How to Transport DJ Equipment
Ask any mobile DJ how much of a hassle transporting DJ gear can be. Not only is DJ equipment costly, but it is also extremely fragile and can be easily damaged. Mobile DJs often have to move from one place to another due to their gigs. Because they have to travel frequently, the equipment often ends up traveling with them.
If mishandled, the DJ equipment can break. This might not result in accurate sounds. What’s more frustrating is having to constantly pack and unpack your equipment. It can get quite time consuming and you might often fantasize about hiring someone else to do it for you.
However difficult it is, it is still an essential part of being a DJ. You need to take all necessary measures to make sure that your equipment is protected. By following a few tips, you can perfectly pack up your gear without worrying about damage.
For the most part, we recommend mobile DJs to buy a minivan to help transport all their equipment easily. If you have smaller equipment, then your car trunk might suffice. Nevertheless, we still recommend buying a minivan if you can dish out some extra cash.
Here is a quick breakdown on how to handle and transport each piece of equipment:
DJ speakers are perhaps the most fragile part of the entire gear. They include countless fragile electronic parts that can easily get messed up. When transporting your DJ speakers, always remember to store them upright.
In case you’re unable to store them upright, you can try a face-up position. Never transport them face down, because every little bump on the road puts downward pressure on the speaker, especially the magnets. These heavy magnets can warp the basket if you drive over a big bump.
On the other hand, transporting it face up helps minimize the effect. In addition, it helps you protect your grill from any unwanted dents or scratches. Furthermore, we recommend that you place a blanket or a rug underneath them to help provide cushioning. Otherwise, the metal floor of the van can easily damage the exterior.
You should also use a bungee cord or a seatbelt to lock the speakers in. Trust us! You do not want your equipment sliding around on the floor as it can easily crash into other equipment.
If you’re traveling on an airplane, then you might want to invest in a flight case. Since you won’t be handling the speakers in the checked luggage section, you need a sturdy flight case. It is better to mark it fragile so the handlers don’t throw it around.
If you do not want to invest in a flight case, simply wrap it in bubble wrap and place it inside a cardboard box. Wrap the box with cellophane until it is completely covered. This will help you avoid any damage to your speakers.
It’s foolish to invest in an expensive DJ controller without buying a protective case for it. You need to look out for different ways to protect your controller. There are basically two ways to do so. These are:
A hard case, more popularly known as a flight case, is perfect for providing protection to your controller. They are suitable for air travel, but you can just as easily use them for everyday travel as well. They tend to be rather bulky and heavy, but they make up for it by ensuring maximum protection.
There are various kinds of hard cases out in the market for your DJ controller. We, however, highly recommend the wooden hard cases. They are often enforced with metal joints and come with a metal clasp to allow for added durability.
Mostly they contain soft padding on the inside to fit your DJ controller snugly. Some cases such as the Magma DJ Controller Hard Case also contain compartments to allow storage for cables and adaptors. This case even has a panel that you can easily remove to access all the controls and the input/output. It makes it easier to use the device since you don’t need to take it out.
They do have their downsides as they can be heavy. Most checked luggage at the airport has a weight limit so, you need to make sure that the flight case does not exceed it. Moreover, if you’re DJing at a small booth, the case can take up a lot of space. Lastly, they are costly too!
There are soft cases available that can help you provide sufficient protection for transporting controllers. They tend to be lighter than flight cases and are easier to carry. If you’re only planning to transport locally or by road, then a soft case will provide you with all the protection you need.
You can also buy a zippered case that comes with a carrying handle or a shoulder strap. This makes it easier to carry. On the other hand, they do not provide nearly as much protection as a hard case. This is why we recommend against using these for flights.
DJ headphones might seem like the easiest thing to transport, but the truth is far from it. Most DJs neglect their headphones and just throw them in a random bag. Most experts agree that you should buy a special case for them that allows you to transport them safely.
If the headphones are foldable, then we recommend that you fold them up for easier carrying. Remove the cord if you can and wrap it up safely. Buy a carrying case that accommodates for wires and stores them in the carrying case.
Then place your headphones inside. If you’re going to transport them by air, you can consider wrapping them with bubble wrap or wrapping the entire case with cellophane.
DJ Mixers actually come with a DJ mixer case that can help protect them from damage. There are a wide variety of DJ mixer cases available in stores such as StoreDJ.com.
A great Mixer case is the Pioneer RC1 Roadcase. The Roadcase boasts robust construction and is said to be built like a tank to help protect your equipment. It can easily fit 10-12-inch mixers. The high-quality construction ensures a long-lasting mixer.
Another, more affordable option, is the UDG Creation Novation Circuit Mono Station Hardcase. The case comes with a soft fleece interior which provides cushioning to the mixer. The heavy-duty carrying handles make it easy to carry it around.
Always pack your mixer inside the case. When picking out a mixer case, take special care to choose one that fits your unit perfectly. Otherwise, your mixer might end up sliding inside the case.
With DJ turntables, you need to be extra careful. The belt on the turntables tends to be very fragile. We recommend that you pack them up nicely with lots of bubble wrap. You can use a hard case or a zippered soft case for this as well.
The general rules are similar to the controller or mixer ones. There is, however, an additional element here. Turntables come with needles which need to be transported separately. If you’re buying a carrying case for them, make sure that they have a separate compartment for needles.
DJ Lighting and Cables:
DJ Lighting follows the same rule as above. Pack them up in a box with bubble wrap or cellophane to make sure that they do not get damaged.
Transporting cables can be very difficult if not managed properly. As a result, they can get tangled up, and they take a long time to detangle. You can even end up breaking them due to the constant tension when they’re being pulled apart.
Take all your cables and wrap them hand over hand. We do not recommend that you wrap them in an 8-shape figure. This is because they cannot tolerate that kind of twisting very well. Wrap them in a circular shape.
Next, label them accordingly. This will help you keep them organized. You can buy a cable organizing case from any store or simply use a small bag with loads of compartments. Another way to transport them is to put them with their relevant equipment
Transporting DJ equipment can be quite a hassle! You’re stuck with tons of equipment that you might need to transport often! Whether you’re simply traveling with them to your local club or to a city on the other side of the world, you need to make certain that your equipment is securely packed.
Furthermore, we recommend that you label all your equipment, especially during a flight. It makes it easier for you to identify what goes where! If you don’t want to deal with the hassles of flight cases and traveling by air, you can simply have your DJ gear transported through carrier service.
Whatever you choose, just ensure that your DJ equipment is safe and secure!