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on February 25, 2012
I've been DJ'ing for over 15 years and this is a new favorite. Out of the box you're ready to rock parties for hours. The second generation of traktor offers many improvements and the s2 is a perfect partner. I'll be honest in that I didn't read any instructions whatsoever as this was simply intuitive right out of the box. The jog wheels offer precision control while the high quality xfader glides back and forth. As a vinyl addict it's hard to notice a difference and while your records won't skip you still get a vinyl feel and total control over the pitch and tempo. Traktor allows more creative mixing as it takes alot of the beat match work away. The effects, EQ and filter within traktor are all quality. You've heard these effects over and over and not with the touch of a button you're golden.

I was a bit skeptical before purchase as I thought the s4 would be a better fit, but I'm more than satisfied. Besides a high quality sound you get a high quality experience. The hard part is figuring out what I am going to mix next!

At the time of this review I've had this thing for 3 days and have spent so much time on it that I'm once again hooked and ready to bring this bad boy out for my next gig. Native Instruments nailed it.
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on August 15, 2012
Had a Numark Mixtrack Pro for a while but Virtual DJ is pretty crappy relative to Traktor. Plus Native Instruments has AMAZING customer service. The S2 is an impressive machine. It's very responsive and is perfect for Traktor. If you have the cash definitely get an S4 for the dedicated filter knobs, extra cue points, remix deck control and 4 deck control but the S2 is huge bang for your buck. It's reliable, easily customizable mapping wise and sturdy (the Mixtrack is mostly light plastic and feels a little cheap). In addition, unlike the S4, the S2 can run off the power from a USB cable so it's perfect for bedroom/home DJ's, casual parties or traveling. Great buy!
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on March 15, 2012
Decided to take advantage of the price offer, never DJ'd before but wanted to add a "Live" element to my music......I currently use alot of Native Instruments including Maschine and Komplete to produce mostly hiphop and dance/house/pop, ect.

My setup:

Macbook Pro 2GB
Logic 9 + VSTs
Komplete 6
Apogee Duet
Yamaha 2.1 Monitors
S2 + Macbook Pro 8GB(use with Ableton)

Like most new equipment, this thing is a bit daunting at first but I got the hang of it after a half hour of playing around and I had never used a DJ controller or turntables or even DJ software before. You can map the S2 to your liking, which is cool because everyone has a preference. Traktor 2 is fairly simple, I've used most of the major DAWs (Protools, Logic, Reason, Ableton) so im familiar with music programs but Traktor is pretty much 1 dimentional considering its only one screen/window, so there isn't much of a learning curve.

I'm using the S2 for original mixes, don't plan on gigging with it anytime soon......I'm not a DJ but would like to become a better live performing producer.

I recommend the S2 if you are a beginner, I've only used it for 2 weeks so I don't have much criticism. The S4 isn't worth the extra $500 IMO considering you can pick up an X1 ($200) or the new F1 ($250) controller for extra sample decks/FXs or use the Maschine with the S2 like I do.

*******1 YEAR UPDATE*********
I sold the S2 about 2 months after I wrote the initial review. I found myself not using it because I didn't have the time to DJ, only produce music. If I got back into it I would probably buy the S2 again. MANY of these DJ controllers on the market are sold because of the bells and whistles, that light up and look pretty. If you're gonna take a chance on one take it on Native Instruments. I haven't used many other DJ programs but the main Traktor 2 program/software view is very playlist oriented and most objects are drag and drop. The S2/S4 also comes with as assortment country outlets (plugs) for different voltages.

In reference to my first review about the S4 not being worth the extra $500, make note that if you need an interface to hook up your monitors the S2 does NOT have one built in, the S4 does. That seems to be the biggest kicker in comparing the two.
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on September 26, 2012
This controller is Pretty awesome, i was thinking about getting the S4, but i already have the X1 controller and i use them both together.
The s2 has a very small learning curve. Its highly customizable and by that i mean you can map out your controller to your liking.
You can map your jog wheel to control the FX units and just really make it fit to your style of performing, whether its just causally playing music at a small party or taking your skills to the next level with controllerism.

The audio card built in is great, sounds real good to my ears.
You can set the built in audio card to your default audio card and leave your S2 on while you watch a movie on Netflix, watch YouTube videos, or listen to music with iTunes to get the most from your S2's built in audio card.

Overall my experience with the S2 Has been great, Make sure you read the manual on how to set it up nice and soundly.
Its really not that hard just plug and play, the only thing that will take a while is the installation of Traktor Pro (free when buying this item), and the extra minute to set your audio preferences.

Check out my pics under the name of JC to get a bit more info.
review image review image review image review image review image review image review image review image
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on May 27, 2012
I was looking to re-start my old DJ fascination in the 2010s with the latest craze, digital DJing. I headed to the local music shop and was checking out the low-end Hercules models when a salesman steered me towards getting the Traktor Kontrol S2, which was on sale for $400. Although it was a bit more expensive, I ended up pulling the trigger, and I have not regretted that move at all. Since I got the Kontrol S2, my DJing has the potential to pay dividends as I have already worked one gig and have potential future gigs on the horizon. It is truly amazing how much power there is in this little box; the Traktor program itself is high-end professional stuff, and it comes with the S2, which is already optimized for use with Traktor alone. Right out of the box, you can be making professional-sounding mashups and mixes within mere minutes, and once you get a little more advanced it is quite easy to program your very own home-brew mapping of the controls to make custom effects to drop over the tunes on the fly. Although this is technically Native Instruments's "entry-level" controller, it packs the power and sophistication of a much more advanced device; the effects alone that come with the program are on a par with those of professional-grade Pioneer mixers. For a beginner or even a seasoned professional, this is really as good as it gets.

Just be sure to get a good pair of headphones (for $200, Sennheiser HD-25s are probably the best bet) along with it; don't make the mistake that I did and get a cheaper pair ($100) only to be upset when all your audio sounds distorted and you can barely hear it in a club setting. Because the S2 is USB powered, that produces a weaker signal, but with a decent pair of headphones that cancel out background noise (e.g., the Sennheiser HD-25s) there is no problem. Sennheiser HD25-1 II Closed-Back Headphones

In short, I have not regretted this purchase for one moment, and I doubt any of you would-be purchasers will, either!
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on December 2, 2014
As most Native Instrument products, the S2 is excellent for beginners in the DJ world. Tough build, easy to set up. The buttons are just the right size, comfortable and durable. Faders seem to be pretty smooth. Recommended for anyone starting in the DJ world.
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on November 4, 2013
I used to spin vinyl from the late 80s to the early aughts, then stopped until 2013. Decided I wanted to get back into DJing using digital media.

Paired with Traktor 2 Pro on a laptop, this controller makes it a cinch to pick up DJing. Very easy to use basic mixing functions right out of the box, but would recommend you purchase the Traktor 2 Bible since the PDF manual for the S2 doesn't explain very much.

I've spun out a few times with the S2 without any hitches. It's great that it has a built in soundcard so you can plug it directly into powered speakers without needing an amp or additional interface. It's also pretty compact and light, making it easy to transport.
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on January 29, 2014
The S2 is a great DJ deck that shows it's quality the moment you start using it. Controls are smooth and work very well. With plenty of output options you can connect this to just about any sort of PA system. Perfectly matched with the Traktor software the device works perfectly.
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on March 4, 2012
Unit comes with full software. No lite or limited use. Controls are excellent. Construction is not bad sturdy plastic. Good for beginer with room to grow.
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on April 23, 2013
So Im new to DJing and I wanted to buy a good starter controller. First I bought the Mixtrack (not PRO) that comes with Virtual DJ LE (Light Edition). I played with it for about a week and it was awesome. But then something happen and every time I opened up VDJ my speakers would crackle and the sound was so distorted it would make your ears bleed if you played it loud enough lol customer service at VDJ were very quick to respond but had no idea how to fix my problem. So I took a trip to Guitar Center to talk to them and came across the Traktor S2. I decided to buy it and give it a try. OH MY GOD. I am having waayyyyyy too much fun on this thing. It has a premium build with metal parts so it feels real solid and looks GREAT. The knobs and sliders are very smooth and accurate. The buttons are so easy to press down. Everything about it feels great. Traktor PRO 2 is an awesome program. Im having a blast with this and I havent even learned all the features yet. BUY THIS. You will not regret it. Guitar Center dropped the price so much so that they would match this price including tax. Cant wait to start mixing again tomorrow!

If you have $500 to spend on a controller then get this. After an hour you wont even think about returning it.
If not then try the mixtrack pro or mixtrack pro 2. Both are good and come with built in audio so you wont need a sound card. The only this is when you get good at mixing and want to get real creative these with kinda hold you back. But they are definitely a good, cheaper way to start so you can see if this is something you really want to get into.
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