3 EQ Mistakes We All Make!

3 EQ Mistakes We All Make!

Matthew Vere
Matthew Vere

Table of Contents

1. Overusing Sweep EQ

The problem with boosting a narrowband and sweeping it up and down the spectrum is that everything will sound bad, causing you to remove too many of the frequencies. Everything is going to sound obnoxious when you’re boosting a single band by 10 to 20 dB. This method is only warranted when you can hear something problematic but can’t find it without EQ sweeping.

Trust yourself to make correct decisions based on what you hear.

If nothing is sounding offensive in a mix, don’t go searching for something, lest you end up with a lifeless project.

2. Not Using High and Low Pass Filters

Where are the energy build-ups happening? Where could you shave off low frequencies to make room for the kick and bass?

If you’re listening to an instrument and not hearing a reason for it to have excessive low or high end, remove it.

Sculpting the high end with low pass filters is critical to achieving a well-balanced mix that’s in line with how people are listening to music today.

3. Applying EQ to Solve Problems That Aren’t Persistent Throughout The Whole Mix

Don’t remove mud from an instrument that’s persistent in one area of the track, but is essential in another. Use a dynamic EQ that responds to the frequencies as they become problematic. Automation could be another option, albeit, more time-intensive.

If we always make our EQ decisions based on a specific moment in a song, this may ruin other sections. An EQ decision may work on the chorus, but not the breakdown. Therefore, it’s essential to have a much more global perspective, not listening to one section on repeat, but how the EQ choices interact with the whole arrangement.