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How to choose your DJ mixer?

The DJ mixing console is the centerpiece of your DJ control room, it is to this mixing table that all your equipment is connected: turntables, headphones, microphones, etc. It is the mixer that will convert all these signals, after modification on your part, into a single main output connected to the broadcast system.

DJ mixers stand out from "classic" mixers by several specificities. For example, they have the particularity of having a “pre-listening” function, essential for any DJ in order to listen to the incoming track without anyone hearing it. There are generally 2 or 4 channels (rare are the DJs to mix more than 4 channels at the same time) whereas on the mixers for live or studio use can count up to 72 tracks.

platine usb dj pioneer

There are two types of mixers more or less dedicated to different practices: models typed "club" and those adapted to "Scratch". The club mixer has more source inputs, while the scratch mixer offers more mixing possibilities between 2 different tracks, including effects and functions reserved for scratchers.

FEATURES

Here is the list of the different specificities found on a DJ mixer:

The faders

These are the linear sliders that adjust the individual level of a slice (or channel). There are generally 2 on “basic” mixing desks, 4 on professional ones and sometimes even up to 6.

The crossfader

The horizontal slider, located at the bottom of your mixer, which allows you to manage the mixing of the tracks between them. It is widely used by DJs practicing scratching.

EQ potentiometers

The rotary equalization (EQ) knobs on each track allow you to boost or decrease the volume of bass, mids and treble. Several types of equalization exist, some are equipped with the "Kill" function. With this, if a potentiometer is at the minimum, the frequency range concerned will be totally inaudible.

Input selectors

On each slice, very often there is an input selector. This allows you to choose the source of the signal. It can sometimes come from the "phono" level input (often linked to vinyl turntables) or the "line" level input (often linked to digital turntables).

Gain potentiometers (called trim)

It is used to attenuate or amplify the signal entering one of the mixer channels. Indeed, depending on the quality of the song, or the input signal, the maximum volume will not be the same.

VU meters

Indispensable to any DJ mixer, they allow you to see the volume (in decibels) of the current song on the track. With these meters, we will be able to level the maximum volumes thanks to the gain potentiometers.

Pre-fader listening (or pre-listening)

Necessary to prepare the mix of 2 songs before it is heard by everyone via the Master track. You can, most of the time, mix the listening of the tracks in pre-fader mode (chosen by means of a switch) and those which come out on the master, which everyone hears.

A microphone input

In order to be able to wish the inevitable "Happy Birthday", it is necessary to have an input intended for the microphone. And luckily, all DJ consoles are equipped with it.

Its filters

The filter is a very important tool to achieve perfect transitions. It usually comes in the form of a potentiometer to be able to filter either the high frequencies or the low frequencies. Most of the time, there is one per track.

An FX section

Depending on the brand and model, it looks different. Each effect is assignable on each track. There is also the possibility to adjust the characteristics of each effect.

Connectors

The inputs and outputs of the mixer are in XLR, Jack and/or RCA format. You can also find tables equipped with a USB socket.

Questions ?

You now have all the basics you need to get started and choose your DJ turntable. It is obvious that not everything is summarized in this guide and you may have some questions or wish to have additional advice regarding the choice of your DJ turntable. Our team of passionate specialists will answer your questions and will be able to guide you during your purchase, whether in our stores or by telephone on 01 81 930 900.