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Have you also noticed this? (About EQing)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by semborg, Aug 7, 2005.

  1. The more I playarorund with my basses and the more I tweak my amplifier, the more I am going flat all the time. Before I had strange and bumpy and quite extreme EQ, but now I only higher Bass a little bit, and a little bit low mid. Nothing more. Everything else is flat.

    Do you also go more and more flat? Can you remember 5 years ago? more "Strange" EQing?

    I feel that the more I work with EQ I am getting alot better at controling it. Also I go way more flat.
  2. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Depends on the sound I'm going for. Back when I was playing metal in the 80's, I used EQ fairly heavily to achieve the gnarly bass tones that were in vogue. In the 90's I switched to more traditional forms of blues, classic rock, and pop, so I'd leave EQ pretty flat.

    One of my current bands plays some modern rock, so I'll use EQ to simulate those heavily processed bass tones.

    There's no right or wrong... whatever works for you.
  3. seansbrew


    Oct 23, 2000
    Mesa AZ.
    I was always thinking I should use each knob, dial or slider on my head to add something to my sound, I was wrong. Before I knew how to use an eq, I would always unnecessarily add frequencies. Now that I know more about how it works, I subtract more frequencies than I add. This approach helps you get more out of your gear. Sometimes I will sit down with a piece of gear for hours and play with the frequencies. This helps me identify them on the gig when I have only a few minutes to dial in a room and play. I agree with the above, less is more.
  4. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    I've been experimenting at home like this too. Then when I'm a room I've never played before it gives me an idea which settings will help me get the best sound possible with the least amount of fuss. I've found with my gear setup that I don't have to mess with the highs or lows that much; most of my adjustments involve the midrange frequencies.

  5. seansbrew


    Oct 23, 2000
    Mesa AZ.
    I agree, most of the tweaking is done in the midrange. These are the frequencies that are most audibly affected in a room.
  6. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass ****

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    As my equipment has gotten better the need for EQ has diminished alot. I had it beat into my head a long time ago that starting off with my amp flat and getting the best tone I can with by bass is the correct way to approach EQing and I still take this route. The way I look at it, the earlier in the signal chain I can get my tone the more pure it is going to be. I got nothin' to back this up except my gut, like always.
    Another advantage to this approach is you don't get too dependent on your rig for tone so when your forced to use the house amp there's less of a struggle. It also makes you feel more at home when your tracking direct in the studio.
  7. andruca


    Mar 31, 2004
    Madrid (Spain)
    Same for me. I'd rather tweak my SR5's onboard EQ than my RBI's (almost flat). But I don't find it totally quality related (maybe just part of it). I noticed this took place since I use 15s (used to have two 4x10" before). With my actual 4x10" + 2x15" I'm more comfortable with the natural sound of speakers. Also the same since I added tweeters on my old cheap Peavey 1x15" TKO combos.

  8. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    Flat is where it's at.
  9. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    I've been fortunate over the years. On those occasions when I run into a PA, I've had the benefit of excellent sound engineers who give me good tone. There's no such thing as "my tone"... I never try to duplicate my stage tone through the house PA. All I care about is that my bass sounds good in the mix.
  10. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Heh. Well, my priority is getting good tone. If I get good tone, I don't care in the least whether the EQ knobs are pointing straight up or every which way. :ninja:
  11. DrGonzo


    May 24, 2005
    amen to that.

    if you have a great sound, what does it matter wether your eq is flat, round or triangluar?

    personally, i'm moving from extremes too falt and trying everything i can out every time i play, until eventually i've got everything sorted.

    and then in three weeks i'll change it again.

    tone is a progressive thing, as you play different material, as your playing style changes, as your rig changes, as the room you play in changes.

    unless, of course, you've sold your soul and are playing covers. in which case buy a programmable digital board, set up all your copied tones to go with your seen-it-all-before tunes and pray sonny! pray for you soul, for you are doomed to eternal damnnation!!!!!

    cover bands are sucking the life out of live music. rise up against them! strike down the evil ones!!!!!!!
  12. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
    The more I goof with EQ...the more I realize that what I really want is in my fingers
  13. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    I only tweak slightly on my passive bass. I bump up the bass actually quite a bit, put the mids up just slightly, and back the treble off just slightly. Nothing too extreme IMO.
  14. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA

    don't shoot!!!!

    this thread has some neat takes on eq - i don't remember how much it advocates "flat" but I agree it's always the best starting point, (unless you're using an amp like the alembic based on the fender tone stack, in which case "flat" is an elusive animal)

    As a former EQ-a-holic, I've learned not to fall into the trap of always using the same EQ settings. Primarily I start "flat" at a given venue, and during setup and soundcheck i adjust as needed to correct for room anomalies. Sure, for some songs I adjust the EQ for a certain "sound", but uless you're in the same league with AJ, so do you - ;)
  15. I know what you mean about flat being best.

    I used to eq quite a lot on my practice amp, then one day I played through it forgetting I'd reset the eq to flat - bingo, it sounded just as good if not better.

    It's easier when it comes to gigs if you're not eqing everything - I've got a PODxt which I use when i wanna eq or get a different sound out of my amp, thats about it. I always try and leave the treble on my bass on 10 (well, my pups have a LOT of bass/low mids coming from them...also its better if you can play with the treble on full whack and not hear any clicks when fingering)

    I may eq a little on my amp if I really need it (like if I'm not playing my usual bass - boost the bass a bit) but again, I usually just use my pod... ;)
  16. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    another thing smash reminded me of...........

    it's one thing to "get a sound" playing in your house by yourself. It's another thing entirely to have a tone that fits in with a full band. It took me years to get over the "smiley face" EQ and realize that that nifty tone didn't cut it in the real world on a gig. Most of the time i can leave my amp flat and have the best sound possible on a gig. And like smash mentioned, a lot of the EQ is right there in your hands.
  17. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    I like variety: there is no perfect bass/amp/cab for me. I'll always have active and passive basses in my collection. I'll always have two types of cabs: modern (ported, tweetered) and vintage (sealed, no tweet). EQ is a nice buffer between all these varied components. It's another option: if I want modern tone one night and vintage tone the next, I can use different gear... or I can use the same gear but in a different way.

    Regarding settings: flat usually sounds just fine, but as noted in the previous sentence sometimes I feel like a different flavor. Then there are the situations where acoustics must be compensated for (no PA/soundman for me, my rig fills the room). Sure, I also use technique to change tone... but I can do that whether my starting point is flat or curved: I see no advantage in limiting myself to either technique or EQ but not both.

    Once I became familiar with EQ I've never felt it was a burden. I don't obsess over "my tone" or "perfect tone". I can get good tone out of the box, and many other good tones with minimal tweakage.
  18. I personally like a lot of midrange in my sound, so going flat isn't good for me. But I understand where you're coming from. I know a lot of bassists who crank every knob up.

    I start by raising the mids to a prominent but not "honky" level, set the bass pretty flat (enough to feel the bass a bit), and cut the treble until the high sparkle is dulled. But I never stop playing with my settings... I think it's normal that your playing style will change with time and your EQing methods and settings will change as well. I used to play everything flat back in the day, and then became a fan of highs, played abrasive steel strings, etc. Now I can't stand the clackiness of highs. I think it's called "progression" :D.
  19. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Sounds like me tonally when it comes to EQ.
  20. Thats the way I run my Fender Bassman 250. I use the Sadowsky Outboard and ALMOST run that flat too. I bump the bass maybe 1 hour or 1 "o'clock" higher then flat. Thats it! The more you EQ, the more you screw w/ the preservation of your basses original tone.

    I have a contour control on the amps face, which cuts out the mids bassically. I tend to favor that to reveal MORE mids. I dont use it much at all, but thats basicaly the only knob I play with. (You can't set it "flat" there's no center detent)