Syncing Traktor Kontrol S4 and Maschine

This tutorial explains how to sync Traktor Pro S4 with Maschine using Traktor as tempo master and Maschine as tempo slave.

At the end of this tutorial you find some information about MIDI sync on Windows.

The prerequisites:

To start the configuration launch both apps.

Preparing Maschine as Tempo Slave

The first section shows how to setup Maschine as tempo slave.

  1. Open File/Audio and Midi Settings.
  2. Open the Audio tab.
  3. Select the audio device you wish to use. For this tutorial I used an Audio 4 DJ.

    Maschine Audio Dialog

  4. Switch to the Routing tab and select the two audio output ports you wish to use.

    Maschine Audio Routing Dialog

  5. Switch to the MIDI tab and open the Inputs section, if necessary.
  6. Find the entry Traktor Virtual Output, click the Off value and set it to On.

    Maschine MIDI Dialog

  7. Close the Audio and MIDI Settings dialog.
  8. Open File menu and click Sync to External MIDI clock.

    Syncing to External Clock

Routing Maschine Audio into the S4 Controller and into Traktor

The second section shows how to get the Maschine audio into Traktor.

  1. Connect the two plugs from the Maschine audio device into the Channel C sockets on the rear of the S4 controller.
  2. Make sure that the input switch of Channel C on the rear of the S4 set to Line.
  3. Open the Traktor dialog Preferences/Input Routing.
  4. Select for Channel C the two inputs from channel C of the S4 controller: Set Left to 1:In Ch C Left and set Right to 2:In Ch C Right.

    Traktor Input Routing

  5. Switch to the Preferences/Decks pane.
  6. Set the Deck Flavor of deck C to Live Input.

    Setting Deck C to Live Input

Preparing Traktor as Tempo Master

You need to tell Traktor on which port the MIDI clock messages shall be sent and then you can activate the sending of clock messages.

  1. Open Preferences/Controller Manager.
  2. Click Add, then Generic MIDI Device. Traktor adds a new MIDI device to the device list.
  3. Click Edit, then Edit Comment. Enter "MIDI Clock" in the textbox and click OK. The new MIDI device now has a name.
  4. Make sure that the MIDI Clock device is selected. Open the list In-Port and select the option None.
  5. Open the list Out-Port and select the option Traktor Virtual Output. The Controller Manager dialog should look like this:

    Traktor MIDI Clock Device

  6. Open the Preferences/MIDI clock pane.
  7. Activate the check box Send MIDI Clock.

Leave the Preferences dialog open to adjust the timing of the MIDI clock messages. This is explained in the next section.

Starting the Sync and Fine Tuning of the MIDI Clock Messages

  1. Open the Master Clock panel in the Global Section of Traktor by clicking the metronome at the very left of the Traktor window (next to FX unit 1).
  2. If the button Auto is highlighted click the Auto button to disable it.
  3. Make sure that the button Master in the Master Clock panel is on.
  4. Press the Master Clock Start button.

    Starting MIDI Clock in Traktor

    Then press the Sync button in the Master Clock panel.
    Maschine will now receive MIDI clock messages from Traktor. You should see the BPM display in Maschine adjusting to the current tempo of Traktor's master clock.

  5. Press the Tick button in Traktor's Master Clock panel. You will hear the tick in your headphones.

    Starting Clock Tick in Traktor

  6. Activate the Metronome in Maschine and open the channel fader of Deck C so that you can hear the Traktor tick and the Maschine metronome at the same time.
  7. Switch to the Traktor dialog Preferences/MIDI clock.
  8. Move the slider Sending Offset, until the Traktor tick and the Maschine metronome are in sync.

    Configuring MIDI Clock Offset in Traktor

Syncing on Windows

Generally speaking you can sync Maschine and Traktor on the same Windows computer as well. Because on Windows Traktor doesn't provide the virtual MIDI ports, you need

However, the transport of the MIDI clock messages in OSX works better than in Windows. When comparing the BPM display on Maschine software under both operating systems, one can see that the clock fluctuates much more under Windows than under OSX.


When syncing two apps via MIDI clock it is best practice to use a stable tempo in clock source. The best way to get a stable tempo is to disable the Auto mode, to make the Master Clock as tempo master. In this mode you use the BPM display in the Master clock panel to change the tempo.

If you want to use MIDI clock to sync and if you only have the S4 controller connected, you will always have to create a logical MIDI clock device as explained in section Preparing Maschine as Tempo Master. Depending on whether Traktor acts as tempo slave or tempo master set either the In-Port or the Out-Port of that device to the port you wish to use.

Written by Rainer G. Haselier
Edited by Karl Yates a.k.a. Karlos Santos on the Native Instruments forum
Last update: November 9, 2010


Chris Walker
wrote on November 7, 2010 at 01:48
When you say connect the inputs from Maschines audio device, in my case its the mac, does that require a phono cable going into 2 RCA plugs from my macs headphone port to the back of the s4's deck c line input,
i would of thought it would be virtual with no need for cables.
 Rainer G. Haselier (admin) says:
Hi Chris,

yes, the option I explained was to have the headphone port connected to the Channel C line input. Alternatively you could create an aggregated device consisting of the S4 and the Mac integrated output. Then you would route in Traktor the four S4 ports as usual (Master Out/Headphne Out) and route the two internal outputs into Channel C of Traktor.

wrote on November 7, 2010 at 08:26
Like Chris, I'm surprised that you can't simply choose S4 ASIO drivers in Maschine's preferences, then output through an S4 audio channel somehow. That would be too easy wouldn't it?
 Rainer G. Haselier (admin) says:
With S4 this couldn't work as it provides four channels only and they are used by Traktor for the Main and Cue output.
And my tutorial is based on running Traktor and Maschine on the same system. If the onboard or second audio device runs well soundwise and with low latency that should work.
The bigger problem is the way that MIDI clock messages are transported on the operating system level. And here OSX is simply better.
Chris Walker
wrote on November 7, 2010 at 22:21
Thank you Rainer for you quick reply and detailed tutorial, ill confirm back when i find or replace my phono to RCA lead.
 Rainer G. Haselier (admin) says:
Cool, keep us informed about your experience.
wrote on November 8, 2010 at 18:50
Will this work roughly the same with Kore 2 so I can use that to host Maschine and some of Komplete 7 as VSTs? Haven't bought them yet but I've identified them as part of my ideal setup (assuming they play nicely together).
 Rainer G. Haselier (admin) says:
You can actually use any kind of software that can be a MIDI clock slave. And you can route any kind of audio as Live Input into one of the rear connectors and feed it into the internal Traktor mixer.
wrote on November 8, 2010 at 20:11
Thanks for the reply, however I think you may have misunderstood my question.

Is it possible to select S4 as the audio device for for Maschine? (Obviously this would then bus Maschine's audio out through S4's main output)

.... and thanks for your very helpful information :-)

Paul Young
wrote on November 9, 2010 at 22:09
since our routing the maschine into channel C does that mean you are not gonna be able to play a track on deck C on the S4 if you have the maschine running with the S4? Thank you
 Rainer G. Haselier (admin) says:
Yes, that's true because the Maschine audio is routed as Live Input into the internal Traktor mixer.
wrote on November 13, 2010 at 11:19
I read on another forum that another way to connect S4 and Maschine via midi is to use 2 separate laptops.

I was hoping you could further elaborate on this.


Ryan Taylor
wrote on November 26, 2010 at 01:44
I can confirm that it is possible to just select Traktor S4 as your soundcard in Maschine. Sound will come out but the problem is that you can't EQ it, I planned to just use it for drums but for those of you looking to add in more full tracks you won't have that control over the EQ's.
wrote on December 14, 2010 at 05:45
what kind of cable will you need to hook up the maschine into deck c of the s4 do they make midi to rca cables? or do i need something different?

wrote on January 5, 2011 at 02:11
Will this setup work so maschine will play cue points with the software??
TJ Boitox
wrote on January 17, 2011 at 14:41
Congratulations on creating and maintaining such a productive website. When i stumbled upon it i thought my dreams were answered but not exactly. I recently purchased the Trigger Finger by M Audio. I am extremely eager to use my new hardware along side the s4 mainly as a midi controller for cue points. I would ideally like to set up the 16 pads to trigger cues 1-8 for deck A and 1-8 for deck B with effects being assigned to some knobs potentially. Please let me know what i can do!
DJ Girish
wrote on January 19, 2011 at 18:47
I like this approach. With this method, I will by able to eq my beats made on maschine. Will using Presonus Firebox (excellent audio interfact)for maschine' audio out help with sound quality, latency, midi clock, offset, sync matters over using mac's built in audio out? I am curious?
wrote on January 31, 2011 at 03:32
Hi thanks for such a detailed explanation, however i was wondering if the midi sync can be achived between traktor and the maschine software runnng on 2 seperate macs?

wrote on February 3, 2011 at 15:48
Hey !

I try to sync S4 & Maschine... but I've no "Traktor Virtual Output" ?
Does anyone know how to find it ?!

wrote on February 12, 2011 at 17:59
what kind of cable will you need to hook up the maschine into deck c of the s4 do they make midi to rca cables? or do i need something different?

You say

"Connect the two plugs from the Maschine audio device into the Channel C sockets on the rear of the S4 controller."

connect the two plugs is slightly vague, is it midi to rca? or both midi in and out to rca or am i well off?

Thanks really appreciate the tutorial, just frustrated with the cable?
wrote on February 14, 2011 at 17:55
if you can answer alex question about what cables to use it will be greatly appreciated! thank you.
wrote on February 16, 2011 at 15:33
Actually you dont connect the Maschine to the S4. You connect The S4 to your external soundcard (in my case Audio 8). You then make sure that Maschine uses the external soundcard. There is only one connection from Maschine and that is the USB to the computer. The rest of the connection is software configuration. Follow the steps abow an voila you are playing Maschine through channel C on the S4. I have trouble with getting perfect sync myself but the set up is fairly easy.
wrote on February 21, 2011 at 14:45
I misunderstood what i need for get in a touch the traktor maschine with s4, i need to audio dj4? or i need just to my pc, s4 and maschine??
wrote on February 21, 2011 at 16:56
U need an external soundcard yes. Audio DJ4 ie.
wrote on February 27, 2011 at 22:23
Hey everyone,

I'm having trouble syncing my Maschine on my PC laptop with my friend's Traktor S4 on his MacBook. When I set to external midi clock, my Maschine won't play or make sound. We're connecting MIDI out of Traktor to MIDI in of Maschine via MIDI cable.

Traktor S4 has send MIDI clock checked.

Also created a Traktor virtual output under the out port. And the in port is none.

We've tried to set Maschine as master as well with little luck.
wrote on March 18, 2011 at 19:37
Hey DeyBwah do u use a PC?
Do u use Maschine as MIDI controller for Traktor?
If yes, try to deactivate it Controller settings and try sync via MIDI cable again. My PC also does not start Maschine via cable if its cofigured as TSP MIDI controller same time.
wrote on April 6, 2011 at 06:33
hey um this mite sound dumb but I'm just getting started with DJing. I just bought the traktor kontrol s4 and I don't just want to mix songs I want to create and produce melodies and make music specifically house genre, will these two peices of equipment work well for that? If not could you help me out with what mite?
wrote on April 12, 2011 at 10:26
Hello everyone can someone tell me how to connect between them the traktor s4 and Mac which cables use and how to connect them? Thank you
wrote on April 12, 2011 at 10:27
Traktor s4,maschine and Mac :-)
wrote on April 19, 2011 at 00:25
this discription is very clear thanx for that.
it is possible to run traktor pro2 and maschine wow that great.
But when it runs on one mac is it stable enough for using at a live set?

and 2. is it possible to run this setup with an differnt controller as the S4
byexample reloop´s digital jockey 2 ME

lot of thanx for reply


wrote on May 25, 2011 at 22:37
Verbinde den Ausgang des in Maschine konfigurierten Audiogeräts mit den Eingängen von Channel C an der Rückseite des S4-Controllers??

Hallo derzeit kommt der Sound von der Maschine aus den Lautsprechern meines MacB.

Wie kommt nun der Sound der Maschine in die S4 (C)?

Muss da eine Kabelerbindung angesteckt werden?

Gruß Bernd
wrote on June 5, 2011 at 21:55
Hi guys,

Thanks for the walk through on syncing this up its great, One question though. I am using the S4 as the audio card. Is there a way I can route the Maschine's audio in to track and have it on a spare channel?

At the moment its just playing over the top of traktor and i am having to use the Maschine's volume knob to control the level.

K Jovan
wrote on June 28, 2011 at 17:32
I have Maschine, Traktor S4, Traktor Pro 2, and HP Envy 14 Beats Edition. My intention is to use S4's internal soundcard / audio interface as the device in Maschine. How do I set that up?
wrote on July 7, 2011 at 22:42
Hi Rainer,

Great explanation! Thanks for that.
My experience with the headphone output on my MacbookPro
is that it's really low in volume. Of course I played around with
all the gains, but I have to really crank it up to +10db to get
at a decent level. What is your experience/solution with this?

many thx Brian
 Rainer G. Haselier (admin) says:
I am preparing a new workshop article where no headphone output is needed. Will be online in the second half of July
wrote on August 23, 2011 at 19:52
I have a question about this 'Aggregated Audio Device' thing in OSX. I just purchased a Maschine and am trying to get it running through a channel on my S4 without having to use my MacBook's headphone out - Rainer, I've seen your mentions of the 'Aggregated Audio Device' but I'm not sure I'm doing it properly. Does this require any other software like SoundFlower, or can it be done natively through OSX? Should I be seeing a new input option in Traktor's Input page? Thanks a bunch for this!!!
 Rainer G. Haselier (admin) says:
Have a look at the "Wedding of Traktor and Maschine" workshop. One part shows how to get it up and running on one MacBook. Audio will be routed via Jack from Maschine to one Traktor deck.
john & waffle
wrote on September 20, 2011 at 21:21
Our set is:
2 Mac
1 traktor audio 10
2 maschine controllers
we have traktor software on both computers.
we just wanna use both traktor controlled by maschine controllers toghether. How to sync them?
wrote on November 30, 2011 at 21:13
Hi There.

1)Is it possible to sync machine and traktor kontrol s2?

2)- can i select the s2 as soundcard for the machine, so it playes over ?
wrote on December 12, 2011 at 21:23
I wanted to Sync S4 and Maschine in two computers.

I have Traktor pro 2.1.2 in a Mac where is running S4. and Maschine
1.7.1 both computers with Mac OSX 10.6.8, i try different ways but i doesn´t run...

Can you help me please?


wrote on December 24, 2011 at 02:17
Supeiror thinking demonstrated above. Thanks!
wrote on December 24, 2011 at 12:39
Hi everybody,

I red some comments above but not all of them so I will ask my question (sorry if it is asked already).

Normally I'll buy a traktor maschine next week or over 2 weeks but I'm waiting for some more info.

Now i'm having a HP envy 17 and traktor kontrol s4. I don't have a external audio soundcard like in the tutorial (audio 4 DJ). So my question is: Is it possible to connect the maschine in deck 3 or 4 with a cable? I mean, without an external soundcard or extra program.

wrote on February 1, 2012 at 07:40
I have been so bewldireed in the past but now it all makes sense!
wrote on February 23, 2012 at 05:06
I bought the Komplete Audio 6 to use to connect Maschine with the s4. My question is I plan to use the RCA SPDIF in and out. Does it matter what in 1 or 2 on Channel C is connected? I hope that makes sense. For example do I connect the In on the Audio 6 to Input 1 on the S4? And then the Out on the Audio 2 to the Input 2 on the S4?
wrote on March 12, 2012 at 08:40
I have My S4 and Maschine both running on the same PC now. I found for me the simplest way to run the audio was making it the input to deck D by simply using a headphone jack to RCA and plugging it in the back. for my Sound device I had to set Maschine to use the laptops Realtek High Definition Audio Speaker/HP It was alot quicker and less cumbersome than using Jackrouter and getting it all set up right everytime I go out to play. I used both loopmidi and an actual midi cable to do the syncing both seemto work equally well as the other. I did at one point have the audio routed using jackrouter but it seemed to be a little more cpu intensive than just using the cable from the headphone jack
wrote on September 3, 2012 at 03:09
Is there a way to do it with maschine mikro?
wrote on September 5, 2012 at 10:30
@Djab The same way.
wrote on January 9, 2014 at 13:39
Hi Everyone

Syncing on Windows has failed so far for me. Anyone got it working properly ?

TK S4, Maschine MK2, EIE Pro, Win 8 64bit
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