5 Best DJ Mixers for Vinyl & Turntables in 2023 (All Tested)

A DJ vinyl turntable is a record player with several features that make mixing between two different tracks easy. 

The mixer, also known as the mixing console, is the heart of any DJ setup. With the help of a mixer, the DJ controls the sound coming from the turntables, and it is the mixer that allows you to perform most of the DJ tricks.

While many young DJs start with DJ controllers, there’s something nostalgic with vinyl records, so many desire mixing the old-school way. 

If the Technics SL1200 series is the standard for turntables for many vinyl-loving DJs, what’s the best mixer to use with vinyl

In this article, I’ll do my best to help you find the best DJ mixer to use with turntables.

1. Allen & Heath Xone: 96

Best Vinyl DJ Mixers for Turntables

  • Sound quality
  • Interface with any system
  • Filters are a little noisy

Price: Around $2000 (See on Amazon)

This model is the improvement and enhancement of the renowned Xone: 92. The Xone: 96 is an outstanding, detailed, uncompromising analog DJ mixer, excellent to use with turntables. 6 + 2 channels and a 4-band EQ stand out for their precision and refinement.

The compatibility and interface with the most varied software and VSTs are fluid and easy to configure, thus allowing you to connect your PC or Mac and manage the sound source with your favorite functions. The two USB ports allow us to connect two computers simultaneously.

The VCF filters with Crunch harmonic distortion (with a double distortion circuit in the pre-phase) will give dynamism and color to your mixes. 

At the same time, the two dedicated FX sends (rare to find in this price range) will allow you to load your favorite effects, sending them to the various channels. The HPF, BPF, and LPF filters have separate resonance and cutoff.

The layout is intuitively easy to use with vinyl, and the controls are truly tactile, thus facilitating the approach for those who do not yet have much experience with DJ mixing.

This DJ mixer weighs 7 kg and is 336 x 410 x 109mm large. It is a solid and robust product that offers a very attractive price for professional performance.

2. Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol Z2

Best Vinyl DJ Mixers for Turntables

  • Connect any sound source
  • Macro FX and Flux Mode
  • The crossfader cannot be ruled out

Price: Around $650 (See on Amazon)

The Z2 disco DJ mixer is a professional mixer optimized for use paired with Traktor software and brings about the fusion of analog and digital. An aluminum chassis, a solid and robust build quality, and its unique “Innofaders” make the product suitable for any stage, be it a club, disco, or other location.

Two stand-alone channels connect with audio sources such as cymbals or CDs, while the other two channels allow connection with the Traktor deck, having control of its cues and all effects.

The combination is truly the pinnacle of modernity as the DJ will have the opportunity to connect sources such as CDs, vinyl, digital tracks, or samples.

The Macro FX, added for the first time to the Traktor software, allows you to create combinations of multiple sounds, manageable by a single knob. Your effects arsenal will be huge by taking advantage of the mixer controls and the software functions.

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The Flux mode, new to the product, will allow you to recall the cue points and modify the track by inserting loops. The software will memorize the passage of the song, showing a residual time indicator.

The dimensions are 272 x 388 x H109mm, and the weight is 5.1 kg. I highly recommend this mixer to all Traktor users, the combination of which will give your performances a truly exciting experience.

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3. Numark Scratch (Best compact mixer)

Best Vinyl DJ Mixers for Turntables

  • Works with all major DJ software
  • Ideal for scratch
  • Minimal and simple layout
  • Phono / Line connection not separated

Price: Around $500 (See on Amazon)

The Numark Scratch is a 24-bit vinyl and digital music mixer. It is compact and performance-oriented, with a simple and intuitive design and layout. 

It works as a stand-alone mixer or is used with Serato DJ Pro software (however compatible with all other major software).

There are two switchable channels (phono/line or computer), and each offers four performance pads per roll, hot cue, and sample. 

The channel strip provides the gain knob, a 3-band EQ, and the fader. The Innofader is equipped with reverse and slope scratch functions.

The effects on the mixer are six controllable buttons together with a wet/dry potentiometer.

The On / Hold levers allow the activation/deactivation of the effects, keeping pressed on the effect until we want it to end (On function) or leaving it completely engaged until we manually turn it off (Hold function).

The weight is 6.35 pounds, and the dimensions of 320 x 245 x 108 mm. These features make the Numark Scratch a good quality/price mixer for lovers of scratch and minimal layouts devoted to performance.

4. Allen & Heath Xone: 92

  • Sound quality
  • Minimal and essential interface
  • Few filters and effects

Price: Around $1500 (See on Amazon)

The Xone: 92, the predecessor of the Xone: 96, represents a market standard and for years has been one of the benchmarks of what a DJ needs during his performances.

Allen & Heath offer this highly reliable analog mixer; everything a professional or a novice could ask for to mix at high levels.

This DJ mixer has six stereo channels, two Aux pre/post or crossfader, and a 4-band EQ. There are 2 VCF filters, as well as LFO filters. The low number of filters/effects is intended, as the Xone: 92 is not meant to offer a wide range of extra features, focusing instead on the fundamentals of DJing. There is also a start/stop button, dedicated data control, and MIDI output.

The knobs and faders are sensitive but give the feeling of something very well built, solid, and not afraid of prolonged and frequent use with turntables.

This model tackles and handles any genre very well, from House to Trance, to Techno, and much more.

With a size of 320 x 358 x 88 mm and a weight of 17.3 pounds, the Xone: 92 is one of those products that “never misses” over the years and continues to be a favorite of professional DJs worldwide.

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5. Allen & Heath Xone: 23

Best Vinyl DJ Mixers for Turntables

  • Separate Monitor and Record Output
  • Weight and size
  • Renowned Xone filters
  • Slight background noise

Price: Around $350 (See on Amazon)

The Xone: 23 is a very light and small DJ mixer suitable for turntables with a budget price. 

As for all other Xone models, the brand always pays the utmost attention to build quality, and this mixer confirms the trend.

The available channels are 2 + 2 channels (2 of which with phono/line inputs). 

The two stereos offer independent gain control for each of the four inputs, allowing use at any time. The faders are VCA type, and the EQ is 3-band.

The VCF HP and LP filters and the frequency and resonance selector have been renowned for years for the quality they operate on the audio. Their combinations allow the DJ to be very creative when mixing with vinyl and thus make the performance much more dynamic and engaging.

Allen & Heath also allows you to update the model with the latest Innofader to have advanced scratch performance. The Innofader is sold as a separate accessory.

The weight is only 6 pounds, and the dimensions are 315 x 240 x 108mm. Xone 23 is one of the most popular models for beginners.

How to choose a mixer for the turntable?

While entry-level turntables will probably disappoint you and may even discourage all desire to DJ, an entry-level mixer (subject to the necessary minimum of functions) can serve you faithfully for the first six months or a year before you grow out of it. 

Such a first mixer can cost many times less than a club standard: around $350 (Allen & Heath Xone: 23) versus $2000 (Allen & Heath Xone: 96).

Mixer Features

To choose a mixer for turntables wisely, you first need to study their main characteristics. 

The number of channels: Determines how many audio sources the mixer can mix and feed to the master output simultaneously. 

Minimum required: 2 channels, one for each of your players. (However, a single-channel mixer cannot exist by definition.)

The number of inputs: A mixer can have two channels but four inputs. How? It’s very simple: each channel has a switch that determines which input it receives a signal from. 

You can assign the first channel to the first or second mixer input and the second channel to the third or fourth, respectively. Thus, even to a two-channel mixer, you can connect, for example, a turntable and a CD player on each side. 

In practice, there are no less than four inputs in mixers, which more than covers the minimum required for us (two).

The microphone input: allows you to connect a microphone to the mixer. 

Channel equalizers: This is a collection of rotary controls; each sets the level of a certain frequency range of a given channel. 

For example, a three-band equalizer consists of three knobs and allows you to control the level of high, mid, and low frequencies. Minimum Required: 3-band EQ per channel.

Sound level indicators: These are luminous strips that jump to the track’s beat and show the level of its sound. 

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The required minimum is the mixer’s main output level indicator. Better – individual indicators for each channel.

The Gain knobs control:  the audio signal level of amplification coming from the input to that channel. The bare minimum is a separate Gain control for each mixer channel.

The mixer outputs: main output, record output, monitor output, and headphone jack. The bare minimum required for the initial stage (main output and headphone jack) is present in every mixer.

BPM counters, effects, sampler: The BPM counters automatically determine the track’s tempo being played through a given channel, which is useful when mixing. 

Mid-range and high-end mixers also offer audio effects and sampling features. For a beginner DJ, all these functions are not critical.

Models to look out for

Armed with the knowledge of the basic parameters of mixers, you can make an informed decision. Below are some interesting models in different price ranges that can serve as starting points.

The good news is that a good mixer that meets the minimum requirements listed above can be bought for less than $500. 

In the $300 to $800 category, more advanced features like per-channel audio level meters are no longer a novelty.

Mixers in the price range above $800 have the most diverse set of features borrowed from samplers and effectors. 

Here, the products of such brands as Pioneer and Allen & Heath reign. The latter two are renowned for sound quality, while Pioneer is renowned for quality combined with functionality. 

After all, the Pioneer pen owns the DJM-900NXS2, the very club standard mixing console. 

Prices are growing in parallel with the capabilities of the devices and are closed, perhaps, by the Pioneer DJM-900NXS2 model – a real monster that works off every penny of its $4000. 

Here it is just right to repeat what was said at the beginning of the article: a beginner DJ can do a lot less without much damage to the quality of training.

The Most Important Connectors on a DJ Vinyl Turntable

Typically, a vinyl turntable is equipped with at least one phono output with RCA connectors for connecting it to a mixer or amplifier with a dedicated RCA input. 

If your equipment does not have phono inputs, you will need to opt for a turntable with a line output or switch between turntable and line. Another option is to use a phono stage between the vinyl turntable and the rest of the equipment.

The digital output can be useful for digitizing vinyl records simply and effectively, which can be interesting to listen to old vinyl records on a smartphone or MP3 player, or when you don’t have a vinyl turntable. 

The most common digital output is the USB port. Thanks to this connector, you will be able to connect your vinyl turntable directly to your computer using a USB cable (type A to B). 

You will also be able to edit the recordings you have made using Audacity, Rekordbox, or any other original software that comes with the kit.

Tray Fiddy

Tray has come to terms with the fact he will probably never be a famous DJ.... but that hasn't stopped him from mixing and researching audio equipment. Tray has over 12 years of experience DJing at home and events.

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