Why Do DJ Headphones Rotate? - DJ Music Geek

Why Do DJ Headphones Rotate?

DJ headphones are unique in some ways, but their most representative feature is the fact that they rotate. If you’ve never noticed that in real life before, DJ headphones have some joint that allows them to rotate the ear cups sideways or even upwards, thus exposing one ear. This feature of DJ headphones is very useful for the trade, as it allows them to listen to both the music that is about to come up and the eventual requests from the crowd. This is the answer to the question “why do DJ headphones rotate?” – they are designed to be comfortable for clubbing use.

One common feature of DJ headphones is that they have swiveling cups. This means that each cup can be moved individually from the other, exposing one or both ears, completely or partially. Most of them are also lightweight, so as to be comfortable for long hours of wearing. The swiveling cups are also a nifty tool for increasing the comfort level, as they can be loosened up to adjust the DJ’s preferences.

Pair of DJ HeadphonesWhen it comes to comfort, not only do swiveling cups make a difference, but also the size and padding of the headphones. DJ rotating headphones are usually bigger that usual, so as to cover the whole ear and prevent sound leakage. For more comfort for the wearer and better sound isolation, these headphones usually have some soft, yet very dense padding that prevents sound from getting through. However, there are also DJs that prefer to have smaller earphones that rest on the ear alone. When it comes to the padding, most of these headphones have leather or fabric around the muff, to ensure that the loud music in the club doesn’t bother the DJ.

One of the most important factors when it comes to DJ headphones is weight. It’s essential that the headphones are lightweight and don’t put too much unnecessary pressure on the wearer’s head, temples and ears. That’s why DJ earphones are usually rather lightweight if you compare them to gaming headsets or any other type of non-specialized equipment. We’ve written a full guide on the best dj headphones on the market if you’d be interested in checking it out.

In addition to that, the shape and construction of the headphones are also important. There are two main styles of DJ headphones: over the head and behind the neck. This depends entirely on the DJ’s choice, as some may prefer to have the headphones secured over the head, while some may feel more at ease with a behind-the-neck model.

Last but not least, the essential feature of rotating headphones is the rotating cup. This allows the DJ to expose one ear or both at the same time, completely or partially, and customize the shape of the headset without damaging it.

Headphones on a DJ deckBefore the apparition of rotating headphones on the market, DJs would wear regular ones and would just move one cup off the ear and to the side, while the other one stayed more or less in place. However, this method was not very “healthy” for the fixed headset shape, and it would lead to early and frequent breakage and other issues. Another problem with this method is that the other ear did not remain completely soundproof, and the DJs could not perform that multitasking that they can do today. Listening to the mix and the crowd at the same was impossible, regardless of the audio quality of the headphones. Moreover, these kinds of headphones were fast to slip off the DJ’s head if placed carelessly, so they would have to put them back on their heads every time. With the apparition of rotating headphones, none of these issues is a problem anymore. The DJ can spend the whole night with the headset on and mix the music in advance, rotate one cup to listen to the requests of the crowd, and then put it back to continue mixing, all without the risk of the headphones being uncomfortable in any way.

If you’re planning to get one of these for personal use, you need to know that there are some benefits when it comes to rotating headphones:

1. They have rotating ear cups that allow you to keep listening to the upcoming mix and check out the reaction of the crowd at the same time.

2. They allow you to swivel the cups to the side or upwards easily, without the risk of the headset slipping off your head or breaking.

3. They usually have bigger ear cups that cover a bigger area and are better at isolating sounds. However, you can also find models that rest directly on the ear, if you don’t like the sensation of overheating that bigger cups may create.

4. They have great isolation. Most of the DJ headphones out there have leather or fabric isolating muffs, which are padded with dense foam so that the music playing in the club should not disturb you from listening to the mix.

5. They protect the ears from hours of exposure to the blasting speakers in the club. Both the size and the padding act a role in this.

6. They are comfortable and lightweight, which meant you won’t wake up with a headache the next day (unless you’ve been drinking too much!)

7. They have excellent sound. In the end, it’s a unit oriented towards DJs. It’s only natural that the sound quality in them would be better than in regular headsets. The bass is usually punchier and the sound cleaner.

8. They look great. You can’t deny the fact that appearance is an important aspect of the DJ trade. With these, you need not worry about your image being hip and professional – many famous DJ’s even made them their trademark.

As a little conclusion to all above said, rotating headphones are an essential accessory for any aspiring or professional DJ. Although you will still see some that wear traditional headsets, rotating headphones are becoming more and more popular because of their ergonomic design and ton of advantages. If you are an aspiring DJ yourself, it’s a really neat accessory to have in your inventory – it will definitely offer you more freedom and a better connection with the public.

DJ Tom

DJ Tom has over 20 years of experience in the Disc Jockey profession. Living and breathing mixing culture, Tom is an expert in everything DJ. Music is the heart and soul of any good party and when DJ's do their job properly, they can make any night feel magical. When it comes to DJ equipment, Tom has tried almost all of it and has an in-depth music and staging knowledge.

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