What is it?
In a nutshell, a cross between a Novation Launchpad and a Korg nanopad. In fact it's part of iCon's 'i-series, which also includes mini keyboard and drum-pad style versions (the latter is called the iPad, curiously). Designed to sit neatly in front of a Macbook, the iStage crams in 48 trigger buttons, 13 function/mode buttons, another four utility buttons, four mode selectors, a rotary knob and a fader.
There is a dedicated DJ controller in the same range - the iDJ - but that is a more conventional, two jog wheels and some faders affair, which is not what we are interested in here.
What can I do with it?
iCon may have stumbled upon an interesting combination with the iStage; dividing the grid of buttons either by two or four can give you generous control of the main transport and mix functions of most deck configurations, while the rotary can be assigned to control multiple parameters via a simple button press. There is also a default Traktor mapping.
If you are looking for the simplest of setups - a laptop and a small controller - then the iStage makes a lot of sense.
Find out more about iCon iStage