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Topic: EQ or Reverb First?

  1. #1

    EQ or Reverb First?

    I am just curious to see what everyone recommends. I am creating a new composition I usually don't use any EQs in my projects, but I am going to in this one. Which comes first the EQ or the Reverb? My theory is if the EQ is placed on the instruments before the reverb it edits the frequencies without messing with the natural sound of the reverb, but putting the EQ for last can shape the entire sound but mess up the natural reverb. Which is the correct way to tackle this?

  2. #2

    Re: EQ or Reverb First?

    Your theory is correct. Use equalization before reverb, otherwise you will EQ the reverb and that's not desireable.

    In case the reverb imparts a tinny or bassy sound, do the opposite of the above or better still, use a reverb that works well without equalization.


    Larry G. Alexander

  3. #3

    Re: EQ or Reverb First?

    I'd agree with Larry on this. When you apply reverb to a track that has some undesireable frequencies, you're amplifying them and trying to EQ them out later can get a bit messy. You'll get better results by applying any EQ first, then sending signal to the reverb (in most cases).

    Generally speaking, effects like EQ or compression are used as inserts before adding any aux effects like reverb, chorus, etc.

    On the other hand, there really aren't any rules around this and if you like the sound, go for it.
    Justin Phillips
    Senior Product Manager
    MakeMusic, Inc

  4. #4

    Re: EQ or Reverb First?

    Justin and Larry have given you the goods, Richard. Though mixing is an art, and there are countless ways to do things, it's really a rule to stick to, doing EQ and all other processing before you finish off with reverb. That ambience is to be added to the sum total of your sound, however you've crafted it.

  5. #5

    Re: EQ or Reverb First?

    Thanks for clarifying this guys.

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