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PARAMETRICS - How do you use them

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Jim Wheeler, Feb 25, 2004.

  1. ... How do you use them as in: "What are your settings and preferences" - I do know how to run 'em :)

    Three? Four?
    Semi? Full?
    Is a Bypass Useful?
    What Frequencies do you find most useful?

  2. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Well, nearly all of us have different rigs, different basses and strings, different techniques, and different tastes. So, what works for one person probably has no relevance to most others. But this is just a disclaimer... your question is still valid. :)

    I use the TC Electronics 1140, a four-band parametric. In addition to the EQ, it has rotary controls for input gain, output gain, and level match... and a bypass switch. The level match knob is to adjust the output level of the EQ'd signal (see below).

    Here's how I use my parametric: I usually leave it disengaged, getting my tone primarily from the 3-band EQ on my Alembic F2B tube preamp (sometimes a SABDDI as well). But it's nice to have the parametric available for rooms with tricky acoustics. My Alembic pre has a passive midrange control (cut only), so I usually use the parametric to goose mids... sometimes I also fine-tune bass or treble. I use the level match control to keep the EQ'd signal at the same level as the non-EQ'd signal, but some like using EQ as a volume boost (as well as tone shaping) for solos.

    I generally prefer growl in the low mids around 200Hz or so. Sometimes I add a little honk up higher (600-1200), depending on the bass, the room acoustics, and the style of music I'm playing.
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    A good way of checking your para out is this: you give it a healty boost and then sweep through the frequency band while playing (set Q narrow if the EQ is fully parametric).

    So for example, if you already have some honkyness in the mids, it will be amplified when you get in that frequency range with the sweep. Now you know where you have to cut the frequency. This also give you an idea of the timbres you can dial in.

    Hope I made it comprehensible.

    Right now I use only one of two fully parametric mids with a 9dB cut @ around 1.4k. Everything else is flat (I add the slap shape switch occasionally - I have to reread the manual for its cut frequency).
  4. Antonius


    Nov 26, 2002
    I use two bands, one channel on a TC1220 two channel - two band full parametric eq. One to deal with a nasty resonance in the room where we usually practice (around 200hz? very narrow Q), the other for emphasizing mwah on the fretless (somewhere round 900hz, pretty wide Q). I was looking for a TC1140 (more flexible preamp, 4 bands mono), but haven't found one yet.

    I previously used an Alesis micro-EQ. Very compact 3-band semi-parametric. Each band has freq and level controls, but only two-position Q-switch: narrow or wide. I wanted more control, and easier operation. The freq controls on the double potmeters were tricky to operate.
  5. ESP-LTD


    Sep 9, 2001
    I leave the parametric EQ flat, like the rest of my EQ. I have way too many buttons and knobs.
  6. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    The 6 " mid / tweet on the MM 2x12 bugs me no end so I have dip at1800 with about a 1/4th octave Q. I boost at 18K to get a little *air* Depending on the circumstances, I boost at 40 and 120 as I like a thick old school tone. Some times in the 600 - 900 band for fretless. I'm using fretted and fretless J basses almost exclusively at the moment.
  7. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    I mostly use a 7 band Ashly. 5 full bands, plus high and low shelving with adjustable frequency and gain, but not slope.

    Depending on which power amp I'm using,I use the low shelving band as a highpass at ~35 Hz, unless I'm using my QSC, which already has a highpass engaged at 30Hz. I generally dip hard at 250, since both clubs I usually play at have a big muck ring there. Most of my homemade preamps have that dip built in, so I generally like to set the parametric as a "B" channel, with a little boost in mid-highs (1.5 K-4K somewhere, usually two bands' worth) to bring up harmonics on the fretlesses that I play. A little low boost to taste, dependent on the room and the musical style. I roll the high off hard at somewhere above the range of my 15s or 12s (no tweeters here). I can either use the bypass, or parallel a preamp and the PEQ into my little stage mixer. The Ashly has individual switches for each filter band, which is more useful than the bypass, which it also has. Usually at least 2 bands are switched off, so I guess 3 plus the two shelving ones would be enough most of the time for me.

    I also have an Symetrix 5 band (5 full bands plus simple, one knob shelving for highs and lows). Lately, I've been using that one a lot more. It's inserted into the sidechain of my compressor, allowing me to only compress when I play a big low note or a nasty, slappy high one, but leaving mids more or less alone. It only takes one or two bands to get there, and it's a real potential speaker saver.

    Oh, yeah, I have a stereo Ashly too. That lives in the PA rack, but I've contemplated putting that in my bass rig from time to time. More knobs = more tone? Erm, maybe not...
  8. Summary to date - the perfect EQ:

    Bypass (individual ranges or the whole system?)
    Switchable Highpass at ~30 Hz
    Variable Q (1/4 to 1 octave)
    40 and 120 (would +/-65 with a 1 octave "Q" do it?)
    600-1200 Hz
    1500-4000 Hz
    Shelving for highs at ?? Hz
    Shelving for lows at ?? Hz
    (Bypass for shelving?)
  9. Nightbass


    May 1, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    I go by this old proverb:

    Cut to sound better.

    Boost to sound different.
  10. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Good one nightbass!
  11. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    Agreed - Less is more!

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