DJ Tech MX-120 USB
- Sturdy build quality; can mix CD players, turntables, USB sticks and iPod Nano or Shuffle players
- Tracks from USB sticks don't start instantaneously when the play button is pressed, so it's not good for beat-mixing; no way to go back to the start of a track on a USB stick
A portable size and plentiful input options make this mixer a decent choice for a mobile DJ as well as a function room, but bedroom DJs wishing to mix tunes of USB sticks will be disappointed with its execution.
Price$ 199.00 (AUD)
If you want to get creative with your music, rather than use audio software to tediously cut and paste wave files into custom mixes, a hardware-based DJ mixer can be a lot more fun. Imagine being able to pack tunes onto USB sticks, then plugging them into a mixer, adjusting your levels and crossing the fader in time with the music – no mouse involved.
That's what the DJ-Tech MX-120 USB mixer allows you to do. You can either plug in two USB sticks, or more conventionally, use it to mix audio from two CD players or turntables. It's a well-built unit, with some decent features for its $199 price tag, but it's by no means faultless.
In theory, mixing MP3s from USB sticks is convenient and economical (no need to swap CDs, for example), but in practise, the MX-120 USB is awkward to use. For starters, there's no visual indicator to identify the number and length of the tracks, so you need to fill the USB sticks only with the tracks you want to mix (in the order you want to mix them) and you need to know them inside out. Even when you plug in an iPod Nano, you'll still have to rely on the mixer's play controls.
Physically, the play/pause pads for playing tracks off USB sticks are very rubbery, not very tactile at all and there is a slight delay before a track will play when the pad is pressed. This isn't ideal for beat-mixing at all. There also isn't a way to quickly return to the start of a track, nor does it support forwarding and rewinding.
Apart from the play/pause pads for the USB sticks, the mixer is solidly built and its fader, volume levels and knobs are easy to move. The fader, in particular, is very loose and responsive – don't slam it too hard though, or it could bounce back to the middle.
To mix from different sources, it's just a matter of flicking a switch; you can mix from USB sticks, CD players and turntables while they're all connected simultaneously and the output can be sent to a PC or amplifier. The sound can be tuned through treble, mid-range and bass knobs, which affects the mixed output of both channels, but each channel does have its own volume control.
For cueing tracks, the mixer allows you to listen in to either or both channels simultaneously, which is an advantage when beat-mixing. A talk-over switch is present, which drops the volume of the music to emphasise the microphone, and the tone of the microphone can also be adjusted.
For visual volume guidance, the stereo peak meter is made up of very bright blue, orange and red LEDs, which can be blinding in a dark environment, but at least you'll know immediately when your output starts to distort.
Overall, this mixer has many uses, but users who are serious about mixing music from USB sticks will be let down. For wedding DJs, or anyone who wants a mixer for a function room, the MX-120 USB is almost perfect and quite portable, too; the fact that music can be played off USB sticks and iPods (Nano and Shuffle) means that CD players and turntables can be left behind. It's also a useful product for users who want to connect multiple audio sources to their PCs and switch between them effortlessly.
The mixer's audio output quality isn't excellent, it's a little heavy on the mid-range so we had to fiddle with the frequency knobs to get a likeable sound, but for the most part, it's more than acceptable.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Huawei Mate 9
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Google Daydream VR headset
Acer Swift 7
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Lexar® Portable SSD
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Surface Pro 4
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- 2 ZTE Axon 7 review: Is ZTE dumping old stock on Australia?
- 3 Oppo R9s smartphone full review
- 4 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 5 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
Latest News Articles
- IBM's hub for wearables could have you out of the hospital faster
- HoloLens Spectator View makes it easier to show off AR creations
- Lenovo's ThinkPad P71 will work with HTC, Oculus VR headsets
- Google revamps Voice with long overdue makeover, new features
- Mozilla's new corporate logo evokes URL lingo
PCW Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- Time to ditch Foxtel and the iQ3: How to replace Foxtel packages with cheaper alternatives
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- CCDigital Communications ManagerNSW
- FTDynamics AX Functional Consultant (Sales & Marketing Modules)ACT
- FTPerformance TesterACT
- FTSenior Web DeveloperNSW
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- FTSenior Software EngineerVIC
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- TPMicrosoft Analyst ProgrammerSA
- FTDatabase DeveloperACT
- FTDynamics AX Functional Consultant (Sales & Marketing Modules)WA
- CCIT Solutions ArchitectQLD
- CCNetwork ArchitectWA
- FTSenior Database AdministratorVIC
- FTSenior Systems AdministratorWA
- TPTechnical WriterQLD
- FTDigital Strategist - Global Consulting FirmACT
- CCTest Capability LeadNSW
- CCNetwork EngineerNSW
- FTBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTSenior .Net Developer with Silverlight proficiencyVIC
- FTFinancial ERP Customer SME / Solution Consultant / System AccountantNSW
- FTLevel 3 EngineerNSW
- FTJava Developer - Fixed Term ContractQLD
- CCWindows AdministratorACT
- CCInfrastructure Test AnalystACT