Kontrol S8 Officially In Stores + Bonus Effects Tutorial

After a bit of a wait, and many leaks along the way – the Traktor S8 controller has officially landed in stores near you. To help our readers out, we created a short tutorial video for those with one in the mail or anyone that might be considering buying it.


The all-in-one system is in stores now and ready to get tested.


DJ TechTools has produced a comprehensive full length tutorial for first time users of this controller. It contains a solid overview of the hardware, screens, mixer and remix decks along with a deeper section on performance details you want to be aware of. Here is a short preview to get everyone started using the effects.

The full length version (50 minutes) is free for anyone that supports DJ TechTools with their purchase of a Kontrol S8. Stock on the S8s is very limited but DJ TechTools has secured a decent-sized batch in our San Francisco warehouse.

Head over to the store and see if there are any Kontrol S8s left.

how to routeKontrol S8 TutorialS8 setup guideTraktor effects tutorial
Comments (45)
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  • Club Megamix Radio

    We just received ours – Thanks for DJTT – it doubles as an early B-Day present for tomorrow!

  • Brian Norris

    Anyone have any idea when the winner of the S8 giveaway will be announced?

  • Craig Martin

    Can someone help me with a mapping for the S8 please?

    I would like to press shift and the the browse button to activate browser on my Traktor (MacBook) screen just like you would with the X1, is this possible?

    Look forward for the The full length version (50 minutes) tutorial to become available in the UK.


  • Oddie O'Phyle

    Honestly… as a Traktor user this unit would be my next purchase if…
    #1 it stood at standard mixer height. If they want this unit to be viewed as more than a toy it should not visually sit at a lower level than your CDJ’s’s or turntables. Psychology plays a big part in it as well as workflow.
    #2 it had a 4 port USB hub for those of us with things MDF’s and CDJ’s… for a company that is #thefutureofdjing why isn’t your hardware forward thinking? Usb 2.0 is a shared bus of 480 Mps. Where is our USB 3.0 already? A bus speed of over 3 Gps would be a lot more useful. Especially if you add usb hubs to your audio interfaces.
    These suggestions would help place the S8 in a proper booth and help non-Traktor DJ’s accept the notion of S8 as a “real” mixer. Other than that the stability issues that have come up with Traktor 2.7 were a bit of a let down.

    I’ll end this rant on a good note… despite the anti-climax in the last couple of weeks with the release of the S8 and 2.7. I’m still curious about the Komplete Kontrol line but will wait till an MKII comes out as I’ve noticed that you tend to clean up your builds in a new hardware version.

  • Dada loops

    No one cares about the S8.. What we do care about is the Maschine 2.2 update.. Release the Kraken!

  • Mert

    Why no one actually said that the s8 can not be personalized with a custom map? so it is for me the worst native product until now and after 2 days I can do in the corner already. For beginners it is okay, but freaks like me need midi tricks. I hope Native is already working on the feature.

    • Ztronical

      So is there a “user map” option? If so the user map(not the default) can be used without switching to midi mode. Is it just the default map that is locked. The S4 default map was locked for a long time as well.

      • Mert

        you are wrong, the overwrite feature comes in later… the user map worked since the release…

        • Ztronical

          So does the user map work? That’s what I was referring to.
          The overwrite feature is for the default map. Is the overwrite what is locked?
          Because if the user map is available then you can still map something using shift and such. Not as nice as overwrite, but I mapped most of my s4 to extra functions before the overwrite feature was available.

          • Damien Sirkis

            You can map things in MIDI mode, but you then have to switch in and out of MIDI mode (Shift-Left Back Button) to use those.

            As far as I can tell nothing is yet overridable or modifiable in regular mode.

  • Robert Wulfman

    if you buy from DJTT does it come with a set of chroma caps?

  • Damien Sirkis

    Got mine this morning and I’m only just getting my head back above water after a deep dive with the unit for the last few hours.

    There’s a lot of stuff here that you could do with two X1s and two F1s (if you really wanted that setup) but the integration is the real standout here. Having all this stuff in one package is amazingly fun to play with and experiment with.

    I just found myself play with 3 decks and 1 remix deck and basically have 4 things playing at once at all times for 3 hours. I wouldn’t try and do that without sync so this is a good example as to how sync can push things in a different direction.

    As usual with NI, the DACs are not on par with the pro stuff from A&E or Pioneer but for my use they are more than adequate.

    Anyway, I’m going back to play with it. It’s really super fun.

    • Dancin' Mark


        • Mark Smith

          I thought so however I didn’t want to assume. Thank you for the clarification.

    • RR

      Mixing 4 Decks on Traktor is way easier then 3 Decks of vinyl , no need for sync at all. So it’s not Sync that’s pushing in a different direction, it’s having 4 decks available….. 3 or 4 decks and techno go hand in hand

  • tony corless

    For me too many layers,playing in a dark club thinking what to play next do you really want to be pressing shift plus this button shift plus that button,a few years back denon made in theory a fantastic cd player,you could mix 2 tracks off the same cd on 1 deck,trouble was it was multi layered and confusing,it was easy to make a mistake,so most people never used it to its full potential,I’m not a big pioneer fan but they have it down to a tee,one button one function simple.these tech heads that invent most of this stuff probably do so in a quiet brightly lit office/lab without anything to distract them.

  • pixeltrance

    I got my S8 just before the weekend and now after a few days of playing around with it, I thought I would give you guys a mini review based on my initial impressions:

    It’s a very solid built unit and its buttons/knobs/faders all feel pretty good. (Disclaimer, I haven’t tried the x-fader yet as I never use it during my mixing.)
    The two monitors are sharp and clear, and it is really nice to get instant visual feedback as you use fx, loops, rmx decks etc.
    Overall, the quality feels worlds apart from the plastic S4/S2.

    The unit is big, as in really BIG. The upside to this is that the layout is logical and few things are cramped. Very easy and intuitive to work with, and few will have any problems using it straight out of the box. If you are used to the NI X1 and F1, you’ll feel right at home.
    The downside to this is that it is BIG and unless you go to your gig by car car, it is very, very unlikely that you would drag the S8 with you. For an international gig, I’d rather bring my X1 and F1 in my carry-on than having to check in the S8 as it is way too big to be considered carry-on.
    Btw, did I mention that it is big?

    Unfortunately I’m not as impressed by the software driving the unit as I am of the build quality. The current firmware [which I updated on initial launch] feels to much of an unstable beta to be trusted to used in a live situation.

    I have experienced audio drop-outs and lags, sounding similar to running low latency on a low spec computer. Not consistently though. Now and then kind of thing. Happened on both a quad-core i7, 8 GB RAM Macbook Pro and a quad-core i7, 16 GB RAM iMac so I doubt that the machines aren’t powerful enough.

    I managed to send the whole unit into some kind of weird epileptic seizure by switching it back and forth to MIDI mode. The monitors were blinking like mad, displaying completely broken graphics. Looked kinda funky actually. Had to restart the S8 to get it back to normal. Could reproduce the error.

    Smaller issues but still rather annoying is missing features such as that the monitors do not display which track(s) are playing or even which have been played. Quite important information and a blatant omission to leave it out.

    I also wish that the PlayMarker position would be moveable as it is in Traktor itself. Would be very helpful as the monitors, are small in size thus displaying a bit short waveforms. I would rather see more what is coming in the track than what has already passed by.

    Another silliness is that you can only change the On State Brightness 50-100% and the Off State 25-50%. Personally I find 25% much too bright for an Off setting. These limits seems a bit random as both the X1 and F1 offers 0-100% on both On and Off setting

    I am certain that all if not most of these issues can be solved with future firmware updates but for now, the software feels kinda rough.

    Last but not least, there are some build decisions that are quite odd. The first being the prominently placed sync button. I’m sure you can mix on the S8 without sync but seriously, I doubt that very few will as there are much better controllers out there if that is your thing. I’m not saying that the feature as such should be removed as there are times when even a sync DJ want to turn off sync (firing off oneshot samples comes to mind) but I do not think it a great idea to have it as accessible (read: easy to hit by mistake) as it is now.

    A related problem is the source select button. This button is located between the fx select buttons and the gain knob. Hitting this button on a playing channel will switch source and kill the sound. Sure, you don’t work constantly in this area but it’s likely that you will fiddle around at least a bit and accidents could happen. I guess though that it can easily be avoided by a software fix. Something like a “IF playing THEN don’t switch” kinda thing.

    My last point but one that is pretty big to me personally is the fact that the entire mix section is a black hole if you are in a dark environment. The mixer stands in stark contrast to the lit up and easy to see transport/loops/fx sections and you do require additional lighting to see what you are doing .

    Sure, one can argue that most mixers aren’t lit up either and that is a fair point. But do we really wanna follow the status quo or do we want to make things better? During all my years of DJing I have experienced many dark booths where it was impossible to see anything. Additional lights on on the mixer section is with gold in those situations.

    All in all it is a nice unit with plenty of potential but not worth the $$$ as it currently stands (for me). I will return the S8 for now and wait for the Mk II or at the very least a few months down the line as the software bugs gets ironed out.

    Alright, I’ll climb down from my soapbox now 😉

    TL;DR – Large quality unit with enough software faults to make me return it.

    • tony corless

      just watch all the NI reps turning up here now to praise the unit! 😉

  • Disorganized

    I was over at the DJTT Popup Shop here in San Francisco this Saturday and spent about half an hour on the demo unit. I loved it so much that I ordered one on the spot. Can’t wait to get my hands on it again!

    • Disorganized

      Just picked it up from DJTT, got it home, unboxed, and mixed a few tracks. I never once looked over at the computer!

  • Vincent Halliburton

    I’m loving this thing, hopefully more tutorials will be available online.

  • Admiralty

    Well, if it isn’t the old bullshit pricing structure of £1000 v $1200
    I shall adjust that cost for you all: The actual cost (here in Europe) is actually $1600.
    The actual price should be £750 add 20% VAT and it’s only £900
    Nice work NI, it’s actually cheaper to buy from the US and pay import duty.

    • Ferdinand

      True dat.
      I’d ordered the S8 here in The Netherlands with discount at my local dealer for €1055.
      Next day, the video with Ean Golden’s extra goodies came out, and decided to cancel the order.
      Now I’ll get the S8 at DJTechtools incl. the extra goodies, for €1020 in total.
      Cheaper + the extra stuff. Yay!
      Warranty is internationally settled directly thru Native Instruments, so I don’t expect any issue there either.

      • Admiralty

        Excellent tip Ferdinand.

      • b

        There will probably be import tax..so i think in the end it will be more expensive..

        • Ferdinand

          I’ll let u guys know, its shipped atm.

          • pixeltrance

            You will definitely get hit by both Dutch VAT and Custom Duties. The VAT alone will be around 250 euros so I think it’s safe to assume that the final price will be somewhere around 1350 euros.
            (Source: Google “Netherlands Import Tax”)

            I hope the tutorial is worth the 300 euros extra 😉

          • Ferdinand

            A part of the chat I had with Matias, customer support of DJTT:

            You – Besides that, the local shop could tell me, if I’m going to order it from outside Europe I need to pay taxes for US + EU + import rights. So how do I get money back I paid for the US taxes afterwards?

            Matías – you don´t pay US taxes
            we don´t charge them for international customers
            so that dude probably didn´t want you to withraw the order =)

            You – how much will the import-rights be approx.?

            Matías – roughly $100, it was part of the estimate i gave you yesterday
            total with shipping and duties was still lower than what you paid there
            if you can get your taxes back even better!

            You – so the 1020 euro is incl. duties?

            Matías – yup

            You – i’m sold =)

            Matías – i´m offering a $100 off
            otherwise it´s €1100
            and Ean´s video won´t be sold separately anytime soon by the way double checked that too

          • Ferdinand

            Arrived yesterday!

            Dutch VAT: €102,74
            Custom duties: €16,54
            Handling: €13,00
            Damage extra in total: €132,28

            Plus the kontrol itself: €1020
            Makes: €1152,28 when u buy it from DJTT.

            Compare this with buying it at local shop for: €1149
            Plus the Tutorial: €16,04
            Makes: €1165,04 when buying local.

            Difference: €12,76.
            Still cheaper to buy it from DJTT =)

      • Foldable

        Yep, big chance that customs will put a hold on it till you pay import taxes… When I order in the USA I let it sent to somebody I know in the USA. He puts it in a blank box and send it to me, till now it worked.

  • Mert

    Hi – is there any options to get the full video without buying the s8 at djtechtools? I am located in Germany and the shipping costs and Import tax is not the best way for me. I preordered the S8 at my local music dealer. thx Mert

    • zigggy

      same with me i’m in UK:(

    • Ferdinand

      I’ve asked this at the Customer Support (Matias) aswell, but they won’t for the time being.
      I totally understand, otherwise they wouldn’t have a direct USP to show off with.

    • Lucky

      Same question. Same problem. 🙁

    • Ean Golden

      Hey Mert, good question! After we get the orders rolling, the video will be available to our European customers. Makes sure you are signed up on our weekly email, as the announement will go out there.


      • Mert

        Supercool ! was für ein außergwöhnlicher tag – Meinen S8 erhalten – einer meiner dj götter übermittelte mir eine positive nachricht! vielen dank und daumen hoch ! whoop whoop! Love – cheers Mert

      • Aviv

        Thank you Ean from your Israeli customer 🙂

  • tony

    “Apparently the S8 now features Oculous style heads up display
    integration, dance floor heart rate monitors, and possibly even
    party-goer mind control. Sadly – these features are not covered in my
    tutorial, but only require a small firmware upgrade and brain implant

    maybe you can ask this upgrade a few “pop stars” of today pushed,mind-controlled and **why not?** microchipped by the (k)illuminati……..