Making the leap from electronic dance music fan to budding DJ can be a daunting prospect. What do you need to start out; apart from passion? What software should you use? And what kind of headphones are best? If you’re unsure how to begin your journey, take a look at our quick guide to the best equipment for beginners:
There are many different types of DJing software out there and most do pretty much the same thing – it all comes down to preference. Try out the free trial versions to find which one works best for you before investing.
If you are purchasing a new laptop, you will need to ensure it has enough processing power to smoothly run your DJ software. If your laptop can’t handle it without slowing or crashing, you won’t get very far. Other things to consider are screen size (get a standard or large screen laptop), USB ports (the more the better) and battery life (the longer the better).
Mixers/ DJ controller
Once you’ve got your music and laptop sorted, you need to get a mixer. There are many options, so consider the following before you buy one:
- USB – make sure the mixer can connect to your laptop via a USB cable.
- Sound card – having a sound card on the mixer or controller as well as your laptop means you can hear what’s being played on the main speakers as well as through your headphones.
The types of speakers you should get depends on the type of venues you are playing and your skill level. If you aren’t yet playing in front of an audience, a 12-inch-speaker with a subwoofer will suffice. A subwoofer allows you to beat-match with ease as you can hear and feel the bass.
Headphones are an essential piece of kit. They’re used for cueing, allowing you to listen to the audition tracks without having to play them through the main speakers for the crowd to hear. The better quality your headphones are the better your executions. When buying headphones, keep the following in mind:
- Isolation – get headphones with a closed back that will isolate your music from the front of house sound.
- Comfort – the headphones will be on your head for long periods of time, so get something comfortable. You don’t need to be distracted by discomfort.
- Cable length – make sure your headphones have a decent cable length. You want to be able to move around freely.
- Durability – your headphones will be in constant use so buy a pair that are solid and durable.
To sum up, buy the best headphones you can afford and make sure you check out real user reviews to ensure they tick all the right boxes.
Obviously to DJ, you need music. With the advent of MP3, you no longer need a vinyl library (unless you want one, of course), just a laptop or USB stick. There are plenty of websites where you can buy MP3s and other digital files. We’d advise paying for good quality downloads though. Nobody wants to dance to music that is distorted or has poor sound quality.
Once you have invested in your equipment, you must insure it. At Insure4Music, our equipment cover insures your equipment up to £50,000 and our Music Liability option offers up to £5 million in Public Liability if you DJ live at venues. Get a quote today!