Every package of Serato Scratch Live comes with 2 Serato Vinyl, and if you’re like me, used to buying vinyl all the time, I’m sure you’ve wondered at some point “when do I replace these?
The truth is Serato Vinyl lasts for a long time, and probably only needs to be replaced once a year, although I suggest have 2 spares in case you accidentally break one or they get warped in travel or the get stolen or any number of other bad things that can happen to a record.
But short of any of those kinds of issues, you’ll want to start thinking about replacing your Serato Vinyl when you start getting weird, seemingly unexplainable interferences when using Serato Scratch Live.
Before you jump the gun and replace your vinyl, there’s a few other things it may be, so check them out first.
1. Dirty Control Records
You may just need to wipe them with a damp cloth or with some standard record cleaner that you can get at any record store. If you keep your serato vinyl clean, they should definitely last a long time.
2. Bad Styli
Before you judge your record defective, make sure the styli on your needles are still in good shape. When you touch them with your finger they should still feel sharp and the stylus itself should be perfectly straight with no dents. If the stylus has experienced substantial wear and tear, which is usually more obvious with scratch DJs or if you’re using less durable needles, it won’t be able to send a clean signal to Serato Scratch and you’ll start experience interference and possibly even drop outs.
3. Bad Connection in the Cartridge
If you’re using a traditional headshell mounted cartridge, you may have a problem with the connection between the headshell in the cartridge. If you’re using a “concorde” type of cartridge that doesn’t have a separate headshell, there may be damage inside, although unlikely.
4. Bad connection between headshell and tone arm
This is really easy to trouble shoot. Unscrew your cartridge and blow inside the hole in the tone arm where it goes. Screw the cartridge back in tightly. If this doesn’t do the trick, lick the contacts on your cartridge and screw it back in.
Note. Over time, saliva may be corrosive to the contacts inside your tone arm so try to avoid doing this too much. Usually, good headshells won’t require you to do this, so don’t settle for cheap crappy headshells like the stanton ones. Get the industry standard Technics headshells or better.
5. You’re computer can’t handle all the stuff you’re trying to do
If your serato gets jumpy, its probably because your computer can’t process everything you want it to do at once. Try to close down other resource intensive applications running in the background like Firefox, Skype, iTunes, etc.
6. You’re USB ports are damaged or your USB cables aren’t good
If you see the Red/Yellow USB indicator going off in the top of your serato interface, swap out the USB cable from your laptop to your Serato box. If the problem persists, try different USB ports. If the problem persists, you either have a problem with your computer or your USB ports are the problem.
If you’ve passed all of these test, then yes, the interference is probably comming from your Rane Serato Vinyl and its time to get a new pair!