Setting up your turntable cartridge

There’s no use in hoping to be the best DJ, practicing for hours unless you start with the basics: setting up correctly the turntable as a wrong setup might wear out the stylus and records way faster.

When you don’t set up right the turntable cartridge, the needle skips and jumps more. For getting special effects, there are so many combinations of settings that a turntablist could make. In this case, we can’t talk about right way to adjust and tune as turntable has become a versatile and amazing musical instrument.

You need to make sure the turntable is level by adjusting the screw in feet (for the turntable with them). You can use a mini spirit level from a hardware shop, but you can also do it visually.

Set the arm height, put some record on the turntable and put the stylus on the record, without turning on the turntable. Rotate the nut on the arm base until the bottom of the stylus housing is parallel to the record. Align the cartridge in the slots in the head shell and use the alignment card that comes along.

Now it’s time to set the tracking weight and anti-skate to zero. Turn the counterweight on the back of the arm so the arm balances and doesn’t fall up or down. Rotate the adjustment dial on the counterweight to zero and screw it in, along with the dial gauge to the recommended tracking weight.

Make sure the anti-skating adjustment is the same as the tracking force (unless you’re scratching). Try not to crank up the tracking force greater than recommended. If you are using bassy speakers, you may want to increase the weight a little to stop the needle from skipping.