The Denon DJ PRIME 4 is a 4-deck, all-in-one standalone DJ System that takes Engine Prime to a whole new level of mobility. The PRIME 4 combines all of your favorite features from X1800 and SC5000 prime like BPM and sweep FX, hands-on control of your tracks, and even adds a hard drive storage bay to keep your tracks on you at all times. In this article, we answer the most popular questions about the features and functionality of the Denon DJ PRIME 4.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Feature Overview
- Storage and Media
- What options do I have to connect external drives and other storage devices to the PRIME 4?
- What types of media should I use?
- What size hard drive can I install into the PRIME 4?
- What drive formats are compatible with the PRIME 4?
- What file formats are compatible with the PRIME 4?
- Do I need to disconnect the internal hard drive to transfer my tracks or database?
- The installed HDD is not recognized on PRIME 4 after exiting controller mode. Why is this happening?
- What is the maximum number of tracks I can use on a single media device with the PRIME 4?
- How can I improve search result speed when searching large libraries on PRIME 4?
- Hardware Features and I/O
- What I/O is available on the PRIME 4?
- Can I use all of the outputs simultaneously?
- Is the crossfader user-replaceable?
- Why are the decks non-mirrored?
- How big is the display?
- How big are the jog wheels?
- Can I adjust the jog wheel tension?
- How do I load my custom DJ or brand logo to the center jog wheel display?
- What can I do with the performance pads?
- What options do I have to sort my tracks?
- Is there a way to record my performance on the PRIME 4?
- What is the quality of my PRIME 4 recordings?
- Where can I find my PRIME 4 saved recordings?
- Is there a ducking option for the mic inputs?
- Do I have to sacrifice a line channel if I want to use the mic channels?
- Can I network the PRIME 4 with my SC5000/M?
- Can I use a USB keyboard with PRIME 4?
- Does the PRIME 4 interface and playback media stored on smartphones or tablets when connected via USB?
- Effects, EQ, and Sync
- Software Support
- Is the PRIME 4 compatible with Serato DJ Pro?
- Is the PRIME 4 compatible with Virtual DJ?
- Can I use my DVS control vinyl/CD Setup with the PRIME 4?
- Is any software included with the PRIME 4?
- Does the Zone Assign function while in Serato DJ mode?
- Do I need to use Engine Prime?
- Why won’t PRIME 4 connect to Engine Prime on my computer?
- Does PRIME 4 support Rekordbox, Serato, or Traktor?
- Some of my Cues/Loops have imported early! How do I fix this?
- Does the PRIME 4 require any drivers to use with a computer?
- Engine Prime Software
- Is the PRIME 4 compatible with Engine Prime?
- Where can I download Engine Prime?
- What are the system requirements for Engine Prime?
- Is there a feature overview available to help me get started?
- What is a User Profile?
- Does Engine Prime support 32-bit Windows?
- How much free hard drive space do I need?
- Does Engine Prime support network drives?
- Can Engine Prime read my music collections from other software?
- Does Engine Prime support beat grid and tempo editing?
- Why do remote drives and songs also show up in the main collection?
- I enabled iTunes in the preferences and clicked Update iTunes Library but nothing happened. What's wrong?
Storage and Media
What options do I have to connect external drives and other storage devices to the PRIME 4?
The PRIME 4 features (4) USB ports (2 on the top, 2 in the back), as well as (1) SD card port, and an internal hard drive bay to store an optional 2.5" hard drive.
Note: A hard drive is not included with PRIME 4; just the bay to facilitate your own drive.
What types of media should I use?
When choosing a portable USB drive or SD card for your PRIME 4, we recommend using drives from reputable media brands whenever possible. SD cards must be Class 6 (c6) or faster. USB drives should have similar performance specs (at least 20MB/s read / 6 MB/s write speed). The faster the media, the faster tracks can load. Slower drives may result in lags when navigating through the collection and longer load times.
For a helpful comparison between all of the popular drives on the market, and a free test to check the stability of your own drive, check out the site: UserBenchmark.com. This will allow you to sort drives by several different parameters like capacity, price, read speed, write speed, etc. Keep in mind that better Peak Read MB/s ratings will be more important for efficient media playback, like playing music through the PRIME 4.
What size hard drive can I install into the PRIME 4?
The PRIME 4 supports a 2.5" SATA hard drive; either HDD or SSD. There is no drive capacity size limitation, just be sure the hard drive is formatted in one of the supported file system types; FAT32 or exFAT.
What drive formats are compatible with the PRIME 4?
All storage media connected to the PRIME 4 should be formatted to either FAT32 or exFAT with an MBR (Master Boot Record) style partition structure. For larger file systems (1TB and greater) we recommend formatting drives to the exFAT format.
What file formats are compatible with the PRIME 4?
The PRIME 4 and accompanying Engine Prime software support the following audio formats:
- MP3 32 kbit/s - 320 kbit/s + VBR
- M4A / AAC
- OGG Vorbis
- WAV 16-32 bit, 44.1k - 192k
- AIFF 16-32 bit, 44.1k - 192k
Do I need to disconnect the internal hard drive to transfer my tracks or database?
One of the great benefits of an internal hard drive is the easy connection and transfer of data back and forth with your computer. Simply connect the PRIME 4 to your computer and the internal HD will appear as a removable drive for access through Engine Prime and other software.
Before installing your drive, please make sure that your drive is formatted according to our requirements above.
To access the drive:
- Connect a USB cable to the USB B port on the PRIME 4 and the other end to your computer.
- On PRIME 4, hold the VIEW button for 2 seconds to show the Menu.
- Tap the SOURCE icon.
- Tap the computer icon to put the device into controller/USB mode.
- Once in controller/USB mode, the drive will be mounted to your computer. Note: The PRIME 4 may continue "searching for the computer" but this is normal.
- Once mounted, you will now see the hard drive as an available media device in Engine Prime.
The installed HDD is not recognized on PRIME 4 after exiting controller mode. Why is this happening?
This is typically caused by not properly (or safely) ejecting the drive from the computer. It is highly recommended to always safely eject any media device prior to using on Prime Series media players. If your installed HDD is still not recognized in standalone mode after safety ejecting, power off the PRIME 4 and restart.
What is the maximum number of tracks I can use on a single media device with the PRIME 4?
We recommend 50,000 or less for the best possible browsing experience. For larger collections, we always recommend using a Solid State Drive. Note: these are recommendations and not limitations.
How can I improve search result speed when searching large libraries on PRIME 4?
PRIME 4 allows you to search within a variety of track metadata fields such as Artist, Title, Album, Comment, etc.. To reduce the search result time, tap the down arrow next to the search field magnifying glass. This will allow you to enable or disable metadata search fields by tapping them. Disable all fields that are not required for your search criteria.
For more tricks, visit our Denon DJ tips guide below:
Hardware Features and I/O
What I/O is available on the PRIME 4?
- (2) XLR outputs (master left/right, balanced)
- (2) XLR outputs (booth left/right, balanced)
- (2) XLR outputs (zone left/right, balanced)
- (1) RCA output pair (master left/right, unbalanced)
- (1) 1/4” (6.35 mm) stereo output (headphones)
- (1) 1/8” (3.5 mm) stereo output (headphones)
- (2) RCA input pairs (line-level, unbalanced)
- (2) RCA input pairs (phono- or line-level, unbalanced)
- (2) XLR+1/4” (6.35 mm) input
- (4) USB ports (for USB drives, 5 V, 1 A)
- (1) SD Card slot
- (1) USB port (to computer)
- (1) Ethernet port
- (1) IEC power cable input
Can I use all of the outputs simultaneously?
Yes, all outputs can be used simultaneously, including the Zone Output. Use the Zone Output to easily send your master signal out to another room (will receive master signal by default), or use the Zone Channel Assign button to set Deck 4 as a Zone Playlist for an alternate mix.
Is the crossfader user-replaceable?
Yes, the PRIME 4 comes with Denon DJ's standard crossfader and can be easily removed and replaced when necessary.
Why are the decks non-mirrored?
Both decks on the PRIME 4 have the exact same layout: play and cue on the left, pitch fader on the right, etc. This more closely resembles a dual SC5000/X1800 combo and allows the user to jump between decks without thinking about reversing their actions.
How big is the display?
The PRIME 4 features an adjustable 10" touch screen with gesture support. A display cover is included.
How big are the jog wheels?
Each deck features an ultra-responsive, touch capacitive 6-inch jog wheel with an embedded 2.2" LED-backlit display and surrounded by a customizable RGB light. The display will show information relevant to the performance such as current playhead position, auto-loop size, and layer. It can also feature track artwork and even your brand logo as a backdrop.
Can I adjust the jog wheel tension?
The jog wheels on PRIME 4 do not have mechanical tension adjust but you can fine-tune the nudge sensitivity in the Utility Menu.
Please note this feature requires FW v1.3.2 or higher.
How do I load my custom DJ or brand logo to the center jog wheel display?
To add your own custom DJ or brand logo simply create a .PNG file, name it "logo.png" and place it into the Engine Library directory on your USB/SD media device. We recommend a .PNG with the dimensions of 600 x 600 pixels.
This could also be used to customize a client experience by adding event specific images to the display like a corporate logo or picture of the bride and groom.
What can I do with the performance pads?
The performance pads feature 4 familiar, but distinct modes: Hot Cue, Loop, Roll, and Slicer
- Hot Cue - Use this mode to assign and jump to up to 8 cue points in a track. Use SHIFT and press a pad to clear a hot cue from that pad.
- Loop - Press the Loop button once to enter Manual Loop mode. While in this mode, press a pad to assign a loop in point and press it again to assign a loop out point. While in Manual Loop mode, press the Loop button again to enter Auto Loop mode. In Auto Loop mode, only press a pad once to automatically set a loop. Use the Auto knob at the top-left of each deck to assign a loop size and adjust the loop position within the track.
- Roll - In this mode, press and hold each pad to trigger a loop roll of a certain length while the timeline of the track continues. Each pad will trigger a different time division (i.e. 1/8, 1/4T, 1/4, etc.). Pads with triplet based loops are lit with a different color.
- Slicer - When you press the Slicer mode button, you will automatically activate an 8-beat loop and each pad will represent 8 sequential "slices" in the beatgrid. A light will move through the pads as it progresses through the 8-slice phrase and you can press a pad to play that slice.
What options do I have to sort my tracks?
The PRIME 4 features advanced track sorting options such as Title, BPM, Artist, Key, Rating, Date Added, and more.
Is there a way to record my performance on the PRIME 4?
Yes, the PRIME 4 features direct standalone recording to any connected drive, including the one hosting the currently playing track(s). The only size limit will be the available space on the selected drive. Recording can also include both microphone inputs.
What is the quality of my PRIME 4 recordings?
The PRIME 4 records your mixes as 24-Bit 44.1 kHz Wav files.
Where can I find my PRIME 4 saved recordings?
The first time you save a recording the system will create a folder titled “Sessions” on the root of your selected media device. Once saved, all recordings will be stored here.
Is there a ducking option for the mic inputs?
Yes. When the Talk Over button is pressed, the level of the master mix will reduce automatically when it receives a signal from the microphone. You can even set the amount of volume reduction in the Utility menu.
Do I have to sacrifice a line channel if I want to use the mic channels?
No, the PRIME 4 has 2 completely independent microphone channels with EQ located on the top left corner of the device.
Can I network the PRIME 4 with my SC5000/M?
Yes, similar to the SC5000 and X1800, the PRIME 4 features a network port for sharing data between devices. Use a standard Cat5e cable to connect this to the hub on an additional Prime device to share media between devices. Note: It is not possible to Sync or Instant double to an SC5000/M over the network.
Can I use a USB keyboard with PRIME 4?
Yes, PRIME 4 supports USB keyboards on any of the 4 available USB ports. The USB keyboard can be used as an alternative to the onscreen keyboard for a more tactile searching experience. You can also use the keyboard shortcut “ctrl + f” to immediately place the cursor in the search field and begin searching.
Does the PRIME 4 interface and playback media stored on smartphones or tablets when connected via USB?
No, not at this time.
Effects, EQ, and Sync
What are Sweep & BPM FX?
The PRIME 4 features two different styles of FX engines: Sweep and BPM
- The Sweep FX include Filter, Echo, Noise, and Wash Out and can be used one at a time. Simply press the button for the effect you'd like to use and turn the Sweep FX Knob above each channel to perform that effect on the corresponding channel.
- The BPM FX feature 14 time-based effects sourced from the X1800 that can be applied and controlled separately for each deck. Use the buttons and knobs above each deck to choose an effect, as well as an adjustable parameter and frequency band to which the effect will be applied to the audio signal. All FX are post-fader.
Are BPM and Sweep FX available for line/phono inputs?
No, when the channel is set to line, only the Filter is available for that channel.
Does the PRIME 4 have Classic and Isolation EQ modes like the X1800 Prime?
Yes, this will be selectable from the Utility menu. Classic EQ will be turned on by default.
- In Classic mode the EQ will range from -24dB to +6dB, so when the knob is fully turned to its minimum position, some frequencies will still be present.
- In ISO mode, the EQ ranges from -? to +6dB/+10dB, so when the knob is turned to it's minimum position no frequencies in the range will present.
How does the Key Lock/Sync work?
Each deck features a Key Lock/Sync button that activates the DAW-quality Timestretch algorithm to perform key matching across tracks and lock the track's pitch, even during the most extreme tempo changes. You can even use this to lock and shift between harmonic musical keys live in the mix.
How do the Key Adjust and Key Sync features work?
To activate Key Adjust, first, enable Keylock on the desired deck, and then tap on the key signature of that deck on the touch display. This will expose plus and minus buttons on the top of the display for incrementing or decrementing the pitch value by increments of one semitone.
To sync the key with the corresponding deck just hold the Keylock button on the desired deck for two seconds.
Is the PRIME 4 compatible with Serato DJ Pro?
Yes, as of Serato DJ Pro v2.3.1, the PRIME 4 is now fully compatible. Please note this requires PRIME 4 firmware version 1.3.3 for full compatibility.
Is the PRIME 4 compatible with Virtual DJ?
The PRIME 4 will be supported for use with Virtual DJ after launch. Look out for a future Virtual DJ update to include support for the PRIME 4.
Can I use my DVS control vinyl/CD Setup with the PRIME 4?
Yes, channels 3 and 4 have switchable line/phono inputs that can be used to send your timecode signal through to Serato DJ Pro.
Is any software included with the PRIME 4?
Yes, the PRIME 4 includes the latest version of Engine Prime, as well as trial periods for lighting and visuals software Resolume, Soundswitch, and Timecode.
Does the Zone Assign function while in Serato DJ mode?
Currently, the Zone Assign function is exclusive to PRIME 4’s standalone mode. In Serato DJ Pro mode, the Zone outputs will provide the same audio signal as the Master output, however, a single independent channel cannot be routed to the output.
Do I need to use Engine Prime?
While the Engine Prime software is a great way to organize and prepare your tracks, the PRIME 4 is ready to automatically analyze any tracks on a connected drive that have not already been added to your Prime database. You can even create playlists, crates and edit track info directly from the Prime. Both Engine Prime and the PRIME 4 are also ready to import your collections created in iTunes, Serato DJ Pro, Traktor Pro, and Rekordbox.
Why won’t PRIME 4 connect to Engine Prime on my computer?
At this time, PRIME 4 is a standalone DJ console only and does not control Engine Prime or any other DJ software. You can however use Engine Prime to manage the music library contained on the installed hard drive within your PRIME 4.
Does PRIME 4 support Rekordbox, Serato, or Traktor?
As a standalone device, PRIME 4 will read Rekordbox drives natively. This will allow a Rekordbox user to connect their media device and import their music, playlists, and even hot cues. The Engine Prime software also offers native support for Serato, Traktor and Rekordbox libraries. This allows you to import your collections and prepare them for standalone playback.
Some of my Cues/Loops have imported early! How do I fix this?
While Denon DJ has tried to account for as many file formats as possible, there is a chance that some files may result in Hot Cues and Loops importing with a slight offset. This can be corrected on the PRIME 4 by holding Shift and then pressing the Zoom/Grid Edit knob for 1 second to enter the Cue/Loop offset mode. While in this mode, the on-screen buttons can be used to adjust for cue/loop offset.
Does the PRIME 4 require any drivers to use with a computer?
The PRIME 4 is fully class-compliant with macOS, so you can get connected without any additional driver installation. Windows users will need to install the hardware driver from the product download page in order to use PRIME 4 with 3rd party applications.
How much does the PRIME 4 weigh and what are the dimensions?
- Weight: 21.34 lb. / 9.7 kg
- Dimensions: 28.68” x 19.56” x 4.08” / 728.47 x 496.82 x 103.63 mm
Does the PRIME 4 have an auto-switching power supply?
Yes, the PRIME 4 comes complete with an internal, auto-switching power supply so you can be prepared to power it up wherever you go in the world.
What does the Protection Circuit do?
This circuit protects your media device integrity in the event of a power loss. If disconnected, the protection circuit provides enough power to safely unmount your media to prevent corruption.
Are there any hard or soft cases available?
Denon DJ does not manufacture a specific case for the PRIME 4 but the dimensions have been provided to all the major case manufacturers. Please check your favorite case manufacturer for pricing and availability.
Engine Prime Software
Is the PRIME 4 compatible with Engine Prime?
Yes, PRIME 4 is fully compatible with the latest version of Engine Prime.
Where can I download Engine Prime?
Engine Prime is available as a free download for all users on the Denon DJ website. Follow the links below to download:
What are the system requirements for Engine Prime?
- Os Version: Windows 10 (64-bit)
- Processor: i5 2.0Ghz or faster
- Memory: 4GB RAM or more
- Video Card: Intel HD Graphics or better
- Sound Interface: DirectX Compatible Interface
- Free Space: 150Mb available for application
- OS Version: macOS 10.14 (Mojave), macOS 10.15 (Catalina), macOS 11 (Big Sur)
- Processor: i5 2.0GHz or faster
- Memory: 4GB RAM or more
- Sound Interface: Internal sound card or Core Audio compatible interface
- Free Space: 150Mb available for application
Is there a feature overview available to help me get started?
Yes! See the video guide below for a download and installation walkthrough, as well as an introduction to features and performance:
What is a User Profile?
A user profile is part of your Engine database and saves your preferred settings including screen brightness, colors, sync settings, the logo for the platter display, and more. Each time a thumb drive storing your user profile is connected to any SC5000 or PRIME 4, you will be prompted to load the profile which will automatically jump to your preferred settings. This means that any SC5000 or PRIME 4 can quickly become your own with just a few clicks.
Does Engine Prime support 32-bit Windows?
Engine Prime officially supports Windows 8 and Windows 10, which are almost exclusively 64-bit. Because of this, we are currently only supporting 64-bit Windows platforms.
How much free hard drive space do I need?
How much free space is required depends on the size of your music collection. Keep in mind, the grid and waveform data require additional storage space. This is approximately 200 Mb per 1000 songs, but this can vary greatly depending on the length of tracks in the collection.
Does Engine Prime support network drives?
Engine Prime should be used only with local internal or external drives. NAS drives are not supported with Engine Prime v1.3.1.
Can Engine Prime read my music collections from other software?
Yes! Engine Prime offers built-in integration for iTunes, Serato DJ Pro, Traktor Pro, and Rekordbox. Use the Library tab in the Preferences to enable 3rd party integration.
Does Engine Prime support beat grid and tempo editing?
Yes, one of the great new features of Engine Prime is the built-in beat grid and tempo editor.
Why do remote drives and songs also show up in the main collection?
The Main Collection is a complete list of all connected media, both remote and local. This allows for all of your songs on either connected hard drives or internal storage to be used interchangeably, making it easy to find your track regardless of where the file is stored.
Because of this, duplicate entries may appear in the main collection if a song is located in both the main collection and a removable drive. Songs are not physically duplicated on the drive, the main collection is simply reporting the song in multiple databases. Removable drives can still be moved from one computer to another and have their crate structures retained, and any song in the main collection can be dragged to the Engine player for playback and editing at any time.
We realize that this is a departure from more traditional workflows and are working on an option to separate collection drives with remote drives in a more clear manner.
I enabled iTunes in the preferences and clicked Update iTunes Library but nothing happened. What's wrong?
iTunes isn’t always configured to share its database with other applications. To configure iTunes to do so:
- Open iTunes.
- Go to Preferences.
- Go to Advanced.
- Check off the box for Share iTunes Library XML with other applications.
- Click OK to save and exit the preferences.
- Quit iTunes.
In Engine, select the iTunes tab and click Update iTunes Library
Help! My external drive doesn’t show up in the devices panel. (Windows)
This may happen when Windows (and therefore Engine Prime) detects an external drive as an internal drive. This can happen if an internal SATA drive is placed in a 3rd party USB enclosure. We do not support these drives and recommend you do not use them, as Windows is unable to safely eject the drives.