New DJ gear list - UPDATED

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LittleTreeGuy

DJ Extraordinaire
Jul 30, 2021
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Hi all... new DJ here. I will be mainly looking to dj small parties, smaller events (less than 200 people), free local events (farmers market, day in the park, music for golf outing/fund raisers, etc...) and maybe someday weddings. I'm trying to put together my "wish list" of dj gear. I'd like to get some feedback from those of you with more experience. I have done a few years of wedding videography and worked with quite a few dj's at weddings, and that brought me to my speaker choice. I know they are pricey, but with all the different setups I had heard, this one is the most pleasing to my ear.

What I already have:
Newer lenovo laptop (rekordbox) and stand
Pioneer ddj 400 w/case
Audio Techna ath-m50x headphones

Wish List (Updated on 8/23)
spare laptop / tablet for backup
2 - EV Etx 12p
2 - EV Etx 18sp
1 - EV ZLX 12bt (ceremonies/cocktail area/etc)
4 - Clutch speaker stands (black and white scrims)
1 - Wired mic - Shure sv100 w/stand
1 - Yamaha MG10XU mixer
1 - Wireless mic - Shure BLX288 (2 mics)
1 - Table (folding 48"x24" with height adjustment)
1 - Facade (black with black and white scrims)
1 - Light T bar
1 - Chauvet Wash FX Hex
1 - Chauvet Swarm 5 FX
1 - Chauvet Bubble/Haze
1 - e-z up tent (mainly only used outdoors for shade if needed)
extra power cables, xlr cables, extension cords
small cart/dolly

Any thoughts, suggestions, advice?
 
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sawdust123

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Nov 10, 2006
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Welcome to the boards TreeGuy. If you are mostly doing free work right now, your list is good. Once you start doing bigger jobs, the pressure to perform under any circumstance goes up. I would invest in redundancy. You don't want to be in situations where on failure could end a gig. I might start with a second laptop. Since cables are major failure point, get more than you need and lots of adapters. For instance, if your mixer ever fails, you can go straight from the computer into the speakers if you have the right adapters.

I love the QSCs. They are the best selling powered speakers on the market. That said, if you set your sights a little lower, you can get a third or 4th speaker sooner rather than later. The extra gear comes in handier than you might initially think. I would consider smaller speakers (e.g. 8") for your second set, especially for the lower key events that you describe where volume isn't a key requirement. Your back will thank you.

Most gear is damaged during transport. Leave some budget for protective bags. Banged up gear never looks good.
 

LittleTreeGuy

DJ Extraordinaire
Jul 30, 2021
42
105
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thanks Sawdust... you are correct about damage. Everything I get will come with a tote/cover/case/or dedicated bin of some kind. I'm hard on stuff, and know how easily things can look bad with just little dings. I was planning on adding maybe just a tablet as a backup for the laptop.... something that I can play music from, will hold a flash drive if needed, and can even put a mixing app on if needed. I've seen some guys play a whole event from their phone or tablet, so I think that should be okay as a backup.

I work in the IT field, and redundancy and backups to the backups are an everyday norm. I plan to take that approach to this hobby/business as well. Thank you so much for your input!!
 

rickryan.com

DJ Extraordinaire
Dec 9, 2009
18,233
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Hendersonville, TN
www.RickRyan.com
I love QSCs (I have the non .2 version of the K10s) but have to tell you if I had it to do again, I'd buy the Alto TS312s. A pair of QSCs will run $1600 and I paid $500 for my pair of Altos. Sound-wise, they're pretty well on par. Now whether these Altos last as long as QSC, I dunno. I've been running a pair of 15" Alto subs now for a few years and they still cook, no problems.

The rest of your list looks great but I'd tell you to forget the EZ-Up. Those things make it incredibly loud on you if you put the speakers under it and frankly I think they're more of a liability than a help. You have one strong wind and that tent is a projectile that can get you in a lawsuit. Personally, I prefer to just have painter's plastic and throw it over my gear in the case of rain. The Yammy mixer is an excellent choice. Great piece of gear. Oh, one more thing. I'd have an alternate music source besides the single laptop. Personally, I run dual laptops (yes, I've had multiple occasions of system crashes during a gig) and an ipad loaded with music can bail you out in an emergency.

Good luck with it.
 

MIXMASTERMACHOM

DJ Extraordinaire
Oct 16, 2011
11,812
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One thing I noticed you didn't mention and that's speaker stands for the speakers. We have 2 sets. One are crank stands that I got from a friend for free. The other ones are the ones that you lock in place to keep them at the desired height. I agree with getting backup as you can get the gear for backup. Nothing like something failing at an event you're doing and you can't finish the job. People won't want to book you if they find this out. You never know when something may fail you at an event.
 

MIXMASTERMACHOM

DJ Extraordinaire
Oct 16, 2011
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I don't believe I've ever heard of a speaker stand failing while performing at an event.
I just pointed out he didn't mention getting or having speaker stands. The one that you lock in place is so that the speaker stays at the height you set it for. If you don't lock it in then from the weight of the speaker will automatically come down. The thing is to make sure you get really good speaker stands and not cheap ones that may not hold the weight of a speaker.
 

azdeejay

DJ Extraordinaire
Apr 1, 2015
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Phoenix AZ
I am going to offer this for advice, don't go buying a lot of gear before you have gigs lined up, you really don't need a lot of gear to book events, as long as the events are booked far enough out, you will have plenty of time to acquire the gear you need. I wish I would of done this myself, I wasted on money on gear that I really dont need and havet used.

Once you get some gigs lined up, then buy the gear you need for that/those events and you can use the money from those gigs to buy the next round of gear acquisition.
 

sonic-vision

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Feb 6, 2007
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What brand or make do you suggest Mixy? I have a two pair of stands over 25 years old ,( look good,I use bags)
Use for outside events.
 
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sawdust123

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I don't believe I've ever heard of a speaker stand failing while performing at an event.
I had an issue at one of my first weddings. I rented PA systems back then. I had put the ~60 lb speaker on the stand and while I was making the wires neat by the legs, the collar of the stand broke. The speaker started falling forward. I started straightening up and caught the stand with my collar bone and then grabbed the legs with my hands. The speaker was at about 45 degrees over my shoulder with my collarbone acting as a fulcrum. The physics work out to there being over 100 pounds of force against my collarbone. Luckily, someone else saw what happened and rushed forward to help. We took the speaker off and used copious amounts of gaffer's tape to repair the stand. My collarbone was black and blue for weeks. I have inspect stands for cracks and loose bolts ever since.
 

MIXMASTERMACHOM

DJ Extraordinaire
Oct 16, 2011
11,812
1,527
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What brand or make do you suggest Mixy? I have a two pair of stands over 25 years old ,( look good,I use bags)
Use for outside events.
One that is great is the one that you turn the dial to lock the stand in place so it stays at the height you want. The other thing is spreading the legs out for a better balance when possible. Some situations you can't fully extend the legs due to the space being limited where the speaker stands are to be placed. The down side is with those you either have to adjust the height to where you want it and then put the speaker on the stand or put it on at the beginning and then lift the speaker up to the desired height you want. Depending on the weight of the speaker that can be difficult for one person to do. Especially with active speakers because of the built in amp.
 

LittleTreeGuy

DJ Extraordinaire
Jul 30, 2021
42
105
44
Thank you all so very much. I've been doing a lot of research, and studying, and practicing with the items I have. Trying to hook up with some semi-local mobile dj's for advice as well.

To answer some things that have come up...

Speaker stands - I've seen a few on Amazon, and the clutch brand I looked at were nice. They are the type that have the pin to lock the stand in place. The looked pretty sturdy. This is an area where I'd rather go heavier duty than is really needed even if it's a few bucks more.

Speakings of tops... I REALLY liked the QSC sound... but I have been looking at the EV elx200 series... 12" tops and 18" subs. I can get 3 tops and a pair of subs for a lot less than the two pair of QSC's. I just need to go somewhere so I can hear them in person. Youtube makes them sound alright, but I won't buy until I hear them in person.

Waiting until I have a gig to purchase - While I appreciate and understand this approach, it's a tricky one. I want to make sure I have everything far enough in advance that I can work with it all and know it all inside and out before I set it up for an event.
 

sawdust123

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Nov 10, 2006
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QSC has a newer, lower cost, powered speaker series called the CP series. I rarely hear talk about them but that might be worth looking into as well. The company does a great job standing behind their products.

I don't know if you told us where you are located. If you are near a major city, it should be easy to find a showroom with the best selling speakers. Buying sight unseen is difficult. Specs don't tell you how something sounds. Also, things like weight are important but a poor handle location or poor handle design or even the weight balance can make even a light-weight speaker a pain in the butt. It is really hard to gauge such nuances from online shopping sites. The same can be true with nuances among speaker bags.
 
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