A gun. "The parole dude (commissioner) asked me where I scored for (stole) the equalizer. He says 'Don't tell me you found it in a garbage can. That story, I heard.' Funny, I was just gonna spring with (offer) that gag (lie)."

- american underworld dictionary - 1950
Electrical device that is used for adjusting sound. Often referred to as EQ. The cheap EQs only let you adjust bass and treble, while the most common ones (and the more expensive ones) let you adjust all frequencies.

EQs became popular in sound engineering during the 50s. Today EQs are used EVERYWHERE where there is a concert, theatre, or anything else that requires sound engineering. EQs allow the technicians to decrease the volume of frequencies that have ugly sounds, while increasing others. EQs are also good for preventing feedback by lowering the threatening frequencies.

Today we have both analogue and digital EQs. Digital EQs have the advantage of being smaller by having multiple lines connected to one control. The downside with digital EQs is that its easier to mess things up, since you sometimes adjust the wrong line.

Electrical components such as TVs, amplifiers, mixers, and CD players usually have at least one built-in EQ.

An equalizer works by creating a feedback loop with a audio device while dissecting the signal into individual frequencies. Equalizers primarily are used to flatten the frequency response. This is done by redirecting the wattage from the selected frequencies to another frequency. The idea is to fine tune a system with an EQ, major sound adjustment can be made by relocating the speakers or upgrading to a better system. A good system will have less need for equalization.

Frequency is the measurement of how many times the current alternates between negative and positive per second. The frequency spectrum is read using a logarithmic scale and divided into octaves. Equalizers are classified by the amount of frequencies or bannds they can control. An one octave EQ will have 7 to 9 bands, and an one-half octave EQ can control around 15 bands. Last but certainly not least is the EQ divided into one-thirds octaves. With 30 diffrent controllable bands, they're popular with most nightclubs and studios.

There are two types of equalizers, graphic equalizers verses parametric equalizers. The easiest to work with is the graphic. Normally the graphic EQ has vertical sliders, each slider controls a frequency range. Graphic equalizers allow you to see what frequencies are being effected and exactly how far from zero dB's a given band is set. The down side of a graphic EQ is, it's fixed frequency range limits what it can control. A parametric EQ has adjustable frequency ranges, but is controlled by visually unreliable knobs. Adjustable frequency ranges are a big issue with concert systems because feedback can occur on an odd frequency boundary requiring something more flexible than a graphic EQ. Experience and measuring equipment are most likely needed when tuning a parametric equalizer.

To complicate the matter even more is the way in which the EQ can be set up. Shelving is when the EQ above or below a set frequency is attenuated or boosted, creating a shelf in the frequency spectrum. Bell equalization is when a specific point with in the spectrum is attenuated or boosted. The further a way from the point the less the frequency will be effected.


E"qual*i`zer (?), n.

One who, or that which, equalizes anything.


© Webster 1913

E"qual*iz`er (?), n.


= Equalizing bar.


A device, as a bar, for operating two brakes, esp. a pair of hub brakes for an automobile, with equal force.

3. (Elec.)

Any device for equalizing the pull of electromagnets; also, a conductor of low resistance joining the armature ends of the series field coils of dynamos connected in parallel.

4. (Aëronautics)

A sliding panel to preserve the lateral stability of an aëroplane.


© Webster 1913

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