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Vestax VMC-180 review :: Denon DN-X900 review
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DJ Equipment Reviews Denon DN-X900

Verdict : 
A high-quality, versatile four-channel mixer with some truly groundbreaking features

Denon DN-X900Designed for on-the-road, studio or installation use, the DN-X900 and DN-X500 are mixers cast from a similarly robust mould, with the more advanced 900 version the one we’ll be featuring in more detail. The key difference between the two is that the DN-X900 comes with digital I/O, though one of my favourite features is found on both, this being the EQ on/off switch.

It’s a simple function, but gives any EQ that extra creative angle, and is particularly useful on mixers such as this where the EQ pots are small and the layout quite tight, making cuts and quick sweeps a bit cumbersome. With the EQ on/off switch, you can pre-dial your EQ before taking it live, while if you’re temporarily EQing a track out of the mix, the on/off switch allows you to punch it back in, in an instant.

Of course, a large percentage of prospective users will be just as interested, if not more, in the mixers’ connectivity and versatility; and there’s no doubt that in these departments they tick every box. For starters they are input matrix mixers, meaning you can assign any of the five line and three phono/line switchable inputs to any of the four channels, though the 900’s digital inputs can only be assigned to the channels to which they are connected.

Output-wise the units are heavily armed, with XLR connections for master and booth, RCAs for an unbalanced master and record, 1/4-inch TRS jacks for the zone and subwoofer/light trigger outputs, plus two digital outs in S/PDIF coaxial and TOSLINK formats on the 900. Add to this not one but two independent mic channels with three-band EQ, talkover, on/off and level control and, in terms of four channel mixers, if you’re still unsatisfied then frankly you’ll never be happy!

Flex your skills
Both mixers offer a choice of linear or rotary input faders – you can even have a mixture of the two on the one mixer – plus the fully assignable Flex Fader crossfader is the best I’ve seen and heard on a Denon mixer. This is another feature only found on the DN-X900 and matches the standard of many a pro scratch mixer, with excellent curves and adjustable tension.

nother feature unique to the 900 is track marking, which means that when recording a mix via digital output you can punch track IDs direct from the mixer. To what degree of accuracy this can be done midway through a mix is debatable, though I imagine it’s something you could get used to; and considering the sheer number of CDs that must get recorded by DJs of every standard it could prove useful.

Finally, the send & return facility is as versatile as you would expect, being assignable to the master output or each channel individually and comes with a dry/wet control, on/off button and cue facility.

In conclusion, then, if you’re using Denon CD players it does make sense to use one of their mixers, as it allows you to take advantage of features such as fader start; plus, on other mixers in their range, effects and hot starts too.

Don’t discount the DN-X900 if you don’t, for it boasts exceptional build quality, provides high-grade sound and sports a spread of features that will satisfy all but the most specialist DJs – and on that basis comes highly recommended.

Four input channels plus two mic
Matrix input assignment
Four digital inputs, five line, three phono/line switchable
Master, zone and record outputs
Two digital outputs
Subwoofer/lighting output

Crossfader with curve control and adjustable tension
CD track mark direct from mixer
Three-band EQ with on/off switch
Fully featured and assignable send & return
PFL metering

Manufacturer: Denon
Model: DN-X900
Price: £579.00 inc VAT

Contact: Denon
Tel: 01753 680023


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