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EQ settings for orchestra
Last post Thu, Jun 19 2008 by clarkcontrol, 9 replies.
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Posted on Fri, May 09 2008 11:30
by hetoreyn
Joined on Sat, Nov 27 2004, Vancouver, British Columbia, Posts 1159
Hi guys. I've been toying with Reverb and position for so long now that I think I've gotten that down .. at least to a point where I'm happy .. but what I don't have seems to be is the right EQ for each instruments. For instance I find that when I listen to a piece of my own music there's a lack of bass on the Bassi .. and yet the EQ settings are arranged to give a little pronouncement to them .. and when compared to a hollywood recording, (where the bass is quiet yet booming .. so it's really hard in the bass range). That's just one example .. I think all my instruments could use tweaking.

.

Hehe .. what I need is a pro engineer to do all this for me :P

.

Well can't quite afford that yet so does anyone have a list of EQ setting preferences that you use and are happy with. Or is there any published works concerning EQ, I'd be interested to see that. :Sigh: .. as if reverb wasn't trouble enough.
Hetoreyn
http://www.hetoreyn.com

Mac Pro 2013 - 3.5 ghz, 32 Gig RAM (Master)
27 inch iMac i5 2.7 Ghz 16 Gig RAM (Slave)


Pro-Tools 12 (Native), Mbox Pro 3
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Posted on Fri, May 09 2008 13:42
by john_1332
Joined on Thu, Feb 13 2003, Posts 109
Hi Hetoreyn, I can't give you precise EQ instructions, but I do have some thoughts about bass in film mixes (I'm sitting in a film mix as I type this). In 5.1 mixes we often send part of the basses discretely to the LFE channel, or sometimes (as in this film) we'll both send some bass signal to the LFE and then make an aux that goes to the LFE with a subharmonic plugin, which creates an additional bass one octave lower. If you listen to this in a two-track environment, that .1 track should get put evenly in left and right, although sometimes it may be dropped. If you listen to a film soundtrack on a CD, it is probably a mix made for the CD, so the above would not apply.

In short, I wouldn't do too much EQ'ing to the contrabasses themselves, as you'll lose some of the character of the sound. If you feel you don't have enough bass, you might want to look into an enharmonic plugin, such as the Waves MaxxBass, or the Aural Exciter Big Bottom (not as good). I know you use Logic, and there is a built-in Logic plugin called SubBass. I haven't used it, but give it a shot.


One further thought, I always pan bass more to the center for a film mix then one would in strict orchestral seating charts. I think if bass it too far to the right it is distracting (I remember being distracted at the 5.1 remix of Close Encounters by the basses -- in the Dolby orginal mix they would have drifted more center in the matrix). Further, I remember an interview with Danny Elfman where he said in the Psycho remake they placed the basses in the center of the room to recreate the mono string sound of the original. When I'm mixing music for films, I always route some bass to the center.
Posted on Fri, May 09 2008 21:03
by hetoreyn
Joined on Sat, Nov 27 2004, Vancouver, British Columbia, Posts 1159
Hmm .. very good points. Thanks for the advice. Sounds like you've had plenty of practical experience at this .. I should interview you for the next Podcast tech topics :D I'd love to sit in on a recording session just to see what the engineer does. Anyways, thanks again for your in-depth answer. I have tried Sub bass .. but haven't really tried it to it's fullest yet .. I'll look at it again.
Hetoreyn
http://www.hetoreyn.com

Mac Pro 2013 - 3.5 ghz, 32 Gig RAM (Master)
27 inch iMac i5 2.7 Ghz 16 Gig RAM (Slave)


Pro-Tools 12 (Native), Mbox Pro 3
Logic ProX
Notion SLE

VI Pro, VE Pro, MIR, Vienna Suite, Omnisphere, Slate Digital Plugs.
Posted on Sun, May 11 2008 14:45
by Rob Elliott
Joined on Sun, Feb 02 2003, Salt Lake City, UT, Posts 1657

Often I will 'double' (or in just spots) a synth 'subbass' with DB's / low brass - which gives that very bottom end power without masking all the already abundant mids and low/mids in many orch arrangments.  I used just the simple Monologue synth found in Cubase - I bet Logic has a free VST that will do the same (just look for a simple round sounding sub bass sound). 

Depending in the material change the patch's attack and decay.     Also I leave the DB's right ( where they are suppose to be) and put this synth in the middle - or even sometimes left (narrow spread.)

Hope this helps.

Rob 

what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?
Posted on Mon, Jun 09 2008 13:59
by Peter Roos
Joined on Tue, Jan 07 2003, The Netherlands, Posts 477

On moving the bass "content" more to the center:

I wonder if there are good plugins that can route the lower parts (say below 150 Hz) of the basses (and tuba?) to the center without introducing audible (phase?) problems near the split frequency. Think "active bass management" in the mixer...

The higher frequencies will then still give the appropriate positioning, while the lower basses are distributed more evenly over the speakers (in a stereo mix that is).

Curious,

Peter

Peter Emanuel Roos
www.PeterRoos.com (music)
www.Samplicity.com (IR libs)
Posted on Mon, Jun 09 2008 16:00
by jasensmith
Joined on Tue, Jan 15 2008, Arizona, Posts 1582

Say Hetoreyn, this might a bit off subject and I have no experience mixing film scores but aren't most sound systems in movie theaters and home theaters set to boomy base anyway?  Maybe the previous posters can correct me if I'm wrong but I remember reading somewhere that film scores are mixed with a little less bass than usual because they know that the average modern movie theatre sound sytem today is EQ'ed with a lot of bass.  Aparently, bass is in fashion these days.  If they mix it with a normal amount of bass then it's over bassed when it gets to the theatre and sounds muffled.  Again, please bear in mind my previous disclaimer of not having any experience mixing film scores. 

Love the podcasts btw!!!  I appreciate your blood sweat and tears on that because they've been a wealth of good information and music.


"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There's no point in being a damn fool about it."
- W.C. Fields
Posted on Mon, Jun 09 2008 17:03
by Angelo Clematide
Joined on Thu, Sep 08 2005, Posts 1139

Certified cinema theatre are calibrated to 105.00 dB SPL maximum at the nearest seat to any speaker. The calibration is done with a -20 dB uncorrelated white noise to 85 dB SPL for all speakers on, or 83 dB SPL per single speaker. Mixing is done at the same calibrations; once you calibrate you mix place, you hear the same dynamics as in the cinema. Basically any studio monitoring can be calibrated to this loudness standard, also the low cost stuff from the music store

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Posted on Thu, Jun 19 2008 22:22
by clarkcontrol
Joined on Mon, May 03 2004, The Pagan Underground, Posts 315
He's asking for EQ and crossover points, Angelo.

I suggest disconnecting your center speaker in your 5.1 home setup and turning down your subwoofer all the way to hear how music is EQ'd for DVD. This way, you can bring the sub gradually back in to find out how much info they send to the sub. It's different for every movie, so pick your favorite.

Mixing is different for theaters vs. DVD as well. See here for more----

http://www.gearslutz.com...-screen-big-screeen.html
Clark
Posted on Thu, Jun 19 2008 22:33
by clarkcontrol
Joined on Mon, May 03 2004, The Pagan Underground, Posts 315
Of course, this is assuming that you have full range satellites that aren't automatically sending info below, say, 125 Hz (or 150 Hz like Peter said) to the sub like most budget home systems. Even sats that have 3" cones can tell you a lot about bass mgmt. if you monitor at lower volumes (after disabling the auto crossover on the receiver).
Clark
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