Layman's Guide to EQ
|The spectrum of a 1 kHz tone. A sound will not be heard if it is under the threshold in quiet. This limit changes around the masker frequency, making it more difficult to hear a nearby tone. The slope of the masking threshold is steeper toward lower frequencies than toward higher frequencies, which means it is easier to mask with higher frequency tones. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
A Layman's Guide to EQ
Frequency: number of cycles per unit time (measured in hertz, Hz)
- A sound at 1Hz only has one cycle per second (making it a low, an inaudible pitch)
- A sound at 20 kHz has 20000 cyles per second (an extremely high pitch usually outside the human range of hearing...your dog might hear it though)
- Human range of hearing can be from 20Hz to 20kHz
-Orchestras tune to A440 (at 440 Hz)
It is important when mixing to determine the general frequency range of your instruments, sounds, and voice tracks in order to EQ properly.
Excess noise, for example, happens in the upper frequency range, and can be reduced by cutting out the highest audible frequencies. However, be careful when doing this to a vocal track, since the "S" sound and much of the articulation can be lost if you EQ out too much.
High Pass: Cuts lower frequencies and allows higher frequencies to go through
Low Pass: Cuts higher frequencies and allows lower frequencies through
Bandpass: Allows a specific band of frequencies through, cutting both high and low frequencies past the point set by the user