"Worth the investment once you see what it competes with!"4.0 starson by Mike12mt
Pros: Features in the Software, all the knobs and buttons!
Cons: alittle small, websites could be nicer to customers that don't own the full version of the software, the mono-split is glitchy in the Headphone monitor.
Hercules gives you a good amount of features to get you started into the world of djing. A fairly accurate BPM counter, decent cross-fading, smooth jog wheels for easy scratching (although alittle on the small side), shortcut keys on the keyboard for cueing, looping, and sampling. Hercules also gives its consumers open-source opportunities to improve on its plugin FX's techology ex: flanger, panning, devil chorus, back-spins, back-looping etc... The recording feature is nice when you wanna compare your first mixes in a basement party to mixing at a club with over 1,000 people.
The overall quality of this product is great. The crossfader feels smooth and solid. The jog wheels are senitive to the touch and responsive. The play and cue buttons are active to the touch but some might notice a 1ms delay once you really start making those fast-paced mixes but its easily adaptable. All the controls feels well-made so don't feel too bad after spending $250.
If you're interested in a career as a DJ, this is a good place to start. The device is design to progress with you as you become more familar with the techniques many pro DJ's use. This product will not disappoint you.
Some experts might say that digital scratching will never sound as real as scratching with vinyls, but i'd say, with the right amount of talent, any DJ beginner or experienced will have no trouble making a good mix from this unit. The sound coming through the main speakers is great. The headphone volume is extremely loud with my Sony MDR-V600 though at times the switch that allows you to mono-split the two decks into each ear is alittle glitchy at times. A good way to correct this is while the song you're cueing up next is playing simply turn the knob fast through all the options until you hear each deck in their respected ears again. Otherwise you're left listening to a mono-version of your mix. The technology isn't perfect but when you think about it, a single usb cable can not split the sounds on your computer into discrete tracks, this device simply mutes each song until you fade into the next song.
>>Ease of Use<<
As a progressing DJ, i find this product to be very helpful in the developing stages of my career. At first, i didn't know what half the buttons on this thing were used for, but as i became more familar with it, i find that this unit is great for many beginners and well-experienced DJ's though at some point you may want your buttons and knobs to be spread-out alittle more as i found i tend to hit the jog wheels a few times while fading into the next song.
The Hercules website is very geared towards customers who have purchased the full version of their software. Most of their plugins made by their company and from fellow DJ's are only available once you have proof you've bought the full product. This was kinda a let-down for me, but in a way, its a much more secure way of preventing hackers who have managed to overide the serial code detector and unlock all the the features only available in the Pro version to prevent free access to their site. Would of been nice if more features were available on lesser versions of the software.
I did find after a month of use, i started looking for other products simliar to this. I heard of the Mixman DM2 and the DJ Kontrol. But overall, i think with the ease of use, all the knobs and buttons bulit in to the device, the DM2 seems alittle cheap and out-dated. I'm told the jog wheels aren't as smooth as the wheels found on this product. All in all, this mixer is worth the investment once you see what it competes with.