Rekordbox 5.0 In Public Beta: New GUI, DJM-S9 Support, 16 Cues/Pad FX

Pioneer DJ has pushed live a new beta version of their track preparation and DJ software, Rekordbox DJ 5.0. The update is the first major overhaul that the software has seen since it added built-in DJing features in September 2015. Read on to learn more about what features have been added, what’s been fixed, and to share your own thoughts on how Pioneer DJ can make their software even better.

Rekordbox DJ 5.0 Public Beta

Many DJs have to use the Rekordbox software – including tons of CDJ users who rely on the software for their preparation needs, and a smaller-but-growing number of controller DJs who are using the software at the center DJ setup to perform. When the 4.0 version was launched, it meant a new path for Pioneer into DJ software – but it also was the first time that the company would handle the codebase entirely internally. In the past, Rekordbox was written by a third party developer, Mixvibes.

At the time of Rekordbox 4.0’s launch, one of the things that was heavily implied was that the software would receive more frequent updates as a result of a being an in-house project. And while it’s been a year and a half since 4.0 came out, there have been plenty of incremental updates. With a changeover to 5.0, this beta has a lot of things for DJs to look forward to.

Rekordbox 5.0 New Features

Here’s what’s new in the 5.0 beta update:

The new GUI in Rekordbox DJ’s 5.0 public beta (click to expand)
  • Renewed GUI – The entire interface has gotten a refreshed look. It’s not a total redesign, but many elements are cleaner and easier to understand at a quick glance. It’s a much darker design, and makes better use of screen real estate. Upon first loading, the interface does also seem a bit busier, so we’re hoping that there will be more options to customize the UI in the future. Now if only Pioneer would update the still-clunky feeling Preferences menu…
Rekordbox 5.0 GUI (left) vs 4.3 right (click to expand)
  • DJM-S9 support – despite being one of the most popular mixers that Pioneer currently makes, it has only received full support on the Serato DJ platform. In this new beta, the mixer has full integration with Rekordbox’s DJ mode. Considering the just-announced DVS soundcard for Rekordbox DJ, it seems like the company is really paying attention to turntable/DVS users!
Key sync active, harmonically syncing it to the other deck.
  • Added Key shift / Key sync – This is a no-brainer addition to any DJ software, and Virtual DJ users are always quick to point out that their platform has had key sync for nearly 8 years. This functionality means that you can quickly sync the key of two tracks just like you would BPM with a single click – or move a track around the circle of fifths as needed.
  • 16 Hot Cues / Pad FXs support – Simple enough, this new feature means that every track can now store up to 16 different hot cues, or when in Pad FX mode, up to 16 different FX can be rapidly triggered.
Keyboard, a new performance pad mode, is ideal for tone play routines.
  • Added Keyboard mode (key-shifted hot cue play) – Following in Serato DJ’s footsteps, this new mode is perfect for tone play routines. Instead of having to make special MIDI-mapped cue points, Pioneer has built it right into the software with a new pad mode called Keyboard.
  • Added Beat loop mode – Another new performance pad mode, this is effectively identical to loop roll / roll functions on other platforms. It quickly drops a short loop to stutter the track. This is often most effective when used with Slip Mode.
  • Added an option to play Hot Cue before reaching the next beat.
  • Added options to set quantize beat value for each function.

At Last: Play Tracks From A Rekordbox USB

Playing tracks off a Rekordbox exported USB drive in Rekordbox DJ – now possible!

Editor’s Update: I went back into the Rekordbox DJ software to check a few other things, and remembered one of my primary complains about the DJ side of the software was that you couldn’t plug in a Rekordbox USB drive and access it in Performance mode – only Export.

It now seems like this limitation is removed (did this get snuck in previously and we missed it?) and you can plug in any Rekordbox USB drive and play from the playlists on the device:

Rekordbox 5.0 Improvements

There’s also a number of other changes made to the Rekordbox DJ software with this new update that aren’t new features, but instead classified as improvements on current functionality. These include:

  • Added a preference to display 16 slots / 8 slots of the sampler.
  • Ability to set beat grid even for short / no beat sampling sound – This means you can much more easily incorporate samples / acapellas into a DJ mix by setting a custom beat grid on them.
  • Quantize hot cue to the closest beat while playing.
  • Displays remaining and elapsed time at the same time – previously you had to click the time display to switch between them
  • Ability to sync with a track whose BPM is double or half of a master deck – At last, no more tracks that get synced +/- 100% when they’re actually just half or double time. Particularly for those DJs who spin drum and bass, trap, hip hop, and other genres around 70-90 and 140-160 BPM, this is a big deal.
  • More choices for font size and line space.
  • Displays original BPM on decks

What About Preparation/Export Mode?

The EXPORT side of the software

As requested in the comments, we’re also taking a look at what’s changed in the Export mode – and so far, not much has come up. The aesthetic changes carry over on this side of the software, but the functionality still seems identical.

No changes to the Sync Manager screen – which still annoyingly stays hovered over every window on your computer.
Download the Rekordbox 5.0 public beta and read more about it here.
Have key functionality that you think deserves to be in the new version? Leave a comment on this article to share your thoughts. 
Dj softwarepioneer DJpublic betarekordboxrekordbox 5.0
Comments (43)
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  • Francis Hogle

    Hiding the EXIT / RELOOP functionality behind a sliver-wide toggle button seems pretty insane to me.

    • Francis Hogle

      Yep now that I use it for even 5 minutes I want to shoot myself. I think I have to go back to 4.5

  • Steve Francesco

    Playing from USB playlists is a pretty big deal. For installation purposes it is a genuine potential for a Desktop Class Mac (Sorry hehe) to become part of every DJ box installation rather than have DJ’s dick around swapping out sound cards and laptops from one DJ to the next.

  • Beep AhFresh

    Rekordbox adds new features, meanwhile., in other news, Serato has announced they are officially beginning an investigation into what “new features” means.

    • B00K3R


  • Thomas

    More important i think, is an easy Backup assistant to save and
    transfer my complete collection and settings to an external harddrive,
    new PC or Cloud!! Currently are all possibilties real shit and it seems there is no new feature therfore in version 5.

  • Micky Weir

    Looks great. Sadly it crashes and closed when adding any music to the collection for me. I’ve been attempting to move over to Rekordbox for a few years, but Traktor or just plain CDR still works best for me.

  • zendoo

    Double/half sync is huge!!

  • Philippe Bardyn

    Still no midi sync/clock to use external softwares like maschine… begin to miss my traktor ( despite the quality of my DDJ RR )

    • Anthony Alonso

      I have a feeling that it is coming soon.

  • Tony Piumarta

    What about Link technology? Come-on Pioneer!

  • Danila Gurov

    Tried PC beta with my DDJ-RR. GUI is much better, but channel filters don’t work anymore =( So I just reverted back to 4.4.

    • irwin

      filter are working, you must need to turn on it in the fx or mixer setting.

      • irwin

        Just go to cfx, then click the filter, then try your channel filter…

    • Joelson Ferrão

      its a beta halooooooooooo

  • Social

    please make it export faster!!!

  • Carlos Muñoz Armesto

    Wow, Rekordbox gets a major update… As a Traktor user i can’t remember what it feels like… T_T

  • Anthony Alonso

    Everyone, please grab the beta and use it as a moment to not only suggest big fixes, but improvements, and feature requests as well. 🙂

  • Sean AK

    What about the AutoMix function?? They should have added it long time ago!!!

    • Anthony Alonso

      doesnt that defeat the purpose of deejayin?

      • Sean AK

        At some point)
        But it’s a really handy option in different situations. I had many cases when I needed to leave the booth not for a long time and that’s exactly the moment when AutoMix saves. Not even talking about early openings at wedding receptions, when you can dj on your own, but see that’s there’s no reason, cause people almost aren’t coming. And lots of other cases

        • Joelson Ferrão


        • Gee Tee

          Wedding receptions?

        • Anthony Alonso

          Untill your clients start realizing they couldve hired their cousin to do what youre doing on an Ipod.

        • Geoffrey Guidetti

          The only time it would be useful for me is when i’m trying to just put music on when i’m hanging out at home and refuse to close my dj software for no apparent reason and keep playing music off of it. it would be quite useful then though.

    • Joelson Ferrão


  • Be

    The aesthetic similarity to Serato is striking. I guess they couldn’t be bothered to create their own look?

  • Linz&Mars

    Some of the improvements such as ability to sync half speed tracks, sound like RBDJ is still in the process of taking off the training wheels and trying to graduate to the grown up table. Yet, when I read about it people throw around hyperbole such as “even better.”
    I haven’t tried it yet but I’d like to know are people dj’ing out regularly with it and if so is it good and stable? Is it at a pro level yet?

    If it isn’t there yet, I’d like to see RBDJ judged more fairly.

    • Spacecamp / Dan

      I’ve used RBDJ a fair amount, and I’d argue that it’s not “even better” than Serato or Traktor, but rapidly becoming feature-comparable. There’s things that each platform does that’s unique.

      That being said, Rekordbox DJ does seem to have the fastest update cycle right now, with features being added every 4-5 months. If trends continue, Rekordbox could become the winner purely by momentum…

      • Linz&Mars

        Ok. Interesting.
        I’ve got a djm900nxs2 and I’m trying to figure out whether to pay to be able to plug directly into it. So stick with Serato (SL3) or RBDJ?!?
        I guess I’ll test RBDJ and see how it feels (but then I have to worry about how long my SL3 will continue to work with it).
        It does bother me to lay out even more cash to Pioneer to be able to use their software with their mixer. Especially when the djm 250mkii & djm 450 both come with a RBDJ license.
        Plus I trust Serato as a company a lot more than our Pioneer Overlords 🙂

        • Mark Smith

          You didn’t buy the club kit to be able to plug in your DJM-900 Nexus 2? Still using an SL3?

          • Linz&Mars

            Yeah. The Club Kit doesn’t give me anything more feature wise than if I use the SL3 with the 900nxs2. So I can handle a little more effort for set-up/break-down.
            Where as RBDJ allows for Post Fader Software FX as well as “Quantizing”/Syncing the mixers Beat FX Bpm with the Software (which would be great. The 900nxs’ are too slow at analyzing bpm).

    • Anthony Alonso

      I have been using RekordboxDJ for timecode since last April on a regular basis and have not had any issues whatsoever.

      • Linz&Mars

        Cool. Thanks. I just downloaded RB Library manager and familiarizing myself with that and then I’ll try the full RBDJ DVS experience to see how it feels.

        • Anthony Alonso

          Mos definitely. I highly recommend using rekordbuddy to transfer your collection once you make the jump

          • Linz&Mars

            Yeah. Definitely not keen to redo all my cues and loops manually.
            I’ll get used the library management and then have a play and if I like I’ll get Rekordbuddy. I can use Rekordbuddy now, instead of itunes as my main library? (why is it every time apple touches something lately they’ve got to make it worse 🙂

  • Wesley Weslochan

    Looks good so far.. All images on every site is only the Rekordbox Dj 5.0/view?
    -Will download tonight to checkout just the Rekordbox track preparation view.