Home > etcetera > Vestax VCI-380 DJ controller

Vestax VCI-380 DJ controller

I have always liked Vestax and their components, be it their DJ mixers, controllers and turntables. I used to use a Vestax mixer very early in my DJ career. That mixer was solid. Had a sampler and also had very good sound. Not bad for a small mixer that was only slightly smaller than the standard 19″ variety available back in the day. Vestax are known for having good, solid controllers and this is the controller that I am doing a post on. It is not a review because I have not had the chance to try it out but there have been many positive things said about Vestax controllers in general, I thought I would write something about it.

The first thing that strikes you about this controller is its solid build. Vestax spared no expense to get a controller out in the market with good build quality. This is essential because more often than not, controllers can be abused and must be built to take that abuse by DJs. First of all, the jog-wheels. According to the Vestax website:

“The platters of the VCI-380 are highly responsive, transmitting MIDI signals with extreme accuracy. The LED needle point embedded in the jog wheel provides excellent visual monitoring, indicating the decks playback position.  The torque of the jog wheels can be adjusted to your preference, and as like all VCI series controllers you can pitch bend the track by touching the sides of the jog wheels.”

This is a far cry from the tiny jog-wheels of my Hercules DJ controller. The jog-wheels on my controller do the job, yes, but larger jog-wheels are always welcome. But the caveat is that it leads to a bigger controller versus my small, compact one. But the difference between my controller and this Vestax one is that the Vestax can function as a standalone mixer:

“The stand alone mixer function of the VCI-380 has great capacity for adaptability. The two hybrid channels are capable of mixing external devices such as CD players, turntables and MP3 players, together with tracks and samples Serato ITCH is playing. Each channel has an RCA Phono/Line input for limitless connection options, and the crossfader and input faders curve can be adjusted like any DJ mixer.  Mixes with the input source can be tweaked with Trim, EQ and in addition, the FX knobs on each channel function as Hi-Pass filters, to add an extra touch to your performance.”

That makes this controller a lot more flexible. Say that your computer breaks down. You can easily hook up a pair of CD players and/or turntables to this. This means that there are RIAA pre-amps built into this. Marvellous!

There is a built-in soundcard, with booth outputs and balanced XLR outputs at the rear of this controller. The Stanton DJC.4 that I just bought has balanced outputs too but they are in TRS format, not XLR. There is also an AC power adaptor to power this controller on but it can use the power supplied by USB. The featres of this controller are:

-2 Channels USB MIDI controller for Serato ITCH
-Built-in 24Bit/48kHz audio interface
-2 x 8 Performance Pads with Velocity & Aftertouch
-5 performance modes (Hot Cue, Auto Loop, Slicer, Roll, Sampler)
-PAD FX function
-Channel FX controls
-Ribbon (strip) control for Pad parameters and Needle Drop
-Large scale 5 1/3 inch jog wheels with needle position display
-2 Channel stand-alone audio mixer with Phono / Line input
-Hi-Pass filter, Trim and 3 band Eq on stand-alone mixer.
-2 Mic inputs with volume control
-Balanced Master output (XLR) & Booth output (RCA)
-19″ rackmount kit (optional)
-Robust metal body construction
-CFX-2 (Digital Crossfader) compatible

But there is one caveat about this controller. It does not support Intel Celeron, ATOM and AMD processors. That is a bit of a blow for me personally because most of my computers are using AMD processors. A bit of a blow on that. But all in all, a great controller. Vestax, you have done it again!

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