Storing and Transporting Your Audio Equipment

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Storing and Transporting Your Audio Equipment

Audio equipment is any electronic device used to record, process, or produce sound. Musical instruments are generally excluded from this definition, though some people consider their instruments to be part of their collection of equipment. Because of this, instruments will be included in the following sections that discuss how to store and transport audio equipment. Their safe transportation is just as important, if not more so, as that of the rest of the gear. Instruments are fine-tuned to produce specific sounds and any damage to them could easily ruin the sound, and is not always repairable.

Sound devices are typically larger and very heavy, this makes getting to and from events pretty difficult. The smallest pieces are usually the microphones, headphones, and CDs. Since they are also expensive and easy to break, it is very important that the equipment be stored properly and transported with care.

Types of Audio Equipment to Store and Transport

There is a multitude of audio equipment. The ones that are moved around to different event locations are most popularly used in bands, disc jockey (DJ) sets, and public announcement (PA) kits. Below is a list of several devices that people may need to find storage for.

Type of Equipment

Description

Amplifiers

Amplifiers are electronic devices used to increase the power of a signal. In this case, they receive a sound, increase it, and then send it to the speakers. These are necessary for increasing the volume of the music coming from instruments, CDs, records, or MP3s

CDs

Some DJs still carry their music around the old fashioned way, with CDs. This is quickly going out of style, though, because digital music is stored easier

Computers

Computers are used to control and sometimes store the music for DJs. They can line up a list of music to play automatically so that they do not have to make a new selection every time a song ends

Disc Players

The disc jockeys who still prefer to use CDs may also not use a computer to play the CDs. If this is the case, they will need a CD player

Headphones

As the DJs are playing the music, they need to be able to hear it very clearly, especially if they are mixing it up. This requires a quality set of headphones

Instruments

Instruments are used by musicians to create music and are sometimes the most valuable equipment used by musicians so it is essential that they

Microphones

Microphones are used by DJs to make announcements or for people to do karaoke on. They are also included in public announcement systems

Mixers

These are consoles that can combine music together in a seamless form. Disc jockeys can add entire songs together or create a mix with just pieces from different songs

PA Systems

Public address systems are designed to be a portable set that speakers use to talk to a large room. They have speakers, an amplifier, and a microphone

Radios

Through radios, people can listen to the news, music, a programme, or they can communicate with others if it is a citizens' band (CB) radio or a ham radio

Records

Gramaphone records are the oldest way to store music. The large discs are played on a turntable. They are particularly popular for DJs because their sound can be distorted by touching the disc while it is playing

Speakers

Speakers are the devices that receive the signals from the amplifier and then project the sounds at adjustable volumes

Turntables

Turntables are the devices that read the music off of the gramophone record

After determining what devices need cases to be transported and stored in, the next step is to figure out which cases are the best.

Containers for Storing and Transporting Audio Equipment

As mentioned earlier, audio equipment is not cheap and therefore should be stored and transported properly. Luckily, there are some cases designed specifically for certain kinds of equipment. This can cost more than just purchasing plastic boxes, but the extra investment is worth the protection.

Rack-Mounts for Speakers, Amplifiers, Mixers, and Small Accessories

A rack-mount is a sturdy, fully enclosed shelf that is designed to hold devices in separate, specially designed cases. Each case slides into the shelf and is secured in place through rails or bolts. The shelving allows users to either protect one unit, or hold several units stacked conveniently on top of each other. In order to use the rack-mount, people have to purchase a rack case to go in each shelf. There are three ways that they can hold the individual cases. The first option is to get a two-post system. With this setup, the case is placed inside the cabinet, supported up front by two posts, and then bolted in at the front. Four-post rack-mounts have two posts in the front and two in the back so that the case is supported at all four corners and then bolted in. With the rail system, the case has a track running horizontally across each side. The track slides into the rail of the rack-mount shelf and may or may not be bolted in place depending on the design.

When shopping for the rack-mount itself, look for one that has caster wheels on it even if it is only housing one device. This makes transporting it much easier and safer. Be sure that it also has handles so that the user can get a good grip on it while moving.

The individual cases can be bought to house specific equipment, or they can just be a large, empty case for smaller things like microphones and headsets. Or, the case may have drawers instead. A mixer case is the most expensive, but it doubles as a workstation when everything is set up. It has a sound control board on the top so that the mixer can be kept safely inside the console but it is hooked up to the exterior panel so that musicians can control everything from the outside. The case also has all of the connection ports on the outside for the speakers, amplifier, and microphone. Some of them also have a collapsible laptop shelf on top.

Rack-mount storage systems have their own unit of measurement. Standard racks are 61 centimetres wide but very in height. The unit of measurement is called a U. One U equals 4.5 centimetres. So, if a case is listed as 10U tall, it is 45 centimetres tall.

For those who are uninterested in rack-mount storage, there are generic storage containers that can house speakers, amplifiers, and other things easily. Some of them also have wheels.

Computer Cases

Most DJs use laptops for their work because they are so portable. The best kind of laptop case to use is mostly up to the owner. Many people prefer just a soft case that fits their laptop snuggly, while others prefer a hard, briefcase-style of case because it offers more protection. Large fabric bags with extra pockets are also available and convenient for carrying accessories, such as all the cables.

Instrument Cases

Since instruments are so delicate, it is very important to get a case that will house it well and protect it. People can either get generic, rectangular cases that fit every kind of instrument, or they can get cases that are specifically designed for a certain type of  instrument. For example, a guitar case will only hold a guitar. No matter which instrument case is being used, it is a good idea when packing an instrument to purchase foam that fills in the voices of the case and stops the instrument from moving around inside.

Find Audio Equipment Storage Cases on eBay

Depending on the kind of storage system that you are looking for, it can be difficult to find locally. Musical instrument cases are usually not hard to find, but other cases can be more challenging. To fix this problem, you can shop on eBay where you have access to every kind of case from multiple different sellers.

To start looking through all of your options, just type the keyword into the search bar and then click Search or Go, depending on which eBay page you are on. For example, enter "Audio Equipment Storage" to see the long list of products that eBay brings up. You can also choose a more specific keyword to get a list of products better suited to your needs. Searching for something like "Rack Case" will produce a list of only rack-mount cases for you to look at. After you have done your search, you can also sort the listings by lowest price first and enter in your price range that you need to stay within. This will eliminate products that are too expensive and help you bargain shop.

Conclusion

For many people, entertaining through the use of music is their passion. They find the music addicting and the challenge of creating it enjoyable. Letting other people listen to and appreciate the music makes the hobby even more exciting. However, whether using the equipment for a bad, a disc jokey, or just a public address system, the devices have to be packed, moved, and unpacked many times. A good storage system will not only protect the audio equipment, but will also make the packing and moving process much easier and less tedious. With the information provided, anyone can put together a collection of cases that allows them to store and transport their equipment easily and safely. It is just a matter of figuring out which cases will hold each device securely and then going shopping online to find the best deals possible.

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