How To Equalize When DJing

It can be tough to figure out how to equalize when DJing. If you know how to do it properly, you'll be able to ensure that your listeners are enjoying your music the way it was meant to be heard. There are a few things every DJ should know when it comes to equalizing.

  1. Adjust levels before the song starts. When DJing it's difficult to equalize tracks without everyone knowing about it. Although every song is different and it's hard to determine how a song will mesh with the speaker system you're working with, you should try to adjust your levels before the song starts. If you only have one mixer, you can do this while you're talking to the audience, or you can have a slightly longer pause between songs to give you some time to do this.
  2. Create your own presets. Whether you write them down or memorize them, as a DJ you should have presets for different types of music. For example, if you know the next song you're going to play is classic rock, and for the sake of simplification you have a three-band equalizer, maybe your mental preset is to have your highs and mids slightly higher, and your lows slightly lower. It goes without saying that presets won't always be perfect for every song in a certain genre, but they provide a good starting point and will help you to equalize without your adjustments being major and distracting for your listeners.
  3. Listen. This step is simple, but if you want to learn how to equalize when DJing, your ability to listen is going to be your greatest asset. Listen at the beginning of the song to see if your preset needs adjusting, and listen to how the speakers respond to your adjustments. Do they bring out the best qualities in the song? Listen during the course of the song to see if any volume, vocal or instrumentation changes require equalization. And last but definitely not least, listen to your listeners, or at least read their expressions if you can't hear them. If something is wrong with the levels and they aren't enjoying the music, it will be written all over their faces, and some may even tell you.
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