First out of the blocks for Roland’s 909 day is a collaboration with Serato. We don’t have much of a DJ angle here at Gearnews.com but this new DJ-808 is really too good and crosses too many boundaries to keep solely to the DJ crowd.
It’s big, it’s got that AIRA glow about it and they’ve packed it with everything a DJ could possibly need. It’s a 4 channel DJ controller with a built in drum machine, vocal processing, external instrument inputs and deep level Serato integration.
There’s lots of talk about this being a revolution in DJing, in how suddenly DJ’s are going to be able to do a whole lot more than they ever thought possible – and other such hyperbole. I’m pretty sure DJ’s have incorporated drum machines, samplers and other boxes of cleverness into their sets. You’ve only got to check out Native Instrument’s hardware DJ controllers to know that creativity and performance already exists in this world.
That aside Roland and Serato have pulled together an awesome feature set into a single piece of hardware. The drum machine offers iconic 606, 707,808 and 909 sounds and 16 steps of sequencing. The RGB pads give access to Serato DJ functions such as loop roll, sampler, slicer and drum performance. Roland have integrated their VT voice transformer to add some spice to those shout-outs. There are two Aria link ports for integrating other Roland boxes. The dual decks provide full Serato DJ functionality and is fully licensed ready to go.
It’s an exciting and complete solution for the DJ with performance ambitions. Not sure the purists would consider it to be anything remotely resembling an 808. But Roland can do whatever it likes with its intellectual properties.
The DJ-808 should be available in October for €1499.
More information available on the Serato website.