Native Instruments has announced the launch of Stems, a new multi-track audio format that introduces enhanced performance possibilities for DJs and a new paradigm for the music industry as a whole.

The format has been widely embraced throughout the industry, and major online music stores are already set to release hundreds of tracks from top artists and labels in Stems format. To mark the launch of the new technology, Native Instruments is offering special pricing on TRAKTOR KONTROL S8, D2, and F1 – the first Stems-ready DJ controllers.

Developed by Native Instruments, Stems is an open file format providing the ability to freely interact with a track’s four different musical elements – such as drums, bass, keys and vocals. Each stem’s volume, filter, and effects settings can be controlled independently to create instant new mixes, mashups, instrumentals, a cappellas, and more. Since Stems was announced in May 2015, six major online retailers Beatport, Bleep, Juno, Traxsource, whatpeopleplay, and Wasabeat have officially begun stocking hundreds of releases from prominent artists and labels in Stems format on their respective sites. From some of 2015’s biggest albums to favorite hits, the list of labels releasing in Stems format is continuously growing.

Hands-on control of Stem files is now possible with the TRAKTOR PRO 2.9 update – the first DJ software to support Stems. For TRAKTOR KONTROL S8 and D2 the Stems View provides a clear, color-coded overview of a track’s four stems as stacked waveforms – granting DJs in-depth, multi-channel control over a single track. DJs with a Stems-ready controller will be able to start playing Stems right away. Three Stems tracks played by Berlin-based DJ-producer NGHT DRPS in a new performance video featuring Stems are now free to download in Stems format directly from the Native Instruments website.

To support the online community of DJs, as well as producers, developers, and industry professionals, will act as the official home for important information about playing and creating Stems. DJs can also follow the global discussion online by using and searching for the hashtag #playstems.

To celebrate the launch of Stems, Native Instruments is offering special pricing on TRAKTOR KONTROL S8, D2, and F1. The offer ends September 30th, 2015.

Traktor Kontrol offer

  • Traktor Kontrol S8: $999 / 999 € / £699 / ¥ 114,800 / AU$ 1.299
  • Traktor Kontrol D2: $399 / 399 € / £279 / ¥ 44,800 / AU$ 549
  • Traktor Kontrol F1: $149 / 149 € / £109 / ¥ 18,800 / AU$ 199

Later this summer, Native Instruments will release the free Stem Creator Tool – a standalone application that opens the door for anyone to create their own Stem files.

The free TRAKTOR PRO 2.9 update is now available for download via the NI Service Center. A full TRAKTOR PRO 2 license comes bundled with the purchase of TRAKTOR KONTROL S8 or TRAKTOR KONTROL D2. The software is provided as a download following registration of the hardware.

More information: Native Instruments / Stems