How to Install Your DJ Booth

Three Methods:Equipment Found in DJ BoothsBasic ConfigurationsEquipment Setup

Before you can start practicing your mixing, scratching, beat juggling, or even just put a needle to the record or a CD in the tray you need to set up your equipment.

Method 1
Equipment Found in DJ Booths

There are a number of components that may appear in a DJ booth. Dont be scared and try not to get confused . We're going to take a look at some of the basic equipment you may find in a typical DJ booth before looking at how to connect everything.

  1. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 1
    CD Players DJ CD Players are different from home stereo CD players. CD Decks used by DJs generally include pitch control, advanced anti-skip, and a jog wheel which is used to manipulate the song that is playing. There are two types of CD players used by DJs:
    • Table Top Table top CD players sit on a flat surface like turntable and can each play a single CD. Table top CD players generally have a large jog wheel and may include vinyl simulation.
    • Rack Mounted Rack mount CD players may take a single CD like the table top's but more often are Dual-CD where half controls one CD and the other half controls a second CD. Rack mounted CD players are often used by mobile DJs because the fit well in mobile cases.
  2. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 2
    Turntables Turntables allow the playing of 33RPM and 45RPM records. DJ Turntables will include pitch control and may have other features such as reverse or multiple start/stop buttons so you can orient them as you see fit on your table. There are two types of DJ turntable:
    • Belt Drive The main advantage of the belt driven turntable is the motor is set to the side of the platter and the spin is generated by a continuous belt thus reducing vibration. The problem with belt drive turntables is that they often lack the torque to bring the platter to speed as quickly as you need to and are more susceptible to speed (pitch) variations.
    • Direct Drive Direct drive turntables have the benefit of the motor being directly connected to the platter thus allowing for greater torque and faster start/stop times there is also no belt which could become worn and need replacing.
  3. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 3
    Mixers Mixers are what allow the DJ to take two or more audio sources and blend them together to a single output. Mixers also usually include basic EQ controls for Bass, Mid, and Treble. There are two main types of DJ Mixers:
    • Battle Mixers Battle mixers are generally very slim, have limited extra features beyond what is necessary, have a very shallow curve on the individual channel volume controls, and very high quality cross-faders. They are used primarily by DJs who scratch records.
    • DJ Mixers Everything else falls under this category. DJ mixers have usually between 2 and 4 channels and may include 1 or 2 mic inputs. Most newer DJ mixers also include some basic effects and may even include an automatic BPM counter.
  4. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 4
    Headphones These are one of the DJ's most important tools, if you are looking to save money when you buy your equipment headphones are not the place to be cheap. DJ's use their headphones to cue the next song and make sure everything is mixed correctly before raising the volume and letting people hear it. The headphones used by DJ's need to be loud to overcome monitors and crowd noise, clear so the DJ can hear the details in the songs, and comfortable because they will be worn for long periods of time.
  5. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 5
    Cables Cables are what connects each component to the whole. There are a number of different types of cables that you may encounter:
    • RCA Cables These are basic audio cables, they are a dual cable with two separate connectors on each end usually colour coded red and white. [6.6 Ft Dual RCA Cable]
    • 1/4" Patch Cables Sometimes used to connect the mixer to speakers these cables have a 1/4" male plug on both ends. [Monster 50 Ft 1/4" Speaker Cable]
    • 1/4" to Banana Cables These cables are used to connect some amplifiers to speakers that are not self powered. [MDP Premium Speaker Cable]
    • XLR Cables These are most commonly used for microphones however they may be used to connect some brands of speakers as well. [25 Ft XLR to XLR Cable]

Method 2
Basic Configurations

  1. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 6
    Turntables A basic turntable configuration including speakers has the following components:
    • Turntable [x2]
      • Needle cartridge [x2]
      • Needle [x2]
      • Slip Mat [x2]
      • RCA Cable [x2]
      • Grounding Cable [x2]
    • DJ Mixer
      • Professional Headphones
    • Self-Powered Speaker [x2]
      • Appropriate Cable [x2]
  2. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 7
    Table Top CD Players A basic CD Player configuration using table top models including speakers has the following components:
    • Table Top CD Player [x2]
      • RCA Cable [x2]
    • DJ Mixer
      • Professional Headphones
    • Self-Powered Speaker [x2]
      • Appropriate Cables [x2]
  3. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 8
    Rack Mount CD Players A basic CD Player configuration using a rack mount model including speakers has the following components:
    • Dual Rack Mount CD Player
      • RCA Cable [x2]
    • Rack Mount DJ Mixer (19")
      • Professional Headphones
    • DJ Equipment Rack
    • Self-Powered Speaker [x2]
      • Appropriate Cables [x2]

Method 3
Equipment Setup

It's time to take your equipment as setup your booth. This tutorial assumes that you are connecting only the bare essentials and the instructions given are with turntables however the same applies to CD players.

  1. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 9
    Unpack your equipment First up we need to remove everything from it's boxes. Be careful when removing items such as turntables as they can be fragile and may have cables that are soldered on that you do not want to accidentally tear off.
    • While unpacking try to keep the cables together with the items they came with.
    • For turntables follow the included instructions for assembling and attacking the cartridges and needles, and if it is not already in place for installing the platter.
  2. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 10
    Place the items on a flat surface You always want to place your DJ equipment on a flat and sturdy surface. The heavier the table the better protected from ground vibration you will be.
  3. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 11
    Decide on a Layout You need to decide how you will lay out your equipment. The most common layout is [turntable] [mixer] [turntable] however some people prefer [turntable] [turntable] [mixer]. You also need to decide on an orientation for the turntables:
    • Standard (Horizontal) Standard orientation will see the tone-arm and pitch on the right and the start/stop on the edge closest to you and to the left. This is used by DJ's who mix records as they need easy access to the pitch.
    • Battle (Vertical) Battle position will see the tone-arm and pitch on the edge furthest away from you and the start/stop on the edge closest to you and to the right. This is used by scratch artists as it keeps the tone arm out of the way so they do not bump it when preforming quick scratches.
  4. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 12
    Connect the turntables to the mixer Each turntable should come with an RCA Cable (See above) and a Ground Cable (Cannot be removed) connect the RCA cable to the underside or back of the turntable colour coordinating red-to-red and white-to-white and connect the opposite ends the the input on the back of the mixer (NOTE: If the mixer has inputs for "Phono" and "Line" connect turntables to Phono and CD players to Line, most DJs prefer to plug the right turntable into Channel 1 and the left turntable into Channel 2 or 4). You also need to connect the ground cables which are usually thin black cables with a "C" shaped connector this will fit over a screw on the back of the mixer labeled "Ground" or "GRND" and help reduce line noise.
  5. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 13
    Connect your power cables The mixes and both of your turntables will need to be plugged into AC Power. It is recommended you use a serge protector or a power bar with serge protection for this to protect your equipment.
  6. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 14
    Connect your headphones Usually the headphones plug into a jack on the front or top face of the mixer marked with a picture of headphones be sure not to plug these into the out lines on the back of the mixer.
  7. Image titled Install Your DJ Booth Step 15
    Connect Speakers (Optional) You can listen to everything in your headphones if you like but for others to hear the music you will need speakers. Check the back of your speakers and the back of you mixer to determine the type of cables you need. Ensure the mixer and the speakers are both off and then connect the cable from the output of the mixer to the input of the speakers. Always turn the mixer on before turning on the speakers to avoid sending a power 'pop' to the speakers.
  8. Image titled 39787 16
    Power everything up and have fun!


  • You can reduce turntable skipping by taking four tennis balls and a cement garden walkway block and using the tennis balls as feet for the block then placing the turntable on top.


  • Although most cabling should be well shielded try to avoid crossing audio and power cables as you may be able to detect some line noise.
  • Do not use DJ turntables without slip mats as this can seriously damage your records. Shop

Article Info

Categories: Disc Jockeys