Using Pioneer CDJs in HID mode with Serato DJ Pro

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Many DJs who use DVS as their primary form of digital DJing frequently find themselves in front of a Pioneer DJ CDJ/DJM setup. The normal method of using CDJs with DVS is using timecode on either CDs or USB flash drives. But there is a better method that gives you way more control – it’s called HID mode.

What is HID mode?

HID (or human interface device) mode transforms a CDJ from just a device to play the DVS timecode to a full featured controller. With HID mode activated almost all of the features of the CDJ become available in your DVS software. All of this can be done simply by connecting a USB cable from the CDJ to your laptop.

HID mode provides physical controls of features in your DJ software that you normally would not have if you were using just timecode. It also gives you more information on the screen on the CDJ; including waveforms, the ability to search the library from your computer, and BPM readout. The addition of these physical controls and additional information on the screens can really help take the focus away from the computer and onto the DJ setup in front of you and the crowd on the dancefloor.

How To Setup HID

The best part about HID is how simple it is to set up to gain so much more functionality.

  1. Start your digital DJing software
  2. Connect a USB cable from each CDJ to your computer (USB hub may be needed)
  3. Hit “Link” on the CDJ
  4. Rotate encoder until you are asked to link to computer
  5. Press encoder to enter HID mode
  6. Select which deck you would like to control
  7. Repeat process on any other decks


The control that is gained when using HID mode compared to using timecode has helped take the focus away from the computer. The ability to put the computer to the side can give your DJ set a more impressive look and a more interactive feel. It is a perfect marriage of the physical control you get from using CDJs and the extra functionality of using a computer.

Of course, if you plan on spinning with a turntable, you’ll still have to use DVS (there’s not HID mode for analogue turntables) but if you’re using media players like CDJ-850s, definitely give HID mode a shot.

Written by: hmr

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