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When recording, mixing down, and mastering, we always come across those 3 different EQ options. Many ask, what is the difference between them and which one should I use. here is a little information to help you get started.

The one most of you will be familiar with is the Graphic EQ as shown in the example below. The faders are arranged from low to high frequency. The are set to a specific frequency. The graphic EQ is most often used to control feedback or to get the sound you want out of an instrument. In a recording environment, once the feedback is taken out of the room, the settings usually stay put.

Parametric EQ you will find to be very different from the Graphic EQ. They permit you to choose exactly which frequency you want via the Frequency setting and the Q control. A wide Q will center your frequency around a broad group of frequencies which will all be affected. It is a very broad adjustment. A narrow Q will only affect the frequencies within the narrow Q.

You can also set the Q to affect one sole frequency. This works well if you have a single frequency affecting your mix. You can easily isolate it and adjust accordingly. Software such as Cakewalk Sonar 6 Producer comes equipped with its own internal software version of all the varying types of EQ's in this article.

Paragraphic EQ is similar to the parametric EQ in that you can chunk out areas of frequency, but it does not give you the Q. It is a nice medium between a Graphics EQ and a Parametric EQ. It is very applicable for live sound, but we are seeing more and more studios putting the Paragraphic EQ to work.

I hope this helps to understand the differences, similarities and applications of these different types of available EQs.

Tinamarie Hite(Dae) is a musician and a sound engineer. She has over 20 years experience in the music business. Her experience covers a wide range of subjects from jazz theory to recording to the know hows of booking, gigging and live stage setup. She is currently working on several music projects. These include singer/songwriter productions, The Acoustic Duo, Cd recording, and a new band. Putting her experience to work comes naturally.

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