So, you want to be a DJ? There’s a few superstars earning big money for nightclub appearances. But most Disc Jockeys perform at weddings, reunions, and other entertainment events and venues. And most make enough to significantly supplement their regular income.
Lisa Carlson, writing for Chron.com, reports the Bureau of Business Affairs numbers: “According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage of disc jockeys was $26,850 in May 2010. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $16,590, and the top 10 percent earned more than $72,500.”
You’ll need to earn your stripes with some free gigs and modest payments until you build the experience and reputation that improves your demand. While you work to prove yourself, you should also reinvest the income in quality equipment.
4 secrets to optimizing your DJ speakers:
- Buy the best speakers you can. You can buy the speakers that will work, or you invest in the ones that will make your performance a hit. What you need to test is how the sound reaches your audience of listeners, not how it sounds to you.
The bass sound must be pronounced, and the high frequencies must be crisp. The best DJ speakers will deliver at least a 2000W power rating, a coverage range of 90 by 50 degrees, and a maximum decibel output of 133. And, they must be portable enough and well constructed.
- Understand tweeters, woofers, and subwoofers. Good speakers have tweeters for high frequency tracks and low-range woofers for the lower frequencies. You must develop a talented ear to differentiate the outputs and test them thoroughly in the speaker store.
Subwoofers are not necessary, but they add texture and depth to the sound mix. They pick up and emphasize bass beats, and your job is to manage the mix, perhaps, to support certain music themes, styles, or segments.
- There’s more to it than speakers. The speakers only deliver the magic. They are only as good as what you feed them. You’ll need quality adapters to overcome incompatibility in switches.
The setup also requires Mp3 or laptop music libraries, mixers and CDJs to handle those beats, and amplifiers to boost the volume. But you also need the talent to figure the combination producing the best experience for the venue and crowd.
- Put speakers where they do best. You need speakers you can move with little trouble, but the stronger speakers are heavier. Some venues provide the speakers, and all you must do is connect to them.
However, where and how you position the speakers. They should be placed on stands above the audience’s height and facing slightly into the crowd. Separate subwoofers sit at floor level. And, you should avoid placing them near or facing walls.
Mix and max the sounds!
You can be sure most of your audience knows nothing about speakers or their quality. But they know what they like. Throw in a lot of alcohol and good spirits at a wedding or a nightclub, they are responding to beats not the lyrics. Your duty is to deploy your speakers and use your skills to keep everyone on their feet.