EQ when mixing

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Zacharia Matilda
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EQ when mixing

Post by Zacharia Matilda » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:02 pm

I know one of the keys to making recordings that sound like you want them to sound is to get it right at the source. Get the instruments to sound like you want them to sound and mic them deliberately. But how many times do you folks find that, when at the mixing stage, there's always something that needs some major surgery with the eq?

I record and mix my own material and am always fighting the urge to eq the hell out of things. Like trying to give my piccolo snare some life or a little help for my anemic sounding bass.
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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by drumsound » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:11 pm

I EQ as necessary. It might not be a lot of elements of the mix, but they might have "extreme" EQ. A couple things might just get a minor massage of EQ, and many elements may not see any EQ.

I go by the theory thatEverything is an EQ viewtopic.php?f=14&t=31607&hilit=Februa ... ky#p288505, so I'm EQing a lot. By that I mean that I'm choosing sources, mics, compressors etc, for the tone that works with the musical idea, in context of the things already recorded, or being recorded together.

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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by kslight » Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:41 pm

I mean if you’re doing it on the DAW all of your EQ and various shaping can seem like a lot (or indeed, be a lot), but then on those days that I’m recording through a board I’ll just grab some knobs and go there and not worry too much about whether it’s too much if it gets me to where it needs to be.

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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by permanent hearing damage » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:27 am

it depends (stock TOMB reply #1)! If you need something super sculpted to fit into a dense mix, then it sure makes sense you will be EQing the hell out of things to get them to fit. that's one thing I truly enjoy about doing quieter or sparser projects - I don't have to micromanage every damn thing.

but yeah, more often than not (i work on a lot of punk/hc/metal recordings), I'm high passing things like crazy, carving up the kick drum, toms, etc. in these super dense, hyper real genres that encompasses so much of modern recording, it is hard to avoid.

i could be wrong, but I think Joel Hamilton stated somewhere on here that he didn't use any EQ on that Unsane record he did (Blood Run). (I do wonder if filters were included in that rule). while i certainly think that record sounds cool and unique, there are moments where it feels a little flat to me, and i certainly believe that is why.

MoreSpaceEcho
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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:20 am

Zacharia Matilda wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:02 pm
But how many times do you folks find that, when at the mixing stage, there's always something that needs some major surgery with the eq?
I wouldn't say major surgery, I think of that as being like +/-12db or something....but certainly I use eq all the time on lots of things, and sometimes it's more than a little.

I think a lot of classic records that everyone loves have tons of eq on them. Don't be shy with that shit, make it sound like you want.

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Recycled_Brains
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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by Recycled_Brains » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:15 am

permanent hearing damage wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:27 am
i could be wrong, but I think Joel Hamilton stated somewhere on here that he didn't use any EQ on that Unsane record he did (Blood Run). (I do wonder if filters were included in that rule). while i certainly think that record sounds cool and unique, there are moments where it feels a little flat to me, and i certainly believe that is why.
You're right.

That record sounds so sick to me. So dark. Refreshing for the genre. I record a lot of heavy stuff too. I hate eq'ing things. I have to, obviously, but I agonize at the tracking phase to avoid having to sculpt the shit out of anything if time allows. Don't always win that battle, but ever since I heard how Joel pulled this beast off, I've been inspired to do less (if I can).

EDIT: Pretty sure I own that MD1 now too. haha. That's neat to know it was used on this record.
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Theo_Karon
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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by Theo_Karon » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:27 pm

Of course it depends. But I think a good rule of thumb is - always act decisively. A considered EQ move that produces the result you were hoping for is decisive. A drastic EQ move that produces the result you were hoping for is decisive. No EQ is also decisive (and often the subjective most 'right' choice)

As you spend more time doing this you will start to hear smaller and smaller changes clearly. You will start to hear phase shift with many EQs, particularly in the high end, and it will start to bother you, unless it sounds subjectively good, in which case it is. But you're not doing yourself or the project any favors by making 'subtle' EQ chances and then endlessly A/Bing, trying to see if you can spot a difference. This might be good ear training in a certain context, but it will fuck with your workflow and force you to slow down and second guess yourself. That's the worst! Don't do it.

Hope this helps

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markjazzbassist
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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by markjazzbassist » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:25 pm

drumsound wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:11 pm
I go by the theory thatEverything is an EQ viewtopic.php?f=14&t=31607&hilit=Februa ... ky#p288505, so I'm EQing a lot. By that I mean that I'm choosing sources, mics, compressors etc, for the tone that works with the musical idea, in context of the things already recorded, or being recorded together.
never heard that explained in words before but i love it and completely agree. i do the same thing.

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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by drumsound » Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:10 pm

markjazzbassist wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:25 pm
drumsound wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:11 pm
I go by the theory thatEverything is an EQ viewtopic.php?f=14&t=31607&hilit=Februa ... ky#p288505, so I'm EQing a lot. By that I mean that I'm choosing sources, mics, compressors etc, for the tone that works with the musical idea, in context of the things already recorded, or being recorded together.
never heard that explained in words before but i love it and completely agree. i do the same thing.
Thanks, Mark. I'm always glad to know when the things I put out there land.

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I'm Painting Again
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Re: EQ when mixing

Post by I'm Painting Again » Sun Oct 07, 2018 5:38 pm

taking the source and front end chain out of the equation

yea you gotta do what ya gotta do

EQ the snot out of it if it gets you where you need to be

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