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Nearfield monitors and EQ question

Discussion in 'Monitoring / Headphones' started by Allan F, Oct 22, 2002.

  1. Allan F

    Allan F Guest

    Hi all,
    Advice please,
    When I am listening to my mix thru my Yamaha MSP5s and I have a good sounding mix, I find that when I switch to any HI FI equipment thru their speakers it always sound to bassy or clonky espesialy in and around the 125hz, I have to cut the 125hz quite a bit to make it sound reasonable.

    My question is, when listening thru nearfield monitors would you put any eq before the nearfields so that you get some idea what your music will sound like on various equipment. I am forever equing my mix between my nearfields and various hi fi systems, and finding it a real problem. Incidently I keep my nearfields very low in volume because of neighbors. Any advise would be gratefully received,
  2. audiowkstation

    audiowkstation Active Member

    An equilizer is ok if:

    It is digital and does not produce the phase anomilies analog equilizers do.

    It is not ok if:

    You take it for granted.

    Unless you go with a Klark T or something on that order, analog wise, the slightest movements of certain frequencies will throw the L/R balance off.

    Experimenting is the key. If you simply learn how your mix should sound without EQ, on your monitors, to translate, this is the best meathod. I applauld the fact you took the time to discover this. Again, many non professional loudspeakers (consumer) do have "built in" low frequency reinforcement. Also remember, folks do use their bass controls...so you have to find that happy medium.
  3. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    I would suggest that your room is the problem and not the speakers. You probably have bass modes around 125 that are canceling certain bass frequencies in your room, making you turn up the low end to compensate. The minute you take it out of the room to another system it sounds bassy. Try using some corner bass traps in your mix environment . You can look at some corner traps @ http://www.foambymail.com./CornerSolutions.html
    I'll bet that's the fix....Fats
  4. Allan F

    Allan F Guest

    Hi again, thanks for your replies, I will try to explain a little more.
    I am using cubase SX and Logic audio and my mix goes thru a Mackie 1604 VLZ Pro then to a switch box that goes to either my yamaha monitors or I can switch to a couple of different hi fi systems with there own speakers, the speakers for all the systems including the Yam msp5s are about 3ft away from me, and at ear level. As I said I keep the volume low so that it does not upset my neighbours, so not so sure if it is a bass trap problem, it would be great if it was! Can the bass problem really be a cause of concern being that my volume of the speakers are so low? I have a good selection of eq plugins, and what I have been doing is set the eq on my mix to sound fine on different hi fi units (all in the same room and position as my Yams) Then switching the hi fi's eq's to jazz, rock, classical, and setting my eq in my sequencer mix so that it sounds fine on all settings of the HI Fi's, but when I switch back to my msp5's it sounds lifeless no bass, so I have to re eq my mix again for my Yams, when I do a eq for the Yams and switch back to the HI Fi.s there is to much bass and as I said I have to cut the 125hz quite a bit,so thats why I am wondering if I should put a eq before my yams to imitate various HI Fi systems. I would be grateful for any more advice,
    Thanks again,
  5. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    What your describing is a common problem between some pro and hifi setups. the yamaha's you have are small, bright, and midrange heavy. The hifi's tend to have a low freq boost and a recessed mid range, and switching back and forth between them will make you feel like "what the hell". Listening at very low volumes on the yamaha's doesn't help either. The yamaha's probably roll off around the same area the the hifi's boost so you might be adding frequencies when mixing on the yamaha's to compensate and then when you switch over, the nightmare begins. I think the problem lies in the small yamaha's. instead of buying an eq to try and fix their problem, I would look into a larger efficient speaker. Something that can be driven at low volume and still produce low freq's. Maybe even a good pair of headphones could help in being able to listen at louder volumes without disturbing your neighbors. There is no quick fix in getting something to sound good on all systems. Most of it is experience and knowlege of your system and how it translates to others. Usually problems in translation lie in freq's below 125hz and above 12khz (in my experience). If too much content lies beyond these freq's, you will get drastic differences from system to system. But you need something that can reveal this or else it's all just guessing and experience. A lot of guys mix on NS10's and they judge their low end not on what they can hear, but on how the woofer is moving. But you need some volume to get that woofer moving. Hope this helps a little.
  6. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    I agree with everything Michael said but I still think your problem would be solved by trapping the room. All of the problems described revolve around the 100 to 125 hz.region. I'm willing to say there are some major bass nodes / room mode things going on there. There usually is in rooms smaller than 14' with 8' ceilings. If you address the room anomalies you will be better able to hear the low end of the Yamahas at 125 hz. or so. You can probably hear the bass on other speakers better because they are giving you more low end response around all the peaks and nulls in the room response thereby being more audible however inaccurate……. Fats
  7. Allan F

    Allan F Guest

    First, I want to say a big, big thank you for your professional advice, I really appreciate your comments and advice.
    What large self powered monitor speakers would you advise that I can work with at a low volume and still hear the low end? hopefully not to expensive!
    My room is 9ft wide by 14ft in length by 8ft high,
    My monitors are in the 9ft wide area and they are about 3ft from the corners of the room and 1ft 4ins from the wall, also they are on swinging brackets at ear level. Would it help if I re-arange my setup to fit in the wide 14ft area?
    I will certainly look into the bass trap advice, many thanks you for your help. I just want to be able to get my music to sound at least reasonable when aventually I can take some of my music to friends and not be embarrased, so still learning and by your patient advice, get there in the end!!
    Many thanks again,
  8. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    I have a similar problem on here!
    I had finished the sequencing, tracking, mixing, mastering of a song of mine which bass patch was the A54 bass from the JV/XP Roland series.

    Everytime I played the Ab (G#) or neighbor notes in a specif low octave, I could hear that note jumping out of the mix.

    However, I listened at my car stereo and some other places and there was that huge mid bass build up. So, it was not a problem specific of my control room. I had to retrack the bass sequence. I combined that patch with another Bass patch, cut heavily at 125Hz and now it sounds quite good, but not perfect.

    This week I recorded 2 bass guitars at different sounds, oka they were not Music Man or Factor nice basses.. The same happened.

    Sometimes I check via headphones or add a dbx166 to make the bass sit down.

    I would like totake some advices of yours concerning this bass trap technique.

    I have 2 rooms: a very good sounding room with no parallel surfaces, made of stones, wood, very little sonex panels on some some parts of the ceiling and an awful too old dead approach acoustics.

    I know MR. John Sayers shall be the right guy on this..

    Would anyone be willing to help me with an easy sollution for that? I have a bmp file with the dimensions of the room, etc. I want to eliminate all that sonex and a small vocal booth that is inside the control room, that somehow made my sweet spot become a square place, which is awful...
    I just can not belive that the Brazilian pro company could have done such a big mistake at that time...

    Anyway, let us see what we can do..

    Many thanks in advance!!
    Nice thursday!
  9. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    just to clarify:
    ROOM (1): live or semi live, good acoustics

    Room (2): Control room, completly dead, sonex clone over both walls, carpet over the floor, small vocal booth inside making th mixing "not so sweet spot" become almost square. the sweet spot with ticker real sonex inside.

    Sorry for not putting the complete info!
  10. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    recommending monitors is like fixing someone up on a blind date and not knowing what their tastes are. The best thing you can do is start by putting together a collection of your favorite CD's (don't forget to include some of your own work, and things you know to sound bad). and start listening to systems where ever you can. Note the amps used as well as the monitors. This can take some time to do because of the shear number of choices out there. You will begin to narrow the field down to a handfull and find out what your tastes are in monitors. Some like big bottoms, some like a forward mid range, some like sparkly hi's. As far as placement in your room, try some different approaches. move them around, a little forward, a little back, a little wider, a little up. You'll be amazed how different the same speakers can sound by moving them around. You can basically eq the monitors by placement, just like mic techniques. When you find the monitors, amp, and placement you like, finish tailoring the sound with room treatment. There are several things you have to pull together to get to where you want to go and you may find that as you progress in this process, you will reveal new ideas. A pair of monitors may sound great with one amp and bad with another. A darker monitor may come together with a brighter amp etc... The more you begin to learn the characteristics of all of these components coming together, you'll be able to take this experience with you into the control room and turn out a better product.
  11. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Micheal, you mstered Maurício Manieri! He is Brazilian, funk/soul style.!
  12. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Thanks for noticing Alecio, I mixed both of his albums and mastered the last one. I've also worked on Skanks big album, Andriana Calcanhotto's live album, Pato foo, L4, Mr. Jam, and a ton of other stuff Dr. Dudu (Edwardo Marote) has done. I usually go to Brazil once a year to work on something so maybe we can grab a drink sometime.
  13. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    greaaaaaaaaaaat! I am far from São paulo, But maybe we shall plan something. In fact I live in a very nice place, 43 beaches no big violence problems like são paulo or Rio, places that I imagined that you had been. So.. do you bring all your stuff together or work at Dudu´s place?

    The Cds you mentioned I have previously heard in Brazil. Adriana Calcanhoto greatest hits is one of the Top 10 best sellers on here.

    My email is studiodp@terra.com.br
    Shall I send ya some audio either?
    Nice friday! :w:
  14. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    43 beaches, that's my kind of place. I usually work at Dudu's place in Sau Paulo, but I prefer Rio :p
    Is Adriana's greatest hits the live album? Last I heard, it was doing really well. Sure, send some Audio. I would love to hear what your working on. Have a great weekend.

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