Pioneer XDJ-1000MK2 Review

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Pioneer XDJ-1000MK2 Review

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The XDJ-1000MK2 is an update on the famous CD-less XDJ-1000 media player. It has the same 7-inch high-resolution touch screen (similar to the one on the CDJ-2000NXS2), but with improved track browsing capabilities. The addition of support for FLAC and ALAC files gives DJs the option for higher quality mixes. The XDJ-1000MK2 is ideal for a home setup, something to practice on before hitting the club.

Look, Ma. No CDs!

The XDJ-1000MK2 has all the qualities of a modern Pioneer CDJ. It even has an updated browse section with more navigation buttons, a welcomed feature that’s passed down from the CDJ-2000NXS2. However, this player won’t take CDs, and it doesn’t have an SD card slot. The XDJ-1000MK2 will play music from a USB thumb drive or a laptop with Rekordbox DJ.

It does seem weird for Pioneer to release a full-sized professional CDJ without an actual CD player. However, the company is making a bold move towards answering the call from many modern DJs that have extensive digital music libraries.

Most DJs today are going through new tracks so quickly, they honestly don’t have the time to burn CDs of their latest music continuously. A simple transfer to a USB thumb drive is efficient and eliminates the additional costs associated with purchasing CDs.

Another cost that’s out of the way is the maintenance of the internal CD player. Because Pioneer CDJs are intricate media players, they require a specialized technician to repair or service the CD player if needed. This means you will pay more for the repair of a damaged CDJ player than you would for a regular DVD player.

There are DJs out there that have broken CDJ800s sitting right in front of them and not enough cash to repair. Depending on where you live, it might even be challenging for you to find someone who can work on a Pioneer CDJ. The XDJ-1000MK2 tries to eliminate these issues while maintaining the solid reliability and feature set of a modern Pioneer CDJ.

Hey DJ Keep Playing that Song

The XDJ-1000MK2 has the same gorgeous touch screen as its predecessor, except with a few key features that will revolutionize your track selection workflow. If you are a DJ that takes plenty of requests from the crowd, then you will be locating your tunes quicker on the XDJ-1000MK2.

On the MK1, browsing tracks was done exclusively through the browse knob. This meant that you had to scroll through entire playlists or libraries to locate your next track. Now the XDJ-1000MK2 offers a search option with an accompanying QWERTY keyboard. You can simply search your track name or artist.

If you are not someone who keeps track of song names and you just want to wing it, then you can add filters to your library, such as:

  • BPM
  • Key
  • Rating
  • Color

Rating your songs or sorting them according to color can drastically improve your productivity towards song selection. This is big for DJs as finding the right song to play next is essential when performing at live events. The track matching feature will recommend songs for you to play next. This takes some getting used to, but can still be fun if you are messing around at home.

Another new feature is the ability to play hot cues which can be triggered on the touchscreen. The experience isn’t as solid or as tactile as using proper hardware buttons. However, DJs have gotten better with finger drumming on touch devices like iPads, and the 7-inch high-res screen is reasonably responsive.

High-Quality Audio

Another upgrade on the MK2 is the addition of FLAC and ALAC playback. If you are an audio purist, then you will be pleased to have the option to play lossless audio on the XDJ-1000MK2.

There is nothing wrong with DJing with tons of MP3 files on a USB thumb drive as Pioneer devices are renowned for pushing out fantastic quality audio. However, if you wish to take your game to the next level, then high-resolution (lossless compressed) audio can make a difference.

FLAC files shine most when played through a high-end setup. If you choose to go with FLAC files at your next gig, your mixes will most likely sound superior to the guy with his MP3s before you.

Where Does the XDJ1000-MK2 Belong?

Similar to the CDJ-900NXS, the XDJ1000-MK2 does inherit many defining traits from the flagship CDJ-2000NXS. The XDJ-1000MK2’s can be seen as Pro Level DJing on a budget (although, they are still relatively expensive). This makes the XDJ-1000MK2 an ideal player to practice their sets with at home.

If you are a club owner looking that wants to avoid making a massive investment in the flagship CDJ-2000NXS, then the XDJ-1000MK2 is a viable option. However, not having the capability of playing CDs will mean that you won’t be able to cater for most DJs.

Just imagine the stress of having a DJ show up with CDs a few minutes before his set, and your setup cannot accommodate him. To avoid this, its best to consider the CDJ-900NXS, a more affordable option to the flagship CDJ2000NXS.

If you are a club owner that has a set selection of resident DJs that are more than happy to play on the XDJ-1000MK2, then you should go for it. CD players do suffer from wear and tear, so over time with continuous playback of foreign CDs. You will most likely run into maintenance issues.

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The XDJ is a professional high-quality Pioneer media player with a great touch screen. Previously lacking track search and hot cue features are now introduced into the 7-inch touch screen.

FLAC and ALAC file support. This gives DJs the option to play high-resolution audio that’s superior to the MP3 file format. It opens up the opportunity for higher quality mixes and sound played through high-quality sound setups.

A fully digital setup with improvements on track selection workflow. Not having a CD player as a primary input could spare you from future service and maintenance costs. Track search and filters are a welcome addition for DJs with massive digital libraries.


No CD input. If you plan on using the XDJ-1000MK2 in a club, you will be limiting yourself and your DJs. Many DJs still prefer to make use of original CDs or MP3 CDs.

Still Expensive. Grabbing two XDJ-1000MK2’s for your home setup remains an expensive affair. Pioneer does offer controllers and all-in-one DJ gear that are also ideal for home use, at a lower price point.

Not a worthy update. The MK2 is a sweet refresh from the original but doesn’t have enough features for current MK1 owners to upgrade. You will be upgrading into better file management and sound quality. These can be overlooked considering the price of an upgrade.


The XDJ-1000MK2 is yet another solid digital offering from Pioneer, if with its lack of a CD player. With so many DJ controller options out there, none of them maintain the same tactile feel and joy that you will get out of a professional Pioneer media player. If you are a digital DJ that uses DJ controllers, you will notice an empty void in your setup that can only be replaced by an actual media player such as the XDJ-1000MK2. If you have mastered a DJ controller and you want to play on something more professional, then the XDJ-1000MK2 might just be what you are looking for.

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