DJ Workshop: Mix Tips:
Ask yourself these questions before you start to buy anything.
1. Do you find yourself listening to music alot of the time?
2. Do you often tap out a rhythm in your mind?
3. Do you play with the eq on your hifi system?
4. Do you spend too many hours in record shops?
5. Do you love dancing in clubs?
6. Are you self motivated and full on energy?
If you answered yes to all of this, then you may have the temprament to succeed as a DJ.
Step 1: Your collection
Well if you love music then you need to extend your musical knowledge.
What’s new? What’s popular? What’s a classic? What are all the types of music? Start your collection. If you have one then you’ve got a headstart.
Decide if you are going to use Vinyl or CD.
Step 2: Equipment
There is so much DJ equipment available now so choose carefully. There are many pros and cons. Most importantly decide what your budget is and why you want to DJ.
(a) You want to play at home, learn to mix and play to friends:
Go for a 2 channel mixer with crossfader, some have eq. Plus belt drive decks choose from: Gemini, Kam, Citrionic, Soundlab, who all make mixers and decks for an under 300.00 package. My tip is to check the torque/tension of the deck and how fast a track takes to get from standstill to 33/45 rpm. Also check the faders for a smooth but firm fade and general durability of switches and buttons.
However get a good amp, speakers and leads.
(b) You want to play house parties, bars and pubs:
In the long term you may want to take your own “rig” out to gigs, functions etc.
So this will be a bit of an investment. You may decide to make it a little earner at the weekend. You may want to consider CD mixers as well that have a range of gadgets to choose from. If you are going to be carrying them around then you should get them flightcased for the future.
Pioneer have the best range of CD Mixers starting at about 300.00, the DJM 500 which with two players is near the 1300.00 mark will cater for all your needs.
With decks again for these purposes Soundlab, Gemini, Citrionic belt and Direct drives will do the tricks and will alll be less than 400.00 per pair.
Good aluminium flight casing, made to order can cost up to 100.00 per deck so maybe go for a package deal.
You are going to need a more powerful amp and some good speakers: Yamaha, Cerwin Vega, JBL are good here but you need to work out the power to size of your venue ratio.
(c) You want to play clubs, radio and maybe become a superstar DJ.
At this stage you may also want to consider Technics 1200 Direct Drive or Vestax PDX range that are the fastest and tightest. Technics range from 300.00- 350.00 but shop around, companies that buy bulk can afford to sell cheaper, where the PDX range goes up to 800.00 with all the latest innovations.
Mixers at this level (which you may want to integrate into a studio set up) will often have more output and input channels. Again our recommendation is Vestax because they are designed by Djs for Djs and are by our experience the most efficient and durable. Check out their range, especially as they have designed some excellent kill switch unit which takes out bass, mid and treble ranges. Look out for either rotary faders for house based music or the O5 Pro for scratch Djs. Finally Eccler also manufacture some quality mixers, especially for home studio purposes.
Lewisham College: 0208 692 0353
Sapphires PA: 0208 450 0318
Vestax Europe: 01428 653117