Best Budget DJ Controllers for Beginners in 2024

Updated on April 24, 2024

For those passionate about DJing, whether as a hobby or profession, investing in a dependable and cost-effective DJ controller is essential. This device plays a vital role in mixing and manipulating music files, and while prices vary, you don’t need to break the bank to get a high-quality controller. When selecting a DJ controller, it’s important to consider factors such as the number of channels, jog wheel responsiveness, overall build quality, and compatibility with your preferred software. To help you find the best value for your money, we have thoroughly researched and tested a wide range of budget-friendly DJ controllers available on the market.

Best Budget DJ Controllers

For DJs on a budget, we’ve compiled a list of the best affordable controllers that deliver great performance without the high price tag. Perfect for beginners or those looking to upgrade, these controllers have been thoroughly tested by our team to ensure they meet our standards for quality and value. Below is our roundup of the best budget DJ controllers currently available on Amazon.

Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 MK2

Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 MK2 — Ideal DJ Controller for Learning to Mix — Software and Tutorials Included, Black

If you're looking for an affordable and easy-to-use DJ controller, the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 MK2 is a great option.

Pros:
  • The Beatmatch Guide feature with built-in Tempo and Beat Align light guides helps beginners learn the basics of DJing and sync tracks easily.
  • The STEMS feature allows for infinite mix variations and creativity.
  • The DJ Academy video tutorials and Serato DJ Lite and DJUCED software included help you master the fundamentals of DJing.
Cons:
  • The controller is quite small, which may be a downside for some users.
  • The setup and software installation process can be a bit complicated for beginners.
  • The lack of MID EQ controls may be disappointing for more advanced users.
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Overall, the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 MK2 is a great choice for those who are just starting out with DJing. The Beatmatch Guide and STEMS features make it easy to learn and get creative with mixing tracks. The DJ Academy video tutorials and included software also help beginners master the basics of DJing. However, more advanced users may find the controller’s small size and lack of MID EQ controls to be limiting.

Numark Party Mix II – DJ Controller with Party Lights

Numark Party Mix II - DJ Controller with Party Lights, DJ Set with 2 Decks, DJ Mixer, Audio Interface and USB Connectivity + Serato DJ Lite

We highly recommend the Numark Party Mix II DJ controller for both kids and adults who want to start their DJ journey. It's an excellent DJ set with all the essentials and fun features to keep the party going.

Pros:
  • The built-in LED DJ light show syncs to your DJ mix, creating an instant party atmosphere.
  • The Party Mix II works with Serato DJ Lite software and popular DJ mobile apps, providing access to millions of tracks from streaming services like TIDAL, Beatport Link, Beatsource Link, and SoundCloud GO.
  • The four performance DJ pads on each deck allow quick access to cue points, loops, effects, or samples, making it easy to create unique mixes.
Cons:
  • The small size of the unit may make it difficult for those with larger hands to use comfortably.
  • The included software may not be compatible with all operating systems.
  • The build quality could be improved, as some users have reported issues with buttons and knobs breaking or becoming unresponsive over time.
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The Numark Party Mix II is an excellent choice for beginners who want a DJ set with all the essentials and some fun features to keep the party going. The built-in LED DJ light show is a standout feature, adding an instant visual element to your mixes. The Party Mix II also works with popular DJ mobile apps, providing access to millions of tracks from streaming services like TIDAL, Beatport Link, Beatsource Link, and SoundCloud GO.

The four performance DJ pads on each deck are a handy feature, allowing quick access to cue points, loops, effects, or samples. The filter knobs and pitch sliders on each deck add flair to your DJ mixes, and the software-adjustable crossfader allows scratches or long, smooth fades for DJ mixes. The Party Mix II also features two large, high-quality jog wheels that allow you to manipulate your music with style.

However, the small size of the unit may make it difficult for those with larger hands to use comfortably. Additionally, the included software may not be compatible with all operating systems, so be sure to check compatibility before purchasing. Finally, some users have reported issues with buttons and knobs breaking or becoming unresponsive over time, so be aware of this potential issue.

Overall, the Numark Party Mix II is an excellent choice for beginners who want a fun and feature-packed DJ set. With its built-in LED DJ light show, access to popular streaming services, and performance DJ pads, it’s sure to keep the party going all night long.

Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300

Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 2-Deck USB DJ Controller for Serato DJ Lite and DJUCED Bundle with 6' Comprehensive Standard Series 3.5mm Stereo Mini Plug to 2 RCA Plugs Audio Cable

If you're looking for a budget-friendly DJ controller that's perfect for beginners, the Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 is a great option. It comes with a range of features that help you learn the art of DJing, including light guides, an Intelligent Music Assistant, and onboard video tutorials.

Pros:
  • The built-in light guides make beat matching a breeze, even for beginners.
  • The sixteen multicolor pads are backlit, making it easy to see what you're doing in low light conditions.
  • The controller is powered by Serato DJ Lite and DJUCED software, which are both user-friendly and easy to learn.
Cons:
  • The 2-channel mixer may be limiting for more advanced DJs who need more channels.
  • The controller doesn't come with a microphone input, which may be a dealbreaker for some users.
  • The jog wheels are touch-sensitive, which may take some getting used to if you're used to traditional jog wheels.
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The Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 is a great choice for beginners who are just starting out with DJing. The light guides and Intelligent Music Assistant make it easy to learn the basics, and the sixteen multicolor pads offer plenty of control options. The controller is also easy to set up and use, even if you have no prior experience with DJing.

One thing to keep in mind is that the 2-channel mixer may be limiting for more advanced DJs who need more channels. Additionally, the lack of a microphone input may be a dealbreaker for some users who need to be able to use a microphone during their sets.

Overall, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly DJ controller that’s perfect for beginners, the Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 is definitely worth considering.

Hercules DJ DJControl Starlight

Hercules DJ DJControl Starlight | Pocket USB DJ Controller with Serato DJ Lite, Touch-Sensitive Jog Wheels, Built-in Sound Card and Built-in Light Show

If you're looking for a budget-friendly DJ controller, then the Hercules DJ DJControl Starlight is worth considering.

Pros:
  • The compact size of this controller makes it easy to carry around and use on the go.
  • The included Serato DJ Lite software provides a great introduction to DJing.
  • The built-in sound card allows you to pre-listen to the headphones and speaker outputs.
Cons:
  • The controller's base lighting (RGB and strobe effects) can be distracting and may not be suitable for all environments.
  • The pressure-sensitive jog wheels may take some getting used to, especially if you're used to using larger controllers.
  • The controller's plastic construction may not be as durable as other, more expensive options.
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We were impressed with the Hercules DJ DJControl Starlight’s performance. Its compact size makes it easy to take with you wherever you go, and the included Serato DJ Lite software is a great way to get started with DJing. The built-in sound card is also a nice touch, allowing you to pre-listen to the headphones and speaker outputs.

One thing to keep in mind is that the controller’s base lighting (RGB and strobe effects) can be distracting and may not be suitable for all environments. Additionally, the pressure-sensitive jog wheels may take some getting used to, especially if you’re used to using larger controllers. Finally, the controller’s plastic construction may not be as durable as other, more expensive options.

Overall, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly DJ controller that is easy to use and provides a great introduction to DJing, then the Hercules DJ DJControl Starlight is definitely worth considering.

Hercules DJControl Mix – Bluetooth Wireless DJ Controller for Smartphones

Hercules DJControl Mix – Bluetooth Wireless DJ Controller for Smartphones (iOS and Android) – dJay app – 2 Decks, White

If you're looking for an affordable and portable DJ controller, the Hercules DJControl Mix is a great option to consider.

Pros:
  • Bluetooth connectivity allows for easy mixing on smartphones and tablets.
  • Comes with a foldable smartphone stand for convenience.
  • Controls the djay app for Android and iOS for unlimited use.
Cons:
  • Limited software compatibility with only Algorythm and DJuced.
  • Larger size may not be as portable as other budget DJ controllers.
  • Some users have reported syncing issues with the equalizers and volume.
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We recently had the opportunity to test out the Hercules DJControl Mix, and we were impressed by its ease of use and portability. The Bluetooth connectivity allows for quick and simple mixing on smartphones and tablets, and the foldable smartphone stand is a nice added convenience.

While the DJControl Mix only supports Algorythm and DJuced software, it does come with unlimited use of the djay app for Android and iOS. This app is user-friendly and allows for seamless mixing.

One downside to the DJControl Mix is its larger size compared to other budget DJ controllers, which may make it less portable. Additionally, some users have reported issues with syncing the equalizers and volume.

Overall, if you’re in the market for an affordable and portable DJ controller, the Hercules DJControl Mix is definitely worth considering.

Hercules DJControl Inpulse 300 MK2

Hercules DJControl Inpulse 300 MK2 – USB DJ controller – 2 decks with 16 pads and built-in sound card – DJ software and tutorials included

If you're looking for an affordable DJ controller that's packed with features, the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 300 MK2 might be the perfect option for you.

Pros:
  • The built-in light guides make it easy to learn beatmatching techniques.
  • The improved jog wheels allow for smoother scratching and better rotation.
  • The DJUCED software's Intelligent Music Assistant feature suggests tracks that match your mix, making it easy to prepare your sets.
Cons:
  • The controller is made of plastic and may not be as durable as other options.
  • It may take some time to get used to the layout of the controller.
  • The controller only has two decks, which may not be enough for more advanced DJs.
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We’ve had the chance to test out the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 300 MK2 and we were impressed with its performance. The built-in light guides are a great feature for beginners, as they make it easy to learn beatmatching techniques. The improved jog wheels are also a welcome addition, allowing for smoother scratching and better rotation.

The DJUCED software that comes with the controller is easy to use and offers a range of features, including the Intelligent Music Assistant, which suggests tracks that match your mix. This makes it easy to prepare your sets and ensures that your mixes sound great.

One downside of the controller is that it’s made of plastic and may not be as durable as other options. It may also take some time to get used to the layout of the controller, especially if you’re used to a different setup.

Overall, if you’re looking for an affordable DJ controller that’s packed with features, the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 300 MK2 is definitely worth considering. It’s a great option for beginners who want to learn the basics of DJing, as well as more experienced DJs who want a portable, easy-to-use controller.

Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300

Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 | 2 Channel USB Controller, with Beatmatch Guide, DJ Academy and Full DJ Software DJUCED Included

If you're looking for a budget-friendly DJ controller that's easy to use and comes with a comprehensive software package, the Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 might be the right choice for you.

Pros:
  • The exclusive functions of the controller, such as the Tempo and Beat Align light guides, the Assistant, and Energy functions, can help you learn DJing quickly and easily.
  • The DJUCED software that comes with the controller provides interactive help and integrated tutorial videos to help you master the basics of DJing.
  • The intelligent music assistant (Imam) can suggest the hottest tracks and help you prepare your mixes easily.
Cons:
  • The DJUCED software may not be the best option for experienced DJs who prefer more advanced features and customization options.
  • The controller's plastic construction may not be as durable as some other controllers on the market.
  • The layout of the buttons and sliders may take some time to get used to, especially if you're used to a different controller.
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If you’re a beginner DJ looking for an affordable and easy-to-use controller, the Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 is definitely worth considering. The exclusive functions of the controller, such as the Tempo and Beat Align light guides, the Assistant, and Energy functions, can help you learn DJing quickly and easily. Additionally, the DJUCED software that comes with the controller provides interactive help and integrated tutorial videos to help you master the basics of DJing. The intelligent music assistant (Imam) can suggest the hottest tracks and help you prepare your mixes easily.

However, the DJUCED software may not be the best option for experienced DJs who prefer more advanced features and customization options. Additionally, the controller’s plastic construction may not be as durable as some other controllers on the market. Finally, the layout of the buttons and sliders may take some time to get used to, especially if you’re used to a different controller. Overall, the Hercules DJ Control Inpulse 300 is a solid choice for beginner DJs who want an affordable and easy-to-use controller with a comprehensive software package.

LyxJam DJ Controller

LyxJam 2-Deck Portable DJ Controller, Mixing Console with LCD Display | Manual Looping, USB, MIC Input, Record Output, 16 Performance Pads with Virtual DJ LE Software Included (Download)

If you're looking for an affordable DJ controller that's easy to use, the LyxJam DJ Controller might be a good choice for you.

Pros:
  • The controller is lightweight and portable, making it easy to take with you to gigs or parties.
  • It comes with Virtual DJ LE software, which is easy to use and has a lot of features.
  • The controller has a lot of inputs and outputs, so you can connect it to a variety of different devices.
Cons:
  • The jog wheels are a bit small, which can make it harder to scratch and mix.
  • The build quality isn't the best, and some of the knobs and buttons feel a bit flimsy.
  • The LCD screen is small and can be hard to read in low light.
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We’ve used the LyxJam DJ Controller at a few house parties, and it’s been a lot of fun to play around with. The controller is easy to set up and use, and the Virtual DJ LE software has a lot of features that make it easy to create custom mixes.

One thing we don’t love about the controller is the small jog wheels. They’re not the easiest to use, especially if you’re used to larger jog wheels on more expensive controllers. However, they’re still usable, and they get the job done.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the build quality of the controller isn’t the best. Some of the knobs and buttons feel a bit flimsy, and we’re not sure how well they’ll hold up over time. That being said, we haven’t had any issues with the controller so far, and it seems to be holding up fine.

Overall, if you’re looking for an affordable DJ controller that’s easy to use and has a lot of features, the LyxJam DJ Controller is definitely worth considering. It’s not perfect, but it’s a solid choice for beginners or anyone looking for a budget-friendly option.

Numark DJ2GO2 Touch

Numark DJ2GO2 Touch – Compact 2 Deck USB DJ Controller For Serato DJ with a Mixer / Crossfader, Audio Interface and Touch Capacitive Jog Wheels

If you're looking for a budget-friendly DJ controller that's easy to use and packed with features, the Numark DJ2GO2 Touch is a great option.

Pros:
  • Ultra-portable design makes it easy to take on the go
  • Touch-capacitive jog wheels provide a traditional DJ turntable feel
  • Comes with Serato DJ Lite and is upgrade-ready to the full version of Serato DJ Pro
Cons:
  • Sound output may not work properly with some speakers
  • Some users have reported issues with crackling sound from the main output
  • Requires a monthly subscription to DJay Pro and a music streaming service for access to MP3s
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We were impressed with the DJ2GO2 Touch’s compact design and touch-capacitive jog wheels, which provide all the precision you need to scratch and blend your mix. The built-in sound card and mixer/crossfader make it easy to connect to any DJ mixer, audio mixer, speakers, or recording device, and the headphone output is perfect for cueing.

The DJ2GO2 Touch also comes with Serato DJ Lite and is upgrade-ready to the full version of Serato DJ Pro, so you can start mixing right away. And with four pad modes for total control of cue points, auto/manual looping, and sample playback, you can add some flair to your performance.

Overall, we think the Numark DJ2GO2 Touch is a great budget-friendly DJ controller for beginners and pros alike. Its ultra-portable design and touch-capacitive jog wheels make it easy to take on the go, and its packed with features to help you elevate your performance to the next level.

Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200

Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 – DJ controller with USB, ideal for beginners learning to mix - 2 tracks with 8 pads and sound card - Software and tutorials included

If you're a beginner looking to start DJing, the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 is a great option. It's affordable, easy to use, and comes with comprehensive software and tutorials to help you learn the basics of DJing.

Pros:
  • The controller's 5 unique features and built-in tutorials make it easy to learn the basics of DJing.
  • The intelligent music assistant helps you choose tracks easily, with suggestions for today's hottest tracks.
  • The layout of the buttons and sliders is similar to those found on a professional controller, making it easy to learn the right moves.
Cons:
  • The controller may feel a bit cheap and plastic compared to more expensive models.
  • It only has 2 tracks, which may be limiting for more advanced DJs.
  • It's not compatible with all DJ software, so make sure to check if it works with the software you want to use.
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We’ve had the chance to test out the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 ourselves, and we were impressed with how easy it was to use. The built-in tutorials and unique features make it easy to learn the basics of DJing, even if you have no prior experience. The intelligent music assistant is also a great feature, helping you choose tracks that will work well together.

However, we did notice that the controller feels a bit cheap and plastic compared to more expensive models. It also only has 2 tracks, which may be limiting for more advanced DJs. Finally, make sure to check if it’s compatible with the DJ software you want to use, as it doesn’t work with all software.

Overall, we think the Hercules DJControl Inpulse 200 is a great option for beginners looking to start DJing. It’s affordable, easy to use, and comes with everything you need to get started.

Buying Guide

When it comes to buying a budget DJ controller, there are several factors to consider to ensure that you get the best product for your needs. In this buying guide, we will discuss the most important features to look for when choosing a budget DJ controller.

Size and Portability

One of the first things to consider when choosing a budget DJ controller is its size and portability. If you plan to take your controller with you to gigs or events, you will want to choose a compact and lightweight option that is easy to transport. On the other hand, if you plan to use your controller at home, you may prefer a larger option with more features.

Software Compatibility

Another important factor to consider is software compatibility. Most budget DJ controllers come with software that is designed to work seamlessly with the controller. However, it is important to ensure that the software is compatible with your computer’s operating system before making a purchase.

Number of Channels

The number of channels is another important consideration when choosing a budget DJ controller. If you plan to mix multiple tracks at once, you will want to choose a controller with multiple channels. However, if you only plan to mix one or two tracks at a time, a controller with fewer channels may be sufficient.

Build Quality

The build quality of a budget DJ controller is also an important consideration. While you may be tempted to choose the cheapest option available, it is important to choose a controller that is built to last. Look for controllers with sturdy construction and high-quality components to ensure that your controller will withstand regular use.

Conclusion

By considering these important factors, you can choose a budget DJ controller that meets your needs and delivers high-quality performance. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned pro, there are plenty of great options available that won’t break the bank.

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I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

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