“The Silent Downfall of Pioneer DJ”

The comments are golden :rofl:


Fanboy central, gushing over their beloved brand, whilst having their wallets pickpocketed by them.

Those of us old enough will remember the day they rebranded the CDJ line mid to late 2000s and doubled the prices overnight, suddenly the ‘entry level’ was priced higher than the CDJ-1000s. All around the time the global financial markets crashed.

Don’t forget though “if you ever want to PlAyInClUbS, you have to use Pioneer to practise on”…… I wonder when these sheep are going to realise it’s their blind loyalty to the Alphabravocharlie money machine that is causing the DJ industry to be damaged.


The decision to stop using the pioneer brand name and start calling most of their overpriced, under-featured products as Alpha-theta is utterly hilarious.

All those sheep wandering into DJ stores or onto webpages, saying/searching for “pioneer” and, in many cases, not being able to spell the new brand name… is going to do nothing positive for sales… thanks to the “never 'eard of 'em” situations.

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Dexxter said “in 2023 Pioneer DJ bought Serato.” Technically, this isn’t true. The sale has not been approved. It seems to be in some trouble in New Zealand and now the UK is taking a hard look.

I’ll never understand why the smaller/neighborhood clubs aren’t saturated with SC5000/6000/Prime 4 gear. Unfortunately, based on the comments, Denon DJ equipment is perceived as being lower quality (plastic buttons wearing out, hard to get parts). They need to renew their focus on quality and make repairs easy.

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It’s perceived to be lower quality by lots of people who haven’t actually used it, is the main issue.

If you talk to a retailer they’ll tell you it’s all about even Stevens when it comes to repairs. Pretty much all tech items have suffered with components since Covid, my new Audi Q5 isn’t the same level of build as my old 2015 one, despite costing a fair chunk more, just little things here and there point to a drop in component quality.

Pioneer gear is truly embedded into DJ culture, bars and smaller venues just buy what everyone else is using, especially if they plan to have guest DJs on. Unfortunately many people will go their whole DJ career without ever knowing what is on offer elsewhere.

In the U.K. especially you barely see any other brands at all, it’s all just CDJs and a DJM 4 channel mixer, even the S series are rare.

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I said it elsewhere and I’ll say it here. The video is full of either wrong, improper, or misleading statements.

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It’s got him a lot of views though Kevin, that’s all that matters lol.

Similar thing happened in Fuji camera world. Some nomark channel with 300 subs put this big autofocus rant out, suddenly his video is being shared left, right and centre… the guy refuses to disclose what camera, lens or settings he was using to reproduce the issue but it’s now being used as the de-facto ‘autofocus issues’ video… meanwhile he revels in his 30000 more views than normal.

As far as that video goes, his misinformation is only as annoying as all the blinkered fanboys and arrogant nobodies in the comments who think they are somehow superior to another human being because they bought a device with a certain brand name stamped on the side, rather than another. Making out like the rest of us don’t have access to credit cards or employment to pay for it🙄

Pioneer DJ fanboys and Sony camera fanboys, 2 sides of the same coin.


Then let’s take the high road and not help share misinformation. And let’s not be the same shitty fanboys that we despise :slight_smile:


I’m brand agnostic, I’ll use the equipment at the time that is best for my needs, if there is no InMusic Prime 2 replacement when the time comes I’ll look elsewhere. My previous 2 units were an XDJ-R1 and DDJ-SX2

What I hate is when people take an arrogant stance and imply others are somehow financially worse off, or less of a DJ because they aren’t using some DDJ or CDJ whatever. It boils my you know what, and that whole comment section is full of it, as is every other comment section on other social sites, including some of them on here at times. It’s even worse on here because they are specifically creating an account on a brand forum purely to do it.


I wouldn’t be as assertive as you on this point.

I love Denon DJ, I love the way they innovate and I love their business philosophy (keeping up with massive updates to bring more and more features) unlike Pioneer.

But we have to be totally honest, the vast majority of Pioneer products that came out until the release of the CDJ 3000 were reliable products. I’m not saying that there are no problems with Pioneer equipment, I’m simply saying that the problem rate is lower than Denon because Pioneer has better quality control and above all chooses better quality/more robust components.

Clearly Denon has made a choice to position itself in such a way as to provide more options for less money. But to be cheaper you have to cut costs and so they have chosen to favor certain very low cost components.

The problems with the view buttons on prime 4/4+ which fall inside, the cue/play buttons on prime 4/sc5000 which are not very robust and need to be handled very gently because they can break easily , the Alps fader and the low cost oled screens on x1850 are just a few examples of recurring design problems at Denon which have never been corrected, although I am convinced that they are perfectly aware of them.

You will certainly tell me that Pioneer has as many problems if not more and that they are simply hiding the annoying posts on their forum to make it appear that there are no problems.

Except that what may be true on their forum is not true on social networks. Pioneer does not control all posts in all Facebook groups. And to be present in quite a few groups of DJ’s both on the Pioneer side and on the Denon side and also third party groups, I see recurring problems more often on fragile components on the Denon side than on the Pioneer side. This also happens at Pioneer but it is much rarer, especially for high-end equipment.

We must be honest and say that there is still a lot of work on the Denon side to achieve quality control at the level of industry professionals. Cue/play buttons break easily because the plastic to make them is cheap, this is not acceptable for equipment at this price.

Denon must raise its quality standards if it wants to appear as a credible challenger. Not to mention that finding a Pioneer spare part is child’s play compared to Denon.

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Im only going off what I was told by the owner of a reputable DJ store here in the UK, his exact words were “everyone likes to think their chosen brand is perfect and all others fail, but the truth is neither are different to the other, there are just as many problems with one as the other”

Also from 22yrs of gigging I have seen mixers with broken inputs, snapped faders, broken EQs, the effects section not working (new screen unit required), loose headphone ports. Then CDJs with broken link ports, broken USB ports, buttons no longer working, unresponsive touch screens, cue and play buttons completely broken, platter nudges sending the track into fast forward, the tension adjust not working, the mechanical platter surface itself completely broken. I had a faulty XDJ-R1 that I stopped being able to rely on for gigs. Ive seen those Effects units completely wrecked.

What do you want me to do, unsee all this?

And just to add, my £1100 Mastersounds Radius 4 was hand built in the UK with premium mixer components to a high standard, its bombproof… how much is that DJM-A9 again?


I’m not saying that all this doesn’t happen at Pioneer, obviously it does. I worked for many years as a resident DJ in clubs, I saw some Pioneer equipment with broken things, but how much time and different DJ’s on the equipment did it take for the cue/play buttons gives up, or a fader is torn off. It happens yes but it lasts a long time before breaking.

And I’ve seen some grumpy DJs, who didn’t pay attention to the equipment, who banged on the cue buttons as if they had hammers at their fingertips. And the CDJ 2000(s) lasted more than 3 years in these conditions, an SC5000 would not have lasted 3 months.

Quite simply because the choice of components is not the same and neither is their solidity. Denon is good when you are the only one using the equipment and when you take care of it. Not when a whole bunch of angry DJs treat the material without any restraint.

Not at the moment anyway.

Concerning Mastersound I agree with you on the fact that Pioneer abuses its prices comparatively. But even if a radius 4 is hand-made and the choice of components and construction quality is excellent, from a technological point of view, it is not as complex to manufacture as an A9 which has a circuit digital processing and an effects module with quantization etc… You have to compare what is comparable

And I haven’t yet seen a single publication with problems with screens or bleeding channels on an A9 unlike the x1850 where not a week goes by without me seeing one.

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All I know its I have 2 pieces of Denon gear and so far they seem pretty reliable to me, ive had a repair on the platter on my Prime 2 (grounding issue) and thats it, the LC-6000 feels well made with nice buttons and dials on it, and a nice platter… we will never find out how robust they are in bars etc because nobody is ever going to use them.

The non-replaceable faders are poor, im guessing partly the reason for the much lower price in comparison.

As far as the Mastersounds goes, yes its not as complex, but it does have Master Insert and individual channel aux returns that are complicated to design and route… and the huge difference, Andy Rigby Jones isnt some Chinese factory worker being paid £2 a day or whatever to build the mixers, he will be on far more, and it still comes in at less than 1/2 of the price of that A9.

P.S. someone sprayed a bottle of beer over my unit at my gig last month, like a champagne bottle, and its still working so far… if it was so unreliable, that surely would have killed it.

The target audience is not the same either, the person who buys a radius 4 is a connoisseur, who generally will use it to have fun at home or possibly in a few events with friends.

I have never seen a festival or a club with this type of tables, whether they are raduis or even model 1s at least here in France. Although it is certainly more solid in the end than the Pioneer.

Why do clubs and festivals use Pioneer? for three reasons:

  • It is easily rented (for festivals)
  • it is robust and reliable enough to last a while without having any major problems
  • Parts are easy to find and replace inexpensively.

The quality seems decent to me on the SC6000M and LC6000 that I have here, I think that Denon has corrected a certain number of things on these units compared to the sc5000 generation. And the buttons for the moment don’t seem to pose a problem for me. But I’m the only one who handles them and I’m gentle with my equipment. I don’t know what that would sound like in a club with a bunch of angry DJs.

But when I see that nothing has been corrected on prime4+ regarding the view buttons even though this has been a problem since the original prime 4, I tell myself that it’s really not serious for a manufacturer whose ambition is to attack the industry’s leading brand

The pio machine of controlling and editing what allowed to stay up online, and what gets deleted, makes it look as though hardly any pioneer fear ever goes wrong - as posts on the pioneer forum and pioneer Facebook groups are deleted from view by their moderators - they’ve been doing that for two decades now.

Dodgy unreliable power supplies on their all-in-one consoles , usb connectors which fell out of the back panels of decks and consoles when you pulled the usb stick out of the device, incredibly expensive and fragile platter displays, terribly unreliable microswitches under platters, platter surfaces which take on a rippled texture when exposed to direct sunlight, and that’s on top of the usual fader / button issues which can affect any make or model…

yet very few accounts of the above issues stay online for more than an hour or so on any official pioneer forum or social media page hmmmmmmm

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Typical Youtuber video. If you want engagement, say something wrong and just see the likes and comments roll in.


I was mainly referring to Facebook groups of third-party and independent DJs of which there are dozens, not to the official groups of the brand

I think these listed points of criticism are valid. Crucial parts like transport buttons and faders should be as robust as possible (+ replaceable), even if that makes those units a few bucks more expensive. On the 6000s units the Play/Cue buttons feel much better, but sadly, the old ones got re-used in the SC Live units, while also going for far worse performance pads (very stiff), instead of simply using the same good ones built into the Prime 4 and 2.

That doesn’t only increase the (perceived) amount of complaints, but also makes the units feel inconsistent compared to each other, which I regard as a bigger risk for inMusic. This is certainly an area, I would lay a stronger focus on - ensure that the core unit parts are of identical (high) quality. This already works for the 7"/10" screens on the Akai/Denon/Numark brands, now follow the principle for the play/cue buttons and faders, and/or make them easier replaceable (not directly soldered onto the PCB) and we are good. Once that is ensured, and only then, you can go the next steps by bringing Akai/Denon/Numark/Rane/SSw even closer together and to take full benefit of the in-house synergy potentials, when it comes to R&D, software and hardware.

The software, once their clear weakspot, has matured really well by comparison! The desktop part is still a bit weak and buggy at times, but the OS on the players is darn good compared to what that other brand has to offer (= far less). We’re slowly starting to notice some CPU and RAM limitations, e.g. longer loading/buffer times, FPS drops, some reported network issues with bigger libraries, but at least my All-In-One systems remain very stable with ‘normal’-sized collections on USB or SD drives, while also running SoundSwitch/Engine Lighting and Ableton Link, all without any laptop support. That deserves all my respect. And the update-support is unrivaled. I still hope for a new CPU-generation in all future ≥2024 units.

As for censoring… yeah, I can guess this happens on Pioneer controlled boards, I had been around there quite a lot during my own CDJ and DDJ time, but their mods can’t be everywhere and I would consider Reddit or DJ-related forums to be pretty neutral. At least I can speak for our german forum where I am moderator and pretty strict when it comes to manipulative brand influence. I’ve worked with Pioneer, inMusic, NI, Roland and other gear, all of them have their bright and not-so-bright sides. As an artist I chose my tools, not vice versa.

(as for the topic, I still believe that the brand renaming to AT was nothing less than ridiculous)


This is very well stated @Skaratak ! Cheers!

DJ Techtools had the right idea nearly 20 years ago… the arcade button mod.