Denon MCX8000 Review



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My name is Brennan Galley and I was the Canadian Technical Sales Manager for inMusic Canada.  I toured Canada coast to coast to show musicians how to use innovative DJ and Music production equipment.   These videos I shoot were designed to be a follow up to anyone I met, who wants to see the demonstration I do for a second time.  My goal is to help musicians use the gear they purchase to the fullest of its capacity.

The Denon DJ MCX8000 is a standalone or Computer Based DJ Controller.  It comes with a full version of Serato DJ and the Pitch N Time expansion pack. It has a video screen above each deck to give you a scrolling waveform and track information.


01 – Standalone Effects

A great and usable feature of the Denon DJ MCX8000 is that it has stand-alone onboard effects.  It offers up echo, phaser and noise.


You have multiple options for playback on the MCX8000.  The MCX8000 comes with a full version of Serato DJ, so it will work with your computer with all of the software content you need.  As a bonus it comes with the Pitch and Time expansion.  Further down there are demo videos on using this expansion pack.  The MCX8000 also works as a standalone DJ controller.  It has two USB slots located on the top left of the unit.  The usb slots can each handle a 2 tb powered external hard drive or a usb key.  The MCX8000 plays back directly from the slots and require the files to be 44.1  The third option for music playback is running audio using an audio input located on the back.  The fourth method is running a DVS vinyl or CD’s.  This requires the DVS expansion pack.  Check out more about it  by clicking on Serato DVS expansion

If you are running in standalone mode or using an external audio source like a record player or CD player the MCX8000 has Standalone Onboard Audio Effects.  There is a delay a flanger and a sound oscillator.  This is a pretty unique feature and will ultimately mean that you don’t need to spend more money on more gear.  This also minimizes the amount of gear you need to bring to a show.

02 – Pitch N Time

The Serato Pitch N time expansion is free with the purchase of the MCX8000.  This will mean that you can quickly blend any song with any other song.  A huge difference between pro and amateur DJ’s is the ability to match the pitch.  Serato DJ makes it easy with their key detection and labeling.  But, sometimes you need to make two songs blend that normally would not sound good together.  Pitch N time will resolve this issue and will allow you to make changes to your set on the fly that you have never been able to do before.

03 – Pitch and Time Cues

The Pitch and Time Serato expansion that comes with the MCX8000 allows you to perform in a brand new fashion.  In the past quality DJ’s would use the pitch fader to make tracks sound good together by paying mind not only to tempo but also pitch.  A lot of prep time would have been committed to ensuring that the tracks sounds good together.


With pitch and time you can now press one button on the MCX8000 and make your tracks sound good when mixed together.

In this video I demonstrate how to take this to the next level.  If you hold down shift and sampler you can select any of your cue points.  When you release the shift button that cue point will be spread out over all 8 pads.  Using the parameter button will either give you notes that are higher (right parameter), or notes that are lower (left parameter.)

04 – Quick Search

When DJ’ng weddings requests are pretty common.  If you get handed a usb stick you need to navigate through someone elses files.  This can be problematic because they can have up to 2 tb of content using the USB ports on the Denon DJ MCX8000.  By holding down shift and twisting the browser knob you can search all of the content alphabetically.  This will make you look like a pro and will make sure that the client is happy.

05 – Utility Folder

The Utility folder allows you to customize your MCX8000.  Here I show how to change the Deck LED playback.  This video also covers how to increase or decrease the capacitive touch sensitivity of either of the MCX8000 decks.


06 – MCX8000 Mic Inputs

The MCX8000 is a standalone DJ controller with screen technology.  It will provide all that you need to get things jamming at a party.  A huge part of hosting a party is MC’ng.  With this in mind the MCX8000 comes with two microphone inputs.  Micro-phone input one is a hybrid jack.  This will accept either a typical XLR microphone cable, or a 1/4 ” cable.  The second input is straight up 1/4 ” input.


Both channels have a gain control and EQ control so that you can make it sound exactly how you want it to.  A very unique feature on the MCX8000 is the mic echo.  Both channels have a button on off switch and below the Microphone control section is a mic echo amount rotary knob.  This will bring your DJ performances to a next level.  Its perfect for anyone from festival DJ to wedding DJ.

07 – Engine

Engine is what makes the MCX8000 work well with Serato and and also helps with smooth operation in standalone mode.  In order for engine to work Your drive needs to be formatted fat 32.  To have the smoothest playback it needs to be also formatted using the included engine software.  Engine is a song management tool that allows you to add Cue points and Meta Data.  The meta data stores track information like BPM and Cue Points.  A huge plus, with engine, is that you are able to drag and drop files from Serato software into the Engine software.


When you drag and drop files, the metadata from Serato is transferred along with the actual song.  When you are in standalone mode you can utilize the cue points and use the MCX8000 in the same fashion you with do it with Serato.  This means that any of the track preperation work you have down in Serato will be kept and usable inside of Engine when running in standalone mode.  It also means that backing up your Serato set is quick.

For dollars spent the MCX 8000 will give you more than any other DJ controller on the market.  There really is no other current comparative controller that will give you standalone or computer based controller with screen technology showing you all the details of the tracks that you are playing back.

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