It will come as no surprise to you that DJs spend a significant amount of time behind their tables, decks or booths. Whether your DJing is a hobby or a job (or both!), you’re bound to be spending countless hours standing behind your set-up working away at creative mixes. That’s why getting the DJ table height right will save your body a lot of stress, yourself a lot of pain and your bank account a lot of medical bills.
When you’re getting started, it can be easy to forget to take care of yourself. After all, you’re busy comparing different equipment and buying all your gear. Then you’re concentrating on scoring gigs, getting your music out there and making a living. However, if you don’t take the time now to check that your decks and DJ booth height is at the right level, you’re going to find that your music-making career is going to take a bigger toll on you than anticipated.
Determining The Right DJ Table Height
How do you replicate the professional setups in clubs and at festivals in the comfort of your own home? Use this handy guide as a benchmark for your measurements.
One important note to start off with. We’ve looked at professional DJs, drawn from personal experience and done some research into the issue, but this is still a general guide. If you’re particularly short or tall, you may have to adjust the various measurements (where specified) accordingly.
Let’s be honest: You’re not going to spend a lot of time DJing sitting down, are you? DJs tend to do a lot of standing up and/or dancing, which means that your table should be designed and set up with this in mind.
The average recommendation for the table height of your DJ booth should be roughly 102 centimetres (equal to about 40 inches) for men and about 91 centimetres (or 36 inches) for women. Of course, this does vary, and you can find standard custom DJ stables that range from 83 centimetres to 106 centimetres (roughly 33 to 43 inches).
Another point to consider is whether you’ll be sharing the deck with a second DJ. This will also mean you need to find a height that works for both of you without causing undue strain on either of your backs or bodies.
How To Measure
When you’re measuring the height of your table, always work off the distance between the floor and the surface of your table or desktop.
A quick tip: If you haven’t bought your table or booth yet and are in the market, one way to envision the type of height you’ll be operating at is to go to your kitchen benchtop and measure that height from the floor. This will give you a rough idea of how low or high you’ll need your DJ table.
Look At Your Elbow Height
The other very important consideration, apart from the height top to bottom, is the height of your elbows. Like setting up any computer desk, ideally, you want your DJ equipment to be positioned as ergonomically as possible to maximise productivity and minimise the pressure and strain on your arms and wrists.
Average elbow height when standing is around 104 centimetres (or 41 inches), so at the height dimensions outlined above your average DJ will have their elbows as close to 90 degrees as possible. This keeps your arms straight and your wrists at the best angle possible to promote healthy physical activity.
Unlike measuring the heights necessary for a writing or even computer desk, a DJ table is going to have equipment on top. As a rough estimate, you should probably consider your equipment to come in at an average height of about 10 centimetres (4 inches). This will need to be taken into account when you’re customising your table booths.
DJ Booth Dimensions
In terms of other space for your DJ booth, you should allow yourself some space to really get into your mixing. Different DJs tend to act somewhat differently, with some being more active and requiring more space and some being less so.
It is recommended you leave about 2 metres of space behind you from moving around and getting to your various gear, as well as about 3 metres from side to side to enable you to move up and down your table and access all parts and sides of your deck.
Achieving The Right Table Height
Okay, okay, now you know what the height and booth dimensions should be of your table but how do you achieve the right height? Here are some ideas to help you along.
1. Invest in a custom stand or booth
There’s no question that this is the ideal option if you have the funds available. There are so many different styles and options for DJ booths and tables out there. When you buy a custom-designed booth you get the many benefits of having a considered design that specific factors in the needs of a DJ. It’s not just dimensions and measurements we’re talking about, mind you. Even places to hide your cables and hang your headphones are some of the main features custom deck stands or fold-up DJ booths offer.
Measuring Yourself For a Custom Kit
If you are going to be ordering yourself a custom DJ booth, make sure to follow these tips so that you don’t accidentally get your measurements wrong:
- Measure your height from the floor to the top of your head.
- Measure the height of your elbow by bending it at 90 degrees and measuring from the bottom to the floor.
- Always measure yourself in shoes similar to the kind you’d wear while DJing. (You’d be amazing at how shoes can change your height).
- Measure yourself on a solid, straight floor.
- Ask a partner or friend to help you measure so you can ensure it’s accurate. If you don’t have anyone available to assist you, then use a piece of string.
There are a ton of different do-it-yourself tutorials out there to help you build and customise your very own DJ table, including our own guide! IKEA is a fantastic source of desks, shelves, and stands with which you can quite easily create your own perfectly assembled DJ booth. Don’t worry, you won’t have to be a superstar DIY enthusiast. It’s surprisingly simple (and affordable) to cobble the necessary pieces of furniture and put them together.
3. Keyboard Stands
Another option available is to buy (and adapt) a keyboard stand. Much like DJs, keyboard players spend significant amounts of time standing up during their sets. Of course, some keyboard stands are created for being in the seated position so be careful which one you order. Simply find the one that can be adjusted to your preferred height, add a surface on top which is anchored securely and you’ll be able to place your equipment directly on top!
4. Other home furniture
Whether it’s an ironing board, a sit-stand desk or another high tabletop that you can further adjust and adapt, there are lots of different options for those on a budget. You can mix and match these different options as well but install part of an IKEA desk onto your existing stand or desk to get it to the right height. A bit of creative ingenuity will go a long way, and there’s always plenty of online tutorials and guides to help you out further.
5. Box it up!
While this probably isn’t recommended for the long term, using a box (such as the one your DJ controller came in) to lift your equipment higher off a standard table or desk can be a good temporary solution. The only thing we would caution is that your valuable DJ equipment is secured at all times and not left at risk of falling and breaking.
6. Laptop stand!
The last suggestion we have is to use a regular tabletop folding laptop stand on top of a desk or table you already have. Like using a box, it gives you the flexibility to add height to a normal table so that your elbows, wrists and back are all in the right position. Again, we can’t emphasise how important ensuring your equipment is kept safe and secure at all times enough.
We’ve spoken a lot about ensuring your DJ table height is correct according to your height and your elbow’s height. You also need to consider your eye line, especially if you’re working with a laptop. Keeping displays in easy view will help keep you from hunching your back over. Luckily, the height of your desk should make getting your eye line dead-on significantly easier.
Keep Your Laptop At the Right Height
In addition to the eye line of your laptop’s display, you also need the entire laptop at a level that complements your height. You shouldn’t be hunching to see any individual part of the screen or leaning in any direction to hit the right keys. The solution? We highly recommend an adjustable tabletop laptop stand.
Don’t Lean Forward
Standing right to the edge of your table and being able to tuck your feet slightly underneath the end will ensure you don’t find yourself leaning forward during your set. If your table set up doesn’t allow you to do this naturally, you’ll find yourself slowly leaning forwards more and more without realising it until it’s too late and your shoulders and back are in pain.
The Right Height To Reach New DJ Heights!
There you have it! A comprehensive overview of the best way to achieve the right DJ booth height for you. Remember: it’s important to take care of yourself and your body, even if it means a bit more work, money and effort.
Contact Us Today For More Mobile DJ Tips
Our experienced and passionate team loves helping out new and experienced DJs in any way we can! If you’d like to speak to the DJ City team for more handy mobile DJ tips and advice about sets, systems and equipment, feel free to contact us.