I have had a couple years use of the Vestax VCI-100 under my belt before I got my hands on Vestax's VCI-300. When I first got the VCI-100 I set myself on a budget mainly because I knew they weren't going to replace my real decks. I wanted to have something portable and fun to bring to a friends house, and something to mix my podcast with while I was on the road.
I want to detour a little and talk about the VCI-100, especially for those who didn't have a chance to play with them. The device was fun but overall lacking in a few areas. Vestax by all means was ahead of the curve when creating the 100 compared to other midi controllers at the time. The biggest problem I had with it was the jog wheel sensitivity. I really wanted to be able to scratch effectivly for when I did some Hip Hop, but we all can't get what we want all the time. I still had a major blast playing house set after house set, without any problems what-so-ever.
Vestax most likely listened to a lot of their customers right after the 100 release, and in the upcoming development days of the 300. Ean from DJ Tech Tools also played a major role in reprogramming a lot of the software to make it work better. Finally the VCI-300 arrives(first in Japan grrr), the world is now flooded with other great controllers, so how does it stack up?
Since the VCI-300 is specifically made for Serato's software, you no longer have to worry about not being able to scratch properly. The 100 was able to be used on a multitude of DJ software which kind of turned out to be a bad thing(in my opinion). The marriage of the 300 and ITCH makes for a tight package that lets you do just about everything you need to with two tables and a microphone(yes there is a mic input on here!).
Another huge leap in getting your money's worth out of the VCI-300 is its built in soundcard. That to me kills two birds with one stone. One being the need to cut down how much I'm traveling with. And second, you don't need to go buy a seperate audio device to make everything work. The soundcard option is a simple one at best, but it does the job right. This is great incase your computer crashes and you need a quick change over to your ipod, or any auxillary device.
Here's a video of the VCI-300 in use and being heavily scratched on. This is from DJ Manilla Ice who does a wicked job on these decks, and I love the use of the netbook!