If you’re still deciding on which DJ software to choose or have finally decided and chosen Rekordbox, you surely want to know about its system requirements.
Requirements depend on how smooth you want your computer/laptop to run the software.
Rekordbox runs all manner of complicated audio analysis and transformation algorithms under the hood to make stuff like multi-channel EQ blending work. For playback and organizing, Rekordbox doesn’t need as many resources.
Obviously, the more tracks you have, the analysis of tracks will take longer. Still, generally, you don’t need to analyze hundreds or thousands of tracks regularly. Even if you do, you can let it do that overnight.
While I already wrote a piece on laptop specs for DJing where I covered each component, I want to expand on that topic and talk more about Rekordbox.
Let’s dive right in with minimum and recommended requirements, and then we’ll explain the issues you might experience.
MINIMUM Rekordbox system requirements
Version 6.0 – 6.6.1
|OS||macOS 10.14 (Updated to the latest version)
Windows 8.1 (64-bit, The latest service pack)
|macOS Mojave 10.12 (Updated to the latest version)
Windows 7 (64-bit, The latest service pack)
|CPU||Intel® Core™ i3
Intel® Core™ i5 (Video function)
AMD Ryzen™ 1000 series
|Intel® processor Core™ i3|
| 8 GB for video function
What else do you need? (99.9% chance that you have this)
Audio output to speakers, headphones, etc. (internal or external audio device)
A USB 2.0 port connects a controller or a mixer and exports tracks to a USB storage device like a flash drive and a hard disk drive.
An Ethernet LAN adapter (RJ45 port) for interacting with the CDJ (i.e., CDJ-TOUR1, CDJ-2000NXS) is needed to transfer music files. For details, see the specific CDJ’s operating instructions.
Playable music file
ALAC, FLAC, WAV, AIFF MP3, AAC
1280 × 768 or greater
You need an internet connection to create a user account and to download and activate Rekordbox.
RECOMMENDED Rekordbox System Requirements
Version 6.0 – 6.6.1
|OS||macOS Big Sur 11 (Versions later than 11.2 – Updated to the latest version)
macOS Catalina 10.15 (Updated to the latest version)
Windows 10 (The latest service pack)
|Windows 10 (64-bit, The latest service pack)
macOS Big Sur 11.2 (Updated to the latest version),
|CPU||Intel® Core™ i9, i7,
Intel® Core™i9, i7 (Video function)
AMD Ryzen™ 1000 series or later
Apple M1 chip
|Intel® processor Core™ i7, i5|
|Memory||8 or 16GB
| 16 GB for video function
As you can see in this photo below, Rekordbox doesn’t guarantee that everything will work even though you have requirements covered.
Even with the required memory capacity noted for the operating environment above, Rekordbox may not be fully functional and perform on the highest level due to lack of memory in the circumstances like:
- Many tracks are being managed in the Rekordbox library.
- Many programs and services are running on the computer/laptop.
According to Rekordbox, it’s suggested to take the necessary measures to ensure sufficient free memory for achieving stable performance.
Does Rekordbox work on iPad Pro?
In an update from 10/2020, Rekordbox stated that their software technically works on iPad Pro with iPadOS 14, but “Full functionality is not guaranteed with iOS 14 or iPadOS 14. “
Rekordbox & Android compatibility
In an update from March 2021, Rekordbox stated that AlphaTheta Corporation had released a brand-new Android version of the Rekordbox from its Pioneer DJ brand.
With an enhanced user interface that copies the layout of the PC/Mac version of the professional DJ software, in addition to a host of helpful new features, Rekordbox for Android (ver. 3.0) makes it fast and straightforward to prepare the music for parties.
You can mix, create cue points, and transfer everything to your main Rekordbox library, so it’s ready for your practice on laptop software.
Rekordbox for Android (ver. 3.0) is ready for free download on the Google Play Store.
Does Rekordbox work on Windows 11?
While we’re waiting for an official update from Rekordbox, some of us tried to use the software on a new version of Microsoft’s operating system.
I have it connected to my DDJ-1000 with windows 11 i7 16GB 500GB 14″ Asus Zenbook, and it works fine. I had to fine-tune my power settings cause I was getting the popping crackling sound from my audio, but everything else was running excellent. Also tested it on my DDJ-400, and everything worked ok.
What to do if your Windows PC laptop doesn’t meet (or barely meets) Rekordbox system requirements?
Set Rekordbox only to use the highest 50% of CPU cores. E.g., If your CPU has eight logical cores, make sure Rekordbox only uses cores 4, 5, 6, 7.
Suppose your CPU has 4, set Rekordbox only to use cores 2, 3. The lower cores (e.g., start at core 0) have more issues with DPC latency (which can cause “pops” and “clicks” in audio software).
Run “DPC Latency Monitor” and test this. You can tell the DPC Latency Monitor app only to monitor specific cores.
If you have performance issues, try to avoid core 0. It usually has the highest DPC latency issues.
If you’re wondering why’s that, it’s because of how Windows schedules CPU work across the cores.
I tested it with an old laptop and Rekordbox 6.41 and didn’t have any glitches that I could notice.
I had tried it with Rekordbox 5 before, and it had been sluggish, so it was either a fix that I did that made ver. 6.41 work but not ver. 5.0, or maybe just a software update that did the trick.
How to set up Rekordbox to use the four later cores?
You can update your Rekordbox shortcut. Right-click on it, choose Properties, then edit the Target as follows:
C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe /c start “rekordbox” /affinity F0 “C:\Program Files\Pioneer\rekordbox 6.4.1\rekordbox.exe”
Note: I have Rekordbox 6 – version 6.4.1. That’s why 6.4.1 is my target. You’ll have to change 6.4.1 to your specific version (like 6.5.1, for example).
The value F0 is a code that represents the set of cores you want to use. You can use this site to calculate. You can remove any leading zeros.
For example, using the calculator, I selected cores 4,5,6 and 7 and got this result:
0x00000000000000F0. But I can just use the F0 part.
What if your laptop meets (or even exceeds) the requirements, but Rekordbox doesn’t work well?
A few months ago, my new HP laptop just seemed to disagree with the DDJ-1000. The sound was popping and crackled and I just couldn’t seem to find a fix. A powerful new laptop that shouldn’t have an issue running pretty much anything now had issues running a DJ software.
As I started on a DDJ-400, with the ability to run a multi-cam live stream with almost no issues, this was getting on my nerves. I knew something wasn’t right and had to find a solution.
If you have a powerful laptop but still having problems, do this:
- Go to the ASIO4ALLwebsite.
- Download the universal driver.
- Once you have downloaded the A4A driver, select that driver in Rekordbox.
- Manually select the channel output for each deck.
- Up the buffer to 512.
This fixed the problem for me. I bought a brand new laptop, and the DDJ-1000 popped all the time. I changed the driver to the asio4all and instant fix. Guarantee this will work.
Does Rekordbox support iTunes/Apple music?
You can use iTunes for songs you own, but not Apple Music.
I saw this mess arising from the moment Apple changed the iTunes name to Music.
Apple Music has not supported a streaming service in any DJ software. Yes, you can use the Music app as a collection manager for songs you have the audio file for, with the important exception of FLAC files.
Currently, I just download files, run them by Mixed In Key, and import them into Rekordbox. I don’t even use iTunes for music files anymore.
The quality of the purchased tracks will be the best, of course. But this will cost much. You can also record them as plain music formats first for a try.
These are the best music converters:
For Amazon Music, you can use: TuneBoto Amazon Music Recorder
For Spotify Music, you can use: NoteBurner Spotify Music Downloader
For Apple Music, you can use: Sidify Apple Music Recorder
If you have a MacBook with an M1 chip, don’t use an older version than 5.8.6.
At the end of 2020, when I spoke to Pioneer support, they said it should be by the end of March 2021 that they will have an update for M1. They released it just as they said.
Before Rekordbox delivered the latest update of macOS Big Sur 11.2 compatibility (Intel Core processor/M1 chip), you couldn’t use any Rekordbox version on my new Mac that is M1.
The updated version is 5.8.6, so if you have a Mac with an M1 chip, make sure you use newer versions of Rekordbox.
Why it’s best to stick to a version below 6.2 if CPU usage is too high
You’ll find most DJ software is consuming between 15-35% when idle, and it depends on your computer’s specs as to whether or not that’s a concern as some will report the CPU usage as a portion of the available cores or threads. For example, mine will show up to 800% usage (100% per core).
A decent amount of people reported the sluggish behavior when they upgraded Rekordbox to 6.4. After reinstalling 5.8.5, they had no issues.
As soon as they open Rekordbox it hogs CPU. The software is totally idle. Browsing through the UI, as clicking playlists or scrolling through songs, is very sloppy. Interacting with it in any way is completely unresponsive. If they play a song, there is a lot of break up, whether they have the buffer size at 128 or 1024 samples.
If you have an unusually high CPU using the 6.0+ versions, stick with 5.8.5 until you see that Pioneer has an update on this.
Imagine having to re-add your library and re-analyze all those tracks or something else after you upgrade to 6.0+. That’s disastrous!
My cousin had the same problem with Rekordbox on his laptop. He has Macbook Mini 2019 (i7, 32GB RAM, 2TB SSD) MacOS & DDJ-400 Controller. I spent some time troubleshooting myself.
I deleted and installed different versions from 6.2 to 6.4. I also deleted the Pioneer folders in the user library and software support and imported a recent backup.
Deleting those folders provided the most improvement, that along with either ver. 6.2 or ver. 6.3 provided an “almost” useable experience. However, there was still high CPU usage and high UI latency upon opening the Rekordbox.
It took over an hour to sync 157 songs between the Rekordbox and the iOS app. There was no difference in the experience with either the keyboard/mouse or the controller. That also impacted the responsiveness of all other apps, so I needed to quit the app to do anything else.
I have disabled lyrics, DVS, and Lights in settings as I read that might be a problem, but it did not help.
The problem can also be the visualizers in the video section. Cool feature, but it spikes CPU.
Why is Rekordbox late to keep pace with Apple macOS releases?
Opposite to Rekordbox, Algoriddim’s Djay AI is developed utilizing Apple development conditions which are rigorously for coding iOS/macOS apps.
That is why delivering Djay AI compatible with the next macOS is relatively easy for Algoriddim. If they follow all the Apple guidelines, then little to no code adjustment is needed.
While the current Djay Pro for Windows has a totally different code foundation than the Djay for iOS, Rekordbox’s code is similar for both operating systems.
The other DJ software companies (Rekordbox, Serato, Traktor) use conditions that Apple does not contribute to because they want to apply the same code base in Windows and macOS.
That keeps development efficient and compatibility for their own software between OS’s achievable. Those development tools need to be updated to compatibility with the new macOS before those software companies can even consider modifying their code.
Add to that the fact that Apple is altering critical code in the different (developers) Betas, breaking adaptability in the process, makes many developers think twice before tweaking their code based on an Apple beta.
Most will wait until the public Beta, but most likely, the golden master is out before debugging.
But Macbook is really great. I had the MacBook Air 2013 model, and it’s worked flawlessly with Rekordbox 6. As long as everything was prepared and analysis completed before gigs, I had no concerns.
Possible audio distortion and other issues with Microsoft Surface Pro
Some people report problems with Microsoft Surface Pros that even exceed system requirements with their eight GB of RAM and i7 processors. They say they’re constantly riddled with issues, the most common being that the airflow through it sucks and heats up very quickly when in Rekordbox.
Seems that a few models may have problems baked into the BIOS that the manufacturer hasn’t addressed.
There is a fix where they’d edit the registry to set a limit on processor power which keeps the throttling down, but then they’d have many other issues, the most common one being the type pad keyboard cover constantly disconnecting.
If you’ve got a controller with four decks like DDJ-1000, Rekordbox might have a problem pushing more than 2-3 tracks simultaneously.
As long as you intend on sticking to only playing two tracks at once on Rekordbox (which is all you can do on controllers like DDJ-400), then you should be fine with any Surface 2 model, though I’d recommend at least going for the i5 CPU minimum.
If you already have Surface Pro and experience these issues with Rekordbox, try these solutions:
- Buy a USB cord with ferrite chokes, which helps filter out the digital noise that gets picked up on the USB signal.
- Reformat Surface Pro to the factory image that it came within 2014 and disable ALL updates.
- Set the Rekorbox with drivers and ensure it is clutter-free.