Drum & Bass QUESTION ABOUT EQ'ING LOW FREQS - PLEEEEZE HELP!!!

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#1
Hey guys, I want to share what I do to eq the low frequencies involving the subbass, kick, snare and main bass to ask if you do it the same way or if you know any better ways to do it than me.

I use Fab Filer Pro Q to low cut/high pass things at a 48dB per octave slew rate.

35 - 70 Hz - this region is only used for sub bass (just a sine wave, nothing else)
70 - 100 Hz - this region is for the kick. I still side chain the kick with the sub bass to get extra clarity down there.
100 - 20KHz - this is for the main bass sound
200Hz - this is where the snare peaks so I cut a chunk out of the main bass sound to allow for this, and also usually sidechain the main bass to the snare so the snare cuts thru more.

Mud in the main bass - I find this is usually around 250 - 500 Hz so I listen for it by combing through with a freq band at plus 15 Hz and then cut it out.

Is this what most of you do as well? I have had mixdown problems recently which have prevented me from getting a couple of songs released (the labels liked the tracks but wanted me to work on the mixdown and I couldn't get it right).

I was also told the bass should be a straight slop from 30Hz all the way to 20 kHz, but I find there is a lot of mud in the bass if I do this.

I appreciate your help with this stuff. Thanks!

Xenflex
 

Eternaloptimist

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#2
hey man, 48db cut might be too steep. also find the exact freq for your snare and kick and only boost that freq if you have to. this works vice versa when cutting out from the bass. i know a lot of people just go into the eq and boost 100 for the kick and 200 for the snare. your snare could be at 210 for example.
mixing is a bitch man.
 

Skuff

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#3
They are basic rules of thumb number wise. Doesn't mean every sound you use will be in the exact same point in the spectrum.. You need to combine the visual with the actual sound and not count on one or the other.. Agree with the above post too
 

Elzerk

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#4
Yes. This^

Every sound is different, try getting something that'll show the sound visually, so you can see how every sound sits in the spectrum.
 
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#5
Thanks guys. I do use a spectrum analyser on every track and those numbers I quoted were just a rough guide - of course I do check if the snare peaks at 212 Hz for example and boost there.

Interesting that a 48dB cut might be too much, thanks for that advice.

Another question - do any of you have the sub bass ranging from say 35Hz up to say 190 Hz and cut a hole in it for the kick?
 

Nydus

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Thanks guys. I do use a spectrum analyser on every track and those numbers I quoted were just a rough guide - of course I do check if the snare peaks at 212 Hz for example and boost there.

Interesting that a 48dB cut might be too much, thanks for that advice.

Another question - do any of you have the sub bass ranging from say 35Hz up to say 190 Hz and cut a hole in it for the kick?
If it's in the region of 35hz - 190hz it's a lot more than a SUB Bass really. Notch filtering to make space isn't a bad idea, though.
 

Binary_UK

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#7
What I find, is there is no hard and fast rule. Do what sounds right, and dont be afraid to try stuff you might think wouldn't work initially, accidents are how some of the best tracks have been born ;)

what I find with some is I usually have it sitting from 30 - 85hz or so, sometimes, higher, it all depends on what it sounds like.
 
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#8
Thanks for the advice man.

What kind of slew rate do you use to low cut and high cut the sub? 12dB per octave? I've been using 48dB to cut it and to high pass the kick and snare but some have said this may be too extreme.

Another issue I'm having is getting the main bass to sound deep enough. I've tried changing the key, having one oscillator an octave lower, eq'ing it with a low shelf to raise the low mids, etc. But I can't quite get the bass to sound as deep as it does on a lot of professional records. Does anyone have this problem or know how to fix it? I'm using Ableton and Massive most of the time.
 

lostnthesound

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#9
For my sub I apply a heavy hi cut (48db) around 80-100hz depending on the key of the tune as well as the fundamental freq. of the kick. I'll roll of everything under 30hz with the curve of the slope usually quite steep (24db - 48db). For the low end in general, I think having your kick and bass tuned properly makes all the difference in the world.

I know what you mean about getting that deep bass sound. Layering/resampling are key, however, it's definitely easier said than done. What I mean is the challenge is finding the right combo of bass sounds (or synth) that mesh well together AND figuring out how to creatively enhance the layered sound as a whole. This is something I've really been focusing on recently when creating synth sounds, but have a ways to go.

What's been working a bit for me lately is layering a thick, slightly dirty basic waveform with a heavily modulated/mangled mid/mid-hi wave/wavetable form.

Also, if your bass sounds ends up sounding too stereo or lacking low end centering, look into utilizing a specialty plugin (ex. Ozone) that will "monoize" your mid-low/low freq content while keeping the width of the higher frequencies. If you don't have one in possession, then you can always split the bands of the sound, keeping the low portions mono.

Hope this helps, I'm definitely interested in others' responses.
 
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#10
definately about modulation in the mids. I havent quite mastered it yet, just going mad with filters, chorus, phaser etc and automating everything to complement each other, i've had some ok results by doing this, but like i say im still learning. Also when it comes to sub bass i've found a 30hz cut has saved me barely headroom (if any) and can create strange resonance in your sub frequencies, so IMO steer clear of that, just use a pure sine oscillator in your patches for low end and the bottom should be pretty clean..

Hope I helped
 

RUSSLA

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#11
definately about modulation in the mids. I havent quite mastered it yet, just going mad with filters, chorus, phaser etc and automating everything to complement each other, i've had some ok results by doing this, but like i say im still learning. Also when it comes to sub bass i've found a 30hz cut has saved me barely headroom (if any) and can create strange resonance in your sub frequencies, so IMO steer clear of that, just use a pure sine oscillator in your patches for low end and the bottom should be pretty clean..

Hope I helped
This all depends on how good your filter is tho, decent filters like TBK don't introduce any resonance whereas something like the built-in Logic channel EQ will slightly. just my thoughts.
 
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#12
I've tried a lot of EQ VSTs and my favourite is FabFilter ProQ - it has a built in spectrum analyser, adjustable zoom range and speed of response. Also has adjustable slew rate up to 48dB. Beauty!
 

lostnthesound

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#13
This all depends on how good your filter is tho, decent filters like TBK don't introduce any resonance whereas something like the built-in Logic channel EQ will slightly. just my thoughts.
So true!

The irony is that using Logic's dedicated low pass/high cut filters rather than the Channel EQ to apply aggressive cuts doesn't produce that slight "ring" you get with the channel EQ. Yet another unexplained Logic mystery...
 

RUSSLA

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#14
Ha that's so gay! I never use that little low cut plugin cos it seems so basic and always resort to the Channel EQ as its just a simple double click at the top of the strip :/ This is why Ableton rules cos almost all in-built plugs have a mini EQ attached meaning you can EQ each plugin separately - Too cool!
 
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