EQing a PA help?

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by nealpolitan, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. nealpolitan

    nealpolitan Member

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    I'm in a band that for many years has used a very basic PA (Mixer > Power Amp > 2 x JBL 15" two way mains and Mixer > smaller power amp > 2 x floor wedge monitors). Now, I've gotten a rack mount dual 15 band EQ in a trade and rather than immediately throw it on eBay, I thought I'd try and use it (or at least ask the experts).

    We don't gig much anymore, but we've never really had any problems eq'ing the rooms we play with just the mixer. I guess I'm having trouble coming up with a reason to use this more comprehensive EQ. Would an EQ like this be more useful if we had a bigger PA with a sub and if we were micing instruments (we just use the PA for vox and sometimes acoustic guitar)?

    Thanks for any help you might have.
     
  2. geetarplayer

    geetarplayer Member

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    It's worth throwing it in the mix and seeing what it does for you. It's dual, so you could EQ the mains, and EQ the monitor mix. I think if you try it, you'll keep it. I know I would always want an EQ. But, everything costs money.
     
  3. mixwiz

    mixwiz Member

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    Generally speaking, a 15 band eq isn't a terribly valuable tool as the freq bands are too wide. 31 is much better and if you want to start goofing around with eq, sell the 15 and get a 31. It will be most helpful on monitors as you can notch out feedback freqs which will allow you more GBF (gain before feedback).

    That being said, if you like your sound and can dial it in with channel strip eq, you might be trying to solve a problem that doesn't exist.
     
  4. nealpolitan

    nealpolitan Member

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    Thanks for the replies. I think the "solving a problem that doesn't exist" statement is right on. I tried it with the PA and it works fine, I just didn't know what I was doing. It took me years to figure out how to EQ a dual channel guitar amp with "Hi" "Mid" and "Low" knobs. I'm too old to learn live sound too...

    I put the EQ up for sale and perhaps someone who knows what they're doing will use it.
     
  5. TimmyP

    TimmyP Member

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    15 band is great as comp or gate sidechain EQ, or as a channel insert on a board with lousy channel EQ. For anti-feedback or for solving other PA problems, it's useless. Even 31 band is a big compromise, but it's quick to use in an 'oh crap' moment.
     
  6. Teleking

    Teleking Supporting Member

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    Which frequencies besides 5K do you guys find you have to cut the most often?
     
  7. rokpunk

    rokpunk Member

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    totally depends on the room and the system.

    5k isn't a problem frequency for my rigs, generally. i pretty much know that i have to pull out a bit of 160, 315, 630 to get my system flat sounding. but that's not the room that causes issues with those frequencies, it's the system itself. if i can knock those 3 frequencies down by 3db, i'm usually in the ballpark. generally speaking, i can remain flat from 800Hz up to 20KHz. it's those "boxy" frequencies that sound funky on my system.
     
  8. rokpunk

    rokpunk Member

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    15 band eq's work pretty well on a small system for monitors. if you are pulling out more than 15 bands, something is wrong with the system or your ears!
     
  9. MrBanjo

    MrBanjo Member

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    I can't tell if you're joking, but the point isn't the number of sliders you're pulling down, it's the width frequencies that are affected by pulling ONE slider down. With a 15-band EQ, you're affecting a 2/3 octave range with every adjustment. The more precise, the better.
     
  10. speakerjones

    speakerjones Member

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    Agreed. With most wedges, I'd rather have a 4 or 5 band parametric than a 15 band graphic. But I'd take the 15 band over nothing at all.
     
  11. rickenbackerkid

    rickenbackerkid Member

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    Agreed.

    EQ in a live setting has two purposes -
    EQ'ing your loudspeakers to sound good and to present your music well, and secondly to tweak your speakers to work in certain rooms.

    For instance, at home in my church, I need to cut lots out around 160 HZ. With the same speakers outside, that frequency is not a problem.
    So that's EQ to suit the room.

    But at church or outside I need to cut 4K considerably - this is making the speakers sound better so they don't rip your face off.

    And of course if the speakers are EQ'd to sound good and work in the room, you don't have to work so hard with channel EQ.
     
  12. mixwiz

    mixwiz Member

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    Thank you. I didn't think it was my ears.
     
  13. rokpunk

    rokpunk Member

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    you really can't make due with a 15 band EQ for your monitors?!? how many frequencies are you pulling out? if i'm pulling out more than 2 frequencies on my mon eq's (plus a low end roll off), something just isn't right. obviously a 31 band is more precise, but even with a 31 band eq, every cut you make effects the neighboring frequencies. you shouldn't be cutting more than a frequency or two to get your monitors sounding correct and not feeding back. if you are pulling out a bunch, try lowering the gain to the overall mix and start over with your EQ. you should be able to run a decent monitor wedge near flat on it's EQ.
     
  14. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    Or creating one!
     

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