Which Direction Should I Place My Slipmat? Experts Weigh In

Are you a turntable enthusiast looking to optimize your setup?

Or maybe you’re a DJ searching for the best slipmat to enhance your scratching and mixing skills.

Either way, you’ve probably wondered which direction to place your slipmat.

With so many materials and designs available, it can be overwhelming to choose the right one.

But fear not, we’ve got you covered.

In this article, we’ll guide you through the different types of slipmats and their advantages and disadvantages.

We’ll also answer the burning question: which direction should you place your slipmat?

So sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the world of slipmats.

Which Direction Should I Place My Slipmat

When it comes to placing your slipmat on your turntable, there are two sides to consider: the printed side and the plain side.

Many slipmats have a printed design on one side, while the other side is plain. The question is, which side should you place facing up?

The answer is simple: always place the plain side facing up.

Why? The printed side of a slipmat can cause unwanted noise and interference with your music. This is especially true if the design is bold or colorful, as it can create vibrations that affect the sound quality.

On the other hand, the plain side of a slipmat is designed to reduce friction and provide a smooth surface for your record to spin on. This allows for better sound quality and less wear and tear on your records.

So, whether you’re a DJ or a casual listener, always remember to place your slipmat with the plain side facing up.

Understanding Slipmats: What Are They And Why Do You Need Them?

A slipmat is a small mat that is placed between the vinyl record and the deck plate of your turntable. Its purpose is to allow the record to spin freely while keeping it still, so that a DJ can back-cue a record to the precise spot they want a cut to begin when transitioning from track to track. Slipmats are essential tools for DJs, as they allow for smooth transitioning, scratching, and mixing without slowing down the beat.

There are different types of slipmats available on the market, including felt and rubber mats. Felt slipmats are the most popular among DJs, as they allow for the most freedom of movement both back and forth on the platter. Rubber mats, on the other hand, are designed to hold the record in sync with the platter and prevent skipping or jumping.

It’s important to note that slipmats are not to be confused with rubber mats that usually come with your turntables and sit on top of the platters. Rubber mats are there to insulate from vibrations when playing, but they’re not meant to do the job of a slipmat. Using just rubber mats can damage the underside of your record, leaving marks and skips.

Types Of Slipmats: Felt, Cork, Rubber, And More

When it comes to choosing a slipmat for your turntable, there are several options to consider. Each type of slipmat has its own unique characteristics that can affect the sound quality and performance of your records.

Felt slipmats are the most common and aesthetically pleasing option. They provide a smooth surface for your records to spin on, reducing friction and minimizing wear and tear on your vinyl. Felt slipmats are also commonly used as slip mats by DJs, as they have less friction, making scratching easier.

Rubber slipmats are firmer than other types of slipmats, providing an extra grip onto the platter. This can isolate the platter from any vibrations coming from the turntable parts, resulting in better performance and sound quality. However, rubber slipmats can create the most static, which can lead to crackling noises.

Cork slipmats are an inexpensive option that creates a smooth contact between the platter and the record. Cork is a natural material that absorbs vibrations, resulting in less resonance and better sound quality.

Leather slipmats are another option that dampens some sounds while enhancing the quality of others. A leather turntable platter creates a warm sound for bass tones. However, leather slipmats can be more expensive than other options.

In addition to these common types of slipmats, there are also more unique options available. Some turntable enthusiasts choose to create their own custom slipmats using materials like fabric or even paper.

Ultimately, the type of slipmat you choose comes down to personal preference and the specific needs of your turntable setup. Experimenting with different materials and designs can help you find the perfect slipmat for your vinyl collection.

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Different Slipmat Materials

When it comes to choosing a slipmat material, there are several options available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.

1. Felt Slipmats: Felt is the most common material used for slipmats. It is aesthetically pleasing and provides a smooth surface for records to spin on. Felt slipmats also have less friction, making them ideal for DJs who need to scratch and manipulate records. However, felt slipmats can accumulate dust and debris over time, which can affect sound quality.

2. Rubber Slipmats: Rubber is a firmer material than felt, providing an extra grip on the platter and isolating it from vibrations coming from other parts of the turntable. This makes rubber slipmats ideal for reducing unwanted noise and vibrations. However, rubber slipmats may not be as smooth as felt slipmats, which can affect sound quality.

3. Cork Slipmats: Cork is an inexpensive option that creates a smooth contact between the platter and the record. It also absorbs vibrations well, reducing unwanted noise and improving sound quality. However, cork slipmats may not be as durable as other materials and can wear down over time.

4. Leather Slipmats: Leather slipmats are known for their ability to dampen some sounds while enhancing the quality of others. They create a warm sound for bass tones, making them a popular choice for audiophiles. However, leather slipmats may not be as effective at reducing unwanted noise and vibrations as other materials.

5. Acrylic Slipmats: Acrylic slipmats are made from a hard plastic material that provides a smooth surface for records to spin on. They are durable and long-lasting, making them ideal for heavy use. However, acrylic slipmats may not absorb vibrations as well as other materials, which can affect sound quality.

The Importance Of Slipmat Thickness And Weight For DJs

When it comes to slipmats, thickness and weight are important factors to consider, especially for DJs who scratch and mix records.

The thickness of a slipmat can affect its weight, with thicker slipmats generally being heavier. It’s important to find a balance between thickness and weight, as a slipmat that is too heavy can drag on the deck platter and cause it to turn slower. On the other hand, a slipmat that is too thin may not last as long as a thicker one.

Most lightweight slipmats are made of felt, cork, or synthetic plastic materials. These materials are popular among DJs because they allow for less stoppage when scratching or mixing. Heavier slipmats, on the other hand, are typically made with rubber or leather and offer more durability but may affect sound quality.

It’s important to choose a slipmat that is suitable for your needs and preferences. Some DJs prefer thin felt slipmats because they don’t affect sound quality as much as plastic ones. Others prefer thicker rubber slipmats for their durability and grip.

Ultimately, the choice of slipmat thickness and weight depends on your personal preference and the type of music you’ll be playing. Experiment with different thicknesses and weights to find the one that works best for you.

Which Direction Should You Place Your Slipmat? Clockwise Or Counterclockwise?

Now that we’ve established which side of the slipmat to place facing up, let’s talk about the direction in which to place it on your turntable.

Unlike the planets and water drains, slipmats do not have a universal direction of rotation. However, it’s important to note that the slipmat is designed to rotate in the same direction as your turntable.

Most turntables rotate clockwise, so it’s recommended to place your slipmat in a clockwise direction as well. Placing it counterclockwise could cause unwanted friction and damage to both your slipmat and your records.

It’s also important to ensure that your slipmat is properly aligned with the spindle of your turntable. This will prevent any wobbling or slipping of the record during playback.

Tips For Maintaining And Cleaning Your Slipmat

Now that you know which side to place your slipmat, let’s talk about how to maintain and clean it.

First and foremost, it’s important to regularly clean your slipmat to prevent dust and debris from building up. One effective way to do this is by using a lint roller to gently remove any surface dirt.

For a deeper clean, you can use warm water and mild soap. Avoid using harsh chemicals or detergents that could damage the slipmat. Simply wet a soft cloth with the soapy water and gently wipe the surface of the slipmat. Be sure to rinse thoroughly with clean water and allow it to air dry completely before using again.

When storing your slipmat, it’s best to keep it in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. Avoid folding or creasing the slipmat, as this can cause permanent damage.

If you notice any signs of wear and tear on your slipmat, such as cracks or tears, it may be time to replace it. A damaged slipmat can cause unwanted noise and affect the sound quality of your records.

By following these tips for maintaining and cleaning your slipmat, you can ensure that it lasts for years to come and provides optimal sound quality for your vinyl collection.