Equalisation Techniques

I have noticed in a lot of the tutorial videos that when EQ is put onto a sound, in the main the EQ will be boosted at certain frequencies dependant on the sound in question. I am NOT saying this is wrong.

However I have read from multiple sources that it is better to EQ sideways (smaller boosts or cuts over a wider Q) and that it is also better to eq cut where possible than to boost as boosting will introduce small phasing artifacts.

This is based around the frequency ying yang principle that the outcome will be the same if you for example have a +12dB high shelf and bring it down by 6dB or have a -12dB low shelf and bring it up by 6dB.

It is more than possible that I haven’t properly comprehended what I have read or I have not put the information into proper context for application.

I was wondering what others think about Eq-ing and what methods are best?

Are there even any best methods? Or is it totally dependant on instrument/timbre or style/genre or is it a matter of the eq plugin/hardware itself which dictate the best approach?

Haha lots of questions there, I hope there are some answers.

I had 2 professional masters done before just to see what will happen to my mix . One mix I boosted many frequencies and then sent my track off to get a pro mastered (175 dollars) they where able to tighten up the mix and pull out sounds I thought where hidden but the track sounded thin .

I took the same mix back to the studio for free a retry , I cut most sounds and the master made the track sound full wide and bright yet the track was still missing edge . So my conclusion from a person who is still learning there are no rules you just have to find the sweet spot and go with your best judgment :slight_smile:


Edit: Thought it was a different topic… Carry on :slight_smile:

Ha… A high useful argument to the topic there ICN.

If we are throwing random words about I choose… FLANGE.

No no wait I choose ASSHAT.

Moving on…

I rarely boost.

I’ll try to stick everything into its own spot in the freq spectrum so its not interfering with anything else. If something is clashing, I’ll move it up or down a bit to a note in the same key. If it works cool… if not, I’ll replace it with something that does.

I’ll cut mainly. Only thing I might boost slightly is the Kick.

[quote]Deathhands (05/06/2011)[hr]Ha… A high useful argument to the topic there ICN.

If we are throwing random words about I choose… FLANGE.
No no wait I choose ASSHAT.

Moving on…[/quote]

haha! Just saw this now…

Asshat is a beautiful word… :slight_smile:

Do you cut based on the advice I have read, or did you come to it through experience of mixes getting muddied up?

I think often I will boost at first because naughty though it is its an easier visual reference. I’m trying to get out of this habit now as it only means I have to go back and make adjustments.

I EQ based on what pitches / freq’s are in the actual sound.

Not being smart mate - but have you tried doing a search here about this subject yet? :cool: :cool: :cool:

There are literally loads of threads about this - I’m sure you could find out a lot about what you are looking for.

This topic comes up quite often. Theres loads of stuff here already. Might help you out :slight_smile: :cool:

In my experience people who start a sentence with the phrase I’m not trying to be smart are in fact trying to be.

If your not interested in discussing the topic or helping new members why post?

Isn’t there the argument on content to put your 2 pence worth into?

Best of luck!

Luck doesn’t come into it.

Just pure talent eh ? hahahaha

Why am I not suprised to see you posting here, Egg2. Determined to antagonise the subject further?

I have read a lot of the post history on this site and ICN and you see to be at the heart of any argumentive posting.

While I may be new to Ableton live and to remixing I am not however new to sound design which I have pointed out previously. I work and earn a living quite happily from audio design, in live events and in the games industry.

I do not profess to be the worlds leading expert on anything, nor the most talented, but I do work hard and continually learn.

So far the only “core” (+1000 posts) member I can see contributing to this commuinty forum sensibly is JamieNC, while other members are abviously willing to help anyone

without being snide or posting random nonsense into the threads. So why aren’t you?

Jamies videos and explanations are both inspirational and informative and as clear and concise as posible while still maintaining a friendly approach.

I’m yet to see anything insightful from the two people making posting on this forum for me at least a pain in the arse. Perhaps you could make a few videos on a subject?

All I wanted to do was create a discussion on a relative topic. Using the forum search fucntion on EQ or Equalisation either brings up too few or too many topics.

Many non members I would have thought would benefit from these type of discussions?

I think with eq there is no right or wrong way, they say when you cut something you boost something else and vice versa. So by that logic if you took all the high off of a kick drum thrn it will be really bassy and booming, but this is not the case as you need the click for the kick to really be punchy.

I find with the ableton eq you really need quite big boosts for it to work properly. But the best thing is to just use your ears. Its much better to rely on your ears when yoir EQing then worrying about if your doing the correct things.

So you find the Ableton EQ to be unresponsive by comparison to other eq’s?

I agree 100% jamies defo helping people out

As to nonsense posting i’ve been here 4 odd years and helped just about everyone on these forums new and older , so don’t even go there !!.

As to sound design and making a living out of music this is exactly what i do and ill tell you something man , if thats the case with you why the need to ask some moronic questions ?

As far as i can see icn was just trying to help , so you slam him ?

Smart move man !

I don’t see how opening a topic about EQ is moronic?

Especially because I have yet to see any content dealing with the frequency ying yang issue. To most people this can be pretty confusing.

I’m always open to hearing other ways to look at a subject no matter how often I might do things my own way.

I didnt slam him… to be honest I thought his eventual comment on eq was in fact fairly reasonable and useful.

I think as you pointed out you have been here a long time, you have your ways of dealing with the traffic.

I’m glad you are earning from your sound design, this is why I came to Sonic Academy in the first place to hear what pro’s have to say in subjects I have less experience in.

I had never dealt with Ableton before so a lot of the vids really helped me along.

Still I think I’d rather not have to defend myself and stick to the topic at hand.

I’m not here to become the keyboard warrior of the week. I just call em like I see em.

DH - You’ve honestly made a mountain of a molehill.

Heres a few bits of non EQ related advice:

Have a sense of Humour. Relax. Stop being so sensitive.

Call it how you see it - but remember that by shooting first, you could be jumping to a conclusion.  

We all do it mate - but y’know… theres nothing but smilie faces & cool smilies back there in my posts. Chill.


I will bare that in mind ICN, perhaps I do expect the worst from forums.