Back in 1995 when I first started as a DJ for personal fun the situation was more or less clear. Nearly all DJs use a combination of two or three Technics SL 1210 MK2 and a two, three or four-channel mixer. After a while, it became more complicated because besides the vinyl decks CD decks with pitch control hit the market (first it was the Denon DN-2000F if I recall correctly).
Nowadays the situation is even more complicated, you can stick to the original analog setup, you can integrate some digital equipment or you can DJ fully digital. After some research, I’ve decided to drop all my current equipment and start DJ with a fully digital setup. I’ve tried a few programs and find out that Traktor 3 is the piece of software I definitely need. So while fully digital and quite simple, it’s still cheap (Traktor 3 is currently offered for around 99€) and you have nearly unlimited features and functions.
A lot of traditional DJ work is done by this tool so you can better concentrate on the creative process. A really nice introduction from Richie Hawtin could be found here starting with part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6 and part 7. To be honest, one of the major reasons for buying that tool :).