General Rule of thumb for EQ boosting for Live Cut?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Captain G, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. I know and appreciate that there are a great number of variables. ie Amp & Cab types/sizes, room dynamics etc. But, I have always been curious to what people's opinions & experiences are, as a possible "General Rule of Thumb" of which specific frequencies they would focus on in EQ boosting, in order to achieve a greater live cut??
  2. My general rule of thumb is to find the frequencies you would want to cut and leave the good ones flat. With my current setup that means backing off the sub-100hz frequencies until i'm cutting through well in the mix.

    If a slight boost is needed I would look for the right frequency somewhere between 400-800 hz and possibly 2.5khz. Chances are good though that your average bass cab is already naturally boosted at 2.5khz.
  3. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    My guitarist got a new Les Paul and was playing very loud at practice. I could not hear myself most of the time. I have to cut him some slack with a new guitar and I could not turn up since I left my ear plugs at home. In my defense, I have never needed them before.

    I was able to EQ a bit to help. First I cut all the bass. -15dB at roughly 60Hz. Slight boost on the high mids. Slight boost on the highs. And play up the octave whenever possible.

    Don't get me wrong, the bass sounded like sh*t :( But at least I could hear myself sometimes. It was a very educational experience that I hope never happens again.
  4. Every guitar player is too loud, both of mine included. It is part and parcel with the music game.

    You will need 10x the amp power (and probably 10x the bass driver area) to compete with the usual, deaf guitar player.

    +1 on cutting instead of boosting.
    +1 on cutting low end, unless you are outside.

    If outside, you will need the bottom, and a whole lot of drivers to make that happen.
  5. +1 for Muzikman, give it a little boost between 400 and 800 to cut through - usually 500 does the trick, but some people don't like the more woody tone and prefer to boost higher at like 800hz...

    I find boosting above 1k to just brings out the fret noise/clicks and makes my tone harsh. boosting at 6 to 10k can give your slapping a nice modern sound too

    lay off boosting between 30 to 90hz, as that tends to just muddy things and rob the amp of half its power - in my experience.
  6. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    i just boost in the lower 120-250Hz for a kick drum like punch, a nice bit in the 1kHz to 3kHz range for a nice stabbing upper mid, and hope for the best.
  7. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Dang... I always crank the hi-mids on my GK 700RBII. I keep trying to back it off (mainly because of what I read here; you guys always tending to recommend either flat or cut), but it only ever sounds just-right to me with these hi-mids pegged! Besides that, the only other appreciable deviations from 'flat' are presence=2:00, treble=10:30.. but then I also always have treble-boost from the tone control on my CS-3 compressor too..

    I've only ever used T.I. Jazz Flats since I got the head; I'm sure that makes a difference, though.

  8. PB+J


    Mar 9, 2000
    arlington va
    Don't boost, cut. if you boost you just add to the volume problem; usually you hear the noise the efin guitar player is putting out and you try to get through it by boosting. That makes him turn up, etc etc. Instead, try cutting frequencies. Forget what you sound like playing solo, and listen to what works. I usually end up cutting the bass a bit and the treble a good bit, leaving an emphasis on the lowish midrange--just below where the guitar lives, but just above the actual fundamental.
  9. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I am one of the guys who likes to keep the EQ flat. I have never used a 700RBII, but I have used the 800RB. I found it *very* trebely. I think that is part of the GK sound. From memory I think I had the treble below 9:00.

    Just a thought, but you might be boosting the high mids to compensate for the high treble. Try cutting the treble even more and maybe cut the bass a bit to bring out the mids more.

    But always trust your ears more than the settings. Not all amps are flat when everything is set half way. For example, old Ampegs Portaflexs have a mid scoop when set flat.
  10. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI

    OK - I have practice tonight with the horn-band. I'll put the High-mids back to flat, and try to forget about it. I bet it'll be pretty unbearable for me, though.

    How'bout the tone control on my CS-3 compressor; that's cranked-up to 3:00 (flat is around 'noon-thirty' to my ears). Ahh, OK: I'll try that flat too. I don't think I'll like it...

  11. What do people consider to be the frequency range of: lows, lower-mids, mids, upper-mids and highs ??
  12. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    To me, it varies greatly depending on the gear I'm using, the room I'm playing, and (sometimes) the style of music. Sometimes I like a mid boost, sometimes I like mid cut... same goes for treble and bass. Sorry to be of no assistance whatsoever... :p
  13. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    Note that the key words are "when possible". Try cutting first, if it dosen't work, then boost. Not all amps are flat and you have to like the sound. Also boosting high-mids is a lot better than boosting the bass.
  14. telekaster


    Feb 14, 2005
    San Diego
    How about in the studio? I fully understand that boosting the lows robs the amp of much power and headroom, but if you're recording how do the 'rules' change? I'm guessing the same applies to boosting the mids/upper mids to cut, but if you want to give a little more low end, is it OK?

    I just finished recording 2 weeks ago and I was limited on time. I did 4 tracks in under an hour and a half for a band I joined recently. I just set my Eden flat with a a tiny bit of boost of the bass knob as well as at 30Hz. It sounds huge, but I wish I could've cut better. On the average boombox, you can't distinguish what I'm really doing. Kind of a bummer, but the EP has already been mastered and will go to press as soon as we get the layout done.

    Live and learn I guess...