Can an equalizer lower the bass in speakers

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Shawn.G, Dec 19, 2002.

  1. Shawn.G

    Shawn.G Second Unit

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    I know an eq can't take the place of a sub, but can it come close? My Polk R40 floorstanding speakers have bass, but I need to get a lower frequency response. So, can an equalizer do this?
     
  2. Matthew Todd

    Matthew Todd Second Unit

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    Hi Shawn,

    I don't think an equalizer will work.

    Most people are using an equalizer to flatten out the bumps in frequency response caused by room interaction, etc.

    Where there are dips you may be able to bring it up some (although if the dip is a result of cancellation, you'll still have a dip no matter how much you boost that frequency), but only if the speaker is already capable of producing the frequency you're interested in.

    I don't think an equalizer is capable of extending the low frequency response of your speakers. You're probably better off spending that money on a sub (or saving for one).
     
  3. Shawn.G

    Shawn.G Second Unit

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    There you go, saving for one! I'm going to build an awesome sub when I get the money. Anyway, I think the Polks will have enough bass to get me through until a sub is built. I just wanted to know if the eq would lower the fr. Thanks.
     
  4. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Actually, Shawn, you can use equalization to extend the response of a speaker. A speaker’s response will roll off naturally at so many dB per octave below a certain point – say, 12dB/octave at 60Hz. The correct filter – bandwidth, frequency and boost – could easily extend response another octave – even more. Companies like Bag End are noted for this technique, using equalization to extend the acoustical response of their subs a full two octaves.

    The caveat is that extending low frequency response is only accomplished by moving more air. This means greater cone movement is required of the woofer, which of course means it will bottom out easier unless it is specifically designed to handle such excursion.

    So, the trade-off of equalized extension is that you will not be able to play the speakers as loud as you otherwise would. While in some applications this might not be an issue (listening to music in a small room at moderate levels, for instance) it usually doesn’t fly for home theater, because movies have much more bass energy than music, and people typically listen to movies louder than music.

    Bottom line, for optimal bass performance – extension and output – it’s best to get a sub, as Matthew recommended.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  5. Shawn.G

    Shawn.G Second Unit

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    I'll get a sub later. I have an eq now. Can it be used to lower the fr of my mains noticeably? I have a 12 by 10.6 room closed off, and I don't listen to the music very loud. And it is used for 2 channel music mainly, with the occasional xbox gaming.
     
  6. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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    Shawn,

    Adjust your equalizer to boost the low frequencies if you need more bass. You'll reach a point where you're asking too much from the speakers to deliver (you'll know as they start to slap and smear the bass) and a sub is the best route.
     
  7. GeorgeTW

    GeorgeTW Stunt Coordinator

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    An equalizer IS a filter.

    By selecting a frequency, you isolate that value for a deviation away from the rest of the band, and this is why sometimes extreme adjustments don't sound so good.

    You can either make the isolation a sweetener, or a sourpuss maker. Let your ears be the guide.
     

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