We’ve all loved using the original Audio 2 DJ from Native Instruments. It was super small in size (the smallest DJ sound-card in the world) but at the same time, it gave an extremely loud & clean output unlike any other sound card in the market. It was lauded by many professional DJs, and a staple amongst beginner DJs that were looking for a professional sound card at an affordable price. After one upgrade cycle which resulted in the name being revised to “Traktor Audio 2″ but no change in size or features, this new model is a more substatial update with new features/integrations and goes by the name of Traktor Audio 2 MK2 (but NI still calls it the Traktor Audio 2).
The new MK2’s look pretty much the same, except that it’s a much smaller footprint and minor cosmetic changes. A quick look at the specifications table lets you know about what’s under the hood –
But here’s what you really need to know about the Traktor Audio 2 MK2 (while we compare it with the previous model):
1) New Audio-Output Ports:
The older generation used to have two stereo TRS jacks (1/4″), while the new ones are regular EP mini jacks (3.5mm). Similar to your smartphone jacks where you’d plug in your earphones. So if you’re looking to sell the older one to pick up the new one, keep in mind that your previous cables will not work unless you get a EP to 1/4″ adapter. Unfortunately, the box doesn’t come with audio cables anymore either. Leaving these points aside, we’re quite excited about this new output format since it’s aimed to please the iOS generation too. The new Traktor Audio 2 MK2 works with your iOS devices (iPad/iPhone) with the included cables, so you can use the Traktor DJ app right off the bat. Since a lot of people still use the mini-jack headphones/earphones, it’ll be quite convenient to plug it into one of the Audio 2 MK2’s output, while the other one can be connected to your every-day commercial stereo system (think: Creative / Logitech / etc). Bear in mind that if you’re using your home ‘Creative’ system, the sound quality coming from the sound-card will be of the highest quality but that doesn’t guarantee your system to work like a club system ;). Speaking of club-system, the recommended cables you get are ‘3.5mm male mini-Jack (EP) to 2 RCA Male’.
2) DC Port for Power Supply:
There have been a lot of speculation as to what the DC port is actually used for since the previous Audio 2’s ran only off USB power. The good news is that nothing changes for the average user and it’s still a USB-bus powered sound card for the most part. You’d only use the DC port when you’re plugging it in with your iOS device so that the sound card can get more power to generate louder volume levels without having to use your iOS devices’ battery, plus it charges your iOS device too. Handy! Note that the DC adapter’s not included in the box and can be bought separately.
3) iOS Compatibility:
With the introduction of Traktor DJ, the iOS app, most of NI’s equipments are being made to be compatible with it and for a good reason. We’ve seen a lot of people moving their library to their iPad and taking it out to gig with the Audio 2 MK2 or even the new Traktor S4/S2! You should definitely give Traktor DJ a try, its extremely addictive & a whole lot of fun. The app’s gone through a bunch of updates and has finally become stable enough to perform on the latest iOS 7 platform.
In summary, the new Audio 2 MK2 has all the loveable features the previous version has PLUS more! We’re really excited about the new features, especially the new audio outputs since the EP-to-RCA cables are far more accessible than the stereo TRS-to-RCA cables (which you need to probably custom make if you lost the cables that came with the box). The Traktor Audio 2 MK2’s definitely here to stay!
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