#1
I read somewhere on here a few days ago that graphic EQs are not as good as the simple knob kind. I can't understand how that would be true though. The graphic EQ would allow you to tweak frequencies more accurately and in depth thus providing better tonal control, correct? If so, how could a EQ with only bass, mids, and treble be better?
#2
[Looks off into distance] Fitzy should be here any minute...

Who told you that? As far as I know, that's simply wrong. You've got the right idea - more control is better.
Les Claypool
Geddy Lee
Robert DeLeo
Flea

Weileder

...Coincidence? I think not.
#3
That's mostly untrue, but it is easier to mess up your tone with a graphic EQ. One's not better than the other, necessarily, just different.
Millie, my Peavey Grind Fiver
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Quote by NakedBassist
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#4
Quote by t3hrav3n
That's mostly untrue, but it is easier to mess up your tone with a graphic EQ. One's not better than the other, necessarily, just different.

Well yeah, an assault rifle is more effective than a pistol, but a pistol is easier to use.

If you don't know jack about EQ - which is a lot of people, even people who are great at playing the instrument - then it's easier for you to figure out what works with three or four knobs as opposed to a row of sliders with different numbers by them. Graphic EQ is more advanced, shall we say.
Les Claypool
Geddy Lee
Robert DeLeo
Flea

Weileder

...Coincidence? I think not.
#5
Here's a Fitzy statement:

Whoever said that is a bloody idiot. The PC commies can come in and say "well, *insert professional musician here* says they're good, so you can't say anything against them", but it's the truth.

First of all, there are two types of EQs - passive, and active EQs. Passive EQs are cut only - meaning all the knobs cranked to 10 results in a flat EQ curve centred at 0db. What comes in comes out. These EQs tend to be very simple as passively EQing frequencies have HUGE bandwidths. People generally think these EQs are a bit more transparent than active EQs, and may prefer them because of it. >95% of guitar amps have passive EQs.

Active EQs can both cut and boost certain frequencies by certain amounts with certain bandwidths. Higher quality EQs have more flexibility. Those who don't care about their tone or are mentally feeble may find this a bit TOO daunting and not worth it, but in the end it's essential.

These 3-band active EQs are essentially "trying to be" passive EQs and are just providing the neutering simplicity of a passive EQ without it's tonal benefits. People prefer 3-band active EQ's to >5 band EQs because they're stupid people.

Now, active vs passive EQ is the lesser known but older brother of the active vs passive BASS wars.

Just because you have a crazy graphic EQ doesn't mean you need to boost and cut a million things. They do, however, mean you have the ability to choose WHERE you cut these things out, and if your EQ is really high end, how thick your scissors are.

Personally, I think most great EQ curves have one peak and one valley. Personally, I think parametric EQs are the best, and a 5-band parametric EQ is the best thing ever. Being able to actually choose the frequencies is just key. However, graphic EQs do provide a better 'steepness' control over your curve than parametrics do.

But, basically, there's no reason to have a 3-band active EQ other than because
a) your amp is small
b) your amp is crap
c) you're stupid

They're NOT different. There's nothing a 3-band active does better than a >5 band. Nothing. It being easier to use says more about the user than the EQ. Whoever says a 3-band active EQ is better should only be allowed to have 1 string on their bass.

Anything in the above statements that weren't fact were my opinion.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
Last edited by thefitz at Mar 31, 2008,
#6
Quote by thefitz
Here's a Fitzy statement:

Whoever said that is a bloody idiot. The PC commies can come in and say "well, *insert professional musician here* says they're good, so you can't say anything against them", but it's the truth.

First of all, there are two types of EQs - passive, and active EQs. Passive EQs are cut only - meaning all the knobs cranked to 10 results in a flat EQ curve centred at 0db. What comes in comes out. These EQs tend to be very simple as passively EQing frequencies have HUGE bandwidths. People generally think these EQs are a bit more transparent than active EQs, and may prefer them because of it. >95% of guitar amps have passive EQs.

Active EQs can both cut and boost certain frequencies by certain amounts with certain bandwidths. Higher quality EQs have more flexibility. Those who don't care about their tone or are mentally feeble may find this a bit TOO daunting and not worth it, but in the end it's essential.

These 3-band active EQs are essentially "trying to be" passive EQs and are just providing the neutering simplicity of a passive EQ without it's tonal benefits. People prefer 3-band active EQ's to >5 band EQs because they're stupid people.

Now, active vs passive EQ is the lesser known but older brother of the active vs passive BASS wars.

Just because you have a crazy graphic EQ doesn't mean you need to boost and cut a million things. They do, however, mean you have the ability to choose WHERE you cut these things out, and if your EQ is really high end, how thick your scissors are.

Personally, I think most great EQ curves have one peak and one valley. Personally, I think parametric EQs are the best, and a 5-band parametric EQ is the best thing ever. Being able to actually choose the frequencies is just key. However, graphic EQs do provide a better 'steepness' control over your curve than parametrics do.

But, basically, there's no reason to have a 3-band active EQ other than because
a) your amp is small
b) your amp is crap
c) you're stupid

They're NOT different. There's nothing a 3-band active does better than a >5 band. Nothing. It being easier to use says more about the user than the EQ. Whoever says a 3-band active EQ is better should only be allowed to have 1 string on their bass.

Anything in the above statements that weren't fact were my opinion.


Wow you just made my day

Now that either means that it was really funny, or my life is pathetic.

But seriously, graphic EQs ARE better. There's the 4 word summary of fitzy's rant.
#7
I have a 10 band graphic EQ on mine and find I can sculpt my sound way better than just three knobs. I find in certain rooms, I need a slightly different mid-boost to cut through. Also, I might need to cut a certain low frequency depending on drummers kick-drum tone. Basically, taking as much control over my sound before the soundman has a chance to ruin it.
#8
Quote by t3hrav3n
That's mostly untrue, but it is easier to mess up your tone with a graphic EQ. One's not better than the other, necessarily, just different.

+1

However, I am inclined to think that with a normal 3/4 band eq, changing one knob's setting will actually change a portion of the frequencies, whereas changing a slider on a graphic eq tends to just change one frequency. In other words, each knob has a much wider influence on your tone.

I find that because of this, simpler eq's on amps tend to have more "character", in the sense that (for example) one treble knob on one amp might have a different effect than a treble knob on another amp, even if they're both 3 band eq's. The contrast to this on a graphic eq is that a slider on one graphic eq for a given frequency will have almost an identical influence on your tone to a slider on another graphic eq for the same frequency.

So in short, graphic eq's tend to be much more mathematical in terms of what they do to your tone, and there's more defined certainty involved. However, simpler eq's on an amp will have more individuality and will most likely differ from any other simple eq. My only explanation for this is that it's a very mathematical affair to define a single frequency, but defining a whole sea of frequencies is a much more flexible, and thus creative thing to do.

EDIT: I do personally prefer graphic eq's without a doubt, but I don't have one and I have learned to make do. I do however have a semi-parametric 3-band eq and I find that the parameter control makes tone shaping much easier as you can simply get closer to what you want.

That's the basic reason why graphic eq's are better; they allow for more freedom and they are more capable. Simpler isn't really better because if you don't like having so many knobs, just don't touch all of them. Parametric eq's are sort of what you get if you have to make do, as they do do much of the same job, just less-directly.
Last edited by AVA_Plus44_182 at Apr 1, 2008,
#9
Quote by IndianRockStar
Wow you just made my day

Now that either means that it was really funny, or my life is pathetic.

But seriously, graphic EQs ARE better. There's the 4 word summary of fitzy's rant.

Well let me perhaps focus on something that I left out of my rant - there's no difference between a graphic EQ and a 3-band EQ! A 3-band EQ is a graphic EQ - just a totally shitty one! You know - an inch-long pencil is still a pencil. Pete Wentz is still a bass player.

To conclude that analogy, to me, a 3-band EQ is to a >5-band like an inch long pencil is to a 5-inch long pencil. COME ON MAN! WHAT DO YOU NEED ALL THAT LEAD FOR!? Or, an 8.5x11" sheet of paper compared to a business card. DO YOU REALLY NEED TO WRITE ALL THAT STUFF?

If you need the former in either case, you need to put down your T-Bird and hit the books.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#10
Double post because of computer freeze:

AVA_Plus44_182:

There's no more or less "character" in a 3/4 band EQ than a >5 band EQ. If you want character, get a passive EQ. The only difference is the Q rating (shape and thickness of the peak of the frequency) of the frequencies. There's no Q rating that only boosts the ONE exact frequency. ALL bands of EQ affect others. Just the 3-bands try to "fill in" the rest of the curve more with thicker Qs.

You can emulate a 3-band EQ on a >5 band EQ no problem. In fact, you can even get more flexibility with it. If more people knew more about how an EQ works, we'd all realize the number of bands is irrelevant if they're at the frequencies you want them to be at... BUT THAT NEVER HAPPENS ON A 3-Band. 3-band parametric? Whole new ball game. 2-band parametric + 2-band? The amp I used to love before I sold it.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#11
Quote by thefitz
Double post because of computer freeze:

AVA_Plus44_182:

3-band parametric? Whole new ball game.

Similar idea though, it just lets you choose which part of the range of a knob you affect the most. E.g. have the parameter knob in the middle, and the related eq knob will mostly affect the middle frequencies of that knob's range, have it at the top and it mostly affects the frequencies at the top of that knob's range, etc.

EDIT: Just to clarify, I don't believe that a 3-band eq could ever have more control over tone than a graphic eq (POSSIBLY unless the concerned 3 band was parametric). But I do believe that there tends to be more difference in tone control between 2 random 3-band eqs than there does between 2 random graphic eqs.
Last edited by AVA_Plus44_182 at Apr 1, 2008,
#12
Quote by AVA_Plus44_182
Similar idea though, it just lets you choose which part of the range of a knob you affect the most. E.g. have the parameter knob in the middle, and the related eq knob will mostly affect the middle frequencies of that knob's range, have it at the top and it mostly affects the frequencies at the top of that knob's range, etc.

Yes, but the actual LOCATION of the frequencies are what counts. On a 3-band parametric you can boost 40Hz, cut out some at 150Hz, and boost some attack at 2359Hz. That's YOUR call. With a normal 3-band, they try to approximate the entire spectrum by putting stuff at like, 60Hz, 500Hz, 8kHz. Not only is that totally limiting, the tonal variation between 60Hz, 500Hz, 8kHz and 75Hz, 633Hz, 12kHz is just huge. Again, it's not the amount of bands as it is the CHOICE of bands, and a hardwired 3-band just gives you NEITHER.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#13
Quote by thefitz
Yes, but the actual LOCATION of the frequencies are what counts. On a 3-band parametric you can boost 40Hz, cut out some at 150Hz, and boost some attack at 2359Hz. That's YOUR call. With a normal 3-band, they try to approximate the entire spectrum by putting stuff at like, 60Hz, 500Hz, 8kHz. Not only is that totally limiting, the tonal variation between 60Hz, 500Hz, 8kHz and 75Hz, 633Hz, 12kHz is just huge. Again, it's not the amount of bands as it is the CHOICE of bands, and a hardwired 3-band just gives you NEITHER.

Yes, I definitely agree with that. Would you say that you get greater amounts of bands with a graphic eq (let's say 7-band), and that you get more choice of bands with a 3-band fully-parametric eq, if one was to compare the two?
#14
Quote by AVA_Plus44_182
Yes, I definitely agree with that. Would you say that you get greater amounts of bands with a graphic eq (let's say 7-band), and that you get more choice of bands with a 3-band fully-parametric eq, if one was to compare the two?

That's a good way of putting it, HOWEVER, the key is you know what frequencies you want to boost and/or cut before making a purchase. If you have bands on a graphic EQ plunked exactly where you were going to set them on a parametric EQ, you might as well get the graphic EQ and potentially fiddle with the Q (even though you're not REALLY fiddling with it). Basically, I think the "choice" is irrelevant - it's being able to follow through with your pre-concieved choice that matters.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..