Updated: May 12
"How to record good vocals with Digital Vocal Equalization on any DAW", It's a burning question for all singer-songwriters and producers today. Digital Vocal Equalization is an essential tool for music producers who want to create high-quality vocal tracks. By using EQ, you can adjust the frequency response of an audio signal to make the vocal sound more balanced and polished. There are two types of equalizers, Graphic EQ and Parametric EQ, and each offers different levels of control. As a music producer, you can use various EQ settings for vocals, such as cutting the muddiness in the vocals or boosting clarity and presence. You can also use techniques like spectrum analysis, narrow/wide bandwidths, and EQ automation to improve the vocal sound. It's important to keep in mind that EQ is just one tool in the mix, and you should use it in conjunction with other processing tools like compression, reverb, and delay. By following these tips and techniques, you can create a well-rounded vocal sound that fits perfectly in your mix and takes your music production skills to the next level.
Understanding Equalization: Equalization is a tool that enables you to adjust the frequency response of an audio signal. It helps you to boost or cut specific frequency ranges to make the vocal sound more balanced and polished.
Types of Equalizers: There are two types of equalizers: Graphic EQ and Parametric EQ. Graphic EQs have a fixed set of frequency bands, and you can adjust the level of each band. On the other hand, Parametric EQs offer more control as you can adjust the frequency, bandwidth, and gain of each band.
Vocal EQ Settings: Before making any EQ adjustments, it is important to understand the frequency ranges of human voice. Generally, the fundamental frequencies of a male voice range from 85Hz to 180Hz, and for female voice, it is from 165Hz to 255Hz.
Here are some basic EQ settings for vocals:
Use a High Pass Filter (HPF) to remove unwanted low frequencies below 80Hz.
Cut the frequencies between 100Hz to 400Hz to remove muddiness in the vocals.
Boost the frequencies between 2kHz to 5kHz for clarity and presence.
Cut the frequencies between 4kHz to 8kHz to remove sibilance (harsh 'S' and 'T' sounds).
Use a De-Esser to tame the sibilance.
Vocal EQ Techniques:
Use a spectrum analyzer to visualize the frequency response of the vocal and identify problem areas.
Use a narrow bandwidth (Q) when cutting frequencies to avoid affecting neighboring frequencies.
Use a wide bandwidth (Q) when boosting frequencies to make them sound natural.
Use EQ automation to make specific adjustments during different parts of the song.
Final EQ adjustments:
Once you have made the basic EQ adjustments, it is essential to listen to the vocals in the context of the whole mix and make final tweaks. Remember that EQ is just one tool in the mix, and it should be used in conjunction with other processing tools like compression, reverb, and delay.
In conclusion, Digital Vocal Equalization is a crucial step in creating a polished and professional-sounding vocal track. With these tips and techniques, you can achieve a balanced and well-rounded vocal sound that fits perfectly in your mix.