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Review & Video: Pioneer DJ DJM-250MK2 Two-Channel Mixer

The DJM-250MK2 is a serious entry-level mixer for the budding DJ and turntablist. Those who like to twiddle with effects will be left wanting, but for DJs interested in a tough mixer for cutting and scratching, along with simple mixing and blending, it's hard to think of something better than the DJM-250MK2.

In use

Everything works as expected - it's a Pioneer DJ mixer after all. Think of it as a pared down DJM-450MK2, with the same build and high-quality Magvel crossfader, but with a spartan effects section: you don't get the multiple Sound Color FX, Beat FX section, send / return channels, and so on.

Mixer section


It sounds great too - as a standalone mixer, the three-band EQ works in isolation mode, meaning you can completely cut out the highs, mids, and lows using the knobs. The Magvel Fader is fantastic - it's a contactless fader, so it's buttery smooth. It can be switched to cut really sharp, perfect for turntablism / controllerism and scratch routines. The Sound Color filter knob is chunky and slightly weighted, so it feels great.

Switching matrix


Each channel has a switch at the top that lets you choose from among three inputs: USB, line or phono. USB is for hooking up the DJM-250MK2 to your laptop running Rekordbox DJ so you can spin with it. Line is for connecting a media player like a CDJ or XDJ, or any other line level input device. Phono is for connecting turntables like the PLX-500.

Sound Color FX

Sound FX

The DJM-250MK2 comes with two Sound Color FX knobs, which works as dedicated filter knobs. There is also a Sound Color FX parameter knob onboard, which lets you adjust the resonance of the filter curve - turning the knob clockwise makes the curve sharper, and turning it anti-clockwise leads to a smoother filter curve.

Headphone outputs

Headphones 2

One of my favourite features of the DJM-250MK2 is quite mundane: the headphone output. It is powerful and loud. Now before you write this off, listen up: a quality headphone output means that you generally can hear things better at both lower and louder volumes, and you can crank it up higher before it starts sounding like mush.

Of course headphones come into play as well, but a good quality headphone amplifier in a mixer is the prime mover, so to speak - users who've had to deal with the Traktor S4 and S2's low headphone output volume know what I mean here. The DJM-250MK2 sounds good, certainly better than other two-channel scratch mixers in its class, even in a noisy environment like a bar or house party.

Aux input


The aux input comes in the form of a pair of RCA jacks, great for hooking up a smartphone / tablet or drum machine / synth if you want to jam along. That also means if you take this out on a pub gig, folk can plug their phone in case you don't have a track they're requesting (double-edged sword, this). It's also switchable to USB, so you can record what's coming out of your master output to a digital audio workstation (DAW).

Rekordbox DVS


The DJM-250MK2 is Rekordbox DVS-ready, meaning you can use it with a turntable or CDJ running timecode vinyl or CDs, respectively. For a two-channel mixer under US$400, and from Pioneer DJ no less, this is a great deal, considering that a DVS box like Serato Scratch Live could easily run past the DJM-250MK2's price tag, and that's without a mixer to use it with. It already ships with the Rekordbox DVS add-on, so you just need to buy a pair of timecode records or CDs to get started.



The DJM-250MK2 is a straightforward mixer for the budding DJ and turntablist. Those who like to twiddle with effects during their performance will be left wanting, and if you are one of those DJs then you're better off with the DJM-450MK2.

But for DJs interested in a tough mixer for cutting and scratching, along with simple mixing and blending, it's hard to think of something better than the DJM-250MK2. With Rekordbox DVS thrown in the mix, the DJM-250MK2 has got the fundamentals of a mixer that serves as a fantastic introduction into the world of digital DJing via Rekordbox DJ.

Sure, there are cheaper options out there, such as the Epsilon-Pro Inno-Mix 2, but the price difference isn't that much, and it really is quite a leap in terms of build quality and features. If I were a beginner DJ wanting to get serious about my spinning, this would be the first mixer I'd get.

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