Smithson Martin Kontrol Surface 32: Touch Surface With Control Templates

Smithson Martin is well-known for being one of the few manufacturers in the DJ space not afraid to do touchscreen control that isn’t limited to iOS or Android platforms. They’ve just dropped early specs on a new unit to be unveiled this Thursday at the 2016 NAMM Show, the Kontrol Surface 32, which is designed to emulate hardware interfaces via templates on the touchscreen devices. Keep reading for the details.

Kontrol Surface 32 Specs + Details

The KS32 looks pretty similar to the now discontinued limited edition KS-1974 unit that debuted at NAMM 2012, which was the first highly portable unit from Smithson Martin (in the mean time, they also unveiled a tablet-sized unit, the KS10.)

The KS32 looks to me a more ready-for-mass-production unit, with a large 32-inch touch screen in full HD, a 170º viewing angle, and capacitive touch screen. The press release also touts the touchscreen has having less than a 5 millisecond response time (watch this video to see how short of a delay that actually is), which becomes critical when using a device like this for audio purposes.

Some of the tech specs below – we’re still waiting on some parts of it:

  • Screen size: 32 inch
  • Resolution: 1920×1080 native – full HD
  • Viewing angle: 170/170
  • Power supply: 110v to 240v automatic
  • (Concurrent) Touch points: 10
  • Touch technology: PCAP (projected capacitance – read about it is here on Wikipedia)
  • Operating systems: Windows 7, 8, 8,1 10 and OSX compatible

Emulator Templates

What makes the Kontrol Surface 32 special is that it’s paired with customizable touch templates in Emulator 2.0, which is Smithson Martin’s control software for the KS line. The premade templates are designed to match familiar control surfaces – like the Pioneer DJ DDJ-SX2 on the unit in the header image.

Right now the KS32 works “perfectly” with PC software and will “soon include support for Mac OS X with Emulator 2.0” – the unit will be available in Q2 2016 at a street price of $2,499.

We’ll take a closer look at the KS32 at NAMM 2016 and find out more details. You can see all the NAMM articles here, or follow us on Twitter or Instagram for up-to-the-minute updates and unique insights. 

km32kontrol surface 32nammNAMM 2016smithson martin
Comments (16)
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  • Mike Kraze

    I think they should learn a lesson or 2 from Lemur. I can’t justify spending all this money on something when you can design it for other platforms for a fraction of the price.

    Lemur used to cost well into the thousands, now you just buy the app on the Apple Store for a fraction of the cost (something like $20).

  • checktense

    Seems pointlessly expensive, why not use an iPad, or Emulator?

    • Tom Wenger

      well an Ipad is not 32″
      (tough I also don’t see the point in this, Lemur stopped doing that when they saw the potential of the Ipad)

  • Anthony Alonso

    I run Emulator 2.0 on my touchscreen laptop. I simply just cannot justify the cost for the touch screen itself when there are other multi touch 32 inch screens on the market for less than $2k

  • Jonny Korchilava

    My friend uses the same equipment.

  • Nick Bertke

    A temperamental touch screen with zero tactility… why not just get an iPad for a quarter of the price?

  • arkaei

    Anyone want a 4x more expensive 2-dimensional DDJ-SX?


    Seriously though – make some original, creative control surfaces that take advantage of the fact that THIS IS A TOUCH SCREEN AND HAS UNIQUE PROPERTIES AS A CONTROLLER god damn it.

    • Anthony Alonso

      You do know you can make completely custom skins in Emulator right?

      • arkaei

        Of course I do – but why promote a control surface like this using the least interesting layout possible? Make something cool for Ableton, or Reaktor, or VJ software like Resolume where having a touch screen would actually REALLY make sense… not a 2D representation of a DJ controller that adds absolutely NOTHING to the experience.

  • Sleepydog

    So… how many 23″ 1920*1080 (touch) do you get for that price? 300/2500 .. Maybe street price will be lower though but point made. Every computer musician should have a touch screen if not just for the option to have that additional form of input. It won’t replace mouse, keyboard or controller but when you can’t be bothered reaching for the mouse or assign a knob it’s hard to beat.
    Seriously though, i bought a HP S230tm directly from their website during the post x-mas sale (boxer’s day something?) for what would be similar to 300€/$. It’s adjustable with a magic stand .. or at least designed by a magic engineer as it’s just great. Being adjustable is key as you want to change angle often to avoid fatigue in your arms. It also depends on how much you will use your mouse/keyboard at that moment. I change angle quite a lot.
    The unit in the article is fixed … maybe ok for stage use. You would want additional physical controllers with it though because touch isn’t good for all motions. You have much greater accuracy tweaking a knob or fader.

    • arkaei

      Or using a 3D sensor 😉

  • Agungald

    I remember there are some “stickable” fader and knobs for ipads touch screen. Would they work in.this one too?
    Djing using ipad kinda feels dumb with your finger, especially with faster tempo and EDMish genre..

  • Ariel Segatto

    It would great with some tuna knobs and some type of faders that work the same way, and some stick on buttons…

    • deejdave

      Aren’t you attempting to make it just a normal controller again by adding these physical controls? You do perfectly illustrate why these gimmicks can never replace actual hardware IMO.

      • Ariel Segatto


  • Rocco Amendolara Darwich

    Just awesome!!!