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Thread: Equalizers

  1. #1
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    Equalizers

    They used to be very commonly used in high end audio systems. I had one in the '70s. So, what are your feelings about equalizers in home audio systems? Both parametric and graphic. I was reading about Schitt's Lokius parametric EQ on their website. Almost infinite tone shaping possibilities.

    In my particular situation my listening room is relatively small and I only have one option as far as speaker placement is concerned. All other space is taken up by furniture and other "obstructions." An equalizer would yield any number of tonal alternatives and sound modifications. You can even do some room tuning with them. My ears are 71 years old and my ability to hear top end frequencies is likely compromised. OTOH, my audio system already sounds outstanding and perhaps an equalizer wouldn't add anything.

    What ever happened to equalizers? They seem like a very practical and useful component.
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  2. #2
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    Re: Equalizers

    Really? 80+ views and no replies? No love at all for equalizers? I still wonder why they lost popularity?

    Songs in the studio are virtually endlessly equalized and manipulated. Why should we think recordings are perfect coming out of the studio. A touch of equalization here and there can really wake a recording up. I remember a Youtube video with Steve Guttenberg discussing equalizers. He looked upon them very favorably and thought there was definitely a place for them in high end home audio systems.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  3. #3
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    Re: Equalizers

    EQ's in the 70's were basically money makers, a fad, everyone had the big smily face on them. Most introduced noise. And, even better if it had lights.

    In order for an EQ to even be effective you'd need some feedback on the room, a spectrum analyzer. Many home theater components have built-in software and get feedback/measurements on the room via a microphone. Some of this equalization software is finding its way into 2-channel with mixed reviews from what I see. Some people rave about it, others don't even use it, not liking the effect. I do use the Audessy on my processor and like it quite a bit for HT, a nicely flat response.

    In my opinion the level of gear you have I can't see an EQ doing much positive. The Schiit piece would provide some tone control, without any experience I can't say if noise or degradation would happen. It would be only something you'd tune by ear as nothing to measure your room response.

    I never used an EQ in my home systems, not evenback when I had receivers. I had a nice EQ with parametric in my car once, seemed like I was adjusting it all the time based on album or song, I grew frustrated with it and vowed not to do that again. So I buy gear that sounds good to me to begin with, and accept all albums sound different due to production.

    Meaning your system has a basic response, each album will sound good or not so good based on its production quality through your system.

    Hell man, you are an audiophile now! We don't even use tone controls. If we don't like something, we replace it. Yo got to get off the porch to run with the big dogs, LOL

    Seriously, not all albums are going to sound great through a great system. And it's not the system's fault.
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  4. #4
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    Re: Equalizers

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    EQ's in the 70's were basically money makers, a fad, everyone had the big smily face on them. Most introduced noise. And, even better if it had lights.

    In order for an EQ to even be effective you'd need some feedback on the room, a spectrum analyzer. Many home theater components have built-in software and get feedback/measurements on the room via a microphone. Some of this equalization software is finding its way into 2-channel with mixed reviews from what I see. Some people rave about it, others don't even use it, not liking the effect. I do use the Audessy on my processor and like it quite a bit for HT, a nicely flat response.

    In my opinion the level of gear you have I can't see an EQ doing much positive. The Schiit piece would provide some tone control, without any experience I can't say if noise or degradation would happen. It would be only something you'd tune by ear as nothing to measure your room response.

    I never used an EQ in my home systems, not evenback when I had receivers. I had a nice EQ with parametric in my car once, seemed like I was adjusting it all the time based on album or song, I grew frustrated with it and vowed not to do that again. So I buy gear that sounds good to me to begin with, and accept all albums sound different due to production.

    Meaning your system has a basic response, each album will sound good or not so good based on its production quality through your system.

    Hell man, you are an audiophile now! We don't even use tone controls. If we don't like something, we replace it. Yo got to get off the porch to run with the big dogs, LOL

    Seriously, not all albums are going to sound great through a great system. And it's not the system's fault.

    Great post! I learned some things. I think we were a little more tolerant of component induced noise in the '70s. I remember a slight hiss while my system was idling. Not sure where it came from. But I do remember that hiss was kind of expected and many people had it in their systems. It would never be tolerated now. I had an ADC stereo 10 band EQ but I ran it flat most of the time. But, don't worry, I have no plans to add an equalizer to my system. I love my system just the way it is. Thanks for your response. I appreciate it.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  5. #5

    Re: Equalizers

    I had a Sound Craftsman EQ back in the 70's and 80's. Back then I was willing to accept some noise and veiling of the sound to get the overall balance right. There is no way I would use one again.

  6. #6
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    Re: Equalizers

    Even back in the day I was not a fan of equalizers. If a piece has tone controls or not is fairly irrelevant to me, I always play the music flat controls even if they are there.
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  7. #7
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    Re: Equalizers

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post

    Seriously, not all albums are going to sound great through a great system. And it's not the system's fault.
    I just got 40 albums back I gave away in 1986 in the same state as they were. The first one I played was an old favorite Songs in the Key of Life and it was fun to hear but sounded like crap. The bass was to forward and boomy. I disengaged Line Straight for a few where I have the bass backed off a little. My wife says switch it back, it still sounds better without it.

    Then I played my old Weather Report album and it sounded fantastic.

    I agree that all recordings are not created equal but I refuse to fiddle around for every song, disk or album. I just acknowledge that the recording sucks and enjoy the music.

    If you want to talk about equalizers, AudioKarma site with all it's Vintage members swear by them, but then again maybe that type of gear needs it more
    -----------------
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Equalizers

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