EQ Advice

Discussion in 'Mixing and Mastering' started by Liedom, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. Liedom

    Liedom Newbie

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    Playing around with some orchestral samples I have. This is a piccolo completely dry from Berlin Woodwinds. I know almost nothing about EQ. How would you treat this little snippet if it were in a session you were doing? (dropbox link below)

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/8hssbioyqtxfq2h/Picc.wav?dl=0
     
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  3. dtmd

    dtmd Kapellmeister

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    How would one "typically" use mayonnaise"?" In salad, in sandwich, with schnitzel, with fries...."?"
    Does one wants/likes, dominant flavour of mayo upfront, just a little bit aside.. or even, nothing at all"?"
     
  4. Liedom

    Liedom Newbie

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    The question was how would YOU approach it.
     
  5. eXACT_Beats_

    eXACT_Beats_ Producer

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    I'm unsure what dtmd meant, but it really isn't a valid question until you put it into a mix with other instruments. EQing something is always subjective (to a logical degree,) to the environment that it's sitting in. If it's battling violins in the same frequency range, your probably going to have to approach EQing differently than if it's complimenting, say, a cello and a C4 and lower piano melody. Whether I'm making a Soul track, an ambient soundscape or a stripped down Hip Hop beat, I rarely EQ much of anything until I have a handful of elements together.
    I'm not trying to be evasive, it really is subjective. I never use mixer presets (even though some people swear by them,) for the same reason.
    Just my two cents.... :shalom:
     
  6. Liedom

    Liedom Newbie

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    I gotcha - so, posting something more big picture is the next step. I’ve gotta learn to do this at some point.
     
  7. Sylenth.Will.Fall

    Sylenth.Will.Fall Audiosexual

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    I would advise you to read and pay close attention to this:- (You'll appreciate the help with reverb on here too)

    https://cinematiccomposing.com/blog/composing-part-iv-eq-reverb


    This chart is good to follow when applying amounts of reverb. This will give you an understanding that applying different amounts (and different types) of reverb, you can bring sections nearer or further away!

    orchestra_seating.gif
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  8. Baxter

    Baxter Audiosexual

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    It's all about timbre, composition and and arrangement. Learn instruments ranges, type of timbre and dynamic ranges. Go for these guidelines first. Don't even think about EQ until you have finished the composition, as composition is a way of "EQing itself".

    If you compose and arrange so that everything fits spectrally/sonically, you might not even need to EQ (or you just might need a little EQ tweak on the whole mix/project, as in mastering, if your composition is well balanced and has sonority).
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  9. dtmd

    dtmd Kapellmeister

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    It's pointless to eq something out of the context?

    "I know almost nothing about EQ."





     
  10. No Avenger

    No Avenger Audiosexual

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    A bit more level in the example would've been fine.
    Eqing without context is pretty senseless, apart from geting rid off some unwanted (high and low) freqs. And since it is a very thin sounding instrument by nature, there isn't really much to eq.
    Didn't you asked this question already here?:
    https://audiosex.pro/threads/eq-to-correct-tin-y-sample-libraries.39286/
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  11. Liedom

    Liedom Newbie

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    Oh!!! This is great!!! Thanks!
     
  12. Liedom

    Liedom Newbie

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    I’m with you there - I’m a legit orchestra conductor by trade so stuff like that comes really easily. What’s unfamiliar to me is working with instruments that aren’t real but COULD sound real with the right treatment.
     
  13. Liedom

    Liedom Newbie

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    Yes! It was better for my purposes if I re framed the question into something more practical and demonstrable.
     
  14. Sylenth.Will.Fall

    Sylenth.Will.Fall Audiosexual

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    You're very welcome!
     
  15. Riot7

    Riot7 Producer

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    Like others have said, it is all about context. To be be perfectly clear, you should mainly use EQ when you want to "fix" something. When it just doesn't sound right. When it doesn't sit right in the mix; when you have to crank the volume so high to hear the notes the instrument is playing that it overpowers the mix.

    Here is what I have learned about EQ's.

    EQing is not something that automatically needs or should be done to every track. I used to think that way. Just like you shouldn't put sugar on everything you eat.

    You have to identify what - if anything - there is wrong in the source material. Then, if you think can best fix it with EQ, use EQ to fix it.

    For the longest time I approached EQ mainly as a tool you used to enhance and transform the sound. This is what you did with the graphic EQ on your crappy stereos. Just add a smiley curve to pretty much everything to make it sound more "hifi" and "powerful". As a result my mixes tended to be boomy, piercing, unbalanced messes.

    I believe this is a mistake many self-learned people do. Yes, you can and in some situations you absolutely should use EQ for dramatic sound design too, but please be very careful. If you don't actually know what you are doing or why, you WILL completely ruin your mixes.

    Let's for example say you want to have a really big low end. You want your staccato bass string section to sound powerful. So you boost the bass, maybe cut the mids and add top end to get that nice aggressive attack. Ok, sounds pretty fucking great and powerful. But then there is a chord change. The frequency you boosted happens to now be right in the middle of the root frequency of the staccato notes that are now playing and it completely drowns the mix. Then the chord changes again and now the root note is right where you made a cut. And anyway the high boost drowns out the other instruments. This is one of the reasons why drastic big "sound shaping" boosts and cuts tend to absolutely ruin your mixes. Also, listen to the whole mix while EQing unless you are doing precision work.

    But how do you get that extra big large low end then? Well, with orchestral libraries I find the best sound shaping tool are the different miking options your library hopefully features. Layer that shit up to add certain thickness and power to the sounds, if that's what you want.

    Same with for example vocals. Want your spoken word vocals really big and ballsy without being boomy? Sorry, you need to use a proper mic and the proximity effect. That's just how it is and there's really no way around it.

    Generally speaking if you are mixing acoustic instruments you should be able do do most of your EQ work with something like Tonelux Tilt by Softube (which I highly recommend). It has nice high- and lowpass filters and it - can you believe it - tilts. You can also make a simple smiley and frowney faces with it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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