Maintenance and Cleaning of Your DJ Equipment
How to clean and maintain your turntables, revive your slipmats,
and clean your crossfaders for optimum performance of your dj equipment.
by Kevin Healy
February 29, 2007
Cleaning your records isn't everything. When was the last time
you cleaned your slipmats, dusted off your turntable platters, or
taken a brush to your needles. If you cant remember, then your equipment
is most likely in need of a full cleaning.
There are a few items that you will need before you start:
- Isopropyl alcohol
- A nonabrasive cloth
- Vacuum with brush attachment
- A cartridge brush, or a small paintbrush will work
Now that you have gathered these items, you are ready to start.
The first thing to clean is your slipmats. These can be cleaned,
by either taking a damp cloth and lightly brushing the mat from
the center outwards all the way around the slipmat. You can also
use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to vacuum the dust
out of the slipmat.
Take off the slipmats and get your nonabrasive cloth damp with
a half and half solution of water and isopropyl alcohol. Lightly
wipe the turntable plate in the same manner that you cleaned the
Your cartridges are very delicate so be careful when cleaning.
Simply take your brush and sweep the needle from the back of the
cartridge to front. This is what is known as a dry cleaning and
should be done on a regular basis. Wet cleaning is the exact same
only you use an alcohol based cleaning solution.
Be sure to wipe your equipment down on a weekly basis, electronic
equipment seems to collect alot of dust due to static, just use
a cloth with some 50/50 solution of alcohol and water.
Cleaning your Crossfader
Now its time to clean that crackle coming from your crossfader,
you will need the following items to do this:
- Can of compressed air
- Tube of bearing lubricant
- Screw driver
Not all crossfaders can be cleaned some mixers use a disposable
fader that cannot be taken apart. Most dj mixers come with a fader
that is designed to be taken apart and cleaned. Make sure all of
your equipment is unplugged before you clean it.
Taking Apart your Crossfader
The first step is to take the screwdriver and remove the screws
fastening the fader plate to the mixer. Once you have done this,
you will notice the fader is attached by a connector. Detach the
connector now there should be two more screws that hold the coverplate
of the fader to the fader itself, remove these. In order to take
the cover plate off the fader you will also have to remove the slider,
these just pull straight off.
Now take the compressed air and blow out every crevice in the fader.
Make sure it is dust free, and that there is no grime build up on
it. Lubricate the crossfader, reassemble, and voila no more sound
leakage or scratchy noise when using your crossfader.
- Choosing the Right Kick Drum Sample for your Song
Selecting and mixing the right kick drum sample into your track, selecting the right kick drum can make or break a track.
- Is Your Sample Library Holding Your Mix Back?
There is an overwhelming amount of audio resources all over the net. with only a small
percentage of high quality samples, that a professional producer or engineer would
- Editing Samples
Music loops in media today - tips on how to edit samples,
hints on mixing with loops, and working with creating samples
for your music.
- Producing Sound With Computer Recording Equipment
Producing sound has come a long way from plugging into an old 4-track recorder and
jamming down your bands new demo song. A sound producer today, utilizes computer
recording equipment to track sound and for mixing vocals, and individual audio tracks. A
recording studio computer has now become the heart of the production.
- Low, High, and Band Pass Filters
Using low pass, and high pass filters, when mixing down a track or automating effects for a song, very powerful tools for audio production.