Mics and Equalisation

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by IainDearg, Oct 21, 2004.

  1. IainDearg

    IainDearg Guest

    Certain mics are characterised as have a presence peak or other qualities that result in a bumpy frequency response plot. Now, and please correct me if I'm way wrong, but was the "original" purpose of EQ not to "correct" these irregularities? If this is the case, to what extent is this accepted practice today? Can not most, if not all, mics be viewed as a device that can be manipulated quite legitimately by way of EQ, whatever its frequency response curve might indicate?

    Most discussions on EQ appear to me to be with regard to its creative / sound sculpting abilities - not with regard to equalisation, at all! Is this because everyone's got perfect mics and perfectly tuned recording spaces? I'm a bit puzzled.

  2. LittleDogAudio

    LittleDogAudio Active Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    I guess it depends on the type of music you are recording.
    When I record a jazz tune, I try to use the flattest mics and the cleanest mic pres. I find that I will almost never touch an Eq with this setup.
    Same would be true for a string quartet.

    A hard-rock song will be a completely different story. I'll use any means at hand in order to "shoe-horn" things together and keep clarity. This doesn't mean that I'll fix-it-in-the-mix (always a bad idea) it just sometimes takes more leverage to fit things together.

    I'm not sure if I really understand your question/statement but this is how I do things in my studio.

  3. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    Jun 1, 2003
    Houston, TX
    I would think the microphones "curve" will give the sound a "charachter", and actually "enhance" the sound source (if the mic is properly selected to the source, and overall context of the production).

    EQ's will add harmful phase distortions, and most people would likely prefer a mic who's curve compliments the source, as opposed to a "flat" mic and then adding EQ for the desired effect. Some form of EQ is usually unavoidable, but the charachter of a mic is usually perferred over EQ'ing a signal.

    I'm not sure if EQ began as a way to "flatten" mics, or as a tool to to reduce feedback in a Public Adress type scenario (I'm pretty sure we had "loudspeaker/Mic" systems before we had audio recorders anyway). I guess they were initially used to "flatten" the speaker/mic combination, as any peaks would be prone to feedback, or a lower PA volume (like for old-school Presidential speeches, etc).

    Now, maybe a real engineer will reply?


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