Post # 1
- Wedding: Christ Life Fellowship
Getting married next year. Right now we’ve got three big items set – venue, photographer and dress. Up until talking with our photographer this past Sunday, I was just thinking that we would load our iPod with music and have a friend do music for us. When our photographer mentioned that a DJ would be a good idea so that we didn’t have to worry about it, my fiance has now decided that he thinks it might be a good idea. However, we don’t really have the budget for it – our whole budget for the entire wedding is $6,000 and that’s the max we and my parents can spend (his parents have passed away).
My question is did you have a DJ or did you use an iPod and a sound system? If you used a DJ would you mind saying how much you spent?
Post # 2
We used a DJ – he was great, read the room and would change songs if no one was dancing etc.
I don’t remember how much he was. We also paid for 2 setups (ceremony & reception so there wasn’t a break in music) and uplighting from them.
Post # 3
Prices will depend on area. I’m in Ontario, Canada and we’re using a DJ. He’s $350, it’s super cheap because we’re having an evening winter wedding, so the time we’ll need him is like 5 hours, plus it’s in the middle of winter. If we have needed him a full day or peak time it’d be over $1000.
I would def suggest getting a DJ, I’ve heard some Ipod horror stories (song cutting out in the middle of first dance!). Are there wedding shows in your area? Usually you can get vendors for cheaper there. Also, just start researching and emailing people. Usually if you give the vendor a price point they will try to work with you (unless you try to get a $5000 DJ for $500), in my experience of trying to have a cost effective wedding with good quality vendors they are happy to work with you based on needs and price point.
Post # 4
- Wedding: August 2013 - Wynn Las Vegas
I had considered using an ipod for our reception, but the advice I kept getting was that the ipod would create less of a “party” atmosphere, whereas the DJ would work the crowd and keep things going. I definitely wanted the dance floor packed, and our DJ ended up being AMAZING! The music made the reception!
Post # 5
We hired a DJ for $800. They were one of the few “bargain” vendors we hired, but our DJ was top-notch. I made sure to read all their reviews before booking them first, but the “all-inclusive” package was too good to pass up, and the reviews were all amazing. Basically, they promised to play from the beginning of cocktail hour to the end of the reception, regardless of how long that was. Most DJ’s charge a flat rate for 4 hours, then have a price per hour after that. Our cocktail hour/reception was 6 hours long, so this was a great price. They also essentially “ran” the whole wedding, announcing the party, parent dances, first dance, garter/bouquet toss, speeches, cake cutting, etc. Our DJ was amazing and ran the show. We also had them for our ceremony music, which was an additional $100. I had a $100 discount because they were running a promotion when I booked them, so it would normally have been $1000, but I had them for 7 hours for $900.
I realize that’s probably a big chunk of your budget, or 1/6 to be exact. However I have spoken with several brides and or wedding guests of weddings where an iPod was used, and they said that basically no one was dancing. Our DJ was awesome with reading the dance floor, changing songs after about 2 minutes so that people didn’t get bored, etc. We recently went to a wedding where the DJ was playing full songs the whole night and I was dancing with my husband going, “Ok, next song pleaseeeee!”
If you’re really struggling to find a DJ for a decent price, perhaps look to see if someone you know has any friends who DJ on the side, or would be willing to sort of run a computer/itunes for the night. At the very least, they could keep the songs moving along and make sure that nothing glitches. My SIL and BIL had a band for their wedding, so they didn’t really have an MC, which is what the DJ normally does. Their good friend MC’d the wedding off of a sort of script they gave him, so you could always do that if your “DJ” doesn’t feel comfortable making announcements or speaking in front of people much.
Either way, I HIGHLY suggest having someone in charge of music, and not an iPod for your big night.
Post # 6
- Wedding: February 2015 - Mount Hermon
jen12381: I answered even though we haven’t gotten married yet. we’re using an iPod. Cheaper, and our venue can’t accomodate dancing anyway. It’s just background music for the most part. FFIL will be the emcee and control the iPod.
Post # 7
We did an ipod and it went reeeallly well. Actually, it was a computer, but same thing. Here’s how we made it work:
– Made a playlist on spotify working collaboratively with my friend who was in charge of the music for the night.
– Friend had final say over what to play and in what order
– Rented professional speakers and a couple of mics (important!)
Other key things: songs need to transition without breaks, no obscure songs, definitely need SOMEONE to be in charge of music at some level, must have good speakers, also think about who will make your announcements throughout the night (the other role a DJ traditionally plays) and make sure they know the schedule of events, if you’re going to use spotify pay for premium so you don’t have commercials.
It’s doable. Don’t let people convince you otherwise. But you need a good friend with some musical sensibilities who doesn’t mind having a big job at your wedding. And you need to pay for professional speakers if you don’t already have them.
Post # 8
jen12381: we hired a DJ, we spent $2K which was very affordable in our area. A lot of places were charging over $3500.
An ipod would not have been a good idea for us because our venue was huge and have one speaker would not have filled the place volume wise.
For our DJ package, we got 1 MC and 2 DJs, and he also did a video montage for my father who passed away, and he included two tv stands for the montage to be played on. I loved loved loved my DJ, he did an amazing job, he was funny and kept the dance floor full all night.
Post # 9
We hired a DJ and I believe the cost was around $500-600 for their basic package (from about 6pm -1am)
Post # 10
- Wedding: Christ Life Fellowship
Thank you ladies! I’m still leaning toward iPod/computer over a DJ just for the sheer cost of it. (I think we might be able to borrow the one portable one from our church.) I think my only concern about doing it ourselves is not knowing who we’d have MC. The only person I’d trust with doing it is one of the groomsment. lol. I think I’ll put my fiance in charge of finding a DJ if that’s what he wants and just let him know what our budget for a DJ is and go from there.
Post # 11
jen12381: Hey there. We used an iPod for background music during the meal. We had a local DJ for £500 which I guess is around $700 and he was just what I wanted, he created an atmosphere and made the evening time.
Post # 12
We used a DJ and an emcee (came with the package) and it was $1550. We both thought it was worth it because he introduced the first dance, cake cutting, etc and definitely got more people dancing than if we used an iPod.
Post # 13
- Wedding: September 2015 - Contemporary Art Center of Peoria
Our budget is the same as yours and we’re doing iPod/Spotify.
It’s not that I am anti-DJ. I think it’s great if you can afford one, we are choosing not to. I think our money can be better spent in other aspects. 🙂
Post # 14
jen12381: So we were all on board for the iPod. But then I was afraid there wouldn’t be good flow– and we couldn’t think of anyone to man the iPod. We also found a really good deal on a DJ.
That said– my sister had an iPod at her wedding– but she had a few people that were in charge of it- and had more of a speech list than us (we don’t like to be the center of attention, so we had no toasts or speeches at our wedding). It can go well with just an iPod as long as you have enough crowd pleasing music, and plan ahead!
Post # 15
Ipod and computer is not a good idea at all. We were going to do that but decided against that. In order to save money we realize that a dj is more important than a fancy expensive photographer. We are paying $500 for our dj that is the cheapest we can get. Seriously $650 for photo’s and you still don’t get the rights to them and still have to purchase photo’s on top of that. So not worth the money especially since you don’t really look at photo’s all that much anyways so I am having my FSIL do them for less. A lot of things can go wrong at a wedding and music is the one thing that I don’t want to go wrong.