The Novation Twitch was the pioneer controller not to be built by Pioneer. Thanks to the general opinion amongst DJ’s that technology within in the industry is simply going round in circles, it was a refreshing change to see a new twist, experimental as it may be. It is targeted at the DJ that likes to mash, chop and change rather than the more conventional CDJ and Vinyl mixing. The Twitch is a DJ Controller designed to be used with Serato’s Itch DJ Software, although it is compatible with other DJ software like Ableton and Traktor.
Perhaps the most effective feature on the Novation Twitch are the two Touchstrip in exchange for the control platters, this gives you a surprising amount of versatility. Its main function is to cue tracks, stop, drag forward or backward but can also be used for more experimental purposes. It can be used to scratch, but as you can probably guess it is quite under whelming and I wouldn’t recommend it, especially in a club! Given this the spinbacks sounds surprisingly realistic, which I wasn’t expecting due to the Touchstrip being a line.
Now to a more familiar sight, the mixer section of the Twitch should be fairly comfortable to anyone that uses Vinyl’s or CDJ’s. I was quite pleased to see this as it might have been a bit overwhelming to be taken completely out of you’re comfort zone and just be given a complicated board of flashing lights. Rest assured it still maintains channel faders, a cross fader and standard controls.
For those planning to really test the Twitch’s experimental values to the limit then the Slicer Mode will excite you most. It works by splitting the track into 8 cue points, which can be triggered by sixteen trigger pads. You can use two modes; the first allows you to play the track as normal and pressing it twice loops the section. While the track plays you can trigger rolls and effects, but the section will always resume where it was. A great feature is that if you’re performing a juggling pattern, it stays locked and doesn’t move on; the reality of this is unparalleled live remixing of tracks that really allow you to express you’re creativity.
As you can probably guessed the Novation Twitch is designed for live performances so it has been built with a robust chassis and secure controls and is surprisingly lightweight. The Twitch is shipped with Itch software, but if you prefer another type of software it is fully compatible with Traktor and Ableton Live, although I haven’t tried them out personally.
The Novation Twitch doesn’t exactly seem as alien and unique as it did when it first came out, but I think it deserves the recognition it receives and controllers such as this are redefining the DJ industry. There are still a few creases to iron out but check out these two awesome mash-ups.