- Audio & Video
DJs - do you Know your headphones
Choosing a Good Set of Headphones
Every DJ wants be known as a great mixer, and if you want to be a great mixer then you will need some great headphones. Its no use trying to use your ipod headphones, they will never cut it. You need a pair that will block out every banging bass vibration coming from the speakers. You should however be able to hear that banging bass line coming directly from the head phones. This is what will help your mixes, and especially so if you are a hardcore house or dance dj. Good quality DJ headphones are a must for the very best beat matching, and mixing.
Help for deciding what to buy
So what are you needing to look for in headphones?
You should look for a set that are lightweight, and that fit round your ears properly. Have you ever wondered why most DJ's are bald? well this is the reason. Hair can get in the way of a tight fit of the headphones. You will have to endure extended lengths of wearing these headphones, so you want to also make sure they are light for your comfort. They should be heavy around the actual ear cup areas, and not the headband. This way they will stay on your head, if you are having to move your head around, reaching for records and hitting switches.
Make sure that you understand the Wide frequency response. Good quality DJ headphones will cover frequencies from 5 hertz to 30,000 hertz, which means that they cover the bass and sub-bass ranges all the up to a higher sound that humans can hear.
Get headphones that have a low impedance. This is the electrical resistance of the headphones, which is important when you are plugged into a mixer. You can sometimes get electrical feedback via the mixer, and this can cause distortion, and unwanted noise and sometimes a large drop in the maximum volume your headphones can play. This should be included as standard on any good priced pair of headphones you buy, so avoid anything that is cheaply priced.
You should also make sure that the cosmetic value of your dj headphones are not a factor in your buying decision. You can also add a little colorful sticker on them later if you need to.
Single-sided, coiled cords
Coiled cords are the ones that are curly. The reason that the cable manufacturers create a coil is to give more length to the DJ if they need it temporary. A good set of headphones should allow you to attach a single-sided cable to only one earpiece, and then the cable travels from one ear-cup to the other earcup, via the headband. Single sided cord cables have nothing to wrap around and choke you unknowingly to death like a python.
If you need to quickly remove part of your headphones, to listen to something, or someone speaks to you then you will know how cumbersome this can be. Swiveling ear cups allow you to pull the ear cup behind your ear, while still keeping the headband in place, on your head. This also reduces the wear and tear on your headband.
Sennheiser is a DJ headphones manufacturer that design their headphones to be modular in design, and functionality. This means that you can replace parts if they are broken. Its great if you have the spare parts with you, and you have a slight accident with them, and you just pull out the spare parts as if nothing ever happened. Obviously they are a bit more expensive, however, if you have ever broken your headphones, you know that they have to be normally just disposed off. If you ever see a DJ who has been mixing with one earcup its not usually due to a special technique they have, its because their headphones are broken.
Dont turn the music up load. You ears can be broken, and they are actually the most important asset you have as a DJ, so treat them carefully,.and you can still be DJing well in your 100's!
Turning your headphones up to the max won't help you with beat matching. Its about the subtle sounds that you need to work hard to hear, and if you have a thumping sound in your ear, you'll miss it.