Which DJ Controllers Can You Scratch With? Special Video Report
The idea of using a platter is not strictly related to DJs who want to simulate a spinning disc or record – in fact the spinning platter has been used in the early days of FX units like the Pioneer EFX-500, which used a spinning platter to input the intensity of an effect. However, modern controller units often opt to have two jog wheels on the front of each controller because there are times when a spinning disc is what the DJ needs. Auto beat detection has made it easier to line up the beats of any two songs that are selected, but when that fails and human intervention is required, it makes more sense to use a spinning platter to nudge a track to line it up.
The jog wheel is where a controller designer can either skimp or indulge. The most basic of these designs are seen on the VCI-100, where jog wheel only responds to movement, rather than touch. These are often harder to use and likely more difficult to scratch with but still provide a means of manipulation. Advanced jog wheels, like on the S4 use capacitive technology to sense the hand’s movement as well as the mechanical movement.