Tag: bedroom DJ
Gemini CDM-500 DJ Station Product Review
The cheaper alternative in DJ controllers
Notice recently how everyone is jumping on the DJ controller bandwagon? Maybe it’s not exactly recent, but DJ controllers are the everything-in-one DJ package every DJ wants to get their hands on. The bad news about them is that they’re very expensive. Even Numark, a DJ supply store known for its low prices, put a pretty hefty number on their NS7. So basically, if you’re a working DJ who has the money and you want a DJ controller, you can get one. Everyone else? Tough luck. Save up your money, and maybe you’ll get it next year. Seeing as that’s the way it would appear, that if you have deep pockets you can buy a DJ controller, Gemini came up with their own unit: the CDM-500. Not only is it a pretty awesome controller, but it’s Gemini, so you know it’s going to be cheap.
I recently did a workingDJ post on Gemini’s CDM-3700G. I liked the product, so I decided to see what other units they offer in their CDM series, which lead me to reviewing the 500. Before getting into the features, it’s important that I not waste anyone’s time: this unit is NOT a unit you want to take to the clubs, as it has way too many shortcomings. It is great for house parties and novice DJs who want to learn the ropes, but can’t afford Pioneer or Denon equipment. The CDM-500 is also good for bedroom DJs who may lose interest a few months down the road.
If Gemini and I still have your interest, check out the features of the CDM-500:
- Audio CD and CD-R compatible
- Anti-Shock using RAM Buffer Memory
- Instant-Start and Cue with preview
- Single/continuous play modes
- Fader-Start capability
- Seamless loop per side with reloop
- Pitch bend via Jog wheel or buttons
- Three time display modes
- Frame accurate search
- Direct track access buttons
- Pitch control with range of +/- 12%
- +10 track button for quick navigation
- Fully programmable with repeat function
- 3-band EQ w/ Gain Control
- 1/4” headphone output
- XLR and 1/4” mic input
- Auxiliary Inputs for Phono or Line devices
Even though the CDM 500 has its share of hindrances, I’ve still dubbed it a great controller for bedroom DJs. First, it has all the features you’ll need: pitch control with a decent range, 3-band equalizers, all the necessary inputs and outputs, plus good sound. Gemini made it flawlessly easy to understand, so this way, when beginning working DJs try to perfect their technique, they can do so with little problems. Little problems, but not no problems. If you ask around, you’ll find that a lot of working DJs had problems in the way it functions. Some features don’t work properly the first time, don’t feel right, don’t respond, etc. That’s to be expected with a controller at such a low price.
After reviewing the product myself, I realized that most working DJs will find problems in the sensitivity of their jog wheels, but that always varies per style (some won’t mind that detail). The beauty of this product is that it doesn’t discriminate against techniques, but when it comes to the jog wheels, I know beatmatching isn’t real easy.
Basically, the CDM-500 is a "you get what you paid for" kind of equipment. When you pay $439.95 MSRP, you can expect "good" and you can expect "decent", but don’t expect miracles.
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