ”

            Vestax VCI-400
            “Premium full-bit sound quality generated by a low latency high resolution 24bit/48kHz soundcard”

          • Luis Lopez

            it has a switch for phono and line so it would proably work for vinyl but not cdjs

          • Bazoggy

            It works great with denon sc3900s trust me I’m using it now

          • Joni

            im using amx with numark ndx500, it works great together!

          • Degree

            CDJs use line level inputs, so I don’t see this as being an issue

      • Luis Lopez

        yea and it looks as tho you can put a full size innofader in if you wanted this mixer looks awsome

        • Mike

          I’d eat my hat if you could fit a full size innofader in an AMX. FORREALS!

        • Ragman

          That’s a mini innofader that’s replaceable. A full size innofader would be to large to fit in there.

    • Deej Envee

      X1 is not a mixer ..

      • Luis Lopez

        the z1 you know what i meant

  • Jayvee

    “Native Instruments had their crack at it with the Kontrol Z1, and now
    Numark is bringing the same level of functionality to the Serato DJ
    world with the AMX controller.”

    I think that should be Akai 😉

    • Dan White

      Sure enough – although they are technically owned by the same company 😉

    • Oddie O'Phyle

      it’s all inMusic… numark, akai, denon, marantz…