Gain Staging Your Mix: DJ Tricks with Claude Young

In the previous episodes of our DJ Tricks series, Detroit's own Claude Young showed us how to balance a turntable's tone arm and mark records and his process for cuing up and mixing between tracks during a live performance. This week, Young turns to gain staging.

When using a DJ mixer, you should see a Gain knob for each input that will adjust a turntable's volume before it reaches the output channel (which has its own gain or volume control). Additionally, there will be EQ knobs to adjust an array of frequency ranges.

When Claude talks about gain staging, he's referring to the process of making sure each side's input gain level and EQ settings are set in such a way that switching between tracks is clean and seamless. When the levels of tracks aren't equalized or set at proper volumes, it can lead to jumpy transitions or easily discernible phase issues as a result of the distortion.

Check out the video above to watch Claude demonstrate how to match levels between tracks properly. And to hear more of Claude's music, you can click through his discography below. Be sure to check back next week to learn more DJ Tricks from the Detroit techno legend.

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