While not as well known as some bigger-name DJ apps, PCDJ has some loyal fans in the Create Digital Music community, with good reason. The app has long had an agnostic approach to vinyl control formats, supporting everything from Final Scratch to Ms. Pinky. And it gains popularity points with lovers of custom effects by supporting VST plug-ins. Basic versions start at US$50. But that doesn’t mean PCDJ is perfect. Not everyone loves its interface, its somewhat rigid approach to DJing (as with most DJ apps), or the fact that it’s Windows-only. Reflex promises to resolve that:

Reflex Product Page [PCDJ.com]

Interesting features promised for the new version:

  1. Custom interfaces for different styles of use, like looping, scratching, remixing; reduced interface for performance use
  2. Flexible control methods: time code, midi controller, USB HID device (including PCDJ’s own gear)
  3. Support for multiple third-party vinyl control, or PCDJ’s own vinyl control system; support for VST plug-ins (but not AU on Mac, perhaps?)
  4. Automate-able tempo, beat matching, and mixing
  5. Turntable brake, tempo-synced effects

Despite their attempt to appeal to “producers and remixers,” though, it seems they could have broadened their audience by including loop recording as well as playback. That’s still something many apps don’t do as well as they could (Ableton Live included, though in fairness that’s partly because of the nature of its Session view design which has other advantages).

Also, this doesn’t appeal to me personally as much as Deckadance because the latter will function as a plug-in as well as hosting them, which means you could, for instance, combine the DJ software for vinyl scratching with Ableton Live for everything else. (You can also do the same thing with the plug-in that ships with Ms. Pinky.)

That said, I’m sure Reflex will be a contender, going up against Deckadance, Serato Scratch, Torq, and NI’s upcoming Traktor Scratch. Let the best DJ app win. We’ll get our DJ experts on this so I don’t just get carried away imagining bizarre setups involving Reaktor samplers running as plug-ins and glitchy music no one could dance to.

US$329 with time-coded vinyl and CDs; $279 without.

Image-Line Deckadance: The DJ App/Plug-in To End All DJ Apps ?