EQ - Electronic Music (by Heartleader)


Filter types:

1.) Low cut / high pass

2.) Low shelf

3.) Bell

4.) Notch

5.) High shelf

6.) High cut / low pass


General Settings for EQing in Electronic Music

RUMBLE / SUB BASS 0-60 Hz

-Most sounds in this frequency range more felt than heard

-Be careful while mixing here as too much sub bass can make your mix sound muddy

-Lowcut everything below 25-45 Hz is a standard practice to reduce the rumble and preserve headroom

-Avoid boosts here because it takes much headroom and you need very good speaker listen too

BOTTOM 60-100 Hz

-This is where the bottom or “punch in your chest” of the bass and kick drum lies

-Boost 2-3 dB within 60-90 Hz range with a low Q setting if more energy is needed (be careful)

BOOM / WARMTH / MUD 100-450 Hz

-Boost 100-170 Hz range for more punch

-Boost 130-220 Hz to add warmth and fullness

-Check 250-450 Hz range for mud

-Boost to bring fullness (too much energy in the 100-450 Hz range make things sound muddy and boomy, while too little make them sound too thin!!!)

HONK 450 – 1000 Hz

-A center and wide cut in the 450-1 kHz range may eliminate many of the harsh, “honky” and boxy characteristics of the tone with

-By making cuts on some instruments you can bring more clarity to the bass within the overall mix

TINNY 1 – 2 kHz

-Too much in the 1-2 kHz range make things sound tinny or horn-like

-You should be careful boosting here (especially on heavy vocal tracks)

-Excess in this area can make listener tired

-Boost at 1.4-1.5 kHz can improve the intelligibility of basses or pianos

CRUNCH 2 – 4 kHz

-This is where you’ll find the attack tones of percussive and rhythm instruments

-Instruments that struggle to cut through the mix may be adjusted here for more presence

-Excess in this area can make listeners tired

PRESENCE 4 – 6 kHz

-The 4-6 kHz range is responsible for clarity

-Boosts here can add edge to electric guitars and drums

-Make sure to check the 5-6 kHz range for sibilance

-Boost in the 4-7 kHz range can also add air

DEFINITION 6 – 10 kHz

-Try boosting at around 6 kHz to add more definition to vocal and guitar tracks

-Boosts in this range can add edge to synths, string instruments and drums

-Too much boost around the 5-8 kHz range tend to sound sibilant

AIR 10 – 20 kHz

-Boosting this range can add extra air and sparkle to your instrument or overall mix

-Excess in this area can cause undesirable listener fatigue and create an extremely shrill tone

-Cut frequencies above 18 kHz to reduce hiss noise

SUB BASS 0-60 Hz

-Most sounds in this frequency range more felt than heard

-Be careful while mixing here as too much sub bass can make your mix sound muddy

-Cutting everything below 25-45 Hz is a standard practice to reduce the rumble and preserve headroom

-Avoid boosts here because it takes much headroom and you need very good speaker listen too

BASS 60-250 Hz

-The fundamentals of kick and bass are living in this center area

-Boost 100-180 Hz range for more punch

-Boost 140-225 Hz to add warmth and fullness

-Bey careful as boosting too much will sound boomy

LOW MID-RANGE 250 – 500 Hz

-This range is usually called the bass presence range

-Try a slight boost at around 300 Hz to add clarity to the bass and low frequency instruments

-Too much in this range make things sound muddy and boomy, while too little make them sound thin

MID-RANGE 500 – 2000 Hz

-Boosts in this range can make an instrument prominent in the mix

-Be careful while mixing here as too much of 500-1 kHz can make your instrument sound muddy

-Be careful because too much of 1-2 kHz can create a tinny sound

HIGH MID-RANGE 2-6 kHz

-This is where you’ll find mostly the attack tones of percussive and rhythm instruments

-Instruments that struggle to cut through the mix may be adjusted here for more presence

-Excess here can make listener tired

-4-6 kHz range is responsible for clarity and definition

HIGH FREQUENCIES 6-20 kHz

-Boosting this range can add extra air and sparkle to your instrument or mix

-Excess in this area can cause undesirable listener fatigue and create an extremely shrill tone

-Too much boost around the 6-8 kHz range tend to sound sibilant



909 Kick

LOW-END 0-40 Hz

-Lowcut 20-40 Hz range with 24-36-48 dB slope filter to cut subsonic content and preserve headroom  

BOTTOM//WEIGHT 70-100 Hz

-Boost 2-3 dB with wide Q within 70-100 Hz if more presence is needed (don’t overdo it)

-Try narrower Q with more resonance for extra prominence

-Keep an eye on the meters, boosts in this range increase levels quickly, so be ready to adjust levels (this range is not hearable on small speakers)

MUD/BOXINESS 250-500 Hz

-Sweep 250-500 Hz band with Q set high enough to get 6-8 dB of gain resulting in a resonant peak

-Tweak the band knob while listening carefully – frequencies that sound most dissonant should be attenuated carefully

KNOCK/ATTACK 2-4 kHz

-Check 2-4 kHz range if more click needed (special for small speakers)

-Stay with moderate 2-3 dB boosts with bell EQ curve

-High shelf and tilt curves will also work for the purpose as well

PRESENCE 5-8 kHz

-Try boosting 5-8 kHz range with high shelf curve if more presence is needed (special for small speakers)

-Keep watch on the 8-12 kHz band though, as boosting there may add hiss


TOM

LOW END RUMBLE 0-100 Hz

-Lowcut carefully from 70 Hz upwards

-Don’t overdo do not thin out the sound too much

THUMP/BODY 100-300 Hz

-Boost 100-300 Hz range to add weight (don’t overdo as boosting too much will sound boomy)

-It depends on the actual frequencies of the drum

...you should be careful while mixing here as too much can make your toms sound muddy

...too little can create a thin tone

ATTACK 3-5 kHz

-This is where you’ll find the attack tones from the drumstick hitting the head of the drum

-Boost 3-4 kHz for more bite

PRESENCE/AIR 5-12 kHz

-Boost 3-4 dB within 6-9 kHz band to accentuate stick hits

-2-3 dB high shelf boost within 5-12 kHz range will bring extra air and presence


SNARE

LOW END RUMBLE 0-120 Hz

-Lowcut carefully about 120 Hz +/- 20  (12-48 dB steep highpass filters works best)

-Use your ears and choose what sounds best

BODY 200-400 Hz

-This is the central area of sound in most snare drums

-Most fundamental characteristics live somewhere inside of this range

-Boost 2-3 dB with wide Q within this range to make the snare sound more heavier

RING 250-600 Hz

-This range is responsible for the all-too-undesirable “ringing” or hollow tone of the snare

-Search within 250-600 Hz range for it (sweep the band with a resonant peak, attenuate unpleasant sounding frequencies with narrow Q cuts)

BANG/SMACK 2-4 kHz

-Boost some decibels at 2 kHz for more, boost 2-4 kHz range slightly for extra bite and attack

AIR/DEFINITION 6-10 kHz

-Boosting 4-6 kHz range brings more air

-If is still sounds off, boost 7-10 kHz range slightly as that should bring extra definition

-The cracking sound made by the stick on the drum head is often around 8000 Hz.


CYMBALS: HATS, RIDES, CRASHES

LOW END 0-200 Hz

-Lowcut 100-200 Hz to get rid of unnecessary low end

GONG/CLANK/CHINK 200-400 Hz

-Lowcut up to 400 Hz to get rid of “gong” sounds

-Boost 200-300 Hz range slightly for more “chink” but don’t overdo – as it may sound muddy

AIR/BRIGHTNESS 6-15kHz

-Sweep from 6 kHz upwards to find the “tsss” part of the sound and boost slightly when done for more air

-Attenuating 10 kHz range will reduce harshness while boosting 14-15 kHz will bring more brightness, but be careful as too much can create an extremely shrill tone


SUBBASS

& BASS SYNTHS

SUBBASS:

-Lowcut at 30-40 Hz

-Highcut at around 120 Hz that it works together with the Bass Synth

 

BASS SYNTH:

LOW END RUMBLE 120 Hz

-Lowcut around 120 Hz to get rid of it if you have a separate sub bass track

BODY/PRESSURE 60-250 Hz

-Boost around 80 – 150 Hz for for more body and weight

-Boost around 160 Hz for extra pressure

MUD / WARMTH 250 – 500 Hz

-Carefully cut mud within the 250-500 Hz range

-Boost 250 Hz to add more warmth (check solo and together with the whole mix)

PRESENCE 2-3 kHz

-Boost the 2-3 kHz range to add more presence


PAD SYNTHS

LOW END 0 – 160 Hz

-Lowcut up to 160 Hz according to your sound design concept

-Lowcut/Shelf up to 500 Hz to make space for the bass in dense mixes

MUD 250 – 450 Hz

-Check 250-450 Hz range for muddiness (try 2-3db cut depending on the instrument sitting already there mix)

THICK 400-600 Hz

-Boosting 400-600 Hz range will add thickness

-Be careful when layering as this band may get cluttered very fast


LEAD SYNTHS

LOW END RUMBLE 0-160 Hz

-Lowcut 80-160 Hz to taste

-Do a high quality sound design

MUD 160-450 Hz

-Many synths become muddy in this range and can directly affect the quality of the tone and sound (especially if multiple synthesizers are layered)

-Check muddiness within the 250-450 Hz range

CHARACTER 1-2 kHz

-Most attributes of synths can be found here

-Cutting or lifting certain frequencies within this range can help it to either stick out or hide away

-Mix as appropriate to the individual synth / patch

PRESENCE 2-3 kHz

-Boost 1-2 kHz range to add more grit and to help the instrument cut through the mix

CLARITY 3-4 kHz

-Just like the guitars and vocals, you can find the exciting, airy tonal characteristics here

-Boost 3-4 kHz range to add excitement and clarity

-Just like the other instruments as well, too much can be shrill and unpleasant

SHARPNESS 7-9 kHz

-Boost the 7-9 kHz frequency range to add more sharpness and clarity, use wide Q factor


VOCALS

LOW END RUMBLE 0 – 100 Hz

-Most sounds in this range are garbage (noise from the mic, vibrations from the room)

-Lowcut up to 100-120 Hz to clean things up (note that “Pop” is around 90-120Hz in general)

MUD 200 – 500Hz

-Try 3-4 dB cuts within the 325-350 Hz range on male vocals

-Boost at 200 Hz can sometimes add fullness

-Female vocals may run a bit higher in the spectrum (but this is a good starting point to search for boomy tones that need to be attenuated)

HONKINESS/NASALITY 800 – 1500 Hz

-Boosting these frequencies can help make some singer’s lyrics more intelligible

-Cuts in 800-1,5 kHz range can reduce honkiness or boxiness with a narrow Q factor

PRESENCE 2.5 – 4.5 kHz

-You can add energy, buzz and definition to a vocal track right around 3 kHz

-Be careful here as too much of this band can make vocals very painful to listen to (be very careful) 

-Try a narrow cut in the 2.5 kHz to 4 kHz range to soften vocals

CLARITY 5-10 kHz

-Gentle boost in 5-10 kHz range may add extra presence to a dull vocal

-Check this range for sibilance, most de-essers handle this range

AIR 10-16 kHz

T-o add more air do high shelf boost around 10 kHz but (not overdo)

-Cuts in this range reduce the “hiss" sound.


WHITE NOISE

LOW END 0 – 500 Hz

-Lowcut up to 500 Hz according to your sound design concept and mix

PRESENCE 1500-2500 Hz

-Boost 2-3 dB with wide or moderate Q within this range to add more presence and character

BRIGHTNESS 10-20 kHz

-Boost at 14.5 kHz can add more brightness (use narrow Q)

-Highcut around 17-18 kHz to reduce harshness if needed