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Innofader - so close you can almost touch it
Innofader - so close you can almost touch it
Posted by Gizmo on May 30, 2008 :

The Audio Innovate Innofader release date is edging closer, with the first mass production of circuit boards happening right now in Taiwan. Elliot Marx keeps tweaking, retweaking and ultratweaking the exact spec of the final product but has released details of all the associated chaff that goes into the bumper box of stuff that makes up the final Innofader package. And just to get a glimpse of how the beta testing has gone, Audio Innovator Justin Woo and skratchworx USA's Phillip Le have been abusing various prototypes and have written a few words, and I'm sure Elliot will chip in with comments as well.

It's also worth noting that because of spiralling costs everywhere in the world, especially with companies that manufacturer faders apparently, the magical $99 figure is looking hella hard to achieve. So don't be surprised if you see it come out for a tad over the $100 mark.

Anyway, here are some words from people who have used the Innofader.

Innofader beta tests - Field reports


So far, I've been very pleased with the results the Innofader has given me. I've had the privilege of using one of the early beta samples as well as the "almost production level" sample. Both samples were put together with a large degree of care by Elliot Marx.

I primarily used the Innofader as a crossfader in my AEM-100i (Unfortunately, it's not compatible with the line faders on the AEM). I started as a mix DJ and I've been practicing scratching since about September of 2007. I've been spoiled as far as faders go, since I've used a Numark CP Pro, Pro X Fade, and now the Innofader.

The cut-in is razor sharp. I set it at about 1mm, which was more than sharp enough for me. Despite being digital, the Innofader doesn't miss a single click.

Also, speaking of digital - the Innofader cut-in control is modified by a plastic electronic dial. You can tweak this to your little DJ heart's desire. This stands in strong contrast to the brass mechanical wheels of the Pro X Fade. When you turn them, they shed little brass bits into the fader box, and if you tweak them too much, it is possible that they can get messed up.

The fader curve is also controlled by an electronic dial, and it's a pretty handy thing to have. Also, your external mixer curve control still works. I'm not a big fan of the AEM's dipped curve. Using the curve control on the Innofader, I can set a dipless curve where most of the volume comes in near the center position. This is perfect for the house that I mix most of the time.

And if I want to scratch, I just set the AEM's external curve control to sharp, and I'm good to go.

This is probably the most ephemeral, subjective part of any fader. After a little inital lubing, this is the lightest, smoothest fader I've ever used. On the lightest setting, if I slap the fader hard, it'll actually bounce off of one side, slide all the way back, then bounce AGAIN and stop somewhere around the middle.

I haven't had any problems with the innofader yet, since I used it at the party until now. One thing I would like to emphasize to all of the users is the importance of testing your mixer/following instructions. Come to think about it, as long as I have been DJ'ing - I can't believe I burnt the first sample I had.

I've used the innofader for over 10 hours, in some sessions over two hours of scratching (or 4 at my gig a couple weeks back). When I was using it for mixing/beat juggling, I found that at the loosest setting, the fader bounced a little too much for me. For example, I would think the fader is all the way to the right side so I would backspin the left turntable to cue up.. but it was actually playing live. I hope this makes sense, I don't know how else to explain it. I found this same problem with those little "rubber stoppers" that vestax makes, that you can put on each side of the crossfader. I personally like this feeling for scratching because it gets rid of the metal "clank" sound that Dstyles was talking about, however my solution to this was to tighten the tension a little bit if I know that I'm going to be mixing/beat juggling more than scratching.

I would definitely say the innofader has the cut off of an Ecler Eternal Crossfader. This fader is probably one of the only faders out there that I can do a "3 click flare" on. Even though the eternal fader has the same sharp cut off, it's too "light" and lacks the mass so I don't have as much control over the fader. As someone probably stated before, the innofader feels like a combination between the eternal fader and a vestax pcv.. or even between the rane ttm56 fader and a vestax pcv. The vestax PCV is one of the only crossfaders I've used that has the mass or weight that a lot of DJ's are looking for. However, the cut off on a factory PCV sucks.

For those who have used or are using the Pro X Fade, I think the innofader is smoother and has more of a buttery feel. The Pro X Fade too can get this feeling, however, only with proper cleaning/lubing and maintenance. And from experience, I've seen that after heavy use of the Pro X Fade, that lube will wear off and it will feel like a lower end VCA or an alps contact fader almost.

NOTE: No further comments are being accepted.
56 comments to this story

On May 30, 2008, Dj Cyberia said this:
I am hoping this fader comes soon! I have a QFO with a stiff and heavy Pro X in it now waiting to be cut on again. Any plans on distribution to Guitar Center or TurntableLab? Thanks for the Beta test reports guys. It seems promising.

On May 30, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
To add to what these guys said:

Phillip Le hooked up the Innofader to an old PMC-06 at the very start of the beta testing. It turns out the old PMCs have power and ground reversed from the new PMCs and Phillip smoked the Innofader. Frankly rather than chew him out, I was actually thankful he found the problem. Now on the production Innofader, the Innofader has a reverse protection circuit so you won't damage the Innofader just in case you get a bit overeager and hook it up before testing.

Phillip also quickly came back with pictures of various Vestax line faders to give us an idea of how do identify mixers which can fit the Innofader.

Justin Woo who many of you know as "Punky" has also given many helpful pointers (which is why I hired him blink1.gif).

Justin advised us to use keep it simple and use just the original Innofader logo for the sticker. We kept hearing this feedback from DJs so we went this way and we'll reserve Gizmo's cool "Feel My Innofader" design for t-shirts and other fun stuff.

Justin pointed out sound quality issues such as multiple clicks and a swimming cut-in point. The first I heard of this was from DJ Troubl at Messe. I felt I had to do something to give the Innofader a really tight consistent cut-in and the result was the 2nd round of samples which Justin and Phillip received.

Justin first tested the DXM-06 and figured out quickly that stacking the washers was a real pain in the butt. After spending an hour fiddling with balancing washers to fit the Innofader on a Xone:92, I realised this balancing crap had to go. I came back to the Xone:92 later using washers fitted with double stick tape. Manufacturing saw my messy prototype and came to the rescue with washers that you can peel and stick.

So definitely a big thanks to these 2 guys who really came through strong with consistent and constructive feedback!

On May 30, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
Cyberia: Turntable Lab should definitely have the Innofader when it comes out. We're still working on Guitar Center.

On May 30, 2008, Punky said this:
Glad I could help out!!!!

On May 30, 2008, corporation said this:
looks like this wont be fitting in my VC1-100 anytime soon (oh the blasphemy). the vci seems not deep enough to house it (who knows if this would actually work though? anyone?)

On May 30, 2008, D PHASE said this:
I need to replace the standard crossfader from my vestax pmc 06 pro bk cause we all know the lag time is way to big....mad.gif

I was thinking about the pricey vestax cc-cf up up till know...wacko.gif

I hope the innofader will be avaiable very soon and can also be applied to the line faders since there is hardly any curve adjustment on them...rolleyes.gif

On May 30, 2008, jason_md2020 said this:
"Justin first tested the DXM-06... "

DXM-06?!?!? MY MIXER HAS HOPE!!! Unless its the main circuit board giving me problems. Anyone else have signal cut in on the crossfader with it all the way to one side?

On May 30, 2008, BOWNSIR said this:
Can't wait to fit these in my 1601s. I know I could drop the 3 bills on a decent backup mixer but im too much in love with my urei and want to hook it up to the max. With 3 of these in that mixer it'll be a monster.

On May 31, 2008, ayooooooooooo said this:
"Frankly rather than chew him out, I was actually thankful he found the problem."

How are you gonna chew someone out for something, that you didn't even know about?

Come on Elliot, choose your words wisely. People are watching.

On May 31, 2008, cisco said this:
hmmmm give life to my stanton sa-8, and give boost to my pmc37

On May 31, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
D PHASE et. al: Here's the list of current PMC Vestax models we know about:


With this number of models plus the older models there are a few standards floating around for fader connectors. We are sure the Innofader is compatible with all of the faders using 4 pin connectors, and the PMC crossfaders except the Samurais conform to this standard. The 5 and 6 pin faders are non-VCA and would require modding by a technician to make the Innofader work.

We also know the Innofader is compatible with both the line faders and crossfader for the PMC-08. But the main confusion is that on the other PMCs, line faders are sometimes 4 pin VCA (like an old PMC-007 I tested) and sometimes 5-6 pin non-VCA.

To anyone who knows about the various standards especially on the line faders, please contribute to this thread. All you really need to do is check the number of pins on the fader connector and identify the model number.

On May 31, 2008, Asan said this:
Will the Innofader fit the Ecler Nuo2 mixer? The first-gen one (that's *NOT* compatible with the Eternal)?

The Innofader .pdf doesn't exactly answer this question.

On May 31, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
Asan: I've updated the chart accordingly. John Ghoddoussi (the North America importer for Ecler) told me that the original Nuo2 doesn't have enough space for the Innofader. However, the new Nuo 2.0 does work using the Ecler Eternal Adapter.

On May 31, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
I'm getting a better handle on the Vestax models. A special thanks to Anthony Gardiner for his contributions and discussions. I've included this information in our Vestax compatibility chart.

The information we came up with so far on Innofader compatible Vestax products is as follows:
All PMC crossfaders
Some older PMC-05 models using the 4 pin connector
PMC-07 line faders
PMC-08 line faders

VMC and PCV crossfaders plus the PMC-05 and PMC-06 line faders have enough space for the Innofader but aren't VCA so will have compatibility issues. The Vestax CF-CC fader is a digital fader and will have the same issues if you try to use it as a line fader.

On May 31, 2008, wbsk said this:
lol i love how they slag the other products, mainly their direct competitor, in their "reviews". Just saying.

On May 31, 2008, DJ Jake Gyllenhaal aka Pretty J said this:
When Phillip Le is juggling his eyes light up like the 4th of July. It's absolutely god damn beautiful. Audio Innovate made the right choice in choosing him. (he was the DJ at my school. SCRIPPS RANCH N*GGA! WE RUN THIS MOTHERFU***R! Like a marathon BOOOOY! SKRATCHWOOORX WASSUP!blink1.gif

On May 31, 2008, D PHASE said this:
Audio Innovate,glad u mentioned it's not compatible with the pmc06 linefader (i have the newer 06 pro black one),so all i need is 1 piece for the crossfader....i can't wait for the release..lolblink1.gif

On May 31, 2008, phillip said this:
heres a short video of the innofader in action. sorry for the poor quality.

On May 31, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
D Phase - actually right now I am working on a simple mod that will allow you to use the Innofader as a line fader on the PMC-05, PMC-06, Stanton SA-5, and any other mixer where the crossfader is VCA but the line fader connectors aren't innofader compatible. It requires no soldering or wire trimming, and can be done using parts included with the Innofader.

I'll post this probably by Sunday night with the link.

On June 1, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:

Updated to show the line fader mod needed for the PMC-05, PMC-06 and SA-5

On June 1, 2008, D PHASE said this:
the link doesn't not avaiable...

On June 1, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:

On June 1, 2008, tobe said this:
My question is - I currently have a HAK360, and its been working great for the past 5+years. The fader itself has become slightly worse for wear (and the cut in settings seem to be a bit erratic now and again) Will this fader be a worthwhile upgrade to the eternal?

A replacement eternal seems fairly expensive...has anyone used both and got a report as to difference in feel? ( I assume cut in for both will be like-for-like)

safety pins

On June 1, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
I got a HAK 360 for beta testing so I tested both. Gizmo also tested both. The head of Turntablog also tested both but he has an older Innofader beta version.

Here are some differences I noticed:

The Innofader has a bit more mass to it which may make it bounce more at the ends if you set the tension light. The Eternal bounces far less but definitely clicks.

I noticed from testing that you can cut the Eternal in and out by moving the knob up and down. The Innofader doesn't do this.

The Eternal has slightly less play than the Innofader. The Innofader long body seems to have about 1mm or so play on the knob. The Eternal is secured at the top of the fader so it has about half of that.

The Innofader rails are a special polished and hardened steel used for drilling. The Eternal rails feel to me like well polished stainless steel rails. One major difference is that if you don't push exactly along the rails, you will feel much greater changes in fader resistance on the Eternal vs. the Innofader. How much you feel this really depends on how you cut.

Obviously you all know who I work for blink1.gif so hopefully Gizmo and Phillip can fill in better.

On June 1, 2008, tobe said this:
Fantastic response =)

Look forward to Giz/Phillip's comments.

Keep up the sick work!


On June 1, 2008, Lamont said this:
Sounds really great!
I can't wait to plug it into my Rodec Scratchbox.
I really want to try it.

On June 2, 2008, DJ Dude said this:
Dude will it work on Numark Mixers?

On June 2, 2008, Cutloose said this:
Seeing as though the old Rane 54's Line and xFader are all interchangeable.
Does the Innofader fit the Rane 54?

On June 2, 2008, Cutloose said this:
Answered it myself.

On June 2, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
DJ Dude:

For Numark branks, the Innofader works on the 5000Fx, PPD9000, all DXM crossfaders, and the DXM-Pro line faders.

You can also find this information on the Innofader website:

Look at the "List of Innofader Compatible Mixers"

On June 2, 2008, phillip said this:
The Innofader has a bit more mass to it which may make it bounce more at the ends if you set the tension light. The Eternal bounces far less but definitely clicks.

With either of these faders, I never miss a click when I'm scratching. I think the "bounce" of the eternal fader is more comparable to that of the rane ttm56. Since the innofader has 2mm rubber stops at each end, the innofaders "bounce" is more comparable to a Vestax PCV fader modded with CLS-1 Rubber stoppers.

On June 3, 2008, illbn said this:
Is there any exact date yet? Waiting is killing me softly :D haha

On June 3, 2008, DJ Switch said this:
Just a thought, is the fader knob thicker than that of the Pro X Fade (are the material walls larger)? Because myself and a fellow DJ both have Pro X's, and very quickly they have developed small holes in the sides of the knob. This is because the material has been made with such a thin wall, or that the gap for the fader stem to fit in is too wide (or a bit of both), that the stem is just wearing the cap away from the inside.

This problem has accelerated much more for my mate (who scratches so much more often than I do), where the fader cap just rocks around, completely unstable and making scratching feel weird and beat-juggling even weirder. And the worst of it all is that the stem on the X Fade is so much wider than on standard faders that he can't just replace the cap with a different one from a different fader, if you get what I mean.

On June 4, 2008, nmngh said this:
it is a real shame that the innofader does not work with the rane ttm57sl mixer. this is an awesome mixer but has one drawback: there is a dip in the middle. a dip which could be fixed in firmware but it seems like there is no interest from rane in fixing this with an update.

so my hope was the innofader working with the tttm57 to get rid of this problem.

On June 4, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
illbn: Yeah I know unsure.gif we're pushing daily to get completion on this. We've already got the boards started so hopefully we'll have some good news soon on completion dates...

DJ Switch: The knobs we use on the production Innofaders will have plastic reinforcement around the slot. One of our beta testers Damian from Bratpol found this problem too so we've made changes accordingly.

nmngh: Sorry Rane has so many of it's own standards (different slot size, different hole spacing, different electronics) that it's really a bear to fit.unsure.gif And they've got the approach that you should only buy Rane approved parts for Rane mixers.

In contrast, Ecler has done the following:
1) used the same industry standard spacing on their faders (45mm travel, 65mm hole spacing)
2) provided me with a sample of their standard fader with an Ecler Eternal adapter circuit for me to study and adapt to the Innofader.

So Ecler definitely receives a big thumbs up from me, and they deserve to have many happy customers who can choose between the Innofader and the Eternal. The HAK 360 in my lab with the 3 Innofaders ain't going nowhere.8)

On June 4, 2008, phillip said this:
my guess is that any fader knob will become loose if you frequently take it on and off. you could always put a small piece of tissue paper on the stem then the fader cap on top of it, which will make it stay on tight as demonstrated on qberts dvd

On June 6, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
I think it's one thing to get loose, but if it actually breaks internally, no amount of tape can fix this...

On June 6, 2008, oooggaa said this:
would it fit in a numark sm1?
doesnt show on the list.

On June 6, 2008, BCROGAN said this:
Hey Elliot Marx, with the amount of testing being done, what is the projected release date for the innofader? When do you think turntable lab will have it and what is the projected cost of the fader?

On June 6, 2008, johnny said this:

siiiick dude, i remember you telling me about all of this, i can't wait to steal yours pick one up when they come out.

On June 7, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
BC Rogan, et al: Actually we're in the process of building the PC boards for the Innofader but still trying to get a finalized release date from manufacturing. No more testing needs to be done, just a matter of pulling together the manufacturing logistics.

I don't believe the Innofader works on the SM-1 but I'll check.

On June 7, 2008, oooggaa said this:
damn that sucks. :'(
please check and tell me it works.

On June 9, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
oooggaa, nmngh, illbn, ayooooooooooo, etc. how about signing on with a username instead of some random typing so we know who we are talking to?

On June 10, 2008, ScreaM said this:
Hi yall,

It should work fine on a a crossfader. Its gonna need all 12 spacers that come with it b/c the sm1 faceplate isnt flush with the mixer body. Basically the SM1 is a fancy 05pro and the slot for the fader is huge so no worries there!


On June 10, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
Hey Scream,

I'll check with the manufacturer to make sure this works.


On June 11, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
Hey Scream,

I think it would be difficult to get the Innofader working without major modding in the SM-1 because it has an unusual optical VCA circuit different from the PMC-05.

There are many mixers - Numark DXMs and 5000Fx, Stanton SAs, Vestax PMCs, Eclers, Ureis, A&Hs, Reloops, Tascam, Rodec, AI of course! - which are Innofader compatible.

On June 12, 2008, hjjh said this:

On June 12, 2008, BC ROGAN said this:
I dont get why it would be difficult to get the innofader to work in the sm1. How different could the electronics be from every other mixer that was designed to work with the standard alps crossfader that all GEN 1 high end mixers used 9 years ago? I mean if it can work in a 05, stanton sa, and the like why not an sm1. What is this about optical vca circuitry?

On June 12, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
BC Rogan - hey hold tight, looks like Scream will help me with detective work on checking SM-1 compatibility. It has the standard 4 pin VCA connector so there's a good chance it works.

On June 13, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
I'd like to take this chance to personally thank "Scream" for his help. He took pictures and even used a voltmeter to measure the voltages on all of the pins on his SM-1.

It turns out that the Innofader can work in the SM-1 with settings virtually the same as for the 5000Fx.

Thanks so much for your help Scream. I got the Numark SM-1 added to the "List of Innofader Compatible Mixers"

On June 14, 2008, Dj MonStAr said this:
When can we buy it in europe?
I want to buy it so bad!
Any new info AI?
Thank you in advance...

On June 14, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
Monstar - where are you in Europe? We just contacted all of our European distributors recently. It should be available in Europe about the same time as it's available in the US, which is about mid-July.

On June 14, 2008, Dj MonStAr said this:
Well, I'm from Croatia. I will be going to Switzerland and Germany at the beginning of next month! I hope that you'll sell more in EU than in US! smile.gif Good luck, and keep up the good work...

On June 20, 2008, Grizu said this:
Hope they will fit into my two Ecler mixer (HAK 320 & HAK 310) and we'll be able to check 'em out in Germany soon.
Do you guys allready know how much it will cost? Eternal and Pro X Fader are still quite expensive.

On June 21, 2008, Audio Innovate said this:
Grizu, Monstar,

Just in case you haven't checked already:

All of our distributors and sales outlets are on this list, including ones in Germany and Switzerland

On July 18, 2008, Skooly said this:
Will this fit the Urei 1601S? I bought one from BOWNSIR (Farthur up the page) and he had it fit with a Pro X fade and he "twisted" the connections. Not soldering. SO...

1)Will the inn fit the 1601S?
2)If so how hard would it be to install?

Thanks Marx!

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